Sunday, November 25, 2012

Progress Report for Final Project

Group Awesome's Final Project

For our final project, we chose to participate in the contest for Made At The USA. This contest ask students to create a one to two minute long video that encourages alumni, as well as others, to donate to or apply for admission to The University of South Alabama.

My group and I have been brainstorming ideas and putting our ideas into action over the past two weeks. The first week, Nancy sent Michael and I a Google Document that we are each able to make corrections into. In our document, we created an outline with ideas and decisions of how we would like to create our final project.

After brainstorming ideas, we decided that we wanted to record JAG fans in action at the last football game. On Saturday, November 17, 2012, we all three rode together to the football game and took pictures of fans that were tailgating. We also recorded some of the fans cheering on our football team.

This week we will continue to work on gathering pictures and recordings so that we can begin laying out our video! There is still much to be done, but we are gradually getting farther along. I know that we will do a great job in the end!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Blog Post 12

For this week's blog post, our class was assigned to create their own blog post on a concept based on their major or concentration. At first I was a little nervous about this assignment because I had no idea what I wanted to focus on. In order to prevent myself from freaking out or over analyzing the assignment, I stopped and asked myself, "What is one concept or resource of technology that I still do not feel comfortable using in the classroom at this moment?"


This semester I have experienced the challenges of technology and gained knowledge of it's benefits as well. However, there is one resource that I still did not feel like an expert in prior to this assignment. At the beginning of the semester we touched on how blind students can use the computer today to help them with their education, as well as their day-to-day life. Dr. Strange taught us how to always use the "alt" application on images so that someone who is blind can know what the image is displaying. The computer reads the "alt" to those who are blind.

Although, this application did help me to understand a little bit about how the computer can help a blind person, I still did not feel like I could really teach a blind student or direct them in using technology. Now that the state of Alabama is encouraging Collaborative Education in Elementary schools, I feel that it is necessary for me to know and understand all the resources that can be used to include special needs students into the classroom. I want every one of my students to feel equal, and I do NOT want a student to feel like they are any less important or "different" because of the way God created them. We are all equal and deserve the same amount of education. With that being said, for my own designed blog post I chose to focus on the use of technological resources for blind students.

Upon my search, I was surprised at how many instructional videos there are just on YouTube explaining how to use technology with blind/deaf students. I found videos encouraging the use, explaining how the applications worked, and what the purpose of the different resources are. After conducting my research, these are the instructions I created:

1. Before you begin, watch Assistive Technologies for Vision and Hearing Impaired Children. Afterwards, write a paragraph on how this video from Australia can be adapted and seen in The United States as well.
2. Watch the video about The Mountbatten. This video was created by The Florida School for the Deaf and Blind in St. Augustine, FL. Write a paragraph explaining what you learned about this resource and how you would use it in your classroom. 3. Watch the video Teaching Math to the Blind that was created by Art Karshmer at The University of San Francisco. Write one or two paragraphs in response to how this resource could help teach math to your blind or deaf students. 4. Watch the video iPad Usage For the Blind that was demonstrated by Wesley Majerus. What is unique about Wesley Majerus? 5. If you still want to know more, watch the video Teaching Mom What Her Deaf/Blind Child Is Learning On the iPad. This video was created by Denise Robinson to help parents understand how their children are using the iPad to learn.

Now, the second part of this week's assignment is to complete the blog post assignment for myself. I have to be honest, I loved getting to search and put what I have learned in EDM 310 so far into action.

Assistive Technologies For Vision and Hearing Impaired Students

The first video that I picked out inspired me to truly learn more about the assistive technological resources that are created for blind/deaf students. At the beginning of the video there is a clear demonstration of what it would be like to be deaf in a classroom full of students. It is common for humans to over look those who are considered "different". This video really stood out to me because it motivated me to want to help the blind/deaf students of the world. Every child deserves equal and individualized education. I feel the need to make this happen after watching the video from Australia.

Even though the "Assistive Technologies for Deaf and Blind Students" video was created in Australia, it can still be adapted to the lives of American citizens. There is still a need for advancement and encouragement in our special education programs. Sometimes teachers over look these students, or they feel like they cannot truly be included in the class discussions or lessons because of their "disability". However, in my opinion, teachers should be taking advantage of the assistive resources we have today and illuminate the barriers that exist.

The Mountbatten

"The Mountbatten" video showed viewers how blind students can type in their own way. The mountbatten machine allows the student to type through the use of braile. When a student types words through the feeling of the braile on the mountbatten, the words are transferred to a computer or screen. This is applicable when the mountbatten is connected to the computer or big screen. The blind student can be included in class discussions through the use of the mountbatten because when the teacher asks the blind student a question, the student can answer the teacher by typing on their mountbatten. If the mountbatten is connected to a big screen, it can be visible for the rest of the students.

Teaching Math to the Blind

Art Karshmer explained to viewers the negative side to learning math when a student is blind. When a blind student reads a math problem in braile, from left to right, it is linear. By this I mean that the math problem shows up in a straight line. For example, students who are not blind are able to see a math problem in double linear form. In an addition problem, this helps them to realize which number is larger and line the numbers up according to value.

Mr. Karshmer has created a graph board with columns and rows that can hold pieces of braile together in a double linear form. The students pick up the piece of braile and scan it using a scanner that is connected to a computer. They place the numbers in order. They are then able to view the equation in their minds in a double linear form. This can improve the quality of learning in blind/deaf students at a young age. Mr. Karshmer said that his design can be used up to pre-algebra math. Knowing this, I believe it is good that I know/understand how to use this resource because I will be teaching Elementary Education.

iPad Usage For The Blind

In this video, Wesley Majerus demonstrates how blind/deaf students can use the iPad for educational purposes. It is interesting that he demonstrates this technique because he is actually blind himself. He works for the National Federation of the Blind in Nebraska. He joined the federation while he was in college.

During his demonstration he shows viewers how to use "Voice Over" that is built into the iPad already. All of Apple's products are created and designed to be accessible for the blind and deaf. When using "Voice Over" the person using the iPad simply has to double tap the item in which they are requesting to select. You use three fingers and slide them to the left in order to turn to the next page of applications.

He then proceeds to demonstrate how important the iBook is. This application comes with the iPad, and it does not have to be purchased. The students can choose from books in their iBook, or purchase new books off of iTunes. This application is very convenient for blind/deaf students because sometime books are not always immediately available in braile. A blind student can have the book read to them by using their iPad.

Teaching Mom What Her Deaf/Blind Child Learning on the iPad

The last video that I found was simply another demonstration of how to use voice over on the iPad. Before researching about technological resources for blind students, I did not even realize that the iPad had all of these options. I had previously contemplated on whether I would want to purchase a Kindle or an iPad. After discovering another one of the iPad's many features, I know that I will definitely be purchasing an iPad as my next big investment. I believe that this device will be on of the best investments towards my future classroom.

I hope all of you bloggers enjoyed listening and learning about the assistive technologies that there are for blind and deaf students. Also, I hope that each of you, current or future teachers, will take what you see and apply it to your classroom. I know I will be applying what I have learned when I teach.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Blog Post 11

Little Kids...Big Potential

Big Things
By watching the interview between Dr. Strange and Ms. Cassidy and her personal YouTube video, I had the honor to learn about her first grade students. In Ms. Cassidy's Skype interview with Dr. Strange, she explained to our EDM 310 class that she started incorporating technology heavily into her classroom when she first received five computers. She now has a computer for each student. Of course, Ms. Cassidy teaches in Canada, so I am not quite aware of what kind of financial resources she is given from her country. In America, it would be hard to find a public school system that had a computer for every student in every classroom. However, we do have computer labs in almost every school. Some even have two. With that being said, I do not believe that ANY teacher in The United States has an excuse not to incorporate technology into their classroom.

Today we live in a technological literate world, and Ms. Cassidy pursues this life style to the fullest in her classroom. While listening to her interview and watching her own YouTube video, I learned of the many different resources that she incorporates into her teaching. First of all, she has each of her students create their own blog. By using a blog, the students are required to not only know how to use proper grammar but type it as well. I believe this is a fabulous idea. Not only does it teach the students how to type, but using blogs illuminates the extra use of paper. This is a very economical resource because our world is trying to illuminate pollution by saving paper.

Now, Ms. Cassidy knows that blogging has its cons. Her biggest rule is that her children are not allowed to use their last names in the blogs, only their first name. This helps to prevent unwanted creepers from invading the students personal lives. We all know their are predators out there, but with the right instruction we can teach students how to avoid future conflicts with strangers.

Another form of technology that Ms. Cassidy uses in her classroom is a webpage. She created a class webpage with links to educational websites for her students to use. Each link is represented by the name of the website and a picture. These links allow her students to research and learn new ideas daily. I believe her webpage is a very good resource because it allows the students to search the web freely, but by adding her own links, she shows them what an educational resource is. This way when her students search the web on their own, they know the difference between a "good" website and a "bad" website.

Her students also use Wiki. A previous EDM 310 class actually had hands-on experience with Ms. Cassidy's class through Wiki. When Ms. Cassidy's class created their own Wiki about the alphabet, EDM 310 students made videos in response to help her class to have fun while learning. Ms. Cassidy's class uses the Wiki to explore other cultures as well. They study the different traditions and rituals that other people devote time to.

Ms. Cassidy's class learns to create their own videos and how to use Skype. The students often get into groups to create videos based on what they have recently learned or are learning. This to me is a good way to evaluate the student's mastery of a particular subject. Creating videos can also be a way to incorporate the arts because teachers could require their students to create a song and record it or design a short skit that demonstrates or pertains to what they learned.

The students use Skype to talk with different students around the world. I can't begin to imagine how mind blowing this must be to experience as a child. We didn't even have personal cell phones as children when I grew up. Now kids are getting iPhones at the age of 6! Ms. Cassidy's class uses Skype for other educational purposes as well. Ms. Cassidy teaches her students how to Skype with "experts". By Skyping with experts, the students can ask questions that pertain to whatever each expert emphasizes in.

Another interesting resource the Ms. Cassidy's first grade class uses is the Nintendo DS. Her students are allowed to play a game called "NintenDog". This game teaches the students responsibility because they have to take care of their dog. Throughout the game, the student must solve obstacles that they come across. In order to conquer these task they have to solve math problems.

Over all, Ms. Cassidy shows future teachers what it really means to be technologically literate. She is very good role model of what a true 21st century teacher looks like. She lives and breathes technology in her classroom. I hope to one day be as good of a teacher as she is!

Summary Post C4T #3

Bill Genereux is the third teacher that I was assigned to this semester. He is a known as a "Tech Intersect".

Fragile Kindles

The first blog post that I commented on by Mr. Genereux was pertaining to Kindles. He was a little put out with their quality considering because after having two kindles for only 18 months, he has had to replace them both. He said that Kindles are extremely fragile. He has actually replaced his own Kindle twice now, and he replaced his wife's once.

Here is the comment that I left Mr. Genereux:

Mr. Genereux,

Hi! My name is Amy Archer. I am currently a student at The University of South Alabama. This fall, I am currently taking Dr. Strange’s EDM310 class.

I do not have a Kindle, but I have considered buying one.
I am glad to hear your input on how they function because their sensitivity will definitely be something I take into consideration. I have also been looking into purchasing an iPad as another option. What is your intake on iPads? Have you seen the new video for the “mini iPad”? I heard it is supposed to have similar qualities as a Kindle.

Good luck with your new Kindle!

Amy Archer

Free Range Halloween

The second post that I commented on by Mr. Genereux was his most recent post about Halloween. The idea for his post came from reading a status of one of his friends about Halloween. His friend believes that Halloween is an awful holiday because all children do is "beg" for candy. Also, his friend thinks that the Halloween costumes are too scary and gory.

Mr. Genereux counter-attacked his friends statement by relating Halloween to his own life. He talked about how it is fun when your children get older and can be trusted to trick-or-treat on their own with a buddy. Another concept that he mentions is to take children's "gory" ideas for costumes and turn them into creative, funny costumes.

Headless Em and Friends

Here is the second comment that I left Mr. Genereux:

Mr. Bill,

My name is Amy Archer. I am a student in Dr. Strange’s EDM 310 class at The University of South Alabama in Mobile.

I loved reading your post about Halloween! Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays of the year. I agree with your reasoning that Halloween does get better as children get older. 

I think it is necessary to take your kids Trick-or-Treating at a young age, though, so that when they get older they will know how to do it on their own. You can teach them what streets are safe and how to always have a buddy with them.

One of the reasons I have always enjoyed Halloween is that I get to not only dress up like a character but act the part too without judgement! It is the one night of the year that you can pretend to be whoever you want without having to participate in a play or musical production.

Another reason I think it is important to take your children out on Halloween is for the purpose of teaching/helping them practice their manners. I do not think it is “begging” for candy if the children ask politely for candy and then thank the other person in return.

On another note, I do believe that it becomes begging once the child becomes an “adult”. I do not think it is right for adults my age in their twenties or late teens to walk around from door-to-door asking for candy. If you do not have children with you and you are an adult, then I believe this is what we can call begging. However, that is just my personal opinion.

I enjoyed getting to read your new post! I hope your having a great school year!


Amy Archer

October C4K Assignments

C4K #3

The third student's blog that I have commented on this semester was for a student named Brandon. On his class blog, it said that the teachers for this class are Haggerty, Bradford, Clevette, and McKenzie. It appears to me that Brandon is currently in the ninth grade.

Brandon's most recent blog post that appeared during the first week of October was from the end of September. His blog post was in response to a topic that his teacher/teachers had assigned to the class as a whole. They were to write about the beginning of their school year. Brandon emphasized how excited he was to be in upper school now that he was in ninth grade. He talked about the new experiences in his new school and the new friends he had made.

Here is the comment I left Brandon:

Hi Brandon!
My name is Amy Archer. I am a Junior at The University of South Alabama. I am currently in Dr. Strange's EDM 310 Class.
I love that you are blogging! It is a wonderful experience, and it will prepare you for the real world when you graduate. You are doing a great job of incorporating different colors and making different words bold so that they stand out! Little things like these really grab the attention of other bloggers.
I am glad that your year is going well! My school year has been overwhelming, but I do not mind the hard work. The reason I do not mind the hard work is because I am conquering one semester at a time in order to receive a Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education.
Now here is my question to you: What are some goals that you have set for yourself this school year? How can you make it your BEST school year yet?

Amy Archer

C4K #4

The fourth student's blog that I commented on is a student in a fully online 12th grade AP U.S. & Comparative Government & Politics Course. Her name is Mi. She is in Mike G. Waltney's class at Oregon Episcopal School.

Mi's writing absolutely blew me away! She is an outstanding student. Although, her blog post touched my heart because she prevailed her loneliness from her online learning. She has been frustrated with technology because her class never meets face-to-face. So I decided to take it upon myself and cheer her up.

Here is the comment I left Mi:

My name is Amy Archer. I am a student at The University of South Alabama in Mobile, AL. I am in Dr. Strange’s EDM 310 class. One of our assignments each week is to read students’ blog post from around the world and leave a comment. I have to say, I am more than impressed with your blog post.
You are a wonderful writer, and I cannot tell you how happy I am that I was able to read your post.

You addressed your thoughts and opinions about technology critically, and you made it personal at the same time. I haven’t read something this inspirational in awhile.
I do agree with you that online classes can be frustrating because you do not get face-to-face contact. I do not know if you are enrolled only at an online high school or if you go to a high school each day and take only this class online, but I do believe this class is helping you more than you realize.
I can tell that you are responsible and motivated, so I know that you will make it far in life.

However, I do recommend you take classes that are face-to-face in a classroom if you are not already. Over the past two years in my academic career in college I have taken many classes in the classroom, as well as online. All of my classes are now web enhanced, which means that I have assignments online and resources available for extra help in Sakkai.
You will be ready to enter college head on when you graduate from high school because you are already familiar with blogging and all that technology has to offer.

I know you want that one-on-one attention with your classmates, and it upsets you that you do not see them face-to-face every day, but do not forget how much you are learning through this online class. I am a people person, so I completely understand where you are coming from.
My suggestion to you is to email some of your classmates and set up a study session if it is possible. I have had study groups with classmates from some of my online classes and we would meet at coffee shops and work on the assignments together. I do not know if this is possible for you in your situation, but I hope that you can!

Keep up your hard, diligent work, and never give up! You are an amazing student!

Amy Archer

Surprisingly enough, Mi decided to comment back. Here is the comment she left me in response:

Hi Amy!

Wow, thank you so, SO much for your comment - you have no idea how encouraging it is to hear that you were inspired! Also, you happen to have a serious gift of encouragement in general... it's not every day people tell you that "you'll make it far in life!" So thank you very, very much! That's really, really interesting to here that college classes are more internet-oriented... I thought I might be able to escape it all once high-school ended, but it looks like I have some long years ahead of me. Oh well!

And thank you for your advice - it probably would hugely benefit me to start reaching out to my classmates in a more proactive way, to try and sort of break the tech-barrier in SOME way by making the class experience more personalized. Your study-sesh idea is brilliant, and I'll definitely being keeping that one in mind as we all get closer to the AP exam. Anyway, thank you again so much for you comment - it was a total shot of life!


The interaction I received from Mi really inspired me to keep diligently commenting on other student's blog post. After my experience with her, even though she is miles and miles away, I realized the importance of blogging and commenting on others post. It also gave me another outlook on EDM 310.

C4K #5

The fifth student's blog post that I was assigned to comment on is from Madrid, Spain. The student's name is Manu. He is in the E1A-Bil IES class at Dionsio Aguado Secondary School. Manu is learning English as a second language. His class was required to write a blog post, in English, describing a celebrity. Here is the description he gave:

He has got brown and long hair and brown eyes. He has played in films like Los Mercenarios. People say that he is the best. He has done a lot of films. He has got a hat. He is from the U.S.A. He has got a big nose. (By Manu).

I decided to take a guess, and here is the comment that I left Manu:

Hi! My name is Amy Archer. I am a student at The University of South Alabama in Mobile, AL. I love your class' blog posts about different celebrities! I believe that you are describing Sylvester Stallone. The reason I believe you are describing Sylevester is because he played in the movie Los Mercenarios. In the movie he wore a black hat. He was also born in New York City which fits your description because you said the celebrity was from America.
You are doing a great job practicing the English language! I am currently learning the Spanish language. It is wonderful that your class is blogging and using the Internet to further your knowledge. Keep up the good work!
Adios amigo,
Amy Archer

C4K #6

The sixth student's blog post that I was assigned to comment on was the post a student named Carter. He is in Mrs. Peterson's 7th grade English class. His assignment was to write a post about a character in the book "The Outsiders". He chose to write about the character named "Sodapop". In his post, he listed Sodapop's actions, statements, and the views of other characters.

Here is the comment I left Carter in response to his post:

Hi Carter!

My name is Amy Archer. I am a student at The University of South Alabama, and I am currently in Dr. Strange’s EDM310 class.

I loved reading your blog post! I can tell that you enjoyed reading “The Outsiders”. I have not read the book myself, but after reading your post, as well as Mrs. Peterson’s, I am motivated to read it.

Also, I saw that you root for the Atlanta Braves, and I am happy to say I do too! Keep up the good work!

Amy Archer

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Special Blog Post Assignment

A World Where Grades Will Be Left Behind

USA Today celebrates their 30th Anniversary this year. In honor of their anniversary, the reporters interviewed some of the nation's best visionaries. The purpose of each interview was to gain the vissionaries' opinion of what the world would be like in thirty years.

Mary Beth Marklein wrote an article in response to the anniversary called "A World Where Grades Will Be Left Behind." In her article, she attached the video that USA Today produced to give examples from all the different visionaries on their opinion of how the world will change over the next thirty years. However, the video also included examples that the visionaries believed would remain the same. Education was listed as one of the concepts of society that would still be the same in thirty years.

The reasoning behind this opinion was that there will always be a constant need to learn. Education has always built character in students in order to prepare them for future jobs. This will always remain true as the purpose to educate students. However, I believe the education system will grow for the better in the next thirty years.

The education system can always use new modifications or new technological resources. With these advances throughout history, the education system has increased in strength. Marklein mentions one man's dream for the education system in the next thirty years. Sebastian Thrun has a dream for an education system called "Udacity". He created this institution in January in order to develop a free catalog of online courses taught by professors around the world.

Mr. Thrun was not the first person to try to revolutionize education. Sal Kahn encourages the "flipping" of classrooms. His definition of "flipping" means that students would study videos of lessons at night for homework, and then, complete assignments based on the videos in the classroom. "Flipping" the classroom illuminates the use of books. It also allows the classroom to conserve paper for the environment because the students would not be taking lecture notes, but they would instead be watching videos at home to learn.

In thirty years, Thrun believes that "there will be no more one-size-fits-all". Basically, he believes that in the future, students will no longer have to respond to education. Instead, education will respond to you. In this particular situation, a teacher would no longer have to wait until every child knew a certain concept because of the online courses. The students would learn at their own pace.

Another concept that Thrun believes will happen in thirty years is the disappearance of grades. According to Thrun, "grades are the failure of the education system." I have to agree that I believe grades can often be outdated in the society in which we live in today. In order to truly learn a concept, students should not memorize the answers or their notes to pass a test. That is simply following through the motions of what Dr. Strange calls "Burp-Back Education."

I agree with Mr. Thrun in that the grading system is a failure to our education system. We make students take standardized test, and we teach according to what will be on these test. If we only teach according to this test though, are our students really learning? Or are they practicing to "memorize" the answers to yet another test?

I know that it is important that educators follow the curriculum given by the state so that we can make sure every child is learning the same content in each grade. However, I do not agree with the idea of grading because not every student will understand a concept based on a "teacher's time". Each child learns at their own pace. Grades help us to present a student's progress to others. If a student receives a failing grade in a particular subject, then the student has not mastered a particular skill. In return, the teacher has failed as well because they did not complete their job of helping the student. Overall, I want to make sure I focus on helping my students to master a skill, not for means of a test, but for life. If my students master a concept, then no matter how or if they are tested, they would pass.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Group Awesome Project 11

Blog Post 10

John T. Spencer's Cartoon


John T. Spencer created this cartoon in one of his blog post to mock the commercial that states "Im a Mac and Im a PC". In his cartoon, the "paper clip" is resembling the "PC". The "Ticonderoga" is resembling the "Mac". For those of you who do not know, a Ticonderoga is a more expensive brand of pencils. It took me a second to figure out what he was trying to explain through his cartoon, but after looking at his comments to his post I understood his reasoning. Through his cartoon, Mr. Spencer is trying to show the world that customers get the quality that they pay for. When someone purchases a Mac, they put a lot of money into their purchase but receive far better quality. A Mac can last for years. When customers go the less expensive route and purchase a PC, they believe they are saving money. However, most PCs do not last longer than two to three years.

The Con Academy

John T. Spencer posted a blog post in his "Adventures in Pencil Integration" blog called The Con Academy. He has a very different type of approach to writing, but his style really prevails his ideas well. I had to read his entry several times before I was able to truly understood the point he was trying to make.

He writes his entries in a narrative style of writing that includes dialogue. In "The Con Academy", Mr. Spencer illustrates his conversation with his principal and a salesman. The salesman, Mr. Kahn, is trying to get the principal and school to purchase a series of products from the Kahn Academy.

Mr. Spencer illustrates that there is a difference between teaching and resources. The Kahn Academy sells the idea that their products will help any and every student. However, John addresses the fact that not every student learns the same way, and no product can be guarantee that every student will benefit. He also points out that there is still a need for teachers even if a resource/video can teach students a concept. If there were not teachers, who would be there to answer students questions?

John T. Spencer also addresses that teachers need to implement different resources into their classrooms to benefit every student in a different way. He says that not every lesson will need outside resources, but it is necessary to prepare lessons accordingly. It is important that we, as future teachers, are able to distinguish the resources needed for teaching a lesson.

Why Were Your Kids Playing Games?

Another blog post that I read by John T. Spencer is called Why Were Your Kids Playing Games. In this entry, Mr. Spencer illustrates his conversation with his principal about using "games" in the classroom. The principal catches Mr. Spencer teaching his students how to learn by advanced stimulation and considers this to be a "game".

While talking with his principal, Mr. Spencer argues that children should be allowed to learn in different ways. He was not allowing them to just play games because they were learning through the activity. His created activity was in effect his "resource" for that days lesson. However, the principal still did not see eye-to-eye with John.

In the end, John gets his principal to allow him to create an "algorithm factory". This factory was just another way to work around the system and still implement his creative teaching techniques. The principal wanted Mr. Spencer to use what Dr. Strange calls the "burp back" technique. Basically, this is where the teacher "spits" out information at the students and "places" it in their brain. In the end the students end up just memorizing the concepts and "burping" them back to the teacher in a test. This is not learning, but, instead, simply memorizing.

Don't Teach Your Kids Stuff Please

Scott McLeod is known as one of the best leading academic experts on K-12 technology leadership issues. He is currently the Director of Innovation for "Prairie Lakes Area Education Agency 8" in Iowa. He is also the co-creator of the video "Did You Know?" that I previously blogged about. He also wrote his own book called What School Leaders Need to Know About Digital Technologies and Social Media.

His post was a witty, sarcastic poem that outlined the way society views technology. He wants to instill in his readers that technology should not be viewed in frightening ways. Technology is a great aspect to learning, and if used in the right, academic way, it can be very influential on a student's academic journey. Today, we use technology in more ways than we even realize on a daily basis. If we prevent our students from being able to use these resource, how can we expect them to survive in the real world?

In Scott McLeod's post, he outlines many of the cons that administrators, teachers, and parents give about the use of technology. He says that we "shouldn't" allow students to get on social networks because of cyber-bullying, or we "shouldn't" allow students to search the web because they will look at porn. This cons are so overly used it is aggravating. In my opinion, bullying will occur no matter what in any student's academic career. If it's not through the internet, it will be through whispering in the halls or trashing another student's locker.

I know that cyber-bullying should not be taken lightly, but that is where the teachers/parents need to step in and handle the situation properly. It is the job of the teachers and parents to teach their students/children that bullying is not the answer. It is sad to say, but bullying does not stop just because you graduate high school. I still deal with other students bullying me to this day, but I have learned how to ignore it and live my life without judging others because I have experienced the world for all that it is.

There are predators and stalkers every where you look. I have been followed when leaving Wal-Mart or walking back up to my apartment, but I have learned how to be cautious without staying cooped up inside all day. The point I am trying to address to each of you is that life happens no matter how much you try to prevent it. With that being said, I do not see why students should not be able to use technology to the fullest in the classroom.