Monday, August 13, 2012

A Day in Mattawan

It most certainly has been awhile since I have been blogging. I completed my master's program and have been working on remodeling my basement. But now, my desktop is set up again (Yes! We have a desktop!) and I have been getting the blogging bug again.

Before I post one of the hundred and one blog posts that have been percolating, I have the opportunity to present tomorrow at Mattawan's Tech Camp. :-) Without further ado, below are the resources I'll be presenting on video production with kids.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Faster than a speeding train

I jumped into my superhero and hero unit with second grade hoping inspiration would come my way. talking about heros and superheros with the kids is hard work!! I was hoping to problematize the manner in which superheros solve their problems (with uber-cool superpowers and a lusty amount of violence), but let's admit it ... the problems superheros tackle in popular media are generally circumstances in which violence may be justified ... at least in some circles. Discussion on the necessity of violence at all is a whole different blog post, I think.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

QR Codes in the Classroom handouts

Presenting ... my session handouts for QR Codes in the Classroom. Raid my Public Dropbox and enjoy!

Oh, and I hope to see you there at #macul12!  Seriously, do say hi. :-)

Making iPad Apps Work in the Elementary Classroom Handouts v.1

Wow! I can't believe #macul12 is nearly upon us!

Here is the link to my handouts (version 1) for my SigEE Precon session on iPads in the Elementary Classroom. They are in PDF now, but I am awaiting them to be uploaded to the iTunes Bookstore, where they will enjoy a life of hopefully many downloads, many updates, and some really cool interactive features that PDFs simply don't offer. Until then, please enjoy the static version of our handouts. As soon as they post to iTunes, I'll send out notices via our MACULSpace forum, Twitter, and a post here.

Can't wait to see all of you there! We're expecting a full house and we're going to have a great time together! If you have a device, please DO bring it along. We've mentioned several free apps in our handouts and recommend you download them ahead of time to your device. We'll be playing with several of them throughout the session. We'll only cover free apps during our session in depth, although there are some paid apps in our handouts.

Can't wait to see you there!!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Have you forgotten something, Dr. Bloom?

I was reading Center for Media Literacy's Literacy for the 21st Century from the MediaLit Kit this evening (all in the name of my capstone!) when I was struck by the parallels between the media literacy processes and good ol' Bloom's Taxonomy (Revised, of course!). Now, never mind the knowledge dimension for just this bit. My brain just couldn't take that addition right now.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Demystifying Student Research: Part 2

I confess: I'm really excited about this series! I suppose I really could expand this series into, well, I guess a whole blog, huh? But I think a miniseries is good. (And this way I sort of look like I know what I'm talking about!)

If you want to know more than what I'll share here, find out what your local librarian takes in his/her coffee and stop by Starbuck's. Librarians and Media Specialists are the true experts when it comes to this stuff. Sadly, too few work in schools anymore. School libraries are being run by paraprofessionals and volunteers, and while that's well and good if all you need is someone to manage a book collection, we have lost a tremendous source of knowledge. This research stuff is tough to teach! 

Demystifying Student Research: Part 1

I love and hate the messiness of research. I don't mind messiness myself, but it is a matter of providing support to students so that they too can navigate messiness. I think that is the challenge and the reason why so many of my research activities have blown up in my face in the past. Without a doubt the biggest mistake I've made is trying to do too much at once. Giving the kids too much responsibility at once is the easiest way to have a research project fall apart.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

One step closer

I am finally in my capstone! I am delighted to know that the end ... yes, and the start of BIG loan payments, is close. But the end is in sight.

Meanwhile, I am suffering from monstrous writer's block. I am supposed to be writing the first part to my curriculum development project right now, outlining my journey and interest in my subject area. But goodness! It sounds like I have a stick stuck ... you know what I mean! So, here are my rambles just to get my brain "turned off" and my fingers moving. Thank you for subjecting yourself to it.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Possibilities of iBook Author

OK, forgive me ahead of time, for I am not the resident expert on Apple products by any means. Only today did I learn how to remove apps from my iPads in iTunes (no joke). But everyone has an idea about iBooks Author. I might as well chime in what I'm thinking seeing as it hits pretty close to home.

As a technology coordinator for a STEM elementary school, it is my job to maintain an iPad lab of 30 devices. To manage the lab, I have a Macbook (nope, not Pro, not Air, just a Macbook). Still, I love the setup and I enjoy searching the world for apps for my students to use.

I was teaching when the big announcement about iBooks 2 and iBooks Author was made. Watching my Twitter feed, I watched it blow up with some ecstatic responses and some exasperated responses.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

When kids ask great questions ...

Awful writer's block today, but thankfully my students haven't caught it.

Just a quickie today: featuring some of the great questions my students have asked pertaining to media literacy:

  • Is a name media? 
  • Are tornado and fire alarms media?
  • Can something be technology AND media?
  • How can digital books help us become better readers?
And there's more on my walls in my classroom. Not bad considering I feel helplessly clueless when it comes to teaching inquiry. My students have awesome questions! (And to think these are from my first and second grade students!!) 

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Please Educate Yourself

Thousands of websites have gone blank today in protest of SOPA and PIPA. Do you know what they're fighting about? Please get educated and take a position.

"The darkest places in hell are reserved for those who maintain their neutrality in times of moral crisis." Dante Aligheri

What's your stand?