Just a refresher for all of my fellow readers: I started this blog as an assignment for my Educational Media Applications at the beginning of the semester. As future educators, it is important for my classmates and me to develop our PLNs — hence, why Professor Brogley assigned us this on-going project!
Throughout this semester, I have followed my classmates’ blogs closely. Today I would like to share with you three of my favorite things that I have learned from some of them so far.
- My classmate Megan–a future history teacher–recently had one of our classmates guest blog for her. Wesley–a future English teacher–shared his knowledge of an extension on Google Chrome called “Stay Focused”. If you are working on a school project on your computer but are worried about getting distracted by other (more fun!) websites, you can use this extension. The extension allows you to limit the amount of time that you can spend on a certain website each day. For example, I could set my allotted time on Facebook to only be 10 minutes per day. It is too easy for me to get distracted or procrastinate when I’m surrounded by technology, so I think that this extension could really help me to “Stay Focused” when I’ve got work to do!
- My classmate and good friend Molly–a fellow broadfield science major–wrote a blog post that I really enjoyed. She found and shared tools that can be used in a flipped classroom. Molly thinks that flipped classrooms are becoming more popular because of the increase in availability of technology, and teachers are going to need the proper tools if they want to effectively flip their classroom. Some of the tools Molly shared included Screencast-o-matic, Powtoon, Wikispaces, and PlayPosit (formerly known as eduCanon). Screencasts were a new concept to me this semester, and I had never heard of Screencast-o-matic before reading Molly’s post. Screencast-o-matic is a free site that teachers can use to record a screencast that is up to 15 minutes long. The teacher can then either save the screencast as a video or publish it to YouTube. I don’t know how confident I would be at flipping my classroom, but I think Screencast-o-matic would be a great tool for me to use if I knew I was going to be gone from school one day!
- I was very happy to see that Paula–a future elementary teacher–asked a former high school teacher of ours to guest blog for her recently. Kris McCoy is our high school’s Instructional Technology and Information Specialist, and she wrote about Future Ready Schools. I had never heard of Future Ready Schools until I read this post. Future Ready Schools use the SAMR model to transform learning and make things possible for students that were previously inconceivable. Kris writes, “Future Ready Schools understand the importance of personalized, digital learning and the need to ‘work collaboratively to transform teaching and learning using the power of technology to help drive continuous improvement…to teach students to become responsible, engaged, and contributing digital citizens.'” She then encourages her readers to learn more about Future Ready Schools at these locations: Office of Educational Technology and President Obama Future Ready. I am going to make it my goal to do more research into Future Ready Schools and how they work!
I truly appreciate all of the incredible information that my classmates have been blogging about this semester. We are not only learning from being in class, but we are also learning from each other.