Sunday, March 24, 2013

Chapter 9: Creating and Sharing Information with Multimedia Technologies

Focus Question

How can teachers use video resources in their teaching?

     Teachers can use video technology to further solidify certain knowledge within the minds of their students.  Videos and DVDs convey important information.  They can also be used to simplify or summarize certain topics.  Many teachers include a "follow-a-long" worksheet to be completed while watching the video in order to make sure the viewing is not a passive experience.  I personally have found that videos are a good way to stimulate interest in dull subject matter.  A video can easily take the viewer out of the classroom and into the real world, to a place where they would not normally be able to visit, such as the inside of a volcano.  Videos are therefore a great supplement to in-class learning.

Tech Tool Link: The Futures Channel

     The Futures Channel is a collection of short video movie clips that are related to jobs, careers, and future opportunities available in the areas of mathematics, science, technology, and engineering.  The site also includes a collection of lesson plans and related teaching resources.  The clips and other resources give students an idea of how subject areas such as math and science are applied in everyday life by people working in very diverse fields, from theatre to marketing.  The website is very diverse.  Students can see videos about animals, such as this one about the Black Footed Ferret, and just a few clicks away they can see videos about space science, such as this one about Revisiting the Moon.   
     The Futures Channel is a visually appealing, easy to navigate website that seems to be very useful to teachers and students alike.  It allows teachers to create stimulating curriculum that will engage the students. This website can easily be used as a supplement to subjects in order to solidify information and stimulate further interest in a topic.  This website can be used to inspire interest in certain careers.  Therefore it can inspire determination and the desire to continue with schooling. 

Summary and Connections

     This chapter was full of information on using multimedia within the classroom.  I found the section on photo taking and movie making by students the most interesting.  Having student make their own videos is a way of having students show their teachers and their peers what they have learned and how they perceive certain topics.  I personally have found that movie making by some students is effective, whereas movie making by others is not.  This all goes back to what type of learner the student is in particular.  I find watching a video, rather than making my own, is the most effective way of instilling a concept.  Others find that while watching a movie, they cannot concentrate and therefore cannot grasp the concept, where on the other hand, if they make the video themselves the desired concept is solidified.  


Maloy, Robert, Verock-O’Loughlin,Ruth-Ellen, Edwards, Sharon A., and Woolf, Beverly Park (2011). Transforming Learning with New Technologies. Boston, MA: Pearson Education, Inc. ISBN:10 0-13-159611-X, ISBN:13 978-0-13-159611-5 

The Futures Channel. The Futures Channel.  Web. 24 Mar 2013.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Chapter 8: Communicating and Networking with Websites, Blogs, Wikis, and More

Focus Question:

How can teachers use wikis to promote collaborative learning?

     Wikis are created and maintained by multiple users from different computers.  Due to the fact the users can use different computers to work on the same "project," wikis allow for collaborative learning. Students and teachers can work together and at a distance.  Wikis make collaborative projects easy to accomplish.  They also allow for the educator to step in at any step of the project to make comments and suggestions. 

Tech Tool Link: Moodle

     Moddle is an online Course Management System, or CMS, also known as a Learning Management System, LMS, or a Virtual Learning Environment, VLE.  Moodle is free and provides the user with an email, online discussion boards, instant messaging, and discussion forums.  Moodle allows for grade record keeping and posting, selective content releases, and filtering options.  
     The site its self is visually appealing.  It is easy to use and free to access.  It provides demonstration websites and videos to allow for easy use, such as the video below:

Summary and Connections:

     Though the entire chapter has useful information on communicating and networking, I found the section on strategies for using email and IM with students the most interesting.  Email is already a very useful way to communicate with students.  Email can be used to give students reminders or documents that they did not receive in class.  Email can also be used for students to turn in work that they could not turn in by hand.  Email also allows for accountability.  Emails are recorded and easy to look back on over time.  
     Instant messaging, or IM, is useful for quick interaction between students and teachers.  This encourages informal interaction, which, while it might not help students when it comes to grammar, is beneficial to building relationships.  IM allows for fast and easy interaction.  IM is also beneficial for online "office hours" in which the students can quickly get answers for questions they need answering.


Maloy, Robert, Verock-O’Loughlin,Ruth-Ellen, Edwards, Sharon A., and Woolf, Beverly Park (2011). Transforming Learning with New Technologies. Boston, MA: Pearson Education, Inc. ISBN:10 0-13-159611-X, ISBN:13 978-0-13-159611-5 

Moodle. Moodle Trust.  Web. 11 Mar 2013.