Well University is done, I am moved back home and I am off to start teaching Kindergarten in less than two weeks.
I can’t believe how much everything has changed, and how fast it has all happened!
I recently met 1 of the 2 kindergarten classes I will be teaching and talked with the classroom teacher whose room I will be taking over during her maternity leave.
I am somewhat overwhelmed with all of the information, and advice I had to take in that day! I was not sure what to expect accepting a position that starts in May, however many people had mentioned how I would be just given the plans and it will be all more or less done for me.
However, I am to choose my own themes and plan my own lessons and with this position starting in two weeks am going into panic mode, and spending countless hours on Pinterest looking for ideas!
I will be sure to keep my blog updated with photographs and posts about my experience!
If you have any resources/blogs to follow/people to add to my pln that may support me in this adventure please share!
Thanks everyone for a great semester! I have learnt so much from each and everyone of you!
Feel free to watch my final summary of learning below!
Hey everybody! I know its a little late but here is the link to my interview with my mentor Zoe Bettes.
She has taught me many valuable things and inspired me greatly to use technology in the classroom.
I know I haven’t been great at keeping up with blogging the past week, but I have had a crazy week!
I’m sure everyone is getting excited, because most of us 4th years have one more week until we are DONE!
However, I wish this last week wasn’t going to be as jam packed as it is and I’d have a little bit of time to enjoy it!
With the final projects in this class, as well as final presentations, projects, and papers, I swear everything is due on the last day of classes! Ahhhh!
However, to lighten my stress a little bit, I can happily say that I have accepted a Kindergarten Position in Kipling starting May 7th and running until the current teacher comes back from maternity leave!
I am so excited to finally be doing what I have worked the last four years to achieve! I can’t believe its real!
I am incredibly nervous, as I’ve never taught Kindergarten before and am more geared towards grade 4, so if anybody has any resources or advice I would greatly appreciate it! 🙂
Also, I will finally completing my interview with my mentor tomorrow, so keep your eyes open for that! 🙂
Today I taught my first lesson over Skype!
I taught a reading lesson about “point of view.” The students had some prior knowledge of what this means so the lesson went pretty smoothly.
However I ran into a few challenges with technology! The video began freeZing and the sound cutting out! As well, I struggled to hear the students answers unless they came right up to the computer. All in all, it was a fun experience and I think the students all learnt something!
For an assessment the students are going to write their own “diary of a…” Story from the point of view of any animal they’d like, and post this on their individual blogs for me to read!
I’m so excited to read what they have to write and see if they learned what I had aimed at teaching them! 🙂
After hearing our visitors in ECMP 355 tell us about many awesome tools and apps I explored a few of them. Most of them I had never heard before and am now excited to spend time learning how to use, and finding uses for them in my future classroom.
The site that instantly caught my attention was Padlet. This site is essentially a blank piece of paper on the web, as quoted on their homepage. You can add text, videos, links, pictures, etc to this blank page. It is available from anywhere with internet access and you can change the privacy settings so that only you can see it, or so that others can add to it and it can be a collaborative project.
I read on one of my classmates blogs that they would use Padlet for a space to have all of their brain breaks avaliable and ready to use when they are needed. Another classmate suggested that they should have this page open so that other teachers can add their brain breaks! I think this is an awesome idea.
The one idea I had to use Padlet for was as a brainstorming activity, or as an exit slip/assessment activity.
Students could all post up what they have learnt/ what they know about a topic along with their name, and then it is all saved in one place. As well, if students do not finish they can save what they have and theres not the risk of them losing the paper they were writing on, as it is saved online. Here is a screenshot of a general idea of how I would use Padlet.
P.S Throughout this class I had been wondering which apps to use for screenshots and had never gotten around to downloading an app or something to do that for me. Today, in my research I learnt how to do a screen shot on a mac, without an app. Now, I might just be way behind the times and everybody might already know how to do this.. but I was amazed that I could do it almost as simply as I can on my Iphone. All this time I thought it was much more complicated. So Mac users if you don’t know how to take a screen shot..
Press command and shift, then the number 3. It will take a screenshot and save to your desktop.
You want me to code?
In ECMP 355 we recently learnt about coding. Now when I think about coding I think about the work that the Software Developing Engineers I know do. When I heard I was expected to code I was terrified! I was thinking that I am not tech savvy, I am never going to be able to do this, and how in the world will this be useful in the classroom?!?
However, throughout the session and my further research, I have learnt that there are many practical ways to engage students with the use of coding.
For my tech task I explored the EspressoCoding site that Dean had told us about. I was nervous as I logged on but I really enjoyed how user-friendly, even kid-friendly that it was! It was simple to figure out and even fun to play around with! I found myself making up stories in my head as I used codes to make the characters move around.
Here is a screen shot of what I was working on:
I could see students using this program in the classroom to tell or re-tell stories! I was very pleasantly surprised with this program and would definitely use it in my classroom!
What did you think of Espresso?
After having a very interesting ECMP 355 session, learning about storytelling as teaching from Alan Levine I thought long and hard about the use of story telling in the classroom. I definitely think stories are a very effective way to teach. I know that I learn best and am most engaged in university classes when we are taught using personal stories.
For this tech task I chose to complete two assignments from the DS106 Assignment Bank. I found this site very cool! By reading other students’ blogs, as well as exploring the site I have seen many awesome options of assignments that would be fun and engaging to use in the classroom!
The first assignment that I chose to do was called My Favourite Lyric. The assignment asked the individual completing it, to find a photograph that represented one of their favourite lyrics. The lyric that I chose was from one of my favourite bands Switchfoot’s song This is Your Life. I found a photograph that I had taken just before a storm. Now, Switchfoot has many other songs that speak more to the storms than this particular song, but for some reason the lyrics and this photo seemed to go together.
This assignment can be done using all sorts of photo editing/photoshop apps. However, I just used the photo editing option on my iphone to add the text! There are many free apps/programs you could download for students to be able to do this assignment. I think this would be a very engaging/exciting activity for students to do. I think that you could adapt it all different ways. You could use it to create images that fit with a certain quote from their reading, or a line from a poem. You could even use it for science, finding images that fit with the topic the are researching and adding text to the photograph to explain. This is definitely something I could see myself using in the classroom.
The next assignment I chose to do was another visual assignment. It was called Focus on One Color. For this assignment, I looked through previous photographs of mine wondering which may look neat if only one color was focused on and the rest were left black and white. I think in the future if I was to do this assignment, I would take a specific picture with this activity in mind. However, the photograph I chose turned out quite neat! It was a photo I had taken during the holidays of a gingerbread house I had made. By focussing on the color red I think it made the photo look quite cool.
To create this photo I downloaded an app called One Color Focus. It was quick and simple to use. There are many other apps, as well as photo shop that you could use to create a photograph like this.
I think in elementary school, which I plan on teaching, there aren’t a whole lot of uses for this kind of assignment other than in art/design type classes. Let me know if you all have any suggestions of how I could use this with elementary students!
I apologize for being MIA the last little while.
Reading Dean’s post I realized how badly I need to get better at keeping up with blogging!
Blogging is something I would like to use for communication with parents, professional development, and as a way to enhance my students learning. It just seems that right now, with so much going on I am having a really hard time keeping up with it!
I, like the majority of 4th year students have been busy with job applications, interviews, and other stresses that life has thrown in the mix. I am once again fighting a nasty cold and feeling like this semester has knocked me down.
There is 22 days left until classes are officially over. Can you believe it? Hello real world!
My goal is in these last few weeks to post as much as possible and connect with others as often as possible.
I hope to keep my blog active, and keep expanding my PLN as I go out into the teaching field.
This Friday I get the chance to teach a reading lesson over Skype for my mentorship. I am teaching about point of view. I was planning on using the Diary of a… books to teach this lesson. Does anybody else have other suggestions of books for this topic?
In my ECMP355 class, we the students, have been paired up with incredible knowledgable teachers from across the world who use technology in their classrooms in new and innovative ways. The teacher I got paired up with name is Zoe Bettes and she teaches grade 3 in Thompson, Manitoba.
We meet at last!
I had the opportunity to meet her and her sweet class via Skype last week and it was a blast! I got a window into each student and their personalities, learnt about their class and school, and had an opportunity to introduce myself and answer a few questions.
Through this mentorship, Zoe and I have a few activities planned for me to interact with the students through. I will be interacting with them via their class twitter, as well as on their individual blogs, on kidblog! In addition to this I am going to have the opportunity to read to the students over Skype and teach a mini lesson on a reading strategy.
When I mentioned one of my interests is snowboarding, the students and Zoe expressed interest in that, therefore, I am going to try and teach a lesson on snowboarding! I think I am going to use a GoPro camera and try and tape some things. However, I’m not very great at snowboarding yet..so it could be interesting! I am not entirely sure what I am going to teach, or how I am going to conduct this lesson.. but I am super stoked to do it!
If anybody has any advice, or ideas feel free to share them!
I am super excited for this part of the course because I get to interact with actual students and learn a lot from my mentor Zoe! 🙂