Tuesday, May 1, 2012

GOOD, Many Eyes, and Reflection

I spent some time checking out both GOOD Labs and Many Eyes this afternoon. While GOOD Labs is incredibly easy to use, it obviously is just a rough tool. I tried using it for it's pie graphing feature, but as a mathematics teacher I wouldn't really be able to use it much in class due to it's lack of mathematical techniques in developing the chart. However, I do think this site would be helpful when making venn diagrams or when making a presentation where you just need to show the relationship between two categories of data. Many Eyes is definitely a tool I could see myself using in the classroom. I love how there are so many tools on the site to use to display data and all of the different graphing options the site has. I look forward to playing with it more in the future. Overall, I think 14 Things to Tame introduced me to some sites and tools that I will implement in my classroom, and some that I probably will not. In particular, I now use RSS Feed (Google Reader) almost daily, and have used Glogster and Creative Commons in my classroom. I also plan to use both Screencasting and Voice Thread next year as a tool. More importantly, I think participating in 14 Things to Tame has inspired me to be more adventerous in my teaching. I think this program has served as a catalyst for change. Our students do not respond well to tedious lessons taught in the same format daily. I think these tools will help me to liven up my classes and result in more engagement from my students. I look forward to continuing to play with these resources when time becomes more plentiful and using them to help me be a more effective teacher. Thanks Sara!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Prezi

Prezi looks like a cool tool to use as an alternative to Power Point, but it seems to have many more capabilities. I use Power Points in both my PreAlgebra and Calculus classes to present new material on occasion. What I like about Prezi is that like my Power Points, once you develop a Prezi, you can put it into your toolbox as a teacher and use it again in the future making modifications as needed. Another thing I really like about it is how you can easily pull together multiple sources from the web or your computer into one presentation. One reason I don't see myself implementing this into my classroom this year is because I just don't have enough time to play with the tool. However, I could see it being very useful in the future and once I get a little more time to sit down and play with it. I also could see myself asking students to use this tool to present material in the classroom. Often times to see how students understand the material, I have them teach it to the class. This may be a good tool to introduce them to which will make their presentations more interactive and exciting.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Voice Thread

I very much enjoyed learning about VoiceThread. It was easy to use, and I think it would be an effective way for students to interact with each other, their teacher, and other students outside of the classroom. I could see this tool being very useful for many different classes, but I did not really find its applications in mathematics incredibly helpful. The examples on the website were mediocre.

After considering how I could use this tool in my class, I thought that it might be an effective way to test students knowledge of the sequential nature of certain mathematical processes. For example, when my Calculus I and II students graph a polynomial without a calculator there is a series of steps (at least 6) which they must follow. I could post a problem and require students to post different steps to the problem to develop a solution. This would require them to understand the material well enough to explain it to their peers and also force them to join the problems at different steps in the process.

While I do find many of the other tools of 14 Things to Tame more useful for my class, it is possible that I may use this one in my classes as well.

Check out the sample VoiceThread above, and explore some of the VoiceThread in Education examples
Sign up for a VoiceThread account
Add at least two comments to the VoiceThread I created, one of which must be an audio or video comment.
Write a blog post about your experience using VoiceThread, and how you might use it with students.

Creative Commons

As a math teacher, I never really considered copyright infringement (is that even what it's called?) as a problem. Most of my classes integrate technology through iPad applications for practice and as a resource for me to show the students new processes and skills. However, I do sometimes make PowerPoint presentations to present material to my classes, and I use pictures that I stumble upon online. I never really considered the fact that the way I was going about this may not be entirely legal. However, looking through creativecommons.org and at the blog you shared on 14 Things to Tame, I think I have a few resources to pull from for my presentations.

I also have my Mathematics in Athletics students create presentations on different sports involving statistics, physics, and other mechanics. It would be interesting for me to share the information I learned with them about citing the material and the pictures they choose for their presentations. It never really occurred to me before that the pictures on their cover pages or in their presentations belong to someone else. I think introducing them to this site will be helpful for the students and will be a useful tool for them to have at their finger tips as the move on to college next year.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Thing 10 - Glogster

Glogster seems like a pretty straight forward and easy to use tool. While it is not a tool that I think I will use often to teach, I think it is something that I may have my students use to present information on a topic they are studying. Specifically in my Mathematics In Athletics site, I think it is a great way for them to bring together videos of the sport they are researching, links to specific statistics of that sport, and display graphs and data for a presentation to the class. Glogster also may be effective in teaching my PreAlgebra students a new topic. I could include a Khan Academy video, and links to helpful websites on the Glog. It would be a good point of reference to ground my students in unit and I could link practice problems and quizzes to the Glog.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Thing Link



After watching the short video on 14 Things to Tame, using Thing-Link is straight forward. I had no problem editing your picture and adding it to my blog after viewing the tutorial.

I think Thing-Link is a really cool tool to use as a history teacher when trying to talk to a piece or event in history. I'm not quite sure how I would use it as a mathematics teacher besides maybe tagging a picture with different websites where students can play math games for practice. I look forward to looking for ways to use this tool in my class or for my students

Friday, February 24, 2012

Screencasting

So I have always wondered how our librarian came up with her presentations with her voice in the back round showing exactly what she was doing on the computer screen.  I thought it was cool, but wasn't sure if I would ever have a use for it. After reading our current "assignment" I struggled to think of how I could use screen casting for my classes or as a teacher. 

However, after thinking for a bit, I realized how much I struggled to explain my students homework assignment for tonight.  They are to complete a practice on the Khan Academy website.  So I created the following screen cast.

video