Archive | August, 2011

Working with Technology! You can do it!

8 Aug


Differentiated Instruction: Getting Personal with Technology

By Grace Rubenstein



Forest Lake Elementary in Columbia, SC has developed over the years into a technology magnet school.  Every teacher uses some form of technology in their classroom every day. Teachers use technology to differentiate learning. Students are very well acquainted with technology so teachers use it as a pathway to educate their students. Students at FLE are assessed in lots of other ways than with paper/pencil and not all students are assessed the same way.  Teachers and staff are encouraged and supported through training and helping each other learn. Forest Lake has embraced technology and their students are benefiting!


New or Interesting Concept:

I find it very interesting that Forest Lake’s building isn’t new. They are using all electrical outlets! One would usually associate technology with “new”. This is a prime example of overcoming obstacles. I also find it interesting that teachers at this school aren’t all young. Younger generations usually embrace technology a little easier than some others. Younger generations are more comfortable with technology because they have been around it more.


My Response:

I think it would be fascinating to observe for a day in a technology magnet school. I use my Promethean board everyday for almost every lesson, but how neat would it be for my students to have their own interactive board? I think it would be great to use technology to help me assess my students. My students love technology (they know much more about it than I do) and I wonder how they would perform if we used it more and more in the classroom?


How do you teach in the 21st century?

1 Aug

Teaching In the 21st Century



            Teaching in the 21st century is very different from teaching 15 years ago. Teaching now is different than teaching five years ago. Technology is becoming more and more prominent and necessary in our classrooms. This video made me think about my teaching methods as teacher. I asked myself the following questions, “Do I teach my kids how to Google or do I just say ‘Google it’?” “Do I give my students an opportunity to present their work in some form other than paper/pencil?” “Are my students engaged in learning?”I need to remember that technology in the classroom isn’t about entertaining my students, but engaging them in learning. Luckily for me, my students’ minds are sponges. They absorb information so quickly that it sometimes leave me breathless. I can easily take the ten minutes or less to show my students how to properly ‘google’ something. I can easily watch a PowerPoint, Prezie, etc just as easily as read an essay. I AM teaching in the 21st century and I need to get with the program!

Give the learning to your students!

1 Aug

Giving Up Control

By J Bevacqua


Summary/New or interesting concept/ My response to article – All in one paragraph this week!


This blog belongs to principal that actually still teaches a course! How amazing is that?! In this entry, he describes his latest assignment for his students. He allowed each student to research and discover the answer to any question of their choosing. The one thing I found most interesting is that this assignment wasn’t for a grade. Students wanted to know, so they learned for their own pleasure. He gave all aspects of this project to his students! He gave up the control! As a teacher, I know how hard it is to give up the control. We have been taught to give all the information (rubrics and requirements) up front to the students and in my case to the parents. Allowing the students to make all decisions is a great way to teach responsibility and hold them accountable for their own learning. In my personal classroom, I think I would love to give my students a project where they could make their own discoveries, but I wonder how the parents would feel about giving up their control of supervising. . . ?

NETS‐T Response Standard Five

1 Aug

Standard 5:

Engage in Professional Growth and Leadership

Teachers continuously improve their professional practice, model lifelong learning, and exhibit leadership in their school and professional community by promoting and demonstrating the effective use of digital tools and resources.


a. participate in local and global learning communities to explore creative applications of technology to improve student learning

b. exhibit leadership by demonstrating a vision of technology infusion, participating in shared decision making and community building, and developing the leadership and technology skills of others

c. evaluate and reflect on current research and professional practice on a regular basis to make effective use of existing and emerging digital tools and resources in support of student learning

d. contribute to the effectiveness, vitality, and self-renewal of the teaching profession and of their school and community



Teachers should use technology tools in creative ways around the community to help students learn. Teachers should model leadership in the area of technology, by being a life-learning of technology and help teach others. Teachers should want to learn about the most current and up-to-date technology resources.

 My strengths in this area

I feel as if I am and want to be a lifelong learner when it comes to technology. I try really hard to at least know the new and different tools out in the world. I want to learn! I am still young enough to not ‘be set in my ways’ yet. In fact, I am trying to figure out what works! Technology is always changing and I love to follow the newest trends. I would like to point out that I remember when Facebook was strictly for college students!

My weaknesses in this area

I need to be more willing to share what I do know. I sometimes think it is easier to do rather than teach, especially unwilling adults. Instead of being the one to always make a PowerPoint, I need to sit down and show my peers how to do it!

Get on Board with Technology!

1 Aug

21st Century Learning in New Brunswick, Canada

By New Brunswick Department of Education



This video emphasizes the point that technology is growing and we, teachers, need to get on board or be left behind! I think in order to really communicate with our students we must be able to keep up with them in ‘their world’ of technology.

As I watched this video, I began thinking of the evolution of cell phones. I am young enough that they have been around since I was in elementary school. I remember the bag phone that only worked in the car. Then I also remember the Zack Morris phone! (Hopefully you understand the reference.) Cell phones used to be huge and you could only send and receive calls; now phones are small enough to fit in your pocket and we can search the web!

I completely agree with the video that the technology my third graders are using today, will not be the same when they graduate high school in 10 years! Technology can be frustrating! Just when you have one program/gadget/tool figured out, something new comes out and the learning process starts all over again. I am going to share this video with my school staff to hopefully inspire some teachers to use more technology in their classroom AND to keep learning!