Monday, July 16, 2012

Tool #11

The tools I see myself using the most over the school year are:

  • blogs- communication with and among students, communication with and among other educators
  • Google docs- students all already have accounts so this is an easy place to start
  • PhET- great simulations for chemistry concepts that cannot be seen by the naked eye
  • Today's Meet- a way to have class discussions as students travel around stations
Through this training I have realized that I want technology to become a part of the daily routine in my classroom and not just events. I realize that I have to take the time to plan to incorporate technology it will not just happen. There must be thought, organization, and time in my plan to make it become integrated into the class. I believe I am willing to do this.

I did not have any big unexpected outcomes except that technology integration is one of my new goals for the year. I am hopefully that it will help to make my classroom more student centered and differentiated.

11 Tools are complete!

Tool #10

Things I want to students to remember about digital citizenship:

  1. Whatever you post/write/text/email is permanent. Someone can track it down.
  2. Do not believe everything you read. Make sure check the source of the information. And always give credit when credit is due.
  3. Cyberbullying is NOT okay. Please report it.
I could see myself using Common Sense as a resource when teaching students digital citizenship.  I like how you can search by topic and grade level to find what is appropriate for your particular lesson and students.

I believe that Digital Citizenship should be taught in context with your lessons. If you are starting a research project, it would be an appropriate time to discuss how to find credible resources and how to give people proper credit for their ideas. If you are starting an online discussion with students, it would be appropriate to have a discussion about appropriate and inappropriate comments, especially about how to disagree appropriately.

I think that biggest thing to communicate with parents is which online tools you are using with your students and make it available to them as well. It is also important that you communicate that you wish they would help the students here a similar message at home about appropriate on-line behavior.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Tool #9

It is important to tie your technology to your objective because technology is not the end goal the content is. Technology should be used as a means for them to learn the content of your classroom and is not itself the learning goal. If you do not keep the technology congruent, you may end up with many tech savvy student in your chemistry classroom that know nothing about chemistry. 

Most likely your goal at having stations in your classroom is for students to discover, learn or practice something. Since you cannot be at all places at once it is important that students are held accountable. This can be as simple as writing a sentence about what they learned or contributing to an online discussion through a back channel like Today's Meet. Your goal of holding them accountable should be that you are gaining some type of formative assessment. Something that tells you as the teacher what they have gained from the station and where you should go next in the classroom-- either moving forward or filling in the gaps or answering questions student's posed.

I really like the PhET simulation and already use several in my classroom. They are great to use in chemistry because they help students visualize concepts that happen at the atomic level and cannot be seen. These simulations can be used at a station where they can manipulate the simulation and then answer some follow up problems to check for their understanding or have them describe their learning of the concept. 

I also liked learning about the SBISD interactive database. Obviously, this is not a place to send students but I can go back throughout the year as a teacher and discover more useful website for my students. I can see this being very beneficial because it is hard to store all of the Web 2.0 tools available in my brain. I am glad to know there is a helpful resource for me. 

I am struggling to find very many Chemistry specific apps. There are a couple formula writing apps out there they can be good for student practice. That is an easy station for when students need repetitive practice. Also, there interactive Periodic Table apps they I will definitely download because students always need access to the Periodic Table to reference while working problems.

Another app that maybe useful is the Whiteboard Free app. I could see students illustrating a chemical bond or a molecular picture and being able to share it with me an other students. In chemistry, drawings and models can be very important to help assess student understanding of a concept. 

I am still exploring uses of iPads in my classroom, but I am challenging myself to make them an useful and integral part of my room. I can see them being video recorders, communication devices and more. 

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Interesting article on homework...

Here is an interesting article I found posted on homework:
Show us What Homework is For by Kathleen Cushman

Tool #8

Things I learned:

  1. How to take a picture and video on a Netbook
  2. How to sync my laptop and iPad
  3. About a website that can be a very useful resource:
Managing Devices

  1. Plan to label them and store them in a central location
  2. Plan to count at the end of each class period when using them
  3. Use as stations in a lesson rotation
  4. Assign to specific groups if using all of them at the same time

Tool #7

I think technology can be a great way to be able to collaborate with different classrooms. One way in which I believe it can be beneficial in science classroom is through lab data. I believe that sharing lab data collected in different classrooms can be a great way to reinforce the ideas of validity, the need for multiple trials, the need for reproducible procedures, etc.I feel like I could collaborate with any of the other chemistry teachers on our campus and could possibly expand to other chemistry teachers in the district.

Identifying unknown chemicals:

  • Objective: Students will identify unknown chemicals by testing different intensive properties of the chemicals.
  • Implementation: This lab would occur during the first 6 weeks when we are learning about how to identify different properties of chemicals.
  • Tools: Google docs and spread sheets to record data, a back channel for discussion, video sharing or voice threads to allow different classes to hear a lab groups discussions and show procedures used during the lab.
  • Plan: Students would be given 4-6 chemicals that they would be asked to identify. Students would use different lab techniques and observations  to identify intensive properties such as density, melting point, color, etc. They would also be given reference materials that would be there to compare their data to for the identification process to happen. Students would be require to validate their data and identification using their data plus 3 other groups from a different class.