Monday, April 30, 2012

Upgrading Curriculum & Assessment w/ Student Blogfolios

Day 2 - edJEWcon - Session 4: Curriculum & Assessment with Student Blogfolios

Side Note: The header for this post is one of the topics I will be discussing on my new Wiki.  iBark in the Classroom It is still at the developing stages, so if you take a look, be aware that it only has some of the topics so far and no content.

Blogs + Portfolios = Blogfolios

*give option to parents about public accessibility*
-- allows password protecting
--no student last names

Blogging = Writing = Following the Writing Process (Drafting, Revising, Editing, Publishing)

Blogging allows for creative expression.  It allows students to put themselves out there and express their opinions.

Digital Citizenship -- no cyberbullying

Developing Digital Skills

"Remember It is A Process"

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Week of Training & Conferences

Microsoft Innovative Educator Trainer Certification

Two days in Garden City, New York for the MIE training course and now I'm back and am certified to train other teachers!  The course began with an introduction into using Microsoft products in the classroom and for professional development.  I have to say, the word "FREE" really got my attention many times.

Microsoft OneNote was a big discussion point for the conference, especially because it is so versatile.  While it is not "Apple friendly" (I did ask), OneNote is available via a web app version once you sign up with Windows Live -- which I will talk about more in a little bit.

I am a devoted Apple girl, even though my school uses PCs.

So what did I learn at this conference?  TONS, which I will go into more later.

edJEWcon Conference 2012

Three day conference in Jacksonville, Fl completely centered around Jewish education and using 21st century tools!  Today is Twitter, tomorrow hopefully I will get to go to the session titled "Improving Student Writing Through Blogging" -- something which my students are already doing, followed by Blogfolios, and lastly on Tuesday, Pinterest which I am super excited for since I already use it!

I'll keep you all posted.  We got some great new technology for the school; a flip camera, an iPad, and an iPod Touch.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

I'm Bark...I mean BACK!

Sorry everyone that I have been MIA for awhile.  I'm sure you read my last post that I got engaged and got a new puppy, but I also went on a vacation to Disney World over Spring/Passover Break, grades are due, and am now in the process of planning my wedding.  I'm back now, and I'm super excited to share with you some new ideas I have.

Last Friday I taught both 5th and 6th grades, and because we are nearing the end of the year, but also starting our 4th and last quarter, I decided to do something a little different.  The students have had tons of practice with learning Microsoft Word and have been tirelessly practicing their typing skills using Mavis Beacon, but now I want them to use what they've learned.  Using Kidblog, a safe blogging website that teachers can set up for their students (and monitor) I have created accounts for each student and organized them by grade/class.

Each week the students will alternate between a list of prompts to choose from or time for "free-write."  While they all can't be dog themed, I will include at least one prompt that has something to do with dogs.  Today's doggy prompt is: "What would happen if it really did rain cats and dogs?"  Today a few of my students chose this prompt, but the rest of them favored "If you had $1 million what would you buy?" and   "If you could have a superpower what would it be and why?"  Incorporating blogging into the computer curriculum has so far proven to be beneficial.  The students are using technology that they have not used before and they are practicing their keyboarding skills by typing.