Thursday, March 3, 2011

Journal 5 NETS-T 3d

Boehmer, C. (2011, February). Brain training with video games. Retrieved from

What a great article to read!  It seems as though this information is shocking news to some, however, I was thinking it was more like common sense finally coming out in people.  I grew up playing Nintendo and Sega, which seem all too ancient these days.  I was feeling like I could take on the video games and the even more complicated controllers.  After attempting to keep up with my younger cousins on the cool video games out today, I was quite emberassed.  I had my 7 year old cousin telling me how to make moves and which routes to take and weapons to use.  
The article focuses on developing the underlying mental process.  Some of the skills mentioned are: attention skills, visualization, sequential processing, ability to see patterns an understanding relationships.  Why not incorporate video games in schools? Seems like a no brainer when you ask me. Tests were done and results showed significant improvement in students who were "falling behind" and scoring low on tests.  Video games help students think and solve problems as well as overcome difficulties.  Great Article! Loved it!  

Q1: Why do you think some would be hesitant to let video games in schools?
A1: I think some would be hesitant because they assume that video games mean nonsense.  It is those people who need to sit down and actually try to play a video game that involves strategy and problem solving.  I think most would be amazed at how developed these games have become.  

Q2: How can video games help students who struggle?
A1: As I mentioned before, I think that there is more thinking involved when playing games.  Students would be able to practice their underlying mental processes such as, attention to details, taking notes if need be, and understanding relationships.  These skills are transferable into other areas such as math, science and reading.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Journal 4 NETS-T: 4a

Schaffhauser, D. (2010, December 01). It's time to trust teacher's with the internet: a conversation with meg ormiston. Retrieved from

I really found this article interesting.  To have technology boundaries and limits is important but, as Ormiston says, "blocks learning".  I would agree that we shouldn't have to block everything on the internet except for of course the obvious, pornography and maybe some social networking sites such as Facebook, that could be very distracting to students.
We must teach our youth to be smart decision makers and learn how to choose right from wrong.  Ormiston also points out that these kids aren't being protected like we would like to think they are, they don't live in a bubble people.  These kids are still being exposed to things outside of school, however, we can at least teach them how to make better decisions even when there is temptation around.  By allowing kids to explore the internet at school, in a supervised environment, raises the chances of these kids learning how to explore other interesting and learning tools offered by the internet.
I would also agree that as Educators, it is important to get a better understanding of the internet and not relying solely on the IT dude.  Educators should take further classes to explore the great things technology has to offer without feeling like they will be shut down for the efforts and not given a chance to use the new tools they have learned in their classrooms.

Q:1:What are some things offered by the internet you would use in your classroom?
A:1: The article mentioned You Tube as having some cool learning videos.  I would create a project where students could make a video, that would teach the rest of the class something.  It could be anything from building, to cooking, or painting.

Q:2: What are some ways you could help students make better decisions on how to use the internet?
A:2: I would try to look up as many cool games and interesting things that would interest kids.  There are many fun learning games such as the freerice game, available online that serve a great purpose.  I think that kids could learn a lot and feel connected to other students around the world by accessing those tools and games.  So my goal would be to really expose my kids to as much information as possible to get them interested in all kinds of things.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Journal #2- NETS-T: 2a

Ferguson, H. (2010). Join the flock!. Learning and Leading with Technology, Retrieved from

In the article, "Join the Flock!", Ferguson uncovers the advantages to joining the "twitter" team.  I personally strongly agreed with the part focused on creating a community of individuals who are learning together.  I will admit that before taking this course and reading this article, I wasn't very impressed or too excited in joining twitter.  I was trying to avoid being "sucked in".  However, I must say that now I am beginning to see the advantages of such a system if used the appropriate way.  I also like the 140 character limit so that "there isn't much room to make a fool of yourself", that is genius.  It allows people to not beat around the bush with nonsense and get straight to the point.  We are all busy and sometimes, often times, less is more anyway.  Especially when leaving a link to something cool you discovered.  It allows for others to form their own opinions rather than just reading about yours.  I think hash tags are pretty useful.  It creates an even more intimate community where a certain group can talk even deeper about a particular subject.  I have become a fan of twitter and have already come across some pretty cool information and links.  I am excited to possibly use this as a tool in the classroom =)

Q:1: How would you incorporate Twitter into your classroom?

A:1: I would let students share any cool videos, pictures or ideas on a particular subject covered in class during that time.  I think that it is a great way for students to share information and learn from each other.

Q:2: In what ways could your teaching be improved through Twitter?

A:2: By using hash tags, I could have groups work together.  For group projects this would be most helpful when passing information between only a selected few students rather than having the entire class receive information that is not relevant to a particular project.