Twitter in the classroom useful or a distraction? I think that Twitter can be very useful for students if the teacher uses it correctly. Students can communicate with one another about the homework or about information they have found just by using the hashtag. They can join all sorts of social communities by following certain people or groups. This is beneficial for both teachers and students, they can get a wide variety of resources from Twitter regarding the topic they are researching.
Teachers can also use Twitter to stay in touch with the students and their parents. They can remind students of their homework. They can stay in touch with parents by tweeting about important dates, tests dates, and social activities. Teachers can also use Twitter to have students write a writing prompt. They have 140 characteristics to get to the point about a subject and give their point of view about the topic at hand.
Twitter can be more than just another social media network. It can enrich the lives of the students everyday. Whether it be with resources, new writing skills, or just connecting with someone outside their normal circle of friends. Twitter can open many doors and make a difference in the way we communicate in the classroom.
Saturday, September 24, 2011
Having students blog about their ideas?!? Having the teacher have a classroom blog to stay in touch with parents and students outside the classroom?!? These ideas seem crazy but they are becoming more and more popular in the classrooms of today. Blogs are becoming a way of communication between the teacher and the parents of the students. It is a great way to make sure that the information gets home instead of lost between school or home. It is also a great way for parents to get involved in their students school work and stay involved instead of just going to parent-teacher conferences once a semester.
For the students it is a way for them to look to see what the homework for the night is and what is coming up in a certain subject. Blogs can also be used for students to express their ideas and also talk about what they have learned that day or week in school. Blogs are a great and inexpensive way for students to really share their feelings about the things they are learning about and also to get help or a simple reminder of what is expected of them.
Friday, September 23, 2011
How can we incorporate this new technology into our schools without spending a ton of money? I think that e-books are a great technology to let students have in the classroom. They are cheaper and way lighter than the normal textbooks we see students lugging around everywhere.They are the same textbooks just presented in a different way, on a tablet or e-reader. I have had some e-textbooks in my college courses but have heard that younger grades are beginning to allow them in their classrooms.
E-books can be both a positive and negatives aspect of using e-books. There is the knowing that they are way lighter than the everyday textbooks. They are cheaper and will take up less space because they are all found in one main source(the e-reader.) Some of the negatives are there are more distractions on the source than in a regular textbook. Also it has been said that the teacher may not know if the student is actually reading and not playing games. The last negative is that the student will be staring at a screen for a long period of time.
The negative with the students not staying on task can be said about anything they are doing. It is up to the teacher to walk around and make sure that they are staying on task. I also think that there is a way to read the e-readers without harsh lighting.
I think making the move to e-books is a great idea. There are many positives to them. They are cheaper, take up less room, and are way lighter. Students are already choosing e-books over regular textbooks for these reasons.
Thursday, September 22, 2011
Skype is changing the way the world communicates. It is a fast and cheap way to talk to your family and friends across the world. I bet you are all thinking why not just pick up the phone and call them...my response it is not the same. With Skype you can video call one another and chat with them, yes there are other video calling software out there like FaceTime. With FaceTime you can only talk with people who have other Apple software but with Skype you can talk to anyone no matter what computer, phone, or tablet they have. Now you are probably thinking what does this tangent have to do with Skype in the classroom.
As I said before Skype is a cheep and fast way to communicate with another person. This can come in handy when teaching in a classroom. What teacher doesn't love an inexpensive teaching method. There are many ways to include Skype in the classroom. One way is to communicate with another class in the United States. Say you are doing an unit about the New England States. You can call a classroom and ask students themselves about their state and what they think are defining characteristics about the state that they live in. Another way to utilize Skype is to call another country. You can call a class in the country that your unit is about and your students can get first hand information from students their age. You can have pen pals with students and talk to them face to face and through the old fashion "snail mail" way. There is many things that you can do to utilize Skype in your classroom.
Skype is a fun and interactive tool to use in the classroom. If done correctly it can have a tremendous impact on the way students learn and the knowledge they gain from the unit. It is an unique way for students to gain information about other cultures from the source itself.