Education 3508 Blog

Friday, October 21, 2005

Web Awareness and WebQuests

WebQuests

Effective webquests have a very easy to read layout. The instructions are clear and there are many, many links available to choose from for research. Of the webquests that I have browsed, it seems to me that webquests are very common and quite useful and can be very enjoyable for students. They would save a lot of time with regards to planning; the lesson is already planned and the students are required to read through and complete the steps with the information given! Using webquests would be beneficial to the students because it allows them to work at their own pace and the teacher would be available to answer any questions and give help when needed. One major downside that I can think of for using webquests is lack of computer time and the lack of available, working computers.

I would love to use webquests for a language arts class, of any level. I think they would be so interesting to use for students when they are required to complete a novel study and research their novel, the author, time period... This would also tie in quite nicely with drama because I could use webquests in the same fashion to research playwrites, plays, time periods... (ie: Shakespeare.)

Web Awareness

Use of technology within the realm of the classroom is still relatively new. Technology changes almost by the second and it is important to know some basic rules of thumb to protect oneself- especially online. Having said that, it is far more important as a teacher to educate my students on safety so they are aware how dangerous technology can be if it is not used in a correct manner. Computers and the internet are becoming more common in the classroom- students are interested in this technology and so we, as teachers, have to implement ICT Outcomes into the curriculum.

As an educator, it is my job to instruct students how to filter through the information on the web and take only the information that is accurate and worthwhile. It is also important to inform them about plagarism and copyrights- it can still occur on the net- and it will still get you into trouble. It is important to demonstrate browing techniques and what to do if you accidentely come across inappropriate information.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Module 6- Spreadsheets and Graphing

Spreadsheets are an excellent source for students. They can provide students with a source to help organize schedules, grades, assignments, allowance and so on. Within the classroom, however, spreadsheets can be more valuable. For example, spreadsheets can be used to create timelines. They are also excellent for marketing assignments, CALM classes... Math classes are an excellent reason to integrate spreadsheets (problem solving, organizing formulas, probability and statistics...).
I believe that graphing also plays an integral part in math classes. If you look below, Michelle and I found an excellent site to aid students in creating graphs.

I would introduce the use of spreadsheets through a three part module. The first part would consist of a tutorial, which would be set up as a class activity with the focus on learning the skills collaboratively. Using Excel projected onto a screen, the class would monitor the teacher's
steps as they together create a spreadsheet. The students would choose a fun topic such as "planning a party" to make the learning more fun and interesting.

Module 2 would utilize the following online tutorial instructing students how to make a spreadsheet:
http://www.internet4classrooms.com/excel_enter_edit.htm (using an excel
worksheet- entering and editing data)
Module 3 would require the student to apply the new knowledge of spreadsheets for a math lesson. For example: "The local zoo requires the purchase of new animals. You have a budget of
$20,000 to spend." You can choose from a list of animals:

Zebras- $500 each
Lions- $900 each
Penguins- $399 each
Deer- $50 each
Monkeys-$319 each
Crocodiles- $495 each
Pandas- $1000 each
Flamingos- $298 each


You are required to decided and budget how many of each animal you would like to purchase.
In Excel, create a spreadsheet using this data. Make sure you use a title and your name. You must include proper columns and rows (such as animal of choice, the price, amount of animals, sum of purchase for each animal, and total purchase.) Make note not to go over budget.
I would also require the students to hand in a summary explaining their choices.

Check THIS site out:
http://nces.ed.gov/nceskids/createagraph/ We (Michelle Katchur and I) found this great website. It is and excellent source for creating graphs.

**Please note- I worked with my classmate, Michelle Katchur, on this assignment, therefore, there will be similarities within our blogs for this module.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Concept Mapping

Concept Mapping is a tool that can be used for students. This tool can be used to illustrate knowledge, brainstorm ideas, study for exams and much more.

Some advantages of Concept Mapping are:
-the concept maps can be used to share ideas and knowledge.
-they can show a basic understanding of a topic.

-if sone well, they can show a deep understanding of a topic.
-it can be a clear indication of knowledge.

-it is an easy way for students to see what they know.
-it can be easy for students to see what knowledge they are missing about a topic.
-it is a quick activity.

Some disadvantages of Concept Mapping are:
-they rarely demonstrate a deep understanding of a topic.
-they can be intimidating for students.
-not all students like them or find them easy to use.

In teaching my major, drama, I would probably use Concept Maps to understand a play. These Concept Maps could be used to show character development. I would also use them to study for an exam. As a teacher, I could get my students to add to their knowledge of what a concept map is using the internet. I would have them Google Concept Maps to learn more about them. I would suggest they look up examples of Concept Maps. We would use them in the classroom and I would suggest they use this tool to study for an exam. I would definitely use this tool in many of the classes I am sure I will teach- I have used this tool since I was little and I know it is useful!

General Outcome C4: Students will use organizational processes and tools to manage inquiry.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Learning Resources

Title of Activity: Trees in Our Region

Reference Section:
Missouri Botanical Garden. (2002). MBGnet.mobot. Retrieved Oct. 1, 2005 from
http://mbgnet.mobot.org/sets/temp/lftypes2.htm

Domatar Inc (2001-2003). Domtar. Retrieved Oct. 1, 2005 from
http://www.domtar.com/Navigateur_Standard/NEWS/EN/HTML/1671_EN.asp?cookie%5Ftest=1&flash=1

WWF (2005). Panda. Retrieved Oct. 1, 2005 from
http://www.panda.org/news_facts/education/middle_school/habitats/coniferous_forests.cfm
Wikipedia (2005). en.wikipedia. Retrieved Oct. 1, 2005 from
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Encarta

Grade Level: 6

Subject: Science

Brief Description of Activity:
*note: This lesson will span over three periods (research, creations, and presentation).

The Task:
The students will gather detailed information from internet sites as provided by the teacher, about two trees (one deciduous and one coniferous) and prepare a PowerPoint presentation to support this choice. You will present this multi-media presentation to the rest of the class.

The Procedure:
The students will gather information using the sites below with the guidelines of: general appearance, location, size, leaves/needles, flowers, bark, wood characteristics, uses, threats to the tree, and unique features. In pairs the students will create a power point presentation of their chosen trees following teacher guidelines (ex. must include images of trees.).

http://mbgnet.mobot.org/sets/temp/lftypes2.htm (Leaf Types)
http://www.domtar.com/Navigateur_Standard/NEWS/EN/HTML/1671_EN.asp?cookie%5Ftest=1&flash=1 (Coniferous and Deciduous)
http://www.panda.org/news_facts/education/middle_school/habitats/coniferous_forests.cfm (Evergreen regions/ coniferous)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Encarta (Reference)


General Learner Outcome:
-Develop respect for living things, the environment and demonstrate their commitment to the care of the above.

Specific Learner Outcomes:
-Identify characteristics of one deciduous and one coniferous tree found in the local environment. (Modified SLE- from SLE 5 of the Science Program of Studies, Grade 6.)

ICT Outcomes:
C.1 – Students will access, use and communicate information from a variety of technologies. (2.1, 2.2)
C.4 – Students will use organizational processes and tools to manage inquiry. (2.1)
C. 6 – Students will use technology to investigate and/or solve problems. (2.1, 2.2)
C.7 – Students will use electronic research techniques to construct personal knowledge and meaning. (2.1, 2.2)
F.4 Students will become discerning consumers of mass media and electronic information. (2.1)
P.5.1.2 access hyper linked sites on an intranet or the Internet


Rationale for Computer Integration:

Computer integration is used in this lesson because:
* it provides students with modern research tools.
* it provides updated information.
* it allows students to collaborate and synthesize information from non-linear text.
* it provides an opportunity for students to demonstrate professional presentation and showcase skills.

**Please note:
-Michelle Katchur and I (Section PQR) worked together on this assignment.
-Michelle and I used a few ideas from Shonna Barth, Bob Buday and Jim Kaupp who have created various lesson plans regarding the environment.
http://www.mhcbe.ab.ca/ict/Projects/treesforest/treesForests.htm