Thursday, April 16, 2009

Technology Ideas

I liked the idea of using the projector to use Google Earth. I think it's fun for students to get to see their own house or other areas. It is more interactive and a great way to teach geography.
I also thought it was great for teachers to use the projector to play games. I think this can be particularly effective in getting students excited for some subjects they may typically dread.

Practicum Project

Internet Safety "Doing"

I decided to share some of the information I learned with my mom. She is LDS and uses the internet quite frequently for different things. It was very easy to remember all of the things I had learned and I was able to easily share them with her. I shared with him mostly some of the tips I read in articles. I liked hearing things from an LDS perspective so it was good to share those talks. I also recapped some of the video clips I watched. As she raised us she always did many of the things that I shared with her but it was a good reminder. She agreed with all of the things that I shared about avoiding dangers on the internet. She thought that it was very important for children to learn how to stay safe because they are often victims online and the internet is such a big part of their lives now a days. I enjoyed the opportunity of getting to teach someone else the valuable things that I have learned. I think it is important to share internet safety to everyone so that we can keep as many people safe as possible.

Internet Safety "Reading"

  1. What article did you choose to read for your fourth article?

I chose to read an article by Mario Hipol called "Fighting Internet Filth."
  1. What were the most important things you learned from the readings?
One of the main messages I got was that the internet can be very good or bad. We need to make sure that we are only using the internet and media as a whole, for good purposes. We are seeking after things of "good report."

  1. How will what you have read influence your actions as a parent and/or teacher of children and youth?
I will try to make sure I educate my children. They will be aware of the dangers of the internet and taught how to avoid these pitfalls. I will be sure to take the precautions that the articles taught to avoid these potential dangers as much as possible.

  1. How can you use what you have learned from the reading to have a positive influence on family and friends?
I can teach others how to use the internet properly. I can make them aware of how to put up a strong defense and offense when online. I can tell them of all of the dangers that there are and what they can do to avoid becoming a victim of these dangers.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Personal Learning Theory

I really enjoyed the opportunity I had to get to learn a new skill. After much thought and consideration, I finally decided to learn how to watercolor paint. I have always enjoyed art ever since I was a little girl. I have learned how to use many different kinds of mediums and have worked a little with watercolor but not to a great extent. I first gathered all of the materials. This included watercolor paints, watercolor paper and paint brushes. I then looked online for different techniques and examples of watercolor paintings. I looked at a few different sites and just read through the material. I then practiced some of the techniques. After I got comfortable with the techniques I just dove right into painting a picture. I tried to select those that would be fairly simple for me to paint.

I chose to paint things that would, for the most part, use bright colors. It was interesting to see how I would naturally put my own style into the painting. I would look at examples online and try to recreate some of the pieces and they would never look like the ones online. Although a lot of this has to do with my skill level however, I still chose different brushstrokes and different techniques.

Throughout the whole process I felt like a lot of my learning involved practice and exploration. I grew more and more comfortable painting and exploring different color usage and style as time went on. I really enjoyed all of the time I spent working on this assignment. This experience also reminded me just how much I love art. I usually get caught up with schoolwork and other aspects of life and I never take the time to really do different activities that I truly love. This assignment makes me want to set aside some time to work on art.

Through this assignment I was able to pinpoint my specific learning style and the ways that I learn. In the first part of my learning process I did have a more knowledgeable other to help teach me. In my case it was not specifically one person. It was the number of contributors to the websites I worked with. This was the source of the majority of my knowledge however. The computer was in essence my cultural tool.
I started as somewhat of a novice to the idea of watercolor. I tried to use retrieval to draw on some of the things I had learned about watercolor in the past but this resulted in no success. After using the website sources I did learn a lot. I discovered how important autonomy is to me when I learn. I know a number of people who are very talented artists. I could have gone to them for help but I enjoy it more when I get to learn on my own. I feel like this autonomy adds to my initiative. I like to try new things and to learn to go about tasks in different ways. Although I did follow some modeling by getting familiar with different artists’ work, I feel that I tried to go learn much on my own. I think I like the idea of discovery learning. I thought that much of my learning occurred in the process of actually painting pictures. There is only so much that a person can learn through reading or seeing. A person needs to really gain firsthand experience to gain a true knowledge of a concept or idea.
I found that this autonomy also prevented me from wanting to research too much. I had a high desire for industry which made me want to dive right into making paintings. As I began the process of actually creating paintings I saw the need for problem solving while trying to create artwork. There were often times when I would put too much of one color or would have too much water. I needed to think right then and then what I should do to try to save the painting from being ruined. Artists really have to think on their feet.
Throughout the process I experienced some positive reinforcement. As I painted, some of my roommates or friends would see some of my paintings. As they would comment on them and say that they liked my paintings it was the social persuasion I needed to increase my self-efficacy. This meant that my interval schedule was most like that of a fixed-ratio. It would take me some time to complete a piece but after I completed it I would share it with some and get a response.
I felt like my self-efficacy and the source of my self-efficacy shifted through my experience. I felt like my mastery experiences allowed me to feel more confident in my work and ultimately to take more risks in my artwork and feel like I was capable of painting watercolor. I felt that my locus of causality shifted in the process from the extrinsic motivation that I needed to complete an assignment to make a certain grade, to a source of intrinsic motivation. I truly rediscovered my love for art and for the freedom that it allows. I think that the majority of my painting was done in massed practice. This was not done necessarily out a need to be completed by a deadline. I initially began the task and then as I mentioned before, realized how much I enjoyed it. I would work on painting for hours at a time. I did not work on a painting for like a half hour a day until it was completed. Once I began a piece it was hard for me to stop before it was completed.
I now have made it my goal to try to incorporate art, particularly watercolor painting, into my daily routine. Now that I also have a deeper understanding of how I learn best I can continue to learn new skills in watercolor. I think that this continued practice of this art will increase my ability to create even better pieces. I look forward to the opportunity to get to continue this learning process and discovery even after the class ends.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Technology Lesson

I really enjoyed teaching my technology enhanced lesson. I feel like it was a very rewarding experience for both the students and myself. I was asked to teach the students' math time which was about the difference between pounds and ounces. We learned the material and then tested the students knowledge on a Jeopardy game. I used PowerPoint to create an interactive Jeopardy game about pounds and ounces. I plugged my laptop into a cable that connected it to the television in the classroom. I was able to click along as the students played.

It went very well. The students had a lot of fun and learned a lot from being quizzed in a different way like that. I also was able to increase my confidence level of using technology. It was fairly easy to set up and carry out and I thought it was a good experience.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Technology-Enhanced Lesson Idea

My teacher has asked me to teach multiple phonics lessons. Most of these lessons require me to have an interactive learning where the students will come up with examples and share them aloud to the class. I think that instead of just using the whiteboard that I will try to create a fun and exciting PowerPoint presentation that will show examples in a whole new way. I will use the laptop and projector that are shared throughout the school and display it for the students.