Saturday, September 15, 2012

Captain's Weblog #2

 In this weblog, I will be discussing the education technology development in a school and over viewing an article that is based on an educational technology professional development.

1. Please discuss your lived experiences of Educational Technology Development:

a. Exceeding-The use of the interactive whiteboard and document readers. I was very excited to see that every classroom had one installed with the proper software. The school would have SmartBoard Technologies and the AverVision 300 Document Reader. Over the past few years, teachers have been attending multiple professional developments to use the technology in many different ways. So now, a teacher can use the interactive whiteboard and save the notes, rather than just erasing it.  If the student that was absent, they will be able to get a copy of the notes. The document reader can show any resource in color as well as take pictures and create movie files. Other than this hardware resource, which is embedded into the Smartboard Software, another Smartboard hardware that I have seen in action is the SmartBoard Response.  The Smartboard Response is a student response system that will give data on student’s strength and weakness when they are doing an activity.  Also, teachers have been using websites that is interactive and SmartBoard friendly, like the Smartboard Exchange. 

b. Achieving- The use of educational software.  Teachers have been taking professional developments in order to use subscribed software like Discovery Education, BrainPop, and Learning A-Z, which has updated information and new teaching curriculum material that is appropriate for Common Core Standards.

c. Slumping- It’s not really slumping, but could be ineffective due to Technology Licenses. The school will be prepared with the data and the staff is trained by professional developments to have the program ready to start at the beginning of the school year. The company that runs the software that requires licenses will have an issue on their end of the program to create licenses for each student.  This process takes a lot of time and overall, the student will lose out of the service until the company updates all the data in order for the students to have their own licenses. Then the teachers would need to take updated courses and professional developments to learn about the new aspects of the software.

d. Failing-The use of communication to connect to the outside world.  Although the school has held great professional developments, the technology is not kept up nor is it utilized after a certain amount of time by some of the educators.  Students want to be engaged at home and parents want to find information about their child’s class, but the teacher neither has a recent update on the website nor wouldn't have website at all.  Also the use of different distance education techniques like blogging, video conferencing, and Web 2.0 Technologies is hardly ever used in the school. 

 2. Based on a reading from the article “Situated Cognition and Technology” by Mark Szymanski and Patricia Morrell, answer the following:

a. Discuss criteria which define successful educational technology professional development.

Based on the article, situated cognition is characterization of how learning takes place not just where it takes place.  The one shot approach was ineffective.  To accommodate the different needs of the teacher’s involved within their levels of expertise and their curricular needs, the professional developments were arranged of having activities in large groups, small groups, and individual teachers.  The results showed that as the teachers were being trained with “situated context”; this approach was effective as teachers were gaining skills and confidence in using technology in their classroom and integrating technology into their teaching.  Also the teachers overwhelmingly believed that using technology-enhanced teaching resulted in an increase in student engagement and achievement.      

b. Discuss criteria which define the effective school administrator and/or technology coordinator in the context of successful professional development. 

 As for the action of the involvement of administration of creating a successful professional development, they had to observe in creating a program that needed to be cognizant with the impact of specific cultural and contextual elements contribute to creating successful professional development model concerning classroom technology use.  The grant program was observed by the OTEN institution.  They implemented the program where a TCTL (technology competent teacher leaders), were advanced in using technology in the classroom and trained the teachers who needed to gain the knowledge of using technology in the classroom as well as collaborating with their curriculum.  It was like a student teaching program.  The OTEN campus coordinators were administrating the program, and the TCTL were the teachers in the program.  Overall, the data shows after interviews and an online project narrative, the professional development program was most helpful when the collaborative activities and workshops that teachers participated in as well as the availability of the OTEN Campus Coordinators when it came to individualized assistance with technology use.  Although the grant program was both expensive and time consuming, developing a professional development program within the district as well as staffing the TCTL teachers from within the district are now considered leaders and can assist other teachers within their own school and district to make an impact of student learning when it comes to integrating technology into their teaching.        

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Captain's Weblog #1

Hello all,

For the folks of DC EDE 8741, please let me introduce myself. My name is Tim Quinn, aka tquinn02. Welcome to my blog “Technology in the Classroom”. If you would like to learn some information about me, please view my profile page on this Blogger account. You can either access it through the widget on the bottom right-hand corner of this page, or you can view information about my work, my interests, why I am interested in educational technology, as well as other information about me by clicking here.

Here are some questions that I would like to share with you based on the use of technology in the classroom.

1. What do you believe was the most important technological invention in history? Why?

Wow, that is a big question. Between the invention of radio and television for entertainment and instant news to inventing the space shuttle where it can fly into outer space, then to our present time and the invention of the computer that is used in every profession so those businesses can operate smoothly and survive, I would have to choose one that made a life changing significance.

It would be the pacemaker.  This piece of technology is able to be a life saving piece of technology for any human being that has an irregular heartbeat in order to treat patients with arrhythmia.  This piece of technology was first discovered by John Hopps in 1949, but then was invented small enough to place in the human body in by Wilson Greatbatch in 1958 where he used a lithium battery so the battery power was safe to place in the human battery and at the same time won’t run out of power This is the same battery to power portable electronic devices. Without this device, a lot of lives would either live a life of suffering and/or even died without the use of this important technological invention.   

2. Please list a number of technologies you currently believe to be essential to your life. Place an asterisk (*) net to those you (tend to) believe to be insufficiently promoted in education.

*Cell Phone
Computer-desktop or Wi-Fi Laptop
Interactive White Board
Copy Machine/Printer/Scanner
Word Processing Softwares
Graphing Calculators
Tabulet Computing-IPad

I feel that cell phones are not being used enough in the classrooms because the cell phone can pretty much do any task. Not only can you communicate with others anymore just by calling someone else wirelessly, just like in the 1980s. Now you can communicate by text, Instant Messaging, Social Networking, E-mailing, Blogging, and so on.  With the cell phone, you can have multiple applications (apps) to download for educational use. You can read books, respond answers electronically (student response system), take notes, and also have access to almost any multimedia and electronically printed resources all in the palm of your hands.  Although schools in general are somewhat defensive about using this technology in the classroom, and that is because even though they know how to use the technology, students may not use this type of technology in a responsible matter in the classroom.

3. Indicate any uses of technology that you believe tend to be inappropriate or used excessively (by children in or out of school, by teachers in or out of school or promoted excessively (by the media, the computer industry, schools), i.e. ones that should be restricted or regulated in key ways.

Well, the first that comes to mind is Myspace, which is not as popular as it was years ago, but Facebook has been getting a better handle onto their users than Myspace did.  It seems that social networks are a big impact on people’s everyday lives.  There are social networks that make a promise to society, like Linkedin, to keep a professional connection to others in respective fields. Edmodo, so teachers and students can conduct a learning area online.  Then there are other social networks like Myspace and Facebook has created great new way of communicating, but at what price.  The intentions at first were innocent. Myspace was a social network of musicians, and Facebook was a social network for college students and professors. Since they have been evolving over time, there have been crimes, cyber-bullying, suicides, divorces, and other acts of misbehavior.  Also, people get addicted to using this as a secondary, if not primary way of communication, which is developing people to be anti-social and using this tool excessively on a daily basis which is an hour or more out of their time.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Google Reader

Good Afternoon,

Once I signed onto Google Reader for the first time, I first subscribed to Dr. Maurer's recommended sites. I then did some exploring on the topic of Web 2.0 Technologies. I did a search based on topics like web blogging and connectivism. I also did searches on web 2.0 tech gurus like Will Richardson, George Siemens, and Marc Prensky. The blogs that I subscribed to is listed on the right side of this blog page as a blog roll.

I noticed that your blog pages were not set up with the blog roll list. It was a bit tricky, but I figured it out. If you are interested, here are directions on how you can developed the "blog roll" on your blogger.

Step 1. Log onto your blogger account, then go to your blog and click on ‘designs’.

Step 2. When you see the design outline of your blog page, there are a couple of places where it says ‘Add a Gadget’. (I choose the ‘Add the Gadget’ template on the right side on my post to place my Google Reader feeds there.)

Step 3. When you click on ‘Add a Gadget’, a menu will pop up. Scroll down the menu and choose ‘Blog List’. Another menu will appear so you can fill in a title for you blog feeds. You can sort and show what you would like on your blog feeds.

Step 4. After naming a title for your feeds, click on ‘Add to Lists’ (a second menu will pop up) and then choose ‘import subscriptions from Google Reader’.

Step 5. Choose which feeds you want from your Google Reader onto your blog roll and then press ‘Add’. Once you click on ‘Add’, the first menu will still be there and then choose ‘save’. Once you save, your template will show your blog roll on your design and on your blogger.

I hope this helps, check out ‘Connectivism’, and ‘Forum Discussions – Classroom 2.0’, these feeds are ways to connect to other educators in the teaching profession on the modern topics of teaching with the use of Web 2.0 Technologies. I have many more on my blog roll for you to view. Please feel free and check them out. If you are interested in any of them, subscribe to them.

Tim Quinn

Friday, April 6, 2012

Welcome to my blog page

This webpage is where you can put your thoughts about current issues and ideas of using Technology in the Classroom.