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Rachel Rawe

New student in Education. Excited to learn, and passionate about teaching others.

Social Networking and Cyberbullying

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Cyberbullying is a very real and very painful thing. I found the picture above very moving, because, although bullying behind a computer screen probably won’t leave the victim physically injured, the pain caused is just as deep and hurtful.

It is harder for parents and teachers to govern what children and teens do online, but something needs to be done to teach youth how to properly and respectfully use the internet. I do believe that social networking allows more access and free speech for teens to say whatever they want online, and still somewhat hide behind a screen, rather than saying it in person. However, a media outlet cannot be blamed for the actions of people. I believe that social media is a privilege that comes with maturity. If a child or teen is misusing a social networking site, especially to hurt others, then parents, teachers, bystanders (or witnesses in this case), or even management of the social networking site need to take action to remove the bully or perpetrator from the site until they are taught respectful and responsible ways to use this media.

In conclusion, yes, in some ways social networking can promote cyberbullying, but technology alone cannot be blamed for bullying. This is a disciplinary issue and is something that needs to be monitored and only used when a child or teen is ready and mature enough to use the networking site.

Cause and Effect Video Tutorial

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The link below is to a YouTube video posted by SpiritualityForKids and is a great way to show students, perhaps in a first to third grade reading class about cause and effect.

Cause and Effect Lesson Video

Web 2.0 Tools

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Emily Robertson’s Web 2.0 suggestions video is a life-saver for educators on a budget. Like she said, some tools can be expensive, but her review of top-tier, free 2.0 tools can save anyone lots of money.

Probably among my favorites of the tools she reviewed was Google Drive. Google offers so many types of tools online. From spreadsheets to slideshow presentations, Google has it all. Google Drive is an awesome way to create a post things publicly and a wonderful way to collaborate with other users. Like Emily mentioned, this is a great way to work together in group projects.  All members can see what was posted, and any edits or changes made to those posts, in a clear and organized way. I have recently witnessed the convenience of Google Docs spreadsheets in planning a weekend trip with a group of friends. This was a way to show the prices of everything and what everyone owed. It helped immensely. I also have observed at a high school that has their students set up a Gmail account and use this to turn in and present many projects.  I would definitely integrate Google Drive into the classroom  in this same way, because it provides a clear and uniform way for students to create and share assignments.

Watch “Simple & Free Web 2.0 Tools for Improving Student Engagement”

Interactive Whiteboards in the Classroom

Interactive whiteboards can be a very engaging tool in a classroom, when used wisely. For example, in her blog “10 Reasons to Ditch the Board,” Lisa Nielsen comments that the boards do not come cheap and that there are often problems with the technology being glitchy. It is also very easy for a teacher to have their back turned to the class when demonstrating something on the board, which is not a good way to engage the students. These are all big issues.

In my elementary school days, I remember one of my classrooms having an interactive “SmartBoard” and thinking it was the coolest thing ever. Every student got excited to get their turn to go up to the board and do an activity.  This was a great way to get the class engaged and involved.

My opinion is that these interactive boards can be a great tool, when used wisely.  It would not bode well for an educator to give an entire lesson on the whiteboard, but to present information in another way and then have the whole class do an activity on the interactive whiteboard.whiteboard1

http://www.rm.com/~/media/Images/Education-Blog/whiteboard1.jpg?h=490&w=600&la=en

Los Colores

This “Los Colores” lesson is intended for a beginner-level Spanish class, most likely for K through 3rd grad levels.

Los Colores Hypermedia Multimedia Lesson

PowerPoint is Not Evil

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PowerPoint is a very useful presentation software feature, when used wisely.  I very much disagree with Edward Tufte’s position that PowerPoint is evil. Tufte’s extremist view that PowerPoint “routinely disrupts, dominates, and trivializes content” does not sit well with me.  This may be true for someone who is misusing the software feature, but not for someone who knows how to effectively make a presentation.  Using too many loud transitions, graphics, or background and font styles can definitely take away from the content of a presentation, and this is why we need to be cautious when constructing a slideshow.  The main focus needs to be on getting the information to the audience, and to spruce it up a little with themes and colors, but not to over-do it.  Going in with this mentality will bode well for anyone trying to make an effective, content-filled PowerPoint presentation.

Software Games in Schools

Software games in schools can be extremely beneficial to learning.  When used in a purely instructional manner, these games motivate students to spend more time on a given topic, as well as challenge students to compete and win, and allow them to practice skills in a fun an entertaining way.  Graphic displays in software games help students to visualize abstract concepts and understand how to solve problems.  This can make a big difference in areas such as mathematics, especially with students who may be more visual learners (like myself).  Studies have shown that students are more likely to practice problem-solving skills in activities they find interesting, and what a better way to implement this than through games.  Software games make knowledge and skills more meaningful by showing students how information applies to actual problems.  This helps prevent inert knowledge.

A personal example I have, that shows the benefits of software games, comes from a computer class I had in elementary school.  My class was learning how to type more efficiently, and we were taught this through a game called Type to Learn.  Everyone loved this game and anticipated getting to play it every week. I cannot see a better way that our computer teacher could have taught us typing skills better, without the use of the software game.

In conclusion, I do believe that software games should be used in schools.  There is a time and place for them and they should be used in moderation, along with necessary teacher-led instruction as well.  Software games are a great way to further education.maxresdefault

Pros and Cons of Objectivism and Constructivism

cropped-educate_35Objectivism

Pros:

  • more practical
  • more time-efficient
  • more accountable
  • concrete and clearly-defined
  • easier for students to demonstrate pre-requisite skills

Cons:

  • not so hands-on
  • can be too teacher-centered
  • students demonstrate what they’ve learned mainly just on written tests
  • knowledge is simply transmitted, like a computer

Constructivism

Pros:

  • student-centered
  • hands-on instruction
  • students generate their own knowledge through experiences and activities
  • students can learn in different ways

Cons:

  • too slow to be practical?
  • not very systematic
  • less standardization and accountability

 

 

Google Image search: (https://marykrisfurterer20.files.wordpress.com/2015/12/cropped-educate_35.jpg)

Objectivism vs. Constructivism

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     Directed instruction and inquiry-based instruction are both vital methods of education. The objectivist view, directed instruction, is a means of simply transmitting necessary information from teacher to student.  This is teacher-centered, with a pre-defined set of information and a plan.   On the other hand, inquiry-based instruction is a constructivist method that uses a student-centered approach.  This allows students to “create their own knowledge” to learn and interpret information in their own unique way.  I see the importance of both of these methods, and think they should each be used in different aspects of education, to benefit students the most. As a teacher, I would probably take more of a constructivist approach, as much as possible, but used in a practical way.  Each individual student learns differently, and I think this method allows for them to do so.  Inquiry-based instruction also allows for students to dig deeper in order to get a more profound comprehension of certain information.  That being said, I personally think that a more objectivist method should be used in transmitting basic information to students, but a constructivist approach should be used in addition, to allow students to grasp the information in the best way they know, and to really comprehend it.

Google Image search (https://i.ytimg.com/vi/rLm1O_DWkYU/hqdefault.j

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