Nearpod, Digital Citizenship, and My Digital Footprint

Part 1 Sites we used in the Classroom and Digital Citizenship

Nearpod

Today in my EDTS 325 class we used the site nearpod as a class. I have to say I loved using this site. As a teacher I loved how the questions/instructions and all of the information was on the student’s computers and they could follow along with the teacher. This would be great if students are sick or miss a day. The way you could get students from home to participate is to have the time and code on a blog like this that students can and know to access where they can log on and follow along.

I also loved the variety of questions and activities you could do. You could have the students draw a picture; use multiple choice and even long and short answers. The one downfall to this app was the price $$$ it costs a bit of money. If the school had this program I would most definitely use it in my classroom, but if I had to buy it on my own I cant see myself using it. The app spiral (which is free) is much similar to this one.

Informational race/Digital Citizenship 

Another app we used in class was spiral where we got to go on a bit of a race for information. This experience taught me a lot about digital citizenship and really triggered some concerns in my teacher point of view. During our experience we were told to go to several sites where we would find certain information to fill in the answer to certain questions. One question instructed us to go to a site for Mankato Minnesota where we were told to go to find some information on what you could do there for fun. Now if you visit that site you would see stuff like “come see our riverfront” not everyone was quick to realize that in Minnesota there are no riverfronts, we were in a race and were focused more on winning.

If you look closer at the links at the bottom of the website there are crazy links to crazy places. One being a link saying “the end of the internet” and once you click it you are taken to a page with lots of stop signs. Another crazy link on this site is one that says “Martha Stuart behind bars” which takes you to a picture of a magazine of Martha Stuart being behind bars.

The Website here

The reason that this as a teacher concerns me is because when students are in a rush or on a deadline they don’t always stop to read the fine print and explore the credibility of the site. If us second year college students who have sat in over 20 library sessions on how to tell credibility still got caught up in it for this experience whose to say that our students will too? As future teachers it’s good that we were able to experience this so we know it happens and we have to teach our students that not everything we learn online is credible. We also need to show them how to find the information and sites that are. I learned that even under stress of a deadline or winning we have to stop and read and think about what we are reading/repeating because this could get in the way of our teaching and learning. We have to think about it before completing it. I can definitely see myself using this website and activity as an example of what non credible sources looks like in my future classroom to ensure that students read first.

Part 2 My Digital Footprint

In class today we got talking about our digital footprints. We talked about the fact that everything you put out there stays out there, and when employers look to hire someone they look that person up on the Internet. This got me thinking about my digital footprint. I came to the realization that my digital footprint doesn’t contain a lot of Personal Networks but I do have a few that I could improve my teacher image.

I keep strict privacy settings on most of my personal networking sites so a lot of people cannot see anything on my profiles unless they are my friend or have permission. The reason I have this set up is not because I have horrible things I don’t want others to see but the fact that I like privacy from the internet, the way that the whole world even strangers can see my profiles freaks me out a bit. For this EDTS 325 class I have had to set up a teacher twitter and blog so those are completely teacher friendly.

I have a personal twitter but I do not use it at all, I have no posts and have an egg profile picture. I would definitely continue to use my teacher twitter account in the future. Students and parents would mostly see on my teacher twitter I use it as a resource for information and educational wisdom. There is nothing bad on it at all and I would be okay for a superintendent or even parents to see it.

The second teacher friendly resource that I have set up from this class is my blog. This blog I am definitely going to use in the future for my students and their parents to access information on the classroom. I am going to keep it 100% student teacher friendly and easy to access and go to for questions and information.

The next personal network I have is Facebook. This is one I have locked tight. I feel that if anyone did see my profile (if we had a mutual friend and the mutual friend could see my profile) I would be okay. I really don’t post anything bad at all even in my past. I was never big into using facebook as a place to air dirty laundry but to rather keep in touch with family and friends. When I become a teacher I may do it differently than just keeping privacy settings like maybe change my name or make another profile and keep teacher friendly (Miss Mathieson) have assignments as my status updates. If I have two and I give them my one handle they might think that I only have that facebook account. Again I don’t know if I will do this for sure. My facebook is locked tight and there really isn’t anything unprofessional on there. I would have to be in that classroom to see what I would do for sure.

The last personal network I have is instagram. This is also one that is locked up tight. Again not for a particular reason other than the fact that I do not like sharing a lot of my personal life out there. My instagram is really lame I have maybe 4 pictures for some reason I update and add content once every year. I don’t even know if I will do anything with this because there isn’t anything on it and I am not too worried about mutual friends because there isn’t anything to see.

I do have a youtube but I don’t enjoy using it. I feel that when I become a teacher I may make that more teacher friendly by only adding content like screen casts for information if needed. I think I might just stop using it all together there are so many other ways to get information out there like using the blog and posting videos on there, that is something I would rather use than youtube.

I did a test and I looked up my name on Google none of my personal sites popped up at all. I did this because I wanted to see what others see if they looked up my name. The only image that popped up under Google images is my avatar, which is okay for me. The reason it is good to look yourself up is to see what others see. You want to give yourself a good image online especially while looking for a job or maintaining one. You need to be aware that everything you do online is permanent and that it could bit you in the butt later in life.

If the superintendent looked at me and asked “What social media are you on and what does it tell about you?” I would answer honestly and say I’m not on a lot and they all say I am boring. I use twitter for information and rarely post anything on facebook and instagram. I am a boring person when it comes to my personal networks.

Using Storybird in the classroom

The app I used to create my project was Storybird. I found this to be really fun to make, I love reading and writing so it is definitely something I can see myself using in the future. In this app you get to explore illustrations from artists that they put on there and create a story around those illustrations. The illustrations are beautiful and the possibilities of stories are endless.

The one downside to this app is the fact you can only use one artist’s illustrations for your work. You cannot mix and match different pictures, this makes sense because as a real writer you would only have one, but was very difficult for the writing process. For example the first picture I found I really wanted to use and had a completely different view on how to go with the story. But I found out that the illustrator only had two other photos and I really wanted my story to be longer than only three pages. As a writer it is very difficult to write from pictures, and can almost be seen as a challenge. I was very time consuming looking for an illustrator who had multiple and similar pictures to carry on through a story. but even with this hiccup, it was still fun to create with. One more downside was that I couldn’t really find away to add anything within the app. I tried to add a video or even a link to something to my story but I couldn’t seem to be able to.

An upside to this app is how you could use this app in a classroom. This has the capability of being a great assignment for students. The amount of creativity this could express or even creative writing would be great to use. For example students who are learning about poetry could each go on there and find a picture that they like and write a poem about it. (there is a teacher’s account available for inviting students to create separate parts of a big assignment) After the book is created the teacher can then print it out and buy the book containing the student’s work.

The way that the app itself is setup is great. It has the instructions right on the page and was clear and easy to follow. I was able to look through the photos and easily put my story together. The second most time consuming part of the creative process next to finding a illustrator is writing the story itself. This is bound to happen because you can’t really practice or prep before going the website. Another thing I really liked about the layout was that teachers can create classes and invite students. This makes it really great learning tool. And finally the layout was great for storing your books and creating an open space for teachers to share stories with other educators.

The way I would use this in my classroom in the future is determined on what grades I end up teaching. If I become an early elementary school teacher I will use this to create relevant stories for students and topics I know they would enjoy and understand, and then read it to the students. If I were a higher elementary teacher I may do what I mentioned above, I would have students find a picture and write a poem or story. There are so many possibilities with storybird and I know I will use it in the future.

My final product from this assignment turned out great! I created the book with storybird, I then used a screen casting site I never used before to record me reading the book. finally I downloaded it to a quicktime player and added music in through quicktime player as well. I think It turned out great, and some students may find it easier to read and follow along to a recording than reading themselves, especially if they are still learning. I hope other future teachers decide to use storybird in their classrooms as well!

link to my final product video!

QR Scavenger Hunts in the Classroom

In my EDTS325 class we completed a QR code Scavenger Hunt around the college using the app Goosechase. Personally I loved this experience. From a student’s perspective, the layout of the app itself was amazing. It had the tasks you completed disappear and this made it easy to keep track of the ones you had to complete still. This enhanced the student’s ability to move to the next one faster, like a race. From a teacher’s point of view, it was awesome that the teacher could see submissions as they come and even mark them along the way. This would make marking and seeing participation a much faster process.

I can definitely see myself using Goosechase in my future classroom. The possibilities on how Goosechase could be used in the classroom are endless. I would find ways to use Goosechase to make boring subjects fun! One way I could see myself using them is for spelling; I could have words on the QR codes and have them find objects that go with the words. For example, the QR codes would say pencil and the students would find a pencil and take picture with it and so on. First group done wins. Goosechase is a great way to keep your class engaged and ensure the students are having fun.

Interactive Learning Tools in the Classroom Review

In my EDTS 325 class I have been introduced to so many different tools and technologies that can be used in a classroom. These technologies can be used to help students be engaged and test their level of understanding within the subject. While exploring these technologies I got a better understanding on what works and what doesn’t work in terms of the student’s interests and the teacher’s presentation. I have learned that there are so many different ways to present the same ideas. I am going to reflect on the resources I have learned about and why they either work or don’t work for me as both a teacher and student.

My top choices for resources are blue and my bottom choice is in red.

Teacher use:

 Socrative:

in order to use the tool Socrative the teacher needs to create an account, which is free and easy to get. The app itself was really easy to follow and create your quizzes in. It has a great layout was all included into one quiz. You pick the type of question you want and write in the question and answers right on the page. They also give you an option to write an explanation as to why the answer is in deed the answer. You can also mix the type of questions up giving variety and fun. Another great quality about Socrative is that you can print out the quizzes on paper and hand them out this can be a great fast and easy way to create a quiz for your students to do on paper as well as through the Internet. It is also really easy to share and use with the students. The students can have fun with these quizzes making it a win for the teachers.

Plickers:

For Plickers the teacher needs an account which is easy to get and easy to use. It takes a little longer to set up this app because the teacher needs to have the list of students in the class ahead of time and be able to assign each student to a certain card. But it is worth the longer time. The teacher’s can assign and print out up to 63 cards. Its very easy to set the questions up but you need questions that can be a and b answers at least. The teacher can set up more than one class onto the site. This would be very beneficial for high school teachers who teach the same course to multiple students/classes. The free version is definitely worth using.

Padlet:

For Padlet the teacher needs to have an account. Padlet is really easy to set up you just pose a question or subject, set a background, and add instructions for the students to follow. It is not timely at all making it simple to make in a matter of seconds. It is easy to upload your own background and even pictures as well. You need to have open-ended questions, which require a long thought our answer with an explanation.With Padlet a teacher can see what everyone wrote, and assess them off of the site. The one downfall to Padlet is that it does not have an automatic grader, or a progress report. The Padlet is my bottom choice is because it really isn’t even quiz it is a place to create information almost more of a blog where students can post questions and answers to a question or subject.

Students Use:

Kahoot:

This tool is so easy to use for students to access questions. All the students do is go on the Internet and look up Kahoot.it.com and they receive a room code and put it into their device (computer, tablet, phone—tablets and phones are the easiest) once the students get in with the code they put their name in. The teacher has access to deleting names that are not appropriate. Once in the students get their name put in they have immediate access to the quiz. Students cannot be anonymous when responding but the only names the students will see is the ones in the top 5 spots. The students see the questions and answers on the board only on the device they will see the colour matching to each on their phone.The teacher can decide if they want to do teams or individual players. The students in competition will be more likely to try and play. Some would say the music is distracting but I feel the music actually gets the students more pumped up to play. There is one tiny down fall to this app and that is with the jumble feature. It is really hard to look at the board and at the device while writing in the right answer.

Plickers:

Plickers is really easy for students to use. The students do not need any accounts or codes all they need is a piece of paper or card as Plickers calls it. Each student is identified with their own special card with their name and pattern on it. When the teacher scans in their card with their answer of a, b, c, or, d. The letters are located on each side of the paper. The only type of technology you need is a tablet for the teacher to scan the answers on.The teacher can see what you chose as your answers but the to the other students on the board you are completely anonymous. It is definitely made for more specific answers and all of the set up is on the teachers end. There could be the distracted element of not so much distractions but rather the way it is easy to copy other student’s answers so the teacher should make the cards smaller so it is harder to read off of.

Peardeck:

When using Peardeck students need to have a Google account in order to participate. By using it with your Google account you get an automatic account for the tool. The students then get a code that they insert into their page. The teacher does not see your name as you are anonymous which can be good for the students. The teacher only gets an overall look at the students understanding. With their accounts they are identified but not to the teachers. This could be used on multiple devices (computer, phone, tablet.) The responses available are either choose whichever answers are already available or short answer the numbering one is weird and these ask for either specific answers and open-ended questions. The reason Peardeck is in my bottom choice for this category is because on the students’ device it doesn’t exactly explain how to use it; for example the number question doesn’t explain what the number one does. It just gives you the space on the phone as if you would know. It makes it very confusing at times for the students.

Flexibility/Variety of Questions:

Socrative:

Socrative allows for a number of variation concerning questions. You can have multiple choice, short answers and have the questions where you can get more than one answer you like best. There does not seem to be a limit of questions or words with Socrative. With Socrative you can shuffle up the questions and answers order so that students will have a difficult time cheating off of one another. You can also choose if you want the quiz to give instant feedback to the students, or to be teacher paced or have an open navigation. Students do not need to be in the same physical locations because the questions are on your device. You just need to be sure that each student has the codes to the room. Teachers cannot have more than one room going at once, but can only have 50 students (with free version) and 150 students (with pro).

 Polleveryhwere:

It allows quite a variety of different question types it gives you options for multiple choice, word cloud, Q&A, rank order, clickable image and surveys. With the word cloud you could do a couple of different things you can ask what words come to mind when you think of this subject and what are your favorite… the with question and answer you can ask open-ended questions and opinions, the rest cant be too flexible with questions. The amount of people who can answer the questions is the amount of your audience size meaning everyone can only vote once. (the amount determined from plan) 25 people plan is the free one. You use this technology with the students at the same time so you cannot shuffle up questions and answers when creating this. Students have to be in the same location because the question is on the board.

 Peardeck:

You can do multiple choice, and even a graph of excitement (1-10) it groups it and gives an average of the graphs and ideas in a calculated averageThe student can also have a write in question (short answer.) Students can use the ball to choose where they feel fit like thumbs up students can draw whatever they want. Peardeck allows for a few different types of questions for the free ones along with a few with the pay ones. The free ones available are multiple choice, write number, and write text. With the plan you can get drag a dot, drag a line, draw on a picture, and draw something. The reason that Peardeck is in my bottom choices for this category is because the one that you pay for is way more fun rather than the one for free. There is not a word limit or question limit. You do this quiz with the class so in order to read the question from the board you need to be in class to do it.

Diagnostic/Feedback

Socrative:

The one aspect I love especially as a future teacher about Socrative is the information that can be recorded about the responses. The teacher sees variation in responses and has the ability to turn off and on names of the students if they want it to stay anonyms. It gives you the options to save data and information that you can use for report cards. It also gives you pdfs of the individual students. The pdfs’ tracks their progress and would be great for parent interviews to print and show the parents the students’ growth and understanding of concepts. It also gives an overall percentage of the grades from the students, which shows you as a teacher what you need to go over and change the way of teaching it. This is extremely handy and is all averaged out for you. This is something that any teacher would love to use.

Plickers:

I really like the format of this learning tool. When the students are given cards it is programmed under that persons name so when the students answer a question the data gets put into the system of Plickers. After the students answer the questions a score sheet gets put onto the teachers account. The score sheet function gives teachers access to a score sheet with the questions hey had gotten wrong. The score sheet gives each student results along with an overall percentage letting the teacher know what the majority got wrong.

Padlet:

Like I said above Padlet is a lot like a blog rather than a testing tool. The questions have to be open ended and the system does not grade the student’s work for you. By not having an automatic report or grader can make it more time consuming for the teacher to read through and grade. One more downside is the students have to manually put their name in the answer and a lot of students forget to add names making it impossible to grade and assign marks to.

Final Summary

After creating and using each of these learning tools I have learned so much about what you can do in a classroom. There are a couple of tools that have stuck out to me that I would like to talk about one last time. The first one that was my favorite tool to use as a student was Kahoot. Kahoot was so much fun and got the whole class involved and ready to learn even the music set the tone as being fun. Everyone wanted to get the right answer and it was the competitive tool that every classroom needs. Kahoot was also so easy and fast to set up as a teacher I will definitely be using this tool in my future classroom. The second tool I would like to talk about is Padlet. I don’t really like padlet very much because if you have a blog, you pretty much have Padlet. As a student I found it hard to use because when everyone is posting everything is moving around. As a teacher I would dread having to go through all the posts and read/grade them when you can use another tool to post and do instant marking for them. If I did an activity where students would post pictures and comments to themes I would use a blog or something a bit different.