Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Wow, I learned so much about You Tube just by exploring the site! You can watch TV shows, movies, trailers for upcoming movies, and music videos on top of the random videos and things that people upload. If you are determined to get You Tube into your classroom, you can definitely find some educational documentaries in the movie section. You can also use You Tube in your classroom by uploading your own personalized videos. That might be a fun and exciting way to deliver instruction to your class rather than just lecturing. If you do want to use You Tube with your class, you will probably have to embed whatever videos you want to show into a document first. You Tube does have an option to embed the videos. That is the only way I can see to get past the site being blocked. I have not tried it yet, but I will attempt it and see if it works. Please let me know if anyone else knows another way to get around the site being blocked.

I did have a chance to upload my Educational Reform PSA on You Tube. The web address is http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dLH-Au9-XFU. Check it out and let me know what you think! I found so many other educational videos that are out there just waiting to be watched! I found a lot of the Schoolhouse Rock videos. Here are just a few of those:
How a Bill Becomes a Law: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mEJL2Uuv-oQ
Conjunction Junction: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mkO87mkgcNo
Grammar Rock - Adjectives: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mYzGLzFuwxI
Multiplication Rock - I got Six: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cwkgNf69ihY
Schoolhouse Rock - Three is a Magic Number: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m3Li-rTuBKs

I understand why Howard County feels the need to block You Tube access from students, but there should be some type of teacher override that we can use to access the site. It would be so nice to be able to just open the site and click play rather than embedding videos into a document. That adds in an extra piece of technology which could cause issues when transferring it to another computer or making one little mistake during the process of embedding it.


You Tube (http://www.youtube.com/) is a very large video-sharing website. It can be used for many purposes including personal and educational use. Much of the content on You Tube is posted from private users that is meant purely for entertainment, but you can also find more professional videos that are meant for the purpose of education.

I do not have much personal experience with You Tube. Most of the experience I have had with the video-sharing website is hanging out with friends looking for funny or entertaining videos to watch for fun. I have yet to use it for an educational purpose. This is due to the fact that the site is blocked from our Howard County server. This creates a big problem for teachers that want to use it in their classrooms. I have, however, seen it used at professional development meetings for educational use. Other teachers have used videos from You Tube to get a message across to us in a training.

I plan to post my Public Service Announcement from our last class on You Tube. I have never attempted to post anything to You Tube so I'm sure it will be an adventure!

Monday, November 29, 2010


So... I created my own Wiki tonight! The web address is http://stantonwiki.wikispaces.com/. It is something I definitely plan to use with my students. I began by creating a fairly simple home page. It gives the students an introduction to the page and directions for their first activity. I created a different page for each student so they will only be editing their own work. Of course I have to trust that they will only edit their own since they will technically have the power to edit other pages too. I don't have to tell them that at first though :) I have used fake student names for the time being, but when I actually implement it, I will put the students names (only first with last initial) as the names for each page on the right hand side. That way, they can just click on their name, and begin editing!

I can see this as being VERY useful in my classroom. I think the kids will truly enjoy going online and just typing away knowing that all of their classmates and their teacher can see their work right on their own screen! That feature would also be nice for teachers that do not have LCD projectors in their classrooms. No more hooking up each computer so a child can share their work. Everyone can see each others! This Wiki will make printing out their papers obsolete since I could grade them by just looking at them online from my recliner at home! That certainly is a plus.

Another benefit of this is that the students can work on it at home. All they would need to do is get on the internet and go to the Wiki's address. I have the permissions set up so that anyone can edit it. Of course that can lead to it's own issues, but I would be willing to try it. If other people started going on and editing the page, I could always change the permissions and only have my students be able to edit it. Unfortunately, if I had to go that route, my students would need to sign up for an account. They would each need an email address which is where I might run into an issue. Hopefully no one would mess with our Wiki so I could keep it simple and public!

Even with a few downfalls, I could absolutely see myelf using this Wiki for this type of assignment all of the time. I look forward to using this with my class!

Saturday, November 27, 2010


A Wiki is website that can be created and edited very easily. One of it's features is that it allows for collaboration from many different people in creating or contributing to the Wiki. A Wiki can have many uses in the education world. One beneficial way to use a Wiki is to provide resources for parents and students to use at home that support the instruction that is going on at school. Currently, our school has a Math Wiki that was created by one of our teachers a few years ago. The address is http://mathfocus.hcpss.wikispaces.net/. The purpose of this particular Wiki is to provide math resources for parents and students to use in one easy to access place.

Another educational use for a Wiki could be to have the students edit a Wiki that was created by their teacher. The teacher could create a Wiki with a set of directions telling the students what their assignment is. The students would then have to add things to the Wiki in accordance to what the assignment is. The students might have to respond to a question, create a story, edit something the teacher has written, or create a project of some kind. You could even have the kids work in groups to edit and work on their assignments. One nice thing is that the students can put their work right on the Wiki due to it's collaborative nature.

If you are interested in creating a Wiki of your own, here is a great website resource that will walk you through it: http://www.wikispaces.com/. You can even create a free classroom Wiki with some great features!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Welcome to my Technology Blog! Throughout this semester, I will be blogging about several different technologies and their features in relation to education. I hope you enjoy!