Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Week 5 in EDLD 5363

Well, I attended my last web conference for EDLD 5363 Sunday night. There was a bit of confusion about exactly what needed to be completed for the last week of the course, but Dr. Abernathy was diligent in helping everyone feel at ease about her expectations. Thankfully she understood our work load and relieved some of the pressure we were all feeling by excusing us from posting comments to our class discussion board.

It was also interesting to hear more information about how and why Ed Tech students can work toward their principal certification. It was enlightening to hear Dr. Abernathy’s explanation of why Lamar University now has a master’s program through which Ed Tech students can also prepare for the principal certification. So many Ed Tech students would finish the master’s program and begin work in central administration offices and then be told they needed to have principal certifications. Thankfully, LU responded to that need and created a program to work toward Ed Tech leadership and principal certification at the same time.

Thank you Dr. Abernathy for your cheerful web conferences.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Cyber Help in the 21st Century

I really appreciate the help my Lamar University professors have been so willing and eager to give through web conferences. Taking courses online can be a bit intimidating. However, anytime I get a little confused, there’s another web conference I can attend in order to ask my questions. As I’ve mentioned in an earlier blog post, if I don’t have the opportunity to participate in a live web conference, I can almost always catch the recording of the conference.

Thanks Dr. Abernathy for sacrificing your precious time, after being away from home, to conduct last night’s web conference…and thanks for answering my questions.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

What Did We Do Before We Could Record?????

Thank goodness for the ability to record! My husband is grateful that he can record sporting events when we are unable to be at home when they are originally aired; I am thankful that my educational web conferences are recorded for my convenience. Although I have had trouble attending a live web conference during EDLD 5363, I have gained a great deal of insight into the course expectations by watching the recorded versions of these conferences.

This week I watched the recording of the November 22, 2011 web conference. Of course I received clarification on some of the expectations for the week 2 assignment, but I really appreciated Brian Conner’s humor. Being a math person as well, I could relate to his viewpoint on a few matters. For instance, many math teachers only know how to use paper and pencil as Brian pointed out.  It helped a lot for Dr. Abernathy to answer questions presented by my classmates. Some of the questions were issues of concern to me, too. I was having trouble understanding exactly what we were supposed to post about the video editing software we had chosen. Dr. Abernathy explained that we needed to make a podcast about how to use that software. She also helped us understand the importance of using subject tags on our podcasts when we put them on YouTube. Unfortunately, I didn’t do that with the video I put on YouTube during week 1; now I know.

It was also very helpful and a relief to know more about what to expect in week 3, 4, and 5 as we work with our groups. I think I even understood that one of those weeks we won’t actually have anything to turn in because we will be building in one week in order to turn in something later. It was also nice to know that I’m already doing some of the things about which other students were unsure. My partners and I have been using a google document to record our collaboration during weeks 1 and 2.

I know I need to attend a live web conference before EDLD 5363 is over, so I am striving to reach that goal. Hopefully the next few weeks won’t be as overloaded as weeks 1 and 2 have been.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Creating a Digital Storybook...scrapbooking in cyberspace

Oh my! What an experience. I honestly started this week thinking I wouldn’t be able to create a digital storybook anyone would be interested in watching. My mind truly whirled trying to narrow down ideas that seemed too large to manage. When the idea I finally used came, I knew it was right. The biggest challenge was finding images to use. Although I have many photographs saved, most of my photographs were lost in a house fire a couple of years ago. Thankfully, I found free images on bing.com that I was able to use to fill in the gaps between personal photos.

I really enjoyed learning how to create a digital storybook and I look forward to playing with that piece of technology more. I can see great potential in using things like Movie Maker and iMovie to document important events.

I also enjoyed collaborating with Jennifer Canizares and Jennifer Ralston through our google document. (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1t_05nwCuZpPRKHeMXfBilKreTUMEXTx6uh1SMLImHSE/edit?hl=en_US )

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Week 1 in EDLD 5363

There are some pros and cons to participating in a web conference during the first week of this course. It was good to be reminded to use the ISTE standards so we’re prepared to assist our colleagues. I was grateful to hear that EDLD 5363 will end by Friday, December 16th so we can enjoy our entire Christmas break. It was nice to hear a brief overview of each of the five weeks of this course to know where we’re going. On the other hand, it felt a little overwhelming to get so much information at once; information that went beyond this boundaries of this course. It helped to know other members of our class are feeling the same.

I found it interesting to learn that this course really was designed to help us learn how to collaborate effectively because of the distance collaborating not in spite of it. I’m grateful for the opportunity we’ve been provided to work with others in our sections.

I wish Dr. Abernathy had shared an answer to one question about updating logs and now knowing where to add in the Principal Competencies activities. Instead, time was spent explaining the e-portfolio (wiki) which made me wish there was a way for web conferences to be done by cohorts so we wouldn’t have to spend time hearing about things we already know. By the time we finished

Wrapping up my thoughts, I didn’t really understand why Dr. Abernathy muted her mic halfway through the web conference but was glad she turned it back on after a few minutes in time for us to hear that we will be taking a Lamar competency assessment whether we plan to take the state principal certification test or not. By the end, I actually ended up being a little confused about things like where certain pieces of our work should b posted (wiki, blog, Tk20, e-portfolio?).

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Week 3, Part 2 - Developing an Action Research Plan

Goal: How can using online multiplication games and programs help low-performing students improve knowledge of multiplication facts?

Activities (Action Steps)
Resources Needed
Timeline       For Completion (start/end)
Person(s) Responsible For Activities
Process For Monitoring Achievement Of Objectives
Assessments For Evaluating Effectiveness Of Research

For low-performing students, determine the initial level of mastery of multiplication facts.
Use a quiz of multiplication facts (2's through 12's) to check initial level of mastery of multiplication facts.
Quiz of multiplication facts (2's through 12's) created using ACCES. Google spreadsheet set up to document student results that can be viewed by those educators and administrators involved in the action research project.
Administer quiz sometime during the first two weeks of the second semester of school (2011-2012) during one class period.
Teacher(s) of low-performing students, math curriculum coach.
Administer the quiz and document results on the Google spreadsheet to use as a baseline for comparison as the school year progresses.
Formative assessment using a quiz of multiplication facts (2's through 12's).

Engage low-performing students in the practice of multiplication facts to improve knowledge.
Use online multiplication games and/or math software to improve knowledge of multiplication facts.
Websites and/or math software that can be used to practice multiplication facts.
Once each week starting with second semester of school/ending with last week of the 5th six weeks.
Teacher(s) of low-performing students, math curriculum coach.
Monitor the online multiplication game practice to encourage student effort.
Formative assessment through teacher/math curriculum coach observations.

Spot check student progress toward mastery of multiplication facts.
Use a short quiz to check on student progress in mastering multiplication facts (quiz designed to check specific multiplication facts in order to pinpoint problem areas).
Short quiz created using ACCES that is grouped by specific multiplication facts to facilitate the recognition of problem areas.
Every week and a half to two weeks (depending on scheduling conflicts) starting with the second semester of school/ending approximately two weeks before the summative assessment described in activity 4.
Teacher(s) of low-performing students, math curriculum coach.
Administer the short quiz and document results to track progress. Use the results to modify the selection of websites and/or math software being utilized.
Formative assessment using a short quiz of specifically grouped multiplication facts.

For low-performing students, determine the final level of mastery of multiplication facts at school-year-end.
Use a quiz of multiplication facts (2's through 12's) to check final level of mastery of multiplication facts.
Same quiz of multiplication facts (2's through 12's) created using ACCES at the beginning of the year.
Administer quiz during one class period in the last six weeks grading period of the school year.
Teacher(s) of low-performing students, math curriculum coach.
Administer the quiz and document results to determine amount of improvement since the beginning of the year.
Summative assessment using a quiz of multiplication facts (2's through 12's).