Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Science/Math Technologies

There are such fun programs online for children (and adults!) to use to explore different science/math interests. I absolutely loved the Stellarium program! Being from a small, rural town, I miss the dark starry nights I could easily see while growing up. Now here in Utah, it is very hard to even see stars at night. I was thrilled to see what you could do with Stellarium. You are able to see the starry night from any location around the world. Not only that, you are able to look at the sky in the past or even in the future.

What a great teaching tool this would be for teachers! Students are able to explore the sky freely on their own, or teachers are able to step the students through different locations or sky constallations. Programs like Stellarium, is a great way to spark students' curiousity and to get them to explore the world around them.


Today I learned about TPACK. TPACK stands for Technological Pedagogical and Content Knowledge. It is a way of thinking about how you intergrate technology into your teaching. I had never heard of TPACK before today, but I feel that it is important to know and to use in my classroom.

TPACK is broken into three main areas--Pedagogical knowledge, content knowledge, and technological knowledge. Pedagogical knowledge is defined as general knowledge and skills relating to teaching. Content knowledge is the knowledge of facts, concepts and skills. It's important to remember that having this kind of knowledge doesn't mean that you will be a good teacher. Content knowledge doesn't include any of the teaching skills. Technological knowledge is the knowledge required to understand and use various teachnologies.

Each of the three knowledges are important, but the key is to use all three knowledges when teaching. If you use all three knowledges, lessons become more hands on and enjoyable. The children walk away having learned much more than they ever would have from just reading a text book.

It is important for teachers to use this in their classroom. Students learn much more about the concept they are studying, if they are able to physically experience it. Students also learn about new technologies, as they use them to study the given concept. TPACK is a way to reach students, who usually are not reached through textbooks. Children all learn differently and TPACK is a tool teachers can use to reach a full spectrum of different learning preferences.

Monday, January 19, 2009

RSS and Web 2.0 Tools

I have never used or even heard of RSS until I did the tutorial today. RSS is a great and easy way to store websites, that you use on a weekly basis, all together. It saves time and is so efficient.

Goodreads is a fun website for teachers to connect with other teachers and friends to share good books. It is a great way to stay on top of new books and to find books that would benefit your students the most.

Delicious is a wonderful way to save websites and internet articles all in one place. It's great because you can view your saved websites on any computer! These are all useful and helpful tools I will use as I'm teaching.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Technology Background and Experience

It's funny how much technology you use every day, but it seems to be changing ever so quickly. I'd say that I am pretty good with technology, but there are definitely things that I can learn more about.
I have a laptop and am usually on the internet every night. My brothers are those kind of boys that couldn't live without their gaming systems. So although I didn't want any exposure to all the gaming systems, I most definitely did. Overall, I just know technology that a student would use everyday.
I have never used a blog, but have been wanted to set one up for a long time! I just haven't had time. So I guess this can be my first try at it. We'll see how it goes....