Using Garageband in the Classroom! (great clip)

I found this video showing a Year 1 class developing a podcast, I really like this clip because the kids show how enthusiastic they are about learning when they are able to create and share their knowledge in a fun and exciting way. They explain and show many of the great ways to use Garageband in the classroom and how it can develop and enhance learning.

 

I have also been playing around a bit more with Audacity and have created a music file, the next stage is working out how to put it in the right format to attach, hopefully it will be up soon!
Caisha 🙂

Audacity

This weeks task has been slightly more difficult for me as I am finding Audacity a bit difficult and frustrating to use. I have seen Garage band used before and I have used other programs like it as well though found them much more straight forward than Audacity. I have been trying to play around with the program and get used to using it though from what I have seen I think kids would take a while to work out how to use it effectively.

One thing that I was missing and I’m not sure if Audacity has it but a range of musical instrument sounds available to mix, if anyone knows if this possible with audacity I would love to know how!

I will keep trying with Audacity but have also been testing out a couple other programs that are free to see if they are any easier (in my opinion) to use.

Caisha 🙂

Predictions for the Future

I found this amusing and insightful video from 1966 predicting what what our home computers would be like in 1999. Some predictions are quite funny but some, for the time are very close to what we are actually able to do now.

I am also testing out my embedding skills here as well, this did actually take me a lot longer to figure out than I thought but I got there in the end.

 

I know this video is focused more on the personal uses of a home computer though I thought I would pose this question:

 What are your predictions for our classrooms in 10 years?

This is a question I often think about myself, the many possibilities are exciting to think about!

Caisha 🙂

 

Google Reader :)

Loving Google reader, honestly I didn’t think I would use it that much but it really does make it so much easier to check out everyones awesome blogs!

I already had a iGoogle account setup but I have now linked the google reader and diigo widget to my home page so I can easily access them.

I am still trying to work out the Diigo bookmark widget but i’m sure with a little longer playing around i’ll get it to work, fingers crossed anyway. Has anyone else added a bookmark widget to their iGoogle homepage? Any tips on how to make mine work would be great!

Caisha 🙂

Using Technology in a Treasure Hunt

Just found this great classroom resource on Edmodo’s Computer Technology community, http://www.classtools.net/QR/index.php.

It allows students to use their phones in a treasure hunt. Students download the program onto their phone or other hand held device and bring it into class. The teacher then prints out a range of codes that they place around the school with the first one being in the classroom. The students then use their devices to scan the code (like a barcode) to get their next clue. The internet is also not needed to scan the clues allowing the activity to be conducted in many different areas.

Though this may be more difficult in a primary classroom as some students may not have mobile phones it would be a great way to use technology productively for learning instead of banning its use, such as the ban on phones in many schools.

Caisha 🙂

Thoughts and Questions: Interactive Whiteboards and Technology

I recently attended training for SMART boards, it was great to learn the specifics about how to best use SMART boards in the classroom. This training though encouraged thought about the effectiveness of IWB use in schools. On recent placements I have seen both high and poor use of IWB’s. What I found as a major factor was the training of teachers to use the boards effectively. Hopefully all of us learning about the many ways to use technology in the classrooms will be able to do great things with IWB’s when we are teaching in our own classrooms. Though at the moment some current teachers are not taking full advantage of the contribution IWB’s have to teaching. I know that SMART hold training sessions for teachers to better use their IWB’s, though this training is specialised to only one brand of board there are still many teachers who don’t embrace and use the technology available in their classroom.

Technology and IWB’s particularly are a prominent part of education today and schools are spending large amounts of money for these resources which are not always used.

Is it the lack of training that discourages teachers to not use technology or is it something else?

Should it be compulsory for all pre-service teachers to learn to use the IWB’s effectively?

Caisha 🙂

Social Networking in the Classroom

In this technological age we are all surrounded by technology that allows every individual to connect, share and learn in a range of ways with others from around the world. Stites’ (2011) blog raises the issue that many schools are banning the use of these social networking sites when they have so much potential in a classroom as an effective learning resource.

Media and news stories show the ‘dark’ side of social networking which is definitely a concern which needs to be addressed in schools. Cyber-bulling and internet predators are issues that students need to be taught about as they use various social networking sites. Though I believe using these sites in schools instead of banning them allows the teacher to educate students about the appropriate and safe use of the internet.  Sites such as ‘Edmodo’ are a safe alternative to ‘Facebook’ as students join a group of other students but are unable to add other people.  This is a good way to encourage a safe and positive experience of social networking without banning the use altogether.  

As technology is evolving, the classroom needs to keep up. Students are surrounded by technology everyday and are learning to use a range of technological devices as toddlers. We as teachers need to embrace technology to engage and inspire students’ learning.

“The brain is social, working with other people engages the brain” Stites (2011).

The internet opens up a plethora of possibilities, students are able to share their ideas and opinions through blogs and even You tube, students are able to post newly found knowledge and their own work online to share with those around the world and they are able to discuss and question ideas and learning with their class online not just in the classroom. Students want to use technology in the classroom so with these amazing possibilities for meaningful learning, why not?

 

Stites, William 2011, Why social media in school?, edSocialMedia, posted 07 July, retrieved 30th July 2011, http://www.edsocialmedia.com/2011/07/why-social-media-in-school/

Caisha 🙂

Edmodo and Teaching in the 21st Technology!

 After exploring and using Edmodo I believe it would be a great resource for the classroom. Students enjoy using technology whenever they can and I believe that Edmodo would be a great tool to engage students in meaningful discussions. Edmodo and other networking and blogging sites allow teachers to excite learners through a medium in which they enjoy using and is constantly evolving around them. As teacher’s we are able to use these new technologies that are available to us to share, discuss and learn with other teachers, students and even parents. I have attached this video which I think outlines what we as teachers of the 21st century need to be: Digital World: Teachers Today.

Caisha 🙂

My First Blog :)

Hi Everyone,

This is the first time I have ever created a blog so this is a new learning experience for me. It took me while to work out how to change things and find my way around the site though I am slowly getting there. Im sure I will find out much more as I use the site over this semester.

I am excited to be learning so much already even though we are only in the 2nd week of the semester, can’t wait to learn more throughout the subject that I can hopefully bring into my own classroom.

I have enjoyed using Edmodo over the first couple of weeks and it’s many functions. The more I use the site, the more I realise what a great resource this would be in the classroom and am constantly trying to think of the many ways it could be integrated and used effectively.

I look forward to learning more about technology in the classroom throughout this unit.

Thanks, Caisha 🙂