Monday, February 20, 2012

Blog Post #3

1. Technology in Special Education video showed me a lot that i did not know.Technology can accommodate for students and teachers in the classroom. The teacher Lace Cook shows us the difference in a classroom with no technology compared to one with some. The classroom is boring without technology. She introduces us to a student using the Ipod-Touch to help him read along with the book he had. The small electronic items teachers say are distractions can be the same things that help the students every day in the classroom.
The video also shows that some technology is almost necessary in the classroom. Mrs. Cook shows us that some students have physical disabilities and are non verbal. They use computers to talk for them. She attempted to do a crossword problem with one student and had him pointing at the letters he wanted to use. She showed that it took a lot of time and that it was way quicker to let him type his response. Students with disabilities might even benefit from technology even better than the kids with out them. The thought i left with is that all students benefit from technology regardless of a major disability or not.
2. In the video "How the iPad Works with Academics for Autism, Bradley, an 8 year old boy with autism, Uses the iPad for different learning activities. The first application he uses helps him with his counting. The application is called Toddler Counting. Every time he taps the item on the screen a number pops up and it says the number aloud for him to hear it and repeat it. He repeats it instantly and seems like he is having fun at the same time.
Another application that is similar to that one is called My First Words. In that application he simply is repeating the word that appears on the screen while the iPad reads it aloud. Kids Writing Pad works very well with Bradley as well. His dad writes a word then Bradley writes the same word under it, to improve and work on his handwriting. The thing that sticks out to me is the enthusiasm and motivation that he has while doing these activities using this application. He is doing your basic mathematics, reading, and writing all at home on his iPad and is having fun. This can be used in schools as well to help other students with autism.
3. Gary's Social Media Count shows how social networks and other media activity takes over the world. In this current period of time it is rare if a person does not have an account on a social network. There is no age limit. From children from the ages of 8 all the way to adults to the age of 60, social media is common.

Social networks by the seconds are growing even larger. It is crazy that the influence it has on modern day society. Soon I think that is going to be required by birth that you have your information put up. Technology has advanced so much since the 90s. From my personal stand point i feel that social media is required in college. So when you see how numbers are changing you can also consider how many students are getting ready to make the transition from high school to college.
4. This video explains exactly how a lot of students feel about learning and going to class. Education first start with the setting. Universities have focused on having bigger classrooms versus better classrooms for students to learn. Why have a classroom that you can hold over 100 students in, if everyone cannot see the board? Questions like this should be asked to universities.

It seems like college classes do not prepare you for your future job. Most students have text books the pay over 200 dollars for and some they never use to only sell back for 30 dollars. The information they even teach you is irrelevant to the job of your future. College is a very big scheme for money it seems and not focused on teaching the information in a way that all students can learn.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Project #5

Blog Post #2

1. The first video i observed was the "Did You Know" January 12 version. It was a very informal with a lot of fun facts. I disliked the music in the video, it had more of a Star Wars feel to it. The facts about Google and Youtube stuck out to me because, that's what i use the most daily. The video really shows how technology is important to the world in our current time period.
The second video that was also named "Did You Know" was more visual with awesome effects. The music was better too, it didn't have a Star Wars sound. The transitions between facts stuck out to me as well. The facts were presented better in this video. Overall both videos were great and filled with a lot of information but, I would personally rather watch the second video.

2. "Mr. Winkle Waves" video has a funny looking old man as the main character. He has been sleep for 100 years and he is basically being woken up to the advancement of technology. It is amazing how he is a cartoon character and his image is being placed in real settings in the video. This video shows how you can be real creative with pictures and do not have recorded movement necessarily to compose a video. The narrator also did a very nice job with tying the plot to all the pictures together.
This video should inspire all teachers to get creative when trying to educate your students. This video would be very useful for elementary teachers in teaching all the subjects. It would be difficult to incorporate a project like this into the secondary school level though. The production was very impressive in the video as well. "Mr. Winkle Waves" is overall a impressive project.

3. Ken Robinson brought up several good points during his talk. It is very difficult to educate and prepare someone for the future if we do not know what the future holds. Another point that he argues about was hoe society dwells on mistakes and makes it seem like that is the worst thing you can do is be wrong about something. I really liked when he discussed that now we educate children from their waste up, and end up only educating their hands. Basically he was referring to how education only prepares us to join a work force that we will be doing works with our hands.
Ken Robinson also talked about how degrees have been minimized now and that there are a lot of people who have degrees, and they do not work in the field of their degree. He brought up and example of a Dancer named Jenny. When Jenny was young and in school she would fidget a lot at her desk. The teacher said she might have a learning disability. She ended up seeing a specialist and told her parents that she needs to go to dance school because she is a dancer. Now she has millions of dollars and is still a dancer. TO understand what each child's calling is. Education would have to adopt a human ecology concept to truly understand children and their callings. Ken Robinson speech was very well and had some funny moments, which kept me interested in what he was talking about.

4. I agree with the video "A vision for 21st Century" one-hundred percent. The way the education system is designed, only a certain number of people will succeed. The first step into improving this system is incorporating more computers/technology. Most students use a computer before the grade of kindergarten. By using 3D image3s to visit certain historical time periods instead of describing them to the class is a big difference. By putting young students in front of pencil and paper everyday limits on how they learn. If we tie education and technology together, there would be no limit on our children's education.

5. The video Harness Your Students' Digital Smarts" Vickie Davis understands the importance and power of technology in which she incorporates in her classroom. She teaches a class that uses almost every form of technology. She knows that putting students in front of pencil and paper everyday limits them. She rather empower them with the idea of teaching. She allows her students to teach the class what they have learned.This idea only leads to an improved and overall better classroom atmosphere.
She also uses Digi-Teen to connect her students with other technology classes around the world. Digi-Teen is a blog site in which students share information in which they have learned in class with other classes. This blog site allows different classrooms in different areas to still work on projects together. Putting technology in a classroom and focusing on that, can only help prepare children for the future.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Blog Post #1

1. A little About Myself
My name is Braxton McShan, I am from Tuscaloosa, Alabama. I am a Mathematics/ Secondary Education major and i hope to one day be a teacher in high school. My interest are anything to do with sports especially Alabama Football. I love to listen to new and old music hang out with friends and watch sports. I also have recently became a shoe fanatic and i love to have the latest sneakers out. The reason i chose to attend South Alabama because i would be at least three hours away from my mom and they didn't have community showers.

The reason i wanted to enter the field of education because i feel like a teacher has the biggest influence on a child's life. I always help my friends out when it comes to math, a lot of people say i have a natural gift when it comes to explaining things about math. I really like doing work by myself rather than groups. I concentrate better that way. I also like to eat when someone else cooks rather than myself. I'm not a bad cook i am just very lazy. That's about it when it comes to me.

2. Randy Pausch on Time Management
 Randy Pausch is a very good speaker and his topic was even better. He spoke on Goals and i really liked when he bought up the aspect of time and money being together. I also liked when he spoke on Prioritizing and Planning. The quote i leave with this video that i will use in my every day life is "Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail" - Randy Pausch.