Sunday, April 22, 2012


I have been working with the tool Symbaloo.  This is a bookmarking tool that I intend to use professionally to help organize my "favorites".  I have came across so many amazing tools and resources throughout my MET courses that I don't want to forget any of them!  Now I can access my tools, websites, and blogs no matter where I am.  Symbaloo also lets you share your webmixes and search others so I can continue to expand and add to my PLN.  I have linked my Symbaloo below.


I like how I can organize my favorites into a variety of categories and Symbaloo even starts some of your web mixes off with popular website/tools. 

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

My First Twitter Chat

Okay, I successfully (I think) completed my first Twitter chat.  I was completely overwhelmed by this assignment I think because I am still a little overwhelmed by Twitter itself. For some reason Twitter and I do not seem to mesh, I am just not feeling it even though I can see the opportunities it has for teachers.  I will keep working on it though! 
I completed my Twitter chat with Really Good Stuff #teachchat.  The discussion was over common core standards  and how to still integrate the fun activities that we know that students need on occasions. I thought the discussion was great, especially since common core is a widely discussed topic in my own building right now.  I took away many creative ideas and head a lot of different viewpoint as well.  The participants were all active and all made good points and were able to see different perspectives as well.  I liked that there was someone leading the chat, it seemed to keep it very organized, moving, and stayed on topic.  The only thing I found challenging was it moved SUPER fast!  I think be a little unfamiliar with Twitter still made that even a little more difficult for me, but it was managable.  I have not yet found another Twitter chat, but I know that this chat takes place every other Wednesday at 8:00 central time and I plan on trying to participate in them.  They even gave out prizes....not that I won any though. 

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Social Networking Site Pinterest

For my social networking site I decided to investigate Pinterest.  I have used Pinterest before for personal fun, but there is a wealth of information on Pinterest for teachers though as well.  I have found almost anything imagainable for teachers:  printable resources, craft and project ideas, graphic organizers, and resources for literature units.  In regards to diversity, I was looking specifically for items for my remedial reading students.  These students are not necessarily considered SPED students but do require a lot of interventions in order to be succesful in school.  I came across the following blog ( from a Title One reading teacher.  This blog contains a lot of good ideas and printables for struggling readers.  I typed "struggling readers" into the search engine and the page was just loaded with printables, blogs, and hands on activities.  I also looked back at these students data to see exactly what reading skills they were lacking.  My district uses Acuity to assess students and track their mastery of grade level skills and as a MAP prediction test.  After pulling their data I typed the skills into the search engine and again was greeted by great ideas and blogs I can follow for even more ideas.  I also love the Pin It feature that allows me to save ideas/blogs that I find.  No more trying to remember where  I seen certain ideas or forgetting about them altogther!  Pinterest is yet another addition to my PLN!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Networked Classrooms

I truly believe networked classrooms are the future of education.  I have enjoyed learning some many different ways that I can connect my students to the entire world via a single computer.  Networked classrooms can provide students with the authentic and meaningful learning experiences that they all crave and engage themselves in.  I agree that for the transition to networked classrooms to be effective that you must start off small and smooth out wrinkles as you come to them.  I have followed this advice myself in my own classroom, I have started off small with an Edmodo site that I have been trying to integrate into my classroom.  I think the most interesting part is the students are truly learning right along with me, it is new territory for us all and they enjoy seeing me make mistakes (a little too much), but it lets them see that I don't get discouraged and we just keep trying.  Using these networking tools has opened a new level of discussions in my classroom, the students are now coming to me wanting to know if I can post certain discussions or surveys to the Edmodo for them to work on.  I see several students using the site from home and this is exciting to me as a teacher.  I can only imagine their enthusiam when we start using Skype and letting them create blogs in the future!  Students in today's world need us to teach them the ins and outs of these powerful collaborative tools so they can prepare themselves for our technology driven world.  I believe students who recieve this networked instruction and exposure in the classroom will have a huge advantage over students who do not--they will be better prepared in seeking out and utilizing technology to learn, be able to see things from multiple perspectives, and have an overall better understanding of their world and what it has to offer.  I cannot imagine what educational technology is going to look like in the future, but I sure am eager to find out!