Hello week 9!

Week 8 and assignment 2 are all finished now and it is time to begin week 9! 

The first part of the week 9 learning path alerts me again about professional experience, module 3 and assignment 3! This is a little daunting! In my previous blog post I was really anxious, nervous and frustrated not knowing my placement but after reading Cassie’s blog, she has spread her enthusiasm about beginning prac this semester. I agree with her in the fact that I am dying to get to know my mentor and learn all about how she/ he incorporates ICT’s in the classroom. 

 

A great mentor teacher can make the professional experience a lot easier and very enjoyable. So my question to my fellow bloggers is: What makes a great mentor teacher? Please comment with your thoughts

Personally I am hoping my mentor teacher 

  •  is friendly and welcoming
  • introduces me to the other staff members and the class
  • calms my nerves
  • provides me with the lessons/teaching programs he/she would like to teach in advance
  • suggests and discusses content, teaching and management strategies
  • shares resources
  • provides a background about the students in the class
  • is available e.g. communicates via email
  • is committed to the profession
  • has a positive attitude
  • provides constructive criticism 
  • encourages reflection after each lesson
  • models effective and a variety of teaching strategies
  • provides a photo of the class to learn names
  • is organised
  • explains the reward system in place
  • provides a chair/place/desk to sit on the first day

We can only hope 🙂

Click here, here and here for more information on great mentor teachers.

Burning out

We have just hit the halfway mark for this semester and I have to admit, I am already burnt out! With assignments after assignments, working full-time and preparing for professional experience, I am already dreaming about the holidays. It is so easy to fall into the stress of everyday life, we need to make time to stop and reflect on each experience. 

 It is so easy to get caught up in everyday things and forget why we wanted to become teachers in the first place and what kind of teacher we want to be. I should be excited about my upcoming professional experience, but instead I am quite nervous, anxious and stressed about what is ahead. Walking into an unfamiliar school, staffroom and classroom with a temporary loss of security can be quite daunting and not knowing what school I will be attending for prac is frustrating! 

Here’s hoping for a great mentor who will make the experience a lot easier and very enjoyable. I can feel Jess’s pain about prac, glad to know I am not alone!

Now to finish some more assignments and keep trotting on…..

 

 

Blogging at home and in the classroom

Since the beginning of EDC3100 I have been not only introduced to the idea of blogging for our own learning as future teachers, but also to the amazing potential that they can have for student learning through the use of classroom blogs. After reading Melissa’s Blog, I  see that blogging has influenced her learning and will continue to be a useful tool to use in her future classroom. I agree with Melissa’s thoughts about how fantastic blogging is for networking and sharing resources with fellow educators.

But what about blogging in the classroom?

The 21st century requires students to possess a new set of skills. Learning needs to be more digital, informal, online, mobile, networked and multimedia and a classroom blog achieves exactly that. 

There are many benefits of a class blog, including:

 

  • they are easy to set up and they are user friendly
  • students are motivated
  • students are encouraged to read and write
  • they encourage discussion and collaboration
  • a community of learners is fostered
  • there is an instant audience
  • interesting websites can be provided to your students via links
  • images can be included to appeal to visual learners
  • they may be accessed anytime and anywhere
  • students gain an increased feeling of ownership
  • authentic learning takes place
  • they allow students to connect with other classrooms all over the world
  • it is relevant
  • a strong connection between home and school is encouraged

Please click here for some more great benefits.

Mrs Brown‘s blog also has some ideas on why blogging is important to prepare our students for the technological world. 

Here is some information shared by Kathleen Morris on some steps to getting your class blog started.

Claymation!

While researching resources and ideas for assignment 2, I came across the idea of using Claymation in the classroom. Claymation is an animation technique used with clay figures. Each movement is a new “shot” and the “shots” are connected together at the end to make a movie.

You may have seen Claymation in action in movies such as Gumby and Wallace and Gromit

Claymation would allow students to participate in active learning as they work in groups to create clay figures and a set.

Claymation could be a whole term project as the students take photos of the figures in different positions in order to create a mini movie, using video software on the computer. You can provide the students with any criteria you like to coincide the units of work.

Claymation allows students to demonstrate their learning in a fun, student centred and interactive way. It is easily modified to meet the needs of a variety of curriculum topics, and is perfect for hands-on learners and new technology users. 

Check out these websites which provide more information about Claymation! http://www.tech4learning.com/userfiles/file/pdfs/Frames/Making_Claymation_in_the_Classroom.pdf

http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/create-claymation-stopmotion-video/

 

Multiliteracies

While deciding on my pedagogical framework I remembered back to EDX2170 where the term “Multiliteracies” was introduced. But what is a Multiliteracies framework?

The term multiliteracies was created by the New London Group (1996) to emphasize two related aspects of the increasing complexity of texts:

1) A major shift related to the increasing influence of cultural, linguistic diversity, affecting communications and labor markets, making language diversity an ever more critical local issue.
2) A major shift related to the influence of new communications technologies. A new multimodal literacy that is required in order to find our way around the emerging world of meaning.

The Multiliteracies framework supports teachers across all learning areas to develop curriculum which ensures sound pedagogy with in-built quality assurance and which responds to the diversity of students in their classes. The framework can also be used to develop online curriculums that are responsive and accessible (Anstey, 2006). 

Here is a website that provides you with more apps for creating digital texts in the classroom http://www.teachthought.com/apps-2/15-literacy-apps-to-create-books-on-the-ipad/

For more information please click on the following links:

 http://www.principals.in/uploads/pdf/Pedagogy.pdf

http://www.newliteracies.com.au/what-are-new-literacies?/138/

http://www.darlingdeer.com.au/learningcollective/publication%20folder/Multiliteracies%20for%20the%2021st%20Century_May%2005.pdf

 

Anstey, M., & Bull, G. (2006). Teaching and learning multiliteracies: changing times changing literacies. Newark, DE: International Reading Association.

The New London Group. (1996). A pedagogy of multiliteracies: Designing social futures. Harvard Educational Review, 66(1) 60-92.