An Amazing Journey

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This has been quite an eventful semester.  I have learned so much new information.  What I have learned will stick with me throughout my last year of college and with my future of being a classroom teacher.  I have learned things this semester in IT 465 about technology that I never knew about before.  Like for instance, this blog.  I have never experienced a blog before and I think it is a lot of fun to do.  I enjoy being able to talk about different assignment and receiving feedback from my peers.  This blog helps me in learning to be creative and able to speak my personal thoughts on many subjects.

Google group was an assignment that turned to be somewhat complicated.  I normally enjoy group work but this one was not so easy beings we were never together in person to work on it.  Online group work is just not a simple project and takes a lot of patience and communication.  My group members were awesome though.  This was a really bad time for me during this assignment because of losing my grandfather.  My group pulled together and got the job done though.  Thanks ladies!! Y’all are the best!! 

My Story assignment was interesting.  I enjoyed putting this together.  This is something I think the students will enjoy being able to do.  I also liked the concept map assignment.  This is something that I will definitely incorporate into my learning curriculum with my students.  I think doing these maps will help them in their all their subjects to break down a topic to learn more about it. 

Web tools was also an assignment I think will be very helpful in the classroom.  Learning to do the online rubrics and test is going to come in handy.  I wasn’t as interested in the bookmark part of the assignment.  I didn’t find it as useful as the rubric and test.  My favorite assignment this semester was being able to design our own website.  I thought this was fun to do and will definitely use this when having my own classroom.  I think this is a good way for parents and students to connect with the teacher.

Turnitin and the Assistive technology assignments were also very helpful.  Turnitin showed just how easy plagiarism can be detected.  This is a very helpful site to go to before turning in a report/paper to make sure the work is your own.  The assistive technology assignment was something I was glad to learn about.  It is so important to accommodate special needs students in any way possible.  I honestly never knew that these changes could be made on computers to help these students out.  Kudos to whoever created this.  These children deserve all the help they can get while in the learning environment.

In closing, I really, really enjoyed this class.  Thanks to all my peers for your feedback and all the help that you provided.  To Dr. Wang and Bessie, thanks for all your help and putting up with me and all my questions.  This class has been an amazing journey for me and I have learned so much that I will take with me through the rest of my career.  Good luck to you all and hope that we cross paths again someday!!

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Accommodating Our Students through Assistive Technology

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Assistive technology is a wonderful way to help disabled students.  These students should be able to be a part of the learning environment with other students.  Providing the proper modifications and accommodations can easily make this happen.  I have several students that receive certain accommodations and my own children at home do, but this is the first time I have experienced these types of accommodations on the computer.  This was so interesting to learn about.  I am glad to have had to complete this particular assignment.  I know now ways to accommodate special needs students whether they have hearing, visual, or mobility impairments.

I did enjoy learning different ways to accommodate in this assignment.  But there were some difficulties for me.  It took me quite a while to complete it.  Apparently I have a different Word than what the instructions were for.  I had to kind of figure it all out for myself.  I couldn’t ever figure out how to fit the picture to the power point screen correctly.  It also took me several tries to get through each step.  All in all though, I did enjoy learning how to accommodate these students.  I will definitely use this information when needed in my own classroom.

AssistiveTech_KimberlyAinsworth

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Turnitin.com

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Before assignments have to be turned in submit it first through Turnitin.com.  This website will check for plagiarism and will show you a report to let you know what percentage is plagiarized.  In this assignment, we got to see firsthand how the website works.  Our first assignment was to research 4 questions, copy and paste the answers and then submit it to Turnitin.  The report count was to show 90% or more plagiarism.  In my report I had 99% plagiarism.  Wow!  The next part of the assignment was to summarize what we copied and pasted into our own words and re-submit it again to Turnitin.  The report should now show less than 10% plagiarism.  This time in my report I had 0% plagiarism.

It is very important when writing or researching for us to use our own words.  It is a big “no-no” to use someone else’s work as our own.  When necessary, we can use quotes from others but we must be sure to site them properly to give credit to whoever made the statement.  Plagiarism can lead a person to disaster and to failing an assignment.  This means “do not copy and paste” information.  Put it into your own words. 

Version 1

Version 1 was 99% plagiarized

Version 2

Version 2 was 0% plagiarized

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Technology and Special Education

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Special education is something that holds dear to my heart.  These children are special in their own way.  I work with several students everyday with special needs including my own children.  These students require special attention to help them learn.  Technology is a really good way to help them in the learning environment.  Technology for special needs can be either assistive or instructional. 

Assistive technology is defined as devices that extend the abilities of an individual in ways that provide physical access as in wheel chairs and sensory access such as braille. 

Instructional technology is defined as the subset of educational technology that deals directly with teaching and learning applications.                                                         

Both types of technology help in the success of special needs students.  Special needs students who regularly use these technologies tend to gain self-confidence and challenge their selves more.  Technology can better help students access, participate, and progress in the general curriculum and overall improve their learning ability.      

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Strategies for Integrating Technology into Social Studies Curriculum

 

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Social Studies is a subject most people do not really think about having technology incorporated into its curriculum.  Social Studies happen to be my favorite subject.  I love learning about the history of our world and how we become what we are today.  Some think only the major subjects have the use of technology but that simply isn’t true.  Our book list the ten strategies provided by the NCSS or implementing technology into Social Studies instruction.

1.  Adventure learning provides students with opportunities to collaborate with other students, teachers, and experts.  Students use research based curriculum as they study real time adventures taking place around the world.  Students learn from the curriculum and each other as they are part of an unfolding narrative.

2.  Virtual field trips help students learn about other cultures.  The wealth of information and images available about other cultures enriches students’ study of other lands and ways of life.

3.  Send students on a geocaching treasure hunt with GPS devices.  The motivating activities get students to spend more time studying geographical information and techniques.

4.  “Live through” history with The Oregon Trail simulated experience.  Students play a role of decision maker in historical situations in order to see the relevance of these events in their daily lives and to develop better problem solving skills.

5.  Do web quest to learn the history behind political issues.  Students do internet research to learn that current issues have historical roots in past events and debates.

6.  Integrate geospatial technologies to study the earth, people, and the symbiotic nature between the two.  Geospatial technologies such as Google Earth allow for real world analysis as students study content such as history, economics, and geography.

7.  Students learn economic principles with stock market simulation games.  The complexities of the stock market become easier to understand when students play the role of stockbroker, investing their own money and seeing the return over time.

8.  Teach local and other history with electronic story telling.  Images and audio make the stories of lives, events, or eras come alive for students and play a key role in helping students prepare oral history.

9.  Use software such as Voice Thread to allow for real time collaboration around numerous forms of content.  This kind of hands on software allows students to post content such as videos and photos and comment on each other’s work in an online learning environment.

10.  Use digital cameras to explore community based history and current issues.  Digital photography allows students to capture images from their vantage point, participate in the construction of knowledge, and learn how diverse perspectives can be shaped.

Any of these strategies listed can be used to enhance learning in Social Studies.  The social studies curriculum is full of great history and implementing technology into learning will broaden knowledge outside of what children are learning in books.

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Intergrating the Internet into the Curriculum

Web based activities are a great way of learning for students.  There are three types of applications to web based learning:

1.  Interpersonal exchanges- students communicating via technology with other students, teacher, and experts.

2.  Information collection and analysis- Using information collections that provide data and information on request.

3.  Problem solving- Student-oriented and cooperative problem solving projects.

There are many type of  web-based lessons and projects.  Image

1.  Electronic pen pals links students at a distance to exchange information.

2.  Electronic mentoring links students with experts to answer questions about    learning.

3.  Virtual field trips are where students can visit sites to view people, places, and resources not available locally.

4.  Electronic publishing is when students can share their written and artistic products on web sites.

5.  Group product development allows students to work on written or artistic products with students at different sites.

6.  Problem based learning lets students explore topics, obtain and analyze data, or participate in simulated problem solving with other students.

7.  Social action projects lets students discuss and create solutions for social or environmental problems with other students.

Students can also use integration strategies for web based activities.

1.  Support for students research helps them to gain insight in topics they are researching and need information about.

2.  Motivation for writing provide strategies for students for better writing.

3.  Practice for information literacy skills helps students learn how to use the web efficiently and effectively.

4.  Visual learning problems and solutions sites provide access to data, images, animations, and videos that help students to find solutions to problems.

5.  Development of collaboration skills give students opportunities to work together to solve problems.

6.  Multicultural experiences gives students the opportunity to learn about other cultures in our society.

Link to my Website:

https://sites.google.com/a/eagles.usm.edu/mrs-ainsworth-s-class/

 

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Web Tools

ImageWeb tools can be very useful and helpful for teachers.  The first thing I did in this assignment was creating a rubric.  Rubi Star was very easy to follow.  I created my rubric around Art.  I find this an easy way to create a rubric and look forward to using this tool in my own classroom.  The next thing I did was make a test on test maker.  I found this just as easy as the rubric.  I created my test around a 1st grade level on Capitalization.  I used the multiple choice and true/false options for the answers.  This was an interesting assignment and I also look forward to using this tool in my own classroom as an easy and quick way to provide test for my students.  The last thing I did in this weeks assignments was the Track Star.  I was not real fond of this project.  I found it a little more complicated and confusing.  I chose the topic to be Children with Special Needs.  I did find many websites that cover this particular topic.  All in all I enjoyed learning this weeks assignments.  I find that in some way each tool will be helpful with in the classroom. 

IT 465 Test

It 465 Test Answers

RUBRIC

Trackstar

 

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