Monday, April 11, 2011

Prezi Assessment

Use this survey to assess the quality of my Prezi assignment. Using Google Docs, I created a survey form to help evaluate my Prezi assignment. This assessment encorporate NETS II and V for educators.


Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Journal # 10- "Being the Change She Wants to See in the Schools" (NETS I, III,V)

Fingal, D. (2011, March/April ). Member profile: being the change she wants to see in the schools. Learning & Leading , 38(6), Retrieved from

Education is obviously in need of a technological re-boot as technology continues to grow and broaden. Libraries across the country have started to re-construct into state-of-the-art facilities. Librarians in charge of these libraries are great leaders and innovators for students. One person can make a difference, and Shannon McClintock Miller greatly demonstrates that. She has devoted herself to education and has provided many students with an outstanding education.
Shannon Miller is the district teacher librarian and technology coordinator at the Van Meter Community School in Iowa. She also co-teaches a personal learning network class with a principal from Philadelphia through Skype. She was the main reason that every student at her school, grades 6-12, now have laptops. She trains students on how to network with online tools like Twitter, Facebook, Animoto, and of course Skype. She cares about the interests of her students, as she oversees a digital photography club online called Club Click. This club allows students to gain resources for photography and collaborate with one another as members share a genuine interest in photography. She has motivated many teachers and students to step out of their comfort zone and become contributors. As if everything she has already done is not enough, she has created a website with helpful updated resources for other educators. She also makes herself available to anyone who needs assistance with technology over the weekends and when she is not teaching. Teaching is not only her passion, it is her life.
Shannon loves what she does and she proves that one person can easily make a difference in life. Teaching is her passion, and she will do anything to improve the student education experience. She credits her great success to the collaborative, creative, and respectful community that she is apart of. If she did not have great collaboration with her administrators and fellow educators, she would not be as successful as she is today. It is very important to collaborate and connect with your educational community, as that connection can pave the way for change.

1. How can we connect with Shannon Miller?
Shannon Miller currently runs a technological librarian website,, that can povide access to great resources that she uses. She also blogs which can be found on her website as well. She is very welcoming and assits anyone that might need help. She is a great leader.
2. What is the best advice that we can learn from Shannon?
Shannon contributes her success to staying connected and collaborating with her peers. Educators should work together to help education change, as it takes a universal change to really impact education. Her passion also guides her through her work and contributions, which can show that passion is important to have in education. All educators must have a passion for the job, as that is how change starts.
3. How can we promote change and innovation in education?
Educators should all connect with PLNs. This is a great strategy to gain new resources and to collaborate with other people who share your passion. Educators need to work together and not remain in solitude. Educators like Shannon who participate in a collaborative, supportive environment have more incentive to bring about change. PLNs need to be promoted in education for educators/administrators to work together and create solutions. Our education system is in dire need of change, and people like Shannon began to act out with collaborative support from her PLNs.

Journal #9- "Not Your Grandmother's library!" (NETS I, II, V)

Perez, L. (2011, March/April). Feature article: not your grandmother's library!. Learning & Leading , 38(6), Retrieved from

A library is a very important necessity in school. Libraries provide students with proper research to support their curriculum and needs in school. With technology expanding, libraries of the past will no longer be efficient to support student's needs. Several schools across the country have stepped up and supported new and innovative libraries. This is a trend that will hopefully expand across the country, as technology is now a requirement in school.
Several librarians and technology teachers have created innovative state-of-the-art libraries for their schools. Joyce Valenza, author of an award-winning library tech blog, has created a great library for Springfield Township High School. This library identifies the latest technologies and resources to support her students. Because of this great library, 90 percent of students at Springfield Township High are college bound. A great library can really affect the students in a great way. Wendy Stephens, a librarian at Buckhorn High School, is right behind Joyce. She is preparing all of her students for our current technology and our future technology advances that we will soon see. She is preparing her students for the future.This library has computers, laptops, and video cameras for the students to use at their leisure. She credits the great collaboration with her fellow administrators for the great library that she was able to create. Charter schools are following in their footsteps as well, as Monarch Academy also provides a state-of-the-art library for their students. There are other leaders out there as well paving the way for their students, and the key success for this building trend is getting and staying connected. Collaboration is highly important and provides support that can only be obtained if you get connected with collaborators. PLNS can be greatly useful in this aspect.
Students use libraries to complete homework and classwork, and resources that libraries provide are highly important to students. If students are not provided with up-to-date resources, their success in school can be greatly hindered. State-of-the-art libraries are now needed in our society as technology keeps expanding and re-inventing. Some educators have paved the way for other schools, and getting connected to these educators can provide resources to create these libraries throughout the country. Everyone needs to collaborate and stay connected to help promote this great step for education.

1. With education currently facing budget cuts, how can we get enough money to build and re-construct these innovative libraries?
Although education is suffering from budget cuts, our education is based off of No Child Left Behind. This means that our education is based on test scores and how well students perform. If students are not equipped with proper resources to use, they will score lower on tests. The government would not want that to happen, so to jump start this process we can rally to the government with petitions to make them aware of what is needed to better the education system. The government can then budget more money to education and more money from taxes or lottery funds can be devoted to education. Although it might not happen, it is worth the effort.
2. How can we promote internet resources if most computers in school libraries are blocked?
With the building and construction of innovative libraries, these librarian leaders are aware of great resources for students to use. Several of these librarians even use Youtube, which is mostly blocked, to support educational lessons. Again, we need to connect with one another to rally and prove that computers should not be blocked as much as they are because it prevents access to great resources. These librarians who have created these innovative libraries have promoted more access to resources as well.
3. How can these libraries promote college bound students in school?
As previously mentioned, the library at Springfield Township High has great resouces for their students. The students at this school are 90 % college bound, which can greatly be attributed to the library. This is because the library is preparing students for their future with technologically advanced resources. Having access to these resources provides students with more preparation and assets to attend college.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Journal 8- " Point/Counterpoint: Should Schools Be Held Responsible for Cyberbullying?" (NETS III, IV, V)

Bogacz, R, & Gordillo, M. (2011, March/April). Point/counterpoint: should schools be held responsible for cyberbullying?. Learning & Leading , 38(6), Retrieved from

Bullying has always been a serious problem in schools. With the development of technology, bullying has developed as well. The newest form of bullying, referred to as cyberbullying, is making its way through schools and damaging students in the process. A student is being cyberbullied when he/she is being harrassed by other students through the internet (social networking sites, email, instant messaging, etc.). With this problem on the rise, people are beginning to question how much responsibility schools should have with this serious epidemic.
The reasons why schools should are responsible are pretty obvious. Students spend a lot of time at school, about 5 days during the week. With that said, cyberbullying affects the students involved, which can greatly affect the school environment. Teachers need to be aware of cyberbullying and they need to educate their students on it's damaging effects, and most importantly how to prevent it. Administrators need to take bullying seriously and enforce necessary consequences. Parents of course need to be involved and be fully aware of their children, monitoring them in the process. Students of course are very important with this issue and they need to be educated to stand up for victims and prevent it from happening. There is a lot of people that can be held responsible in the school system for cyberbullying, as they all hold responsibility to educate the students about this serious issue.
There are also reasons why schools should not be held responsible. Students can be going through exterior issues outside school that sometimes the school can not help or prevent. The responsibility then transfers to the parents or family members of the student to constantly be aware of their children/family member. Parent's have the most authority and knowledge of the student, which only makes sense that parents should be held responsible.
Cyberbullying is as serious issue, and the question of responsibility is always lingering. In reality, everyone needs to be aware of cyberbullying and do their part to help prevent it. In most cases, schools and family are responsible for it. Everyone should be held responsible who did not do their part to help prevent it. Everyone needs to be involved and most importantly educated. This has already caused some fatalities, as suicide rates have increased.

1. Why do students use cyberbullying when they can just do it at school?
Most students who cyberbully are physically defenseless and therefore hide behind a computer screen. When students are able to hide behind a computer screen, they gain more confidence and power to affect their victims. This is because they are too afraid to confront them in person.
2. How can parents properly monitor their children?
In order to properly monitor their children, parents need to gain access to social networking passwords, email passwords, and screennames that they might use. Parents can then log on to their accounts every once-in-a-while to see if anything inappropriate is going on. Parents also need to be aware of their children's friends, and where they go when they leave the house.
3. What should a student do if their teacher is not taking them seriously when they try to tell them about prospective bullying/cyberbullying?
A student should tell another teacher or an administrator. Teachers and administrators have a duty to take bullying seriously and if someone is not doing their part, the student is greatly affected. The best administrator to go to often times is the principal, because they hold the most authority for the school.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Journal 7: My Personal Learning Network (NETS I, II, III, V)

A PLN is a personal learning network that helps you learn, gain new insight, and collaborate with other people who share the same interests as you. My PLN is made up of educated math teachers, technology teachers, a couple of teacher organizations, and useful educational websites. My goal is to be a Geometry teacher one day and my PLN mostly consists of math teachers. These math teachers inform me on useful web links to provide math lessons and helpful math hints. The technology teachers that I follow post useful links for incorporating technology in the classroom. Lastly, the few teacher organizations that I have on my PLN infom me of important educational news from the goverment (state and federal), teacher conferences, etc. My PLN is very helpful for my future teaching career, and incorporates several different tools.

Twitter is my first tool that I used to create my PLN. Twitter allows you to post useful information to share with the network community, and fosters collaboration with people who share your interests. I chose to follow 9 educational organizations, 3 math professors, and 2 technology educators. The 9 educational organizations are dedicated to helping not only math teachers but all teachers in general. Two of those organizations are affiliated with the US Department of Education, which constantly informs me of new educational reforms, news, and goverment influence all throughout the country. The 3 math educators I chose to follow are all college professors that not only post helpful links for math educators, but other fun math concepts like mathematical jokes or innovative lesson plans. The technology educators I follow are passionate for promoting technology in the classroom and constantly feeds helpful tips and links to incorporate technology in any and all classroom subjects. The chat I chose to participate in was Edchat, on March 29th at 12pm EST. The topic was " What are the possibilities, negative or positive, if we do blended (Internet and F2F) classes on secondary level?" The benefits that most people exhibited on the chat was that students get more variety in their learning structure, students get more prepared for college, and it allows for better scheduling for students. Students are restricted and planned to be in a classroom a certain amount of time per day, but the Internet is always available to them. The Internet also provides more access to other experts besides just the teacher. Blended learning can also get more students motivated to learn, as most students nowadays are constantly online. A Face to Face environment requires deliveries of school supplies, and the Internet is free. Blended Learning can decrease school spending because of the time spent using the Internet. The main issues that can arise with Blended Learning is that teachers are not educated enough to appropriately encompass Blended Learning, and students might not have access to computers outside the classroom. Overall, Blended Learning is a great benefit for students. This PLN chat was very enriching, and I can see myself participating in more chats in the future.

Diigo is a great tool for creating a PLN. Diigo allows you to follow and collaborate with people of interest just like Twitter, however it is also a social bookmarking site that allows you to bookmark useful websites. This is a public site and using tags, you can look up useful infomation you might need, or post useful websites that you want to share with the public. People who often share your interests post useful website links that you can always easily access because of the bookmarking capability. I chose to follow 4 educators that specialize in math and technology. The websites that they bookmark are greatly useful to me for my future math teaching career. The first website I bookmarked for my PLN is edtechpost-PLE diagrams. This website provides useful links and tools to create a positive and engaging personal learning environment for all educators. The second website I bookmarked for my PLN is Teacher Reboot Camp. This website lists goals that all educators should strive for and useful resources to educate teachers, gain student learning, and increase test scores. The third website I bookmarked is Creating a PLN with Web 2.0 Tools. This site provides more web 2.0 tools that can be useful for expanding your PLN.

The last tool I incorporated to my PLN is The Educators PLN. This is a website that used the NING tool that is a PLN for educators to join. This PLN is constantly growing as new members are joining, and new information that is useful to educators is constantly be uploaded in video form, blog form, articles, and website links. This is an already constucted PLN that fosters collaboration and educational transformation. A very interesting article I read was titled " 5 Reasons Why Educators Should Network". This was a great article to read as this NING site was created to help teachers network. This is a great article to convince other teachers to end educational isolation and work together to help transform education. This article conveys that educational isolation, teachers keeping isolated from one another, is one of the reasons our education system has had a downfall. Creating a PLN network allows teachers to collaborate and grow from one another, instead of struggling alone. The five reasons to network are to " learn with others, serve your students, access a dynamic resource, extend your learning base, and to stay engaged in education" (Roscorla 2010). By networking with fellow educators, you are constantly extending your learning base and you are serving your students by gaining useful information to be the best educator you can be.

PLNs are greatly useful for future and current educators. Having a PLN allows you to share your knowledge, and constantly gain new knowledge that can help you in your teaching career. Educators should have a passion for learning, and PLNs greatly foster that. Using your PLN, you have a better capability to grow and become a great educator. People with other interests outside education can also collaborate to grow in their field of expertise. Everyone can greatly benefit from having a PLN.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Journal #6- Grow Your Personal Learning Network (NETS I, III, V)

Warlick, D. (2009). Grow your personal learning network. Learning & Leading With Technology (36)6, Retrieved from

               With the new digital-age coming into play in education, building a personal learning network is a great way to share your knowledge, meet people with the same interests as you, and most importantly gain new knowledge to utilize. David Warlock addresses the different forms of PLNs you can use, and how to properly use your PLN.
               Personal  learning networks can be created through Twitter, Diigo, Second Life, Google Docs, Wikis, and Blogs to name a few. There are many resources out there to create a learning network that is personalized just for you. There are three types of Personal Learning Networks, which can encompass your social life and your business/ work life. The first type of PLN that you can create is  a personally maintained PLN with synchronous connections. This is the traditional PLN that includes the people and places you consult with every single day. IM and text messaging are two tools that can greatly enhance your PLN. The second type of PLN that is created is a personally and socially maintained semisynchronous connection. This type of PLN includes facebook, chatrooms and almost every other technological communication tool. It is only semisynchronous, so you are not synchronized with information 24/7. This type of PLN is very common for people with busy schedules, as schedules often prevent PLN members from engaging in their PLN 24/7. The third type of PLN is a PLN that connects us most often with sources that we feel are highly useful. This PLN is known as a dynamically maintained asynchronous connection. This type of PLN is easy to use as when you sign up for an aggregator such as Google Reader, your PLN is updated when they post new information. This type of PLN is training people to get information delivered to them. Having a PLN gives you a sense of responsibility to actively participate in your PLN as you most likely have network followers depending on you for new knowledge as well. PLN's are not about just acquiring information, you have a responsibility to contribute as well.
                 David Warlick presents us with a very useful publication distinguishing the three different types of PLN's, and how you can effectively use your PLN. The great thing about this publication that while PLN's are a great tool to participate in, once you create a PLN you have a responsibility to spread information as well.

Analysis Questions:
1.  How does Facebook qualify as a PLN?
                  A PLN is a network of people that you associate with frequently, or maybe once in a while. Generally a PLN is created to collaborate, spread ideas, and keep in contact with people that you affiliate with. Facebook qualifies as a PLN because you "friend" people that you share the same interests with, or people that you know, and posts are regularly made sharing ideas or even links to websites. Facebook allows you the opporunity to share with your friends website links, or other information that can be greatly useful. Generally people use Facebook as a personal leisure website, but information can be transmitted and spread.
2.  How do you start a PLN?
                  Starting a PLN is very simple. You first must choose a tool to create your PLN such as Diigo, Google Docs, Blogger, Wikis, or other collaborative tools that you see fit. Once you sign up and create your account, you describe what your interests are in your personal information. Once you have done that, you can search other people regarding to your interests. Once you find someone with the same interests as you, all you have to do is click " follow" or add them to your profile. Their posts will show up on your stream and you will gain new information from that person. Once you continue to find more people, your PLN further develops.
3. What is the difference between a PLN with synchronous connections and a PLN with semisynchronous connections?
                 A PLN with a synchronous connection is a PLN that you are always connected to. It is always synchronized to you and you are able to access it 24/7. Semisynchronous PLN's are PLN's that are not always synchronized. With a semisynchronous PLN, you are able to step away and take a break for a while. You don't always have to be connected.