Sunday, April 7, 2013
Blog Post #11
Ms. Cassidy's Little Kids...Big Potential
Ms. Kathy Cassidy has really done a great job of educating herself in technology to be able to lead the way in integrating the tools of technology in her first grade classroom. In this video, students give voice overs and pictures of the work they have done and how they use technology on a daily basis. The video highlights blogs, internet safety, webpages, center time, wikis, group videos, Skype sessions, and even learning with Nintendo DS "Nintendogs". A student says playing Nintendogs in a group has made them better problem solvers and taught them to learn to share.
I know I will introduce blogging to my classroom, regardless of the grade level. Through EDM 310, I have learned that even first graders are capable of contributing to a blog. Even if a student only writes one sentence, the value is great. Ms. Cassidy said in the Skype interview that blogs allow the students to have an audience. Having an audience improves the students' writing. The anticipation of receiving comments is also encouraging and fun for the students. I find it interesting that she says the tools of just five years ago are not the same because of how quickly technology has changed.
I see from her interview the importance of support from fellow teachers, technical coordinators, and administration. Her guarded response in the interview about support from administration led me to think she has not always had the support she would have liked, though she did not actually say that. People in administration positions do not always see the importance of technology in the classroom which can lead to restricted access and restricted time spent on technology.
I like that parents have given positive responses. Parents naturally love to see their children and their work on display. On the internet, parents can share their children's work with other family members and friends. I like Ms. Cassidy's insistence on internet safety for her students.
An impediment I personally say at Fonde Elementary was that the students did not know how to properly type and are not taught how. In my classroom, time will be spent on that. I know that there are free learn-to-type games on the internet.