I really enjoyed reading the Mindset of an Innovator. Choosing to be an educator, I am choosing a path that will require innovation all the time. There is no cap to what I can learn, and what I can learn with my students and what I can teach my students. There are always going to be new ways to research, create, build, and challenge the boundaries of education. Couro’s quote “I will utilize the tools that are available to me today and I will continue to search for new and better ways to continuously grow, develop and share my thinking, while creating and connecting my learning.” really helped me see what being in an innovator is all about. Growing as teachers is very important. We should always be advancing our knowledge and techniques so that our students will get the most out school. If we get into the same old pattern, our students will do the same, and society will grow without us.
Through the unlearning reading, what I gathered was we basically we need to look past expectations and standards and look past the barriers and labels that people set. My favorite part of Richard’s blog was “We need to unlearn the premise that we know more than our kids, because in many cases, they can now be our teachers as well.” Teachers should be learning right along side their students. Even though when I was little I thought my teachers knew everything. I know now that was definitely not the case. Students are constantly teaching us as much as we teach them. My preschool students, being three to four year-olds, are constantly teaching me things. It may not be content based, but about how children think and process things differently than I do or that another child might.
Through out the length that I’ve made this course go on (thanks to major procrastination) I’ve learned that making myself stay motivated is hard for me to do. I have learned that it’s hard to teach myself how to do something and that I can retain and learn much better in an in-class environment. My lesson has definitely been learned. When I have online type classes, I need to remember that they should get just as much of my attention and focus as my in-class courses. I also need to remember that not every professor is going to give me a second chance to fill in the huge hole I put myself in. So HUGE shout out to Dr. Ellington. I just got to get better at motivating myself and setting my priorities!
All the information that I did learn will be extremely beneficial to my future career as an elementary school teacher. I now know so much more about Autism and Asperger’s Syndrome (now just referred to as Autism Spectrum) that I might not have learned in a SPED class. There are different aspects of Autism that I might not of learned until I had a child with autism in my class. For instance, looking at Autism through the families’ side of things. It was very interesting how they interact and help each other and how Autism has affected their day to day lives. I think it will make things so much easier for me in the future. It will still be a challenge, as teaching should be, but at least now I have a much better understanding of autism and how it affects learning.
Looking and exploring through Canva and Piktograph, I decided to use Canva. I found this designing website extremely easy to use. They had a very short and simple to understand tutorial, they also had a starting user challenge that just had you practice using the tools available. The Piktograph website was also fairly easy to maneuver around on. That would be something for more of an informational creation. I think both these sites would be fun to use in a classroom. Instead of writing research papers or essays over a subject, I think it would be fun for the students to use Pitkograph. They would have to decipher the most important facts, but still cover their subject. I believe that Canva would be a good mix of pace instead of using Powerpoint or Publisher all the time. The fact that both sites are very simple to use, you wouldn’t have to spend much instructional time explaining the website to the students. They would be able to quickly take the tutorial themselves or you could project the tutorial for all of them to watch.
In sixth grade, I believe, we created a comic strip for class. I thought it was fun, but the limitations frustrating. I think some students would really enjoy making their own comic strip, especially if they like to read comic books. Others might not enjoy it as much.
For my own Canva creation, I chose to use simple words and a fairly simple design. I didn’t want to overload my poster. But here is the link!
Podcasts and digital storytelling will be a great way to reach different types of learners and levels of students. We recently did a test in a differential teaching class to see if we were visual learners, auditory learners, or kinesthetic learners. I was a kinesthetic learner, but my score for auditory was a close second. Using podcasts will be a great way to reach out to my auditory learners when I have my own classroom. As said in the “What are Teens Learning from ‘Serial’ and Other Podcasts?” article, different Common Core standards, especially the critical thinking, and listening skills. I really liked the idea of the ‘Serial’ activities one of the teachers had brought up with using a lawyer and detective scenario for the critical thinking standards. Its a great way to get the students who get bored easily involved into the lesson.
Digital storytelling would be really fun for the kinesthetic learners. They get to create something of their own, in the own words, and their own way. I think the use of a prompt or have them create a certain type of story, but they can choose in which the way they create their story. I also think it’s a way to involve every student. Sometimes I see students who feel left out either because they are more advanced, or because they aren’t as advanced of learners. I think with the digital storytelling is a good way to make sure everyone feels included, especially those with different learning disabilities.
To sum up my attention log. The majority of the time that I was on my phone, I was either walking to class, sitting at home on my recliner, right before I was going to sleep, bored in class, or texting someone something. Instead of saying hello to the people I pass on the sidewalk on the way to class, I look at my phone, whether I’m actually using an app or pretending I am, just to avoid awkward eye contact. Pathetic right? I know for a fact I’m not the only one who does this on a daily basis. When I’m at home, I’ll either lay on the couch and scroll through my social media apps, or check my school email. At night, I always scroll through all my accounts. Why? I have no idea. The obvious thing to do in class when your professor is a monotone lecturer, is to look at my phone. Instead of doing some homework or ordering books, I look at Twitter.
When I’m on my computer, it’s just to do homework or check my email, typically. this is usually when I’m at home. I will lay on the couch or in my recliner. I rarely sit at the table. My posture is typically slouched down or sunken down in whatever chair I’m sitting in. I’ll usually have my feet propped up some way or another. On the rare occasion, when I am in deep and utter procrastination, I will watch a movie on Netflix.
The thing that kills my productiveness, is the social media. I’ll get a notification and have to check what it was, then I end up looking at Facebook for ten minutes. Then I’ll have retract my focus which takes another ten minutes, and then my phone will go off and I’ll have to text someone back. It’s a never ending cycle.
After watching the Paul Miller’s Ted Talk and reading the articles, I can confirm that we as a generation are hugely dependent on technology. From the “What Happens When Teens Try to Disconnect From Technology for Three Days” article, I realize that even when we are doing homework, or doing activities in class, we are using different types of technology all the time. Instead of going to the library to check out books to do research, we just have to open our laptops and use a search engine to do the research for us. One of the teens had said that the conversation with his parents about politics would never of happened if he had his phone. He also had interacted and communicated with classmates that he usually wouldn’t have if he access to his technology. It was also said in the article that one of the students felt naked without his phone, in which I agree. I have broken a phone or two, and when you click your button on your phone for your screen to turn on and it doesn’t is almost a gut wrenching feeling. For the first couple hours of my phone being broken, I almost felt panic. What was I supposed to do without being able to check snapchat or twitter? By the end of the second day of not having a phone, it wasn’t as bad anymore. The reality set in that I didn’t really have anyone to talk to anyway and so the need to check my phone went down.
The “Simplify the Internet” article only reinforced what I already know. I’m checking and refreshing my day to day social medias way to much. I have a pretty patterned cycle in which I check my accounts. I typically will go through twitter first because there’s always someone out their tweeting away. Then I move on to snapchat and check everyone’s stories which are typically not that interesting anyway. Next is instagram, which is a little slower for me, I don’t follow too many people and I don’t post anything very often. Last, but not least is Facebook. I hate Facebook. I have an account, go through the news feed everyday, see the same people doing the same things all the time. I basically just use it to store pictures to be honest. I really don’t even need it. It almost annoys me to have it. But do I delete it? Of course I don’t. Completely logical right?