It is truly amazing just how much I have learned in the last two weeks. Embarking on the course I was anxious and very nervous, as I always felt ‘behind the eight ball.’ I second guessed everything and spent hours sometimes just looking around ( and panicking that I would never be able to keep all of this straight.) Then I just decided to embrace it with I CAN DO THIS. Although things are still a little murky, I feel that I put together a great Action Plan that I can actually use starting my new job in the fall. What a way to make an entry! Ha! It will either make or break me! I really think that this can be done so it puts a sense of authenticity to what I have done. That sweetens the deal for sure!  Always more to learn! Have the rest of the summer to play and go back to that great book THE CONNECTED EDUCATOR. It is a step by step book that guides, informs and challenges you to try things and make some connections to real life. And it works!



Annotated Bibliography

ED 626

Catherine Stephenson


Source of Reference

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Great short video clips to use for basic intro to social media. Short and concise. Great for staff introductions when introducing social media uses to teachers, students and parents


A support page that explains basic social media such as wiki and has options to become a site member.


Video Clips: one on the history of technology and the other on how to use technology in the classroom. These could be useful in gaining support and momentum for moving forward.


A Short clip of ‘Did You Know’ facts about technology. These could be used in a sequence with others at initial stages of technology implementation.


A video clip explaining how to use a clicker in the classroom (a responsive and interactive device used by students. J


A short article that explains what  BYOD to school is about with rationale.


Another short article on mobile learning that would be a quick read in a staff meeting or PD session.


 A CNN Report on technology use in the classroom. Good for reference all around


 So Many Devices, So Little Use

A good short article that looks at technology and how observing classrooms can indicate what and how technology is being used. It discusses about getting a feeling by doing a snapshot of the classroom. (Sounds like a Walk Thru’ Visit we do in our schools)


A good example for sharing what a blogspot could develop into over  time. It is  awesome for vision of what is possibly on the horizon. A great model.

13. ‘From Silos to Systems: Reframing Schools for Success – Kilgore and Reynolds

A great easy but inspiring read on how the barriers within the school system have to be broken down. Great for a book study!’

“The book also includes current research on developing a positive school climate, improving professional learning opportunities, utilizing data analysis to identify and resolve instructional and behavioral issues, and the effective use of technology in schools.” (Back Cover)

14. ‘Switch: How to Change things when change is hard – Chip and Dan Heath

This is an awesome book for inspiring change and has practical and relevant explanations. It puts the change process into perspective and makes you think things through. Great read and quite relevant

15. 21st Century Skills – Trilling and Fadel – A book that bases the changes needed in this century to current research and prominent authors and researchers. Something that can be used as a point of reference in many areas of education.

What an interactive and informative book this is. I wanted to finish reading it so I didn’t do all the suggested activities, but those I did were very neat and useful. IT is an authentic way to learn…read a little and do a little and then PLAY.`
The statements, “Our focus should always be on what we can do with the tool. Tools should be used to serve the learning” ( ch. 5, p.g.2)  are very powerful statements suggesting that ‘teachers’ more than ever have to be on top of their game ready to set up unique and enriching learning experiences. Yes they need us, but they need us to be learning with them which is stated many times. All part of the package in life long learning. Modeling it to the students shows it is important and needed to be informed. I like the concept of Delicious and Diigo and can see how they would be useful tools as exploration is taking place.
I guess the one factor that resonnates with me throughout this book is that technology is more than just acquiring and accessing information when one wants to learn something or retriveve information. It is about participating and collaborating to share, establish relationships and learn from others where sometimes it may have been impossible to set up. Building up a network with many facets to do many things with a lot of people. Diversity at its best.
Chapter 5 really drives home the fact that schools have the capability to set up blogs that provide a forum for all interested parties in education.One can see how parents can stay linked and informed to the school while providing some imput and actually having a voice. The ideas of podcasts has endless possibilities and the fact that it can be downloaded and listened to when time permits is beneficial to teachers, students and parents. Nothing like killing two birds with one stone…going for a walk and listening to ipod OR driving and lsitening. Fits into the busy life scheme nicely.

Ireland 196

Google Doc Slideshow

This was awesome. I got to create a slide on the connected learners presentation. It was a learning experience for Google Docs as explained on p.41 in chapter 4 of the Connected Educator. This book is truly interactive and a great learning tool. It is slowing down my reading but my learning is moving upwards as I try these things.

I am growing!!

The Do it Yourself Mentality is a unique term as it is opposite to what we think it would be. It ‘signals a shift away from dependency and obsessive consumerism toward a learner first attitiude, one of self reliance and can do spirit'( ch.1 – pg.6). By the sounds of it, most of us have adopted that attitude as we are stretching out of our comfort zones into areas formerly not of interest or thought of as a need. We are doing so with open minds and experimenting, as the documented research in Education and Technology and in this book, The Connected Educator, is showing many good reasons why we need to embrace it. The number one reason is for our students with reference to how they can learn and direct themselves into areas of interest and need. It is giving them independence to become interdependent with global networking. Basically it also shows students that life long learning is essential to be knowledgeable and informed.

We know that by working together in teams towards a common goal is rewarding, enriching, in some cases saves time and provides endless possibilities to arrive at some top  notch places in education. Collaboration is talked about continually throughout this book in terms of goals, networking, sharing, researching, testing, trying and analyzing. The list could go on.

The one comment that resonated with me was about how Professional Development needs to be revisited, tested, tried, dissected, talked about and looked at through critical eyes. Over the years I have gone to many PD opportunities only to come back to the classroom, not really connected with anyone and finding myself overwhelmed to try  and implement some new strategies and pedagogical practices. I think Rochelle wrote in a post that it is difficult throughout the school year to try to implement something as we are on the treadmill running hard and it requires a lot of time. Maybe by being connected with other learners we can reduce some of that time by working together to test and try strategies and giving each other some concrete feedback, advice and/or suggestions. Sounds like a support group.)

This week I am going to be committed to looking more closely at Twitter, blogging and Diigo to see how it can work for me. I have set these up but really haven’t utilized them fully. It may not be an authentic set up but something worth trying as I keep reading statements much llike the following from ch. 1 pg. 32.

‘She retweets that link to her own Twitter followers, sharing what she feels is a good resource, and then saves it on Diigo, her social bookmarking tool.

Becoming a Techie!!

It has been a roller coaster of a ride getting acquainted with technology in depth that I am definitely not used to, nor comfortable with at this point but I am making slow progression

After reading ‘Education and Technology’ I seem to have a better grasp on the struggles of technology being fused into the education system. As stated many times througout the book it is evident that changes to our educational system are badly needed and technology may be a good excuse as any to start the ball rolling. It ruffled my feathers a bit to read about replacing the teacher, although I agree that teaching has transformed into a more scientific job, searching, researching and probing into processes to find best fits for children, These fits are not only based on needs but on interests. We would be better served to be labelled as facilitators setting up opportunities for learning through exploration. I often compare to the age group that I am with and it is a bit more cut and dry as there are foundational things that have to happen in the early years to ensure success as they move along up the ladder and through the system (s). We do need to adjust and give choice and I related and recounted today the works of Keiran Eagan who talks about Learning in Depth as a thorough pedagogical practice enabling children to build, explore, relate and integrate through something of interest. With the end in mind they would be experts by the time they graduate and have a strong portfolio in that given area. IMAGINE!!

As I begin the Connected Educator it is neat to do the activities and actually feel ‘Connected’ to the book. I have just started it so I will post more later. I did do the google map activity and by a glance it was awesome to see the varied educators around the world linked by a dot and a few comments. Where will that lead???

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