About Me

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I am currently 3rd grade teacher at West Burlington Elementary School in West Burlington, Iowa. I'm in my ninth year of teaching at the same school I attended from K-12. I pursuing my Master's degree in Instructional Technology through the University of Northern Iowa and I am so excited about this adventure.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Blooming Technology

Eight or nine years ago, when I was pursuing my teaching degree we discussed and went over the importance of Bloom's Taxonomy. Yada yadaaa yadaaa, was what it kind of sounded like coming from the professors at the time. Today, there is a whole new perspective with the integration of technology and more importantly Web 2.0 tools and applications. It is very interesting to see the ways that these tools can be using in assessing different levels of Bloom's. The picture gives a great visual and could be very helpful when presenting tools to other educators.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Mom Madness

Photo: www.tweedlehop.com

As I traveled across town this evening to meet a friend for dinner, I was fretting about all the other things I could or should be doing this evening. Still, I ventured over to a little Mexican spot for some delicious dinner. Upon returning to my cubical of a dorm room, I broke out my laptop and sat it down in front of me... What to start on first: Updating/finish creating my PLN (personal learning network), RWLD (readings, watchings, learnings, doings), work on a project, read and respond to blogs... decided upon writing my own blog post of thoughts from today.

The last month or so I have felt so completely overwhelmed by the ending of my school year and all the wonderful things that go along with that, my daughters softball games, my nephews soccer & baseball games, cooking, cleaning, finishing a privacy fence and landscaping in the yard, running, working a second job, etc. etc. etc. Oh, and taking two graduate classes. I have to say that it has really been kind of wonderful to be up here on campus and be able to focus a one of these responsibilities whole-heartedly. The information that is being presented and explored throughout this class is astounding, I love it! I'm really thinking..."if we are being exposed to this much knowledge in the first class of this program, by the time I am done in two years I'm going to be soooooo intelligent!!" You might think this sounds silly, but I really thought I knew a lot about technology before I came here. Wow... so much more to learn and I can't wait for it to be pounded into my brain. I don't know that my brain can even hold all the information available but Dr. Z provided me with an article link about increasing brain power and its rather interesting. I think I might just try some of the suggestions.

My New Second Life

I created a new life during our 2nd day of Emerging Instructional Technology. We explored the world of Second Life for a few hours and wow... I love the shopping and dancing! No, but seriously this virtual world is absolutely amazing. We created an avatar for ourselves and took a tour of Iowa Island. There are so many things that you can that you can do in this world. I don't see the relevence for elementary education, but Sara's Sighs posted several other virtual worlds to take a look at. Even though I don't really see any applications for my 3rd grade classroom, I have an understanding of how it could be used in upper education or business. I'm wondering though if people would choose another avenue such a Adobe Connect or Skype for distance meetings and such. Personally, I really didn't want to get too enthralled in this virtual world. I can see myself getting addicted and spending too much time in my Second Life and not enough time in my REAL life.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

EMERGING Technology

Our first day on campus was pretty interesting... I arrived Sunday evening and checked into my dorm room. Bare necessities to say the least. I never experienced dorm life before so this is a first for me. Dinner that evening with some of my classmates was lovely, but as I returned to my room I noticed someone else's things. I have a roommate? I did not request a roommate! Huh? Well... due to a mistake in the office I spent my first evening with a stranger, but whatever, it was fine. Mistake was fixed Monday morning.

Class was great! Information overload... good stuff! We got our computers registered for campus internet, explored some great tools and even Skyped with the Cool Cat Teacher, Vicki Davis. Awesome! I started on an interesting little project with my group and was off for what I thought was going to be an evening of (a little shopping) and catching up on RWLD's. Evidently, the internets Gods had something else in mind. The dorms are evidently still EMERGING on the whole technology thing. Sunday night we could not get online, because we did not have an ethernet cord and no wireless. Monday night, we just couldn't get on. Frustration! After about 40 minutes of trying... I gave up the quest for online information for the evening. I came up to this wonderful place to EXPAND my knowledge of technology and I feel like I stepped back 10 years. How ironic! Hopefully we can EMERGE a bit faster!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Time vs. Trouble


As educators we face numerous responsibilities. We are not just teachers. Our positions also require us to be secretaries, record keepers, counselors, curriculum creators, coaches, referees, nurses, students, organizers, janitors, entertainers, etc. etc. etc. When we look into finding, adopting, and using technology in our classrooms, we want, no.... we need, something efficient and effective. Some may be interested in integrating technology, but because of time restraints we hesitate. I would love to have the time and resources to create endless technology experiences for my students. Reality naturally forces us to collaborate with others to make this happen. There are many resourceful sites that are available to teachers for just this purpose. I am so excited for the adventure that the Instructional Technology cohort is taking me on. I hope to share with my collegues the interesting ideas I gain throughout the process, as well as encourage them to dive deeper into the world of technology.

Here are some resources I have found useful. Take a look and let me know what you think.