I am a 5th grade English teacher in an all-boys' school using technology to help teach grammar through writing. Since I teach in a textbook-free school, my main focus is to teach cross-curriculum as well as incorporate as many relevant, authentic assignments to give the students a meaningful purpose for enhancing verbal and written communication.
I have really enjoyed starting an interactive classroom blog where the students can use technology tools as a way for learning about grammar and writing. This blog also permits easy access to learning links for reinforcement of the skills being taught, uploaded teacher resources for review, noteworthy blogs to visit, etc. (all of which are in one central location).
Our class wiki has been a huge success in that it has allowed the students the opportunity to collaborate with peers not only from our school but with schools from different parts of the country. The wiki has also served as a place for the students to showcase their writing, iMovies, and other various projects.
I have begun a reflection blog http://trefzenglish.blogspot.com where I will continue to write about all that I am learning during the implementation of technology in the classroom. I will also be reflecting on the thinking strategies that will be used to help the students gain a greater understanding of the English language and as a result become better communicators.
Technology tools that I have enjoyed using in my English class so far: Piclits.com diigo.com glogster.com quinturakids.com voicethread.com pbwiki.com animoto.com wordle.com mind42.com classtools.net prezi.com blogspot.com googlemap.com mapskip.com linoit.com dipity.com smilebox.com teacherTube
Check out my new blog where I reflect upon all of the technology tools that I am implementing in the 5th grade classroom. I will also be discussing how The Thinking Classroom is integrated into the curriculum as the six dimensions of thinking are closely studied. Reflection Blog
Hi Kim. Do you remember me? well, we were going to plan a collaboration of some kind. (see comment thread below :) ) well, are you still interested? let me know. my email is Daniel.Klumper@k12.sd.us my skype is: dan.klumper my blog is: http://waterforsixthgrade.blogspot.com
Hi Kim. Thank you for your comment. I appreciate you taking the time. Wow, laptops everyday, that would be so sweet to have that. you are lucky :) i am familiar with wiki (though don't use one), glogster (which i really think is cool) and voice thread (which is a great tool, i agree) I am not familiar with animoto or prezi.com but will check them out. my main focus is our blog. my philosophy has been instead of doing a whole bunch of technology things, just to focus on a couple and do them really well. My blog is getting to a point where i can now start to bring some other web 2.0 things in. I have not skyped, but last year we communicated with students from scotland, england and turkey through my blog. it was pretty cool. we actually got to shareing video's and slideshows. yeah, we should definately have our students collaborate on something. I like to get my students thinking and interacting beyond the walls of my school. the world is so big but with technology and the internet we can shrink it and learn all sorts of things about the world that would have been nearly impossibly 10 years ago. Keep me posted on what you are thinking about the collaboration.
Have a great Day
Hi Kim. Thank you for the comment. you have a good blog as well. I enjoyed looking over it. how often do you take your kids to the computer lab? it's tough getting my students to the computer lab as often as i wish. It sounds like you have a lot of good technology elements going on. good to see. out of the list of technology tools you have used (from above) what three tools do you like the best besides blogger? just curious. i will check them out.
have a great day, keep in touch.
Thanks for that KIm. I will be visiting you blog and wiki later this weekend. I am sorry if am not having a presence her but it is bc I've been doing other things ( ning for our schoolteachers, blog, new website for SAT prep class, workshop for teachers, apart from carrying my responsibilities as an English coordinator). It's good that you are working on your PLN and connecting with other educator; we learn from each other. I will be back to you later this weekend.
Opps, thanks, Kim, that comment WAS intended for you. Appreciate the response. I am always interested in how we get kids directly involved in this stuff while maintaining safety, inclusion and such.
No I do not have a blog per se, but the class and I do almost everything on our Moodle site. Very little paper involved. I can give you a guest account if you want to look around at last year's course.
I am currently in the process of making improvements (I hope) based on our experience last year and the kid's feedback.
I came to ECFS four years ago from the Brentwood School in LA where I had started using Moodle with teachers, and I had used it with clients during my consulting years with schools. I have really come to appreciate this tool as it has a very flat learning curve for teachers (passes my ten minute Tuesday night teacher test - we have 200 courses K-12 on Moodle now), is an environment the kids take readily take to, is secure and is free (or nearly so even if you outsource the server and support as we do). If you take a look at our MM page, I have a podcast there with some other thoughts about Moodle - http://www.ecfs.org/multimedia.aspx .