Thursday, April 30, 2015

Project 16 Team Posting

Using Technology and a PBL Approach in the Classroom
Team Cougar
                                            Head shot of cougar

     Originally all of us assumed that there would be no need for technology in PE classroom setting, we soon discovered that it takes an open mind to see that it can be useful. While we are not going to be equipped with SmartBoard or even laptops this doesn't prevent bringing in other sources to help teach and motivate students. In our project we created we found that there is abundant amount of resources out there to help implement healthy ideals for our students. We also found that tracking physical activity has been made so simple that almost all age groups can do it and benefit from it. By creating our project we found several sources on smartphones and then the more we thought about it we found other tools that we could bring into our gym setting for our students.
     Just like as with technology, we all thought that there is no place nor need for project based learning in PE, again we were proven wrong. It took a bit of creativity to see that by using project based learning we could really bring our classes together. By setting it up as as competition it provides a way to keep students motivated to work together and to accomplish tasks big and small. Our use of teams, along with creating group learning, also gives students who would never get the chance to be part of any extracurricular team the opportunity to learn how to work together with others on a different level.
     While many in the future may be speculative about why this class is necessary for PE majors let us just say that any new way of teaching is never unnecessary. Having different techniques in your pocket is always useful and a great resource. The best advice we have to give for students that will be in our shoes is don't think that what is going on doesn't apply to you, just find a way to use it in your favor. It's going to take a little creativity and some hard work but it can be done.


Saturday, April 25, 2015

Blog Post 5 Part 2

PLN Summary
After my initial start up of my PLN I found that by using Twitter and getting my interests out there in the "Twittersphere" can also suggest me to other groups as well. I still am following Edutopia and the Teaching Channel and now I have @GoogleforEdu, @DiscoveryEducation, and @Teaching Channel. Having these new resources has been of great benefit to my personal learning network and I can't wait to see what other sources I come across.
twitter logo

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Blog Post 14

Can Teaching be a Profession?
     According to Joel Klein it absolutely can and it absolutely should. Three main "problems" discussed on why making teaching a profession are discussed in the article by Mr. Klein. They are: that teaching should be seen on the same level as that of medicine and law, there is too much seniority distraction in the school systems, and teaching overall needs a radical change. In order for teaching to be on the same level as other well respected professions there would need to be better academic training for prospective teachers, a new approach to recruiting teachers, and changing how teachers are rewarded. Seniority distraction is seen in all school systems. To get rid of this distraction overall evaluations of teacher performances need to be done, and there needs to be a standard national teacher examination which compares all teachers to a standardized level. Lastly, a radical change needs to be seen in how teachers perform and are seen. Teachers can accomplish this by establishing their own board to report to, and teachers need to be subjected to merit based career ladders.
     I basically agree with the above "problems" that were listed out, however, I do not think that teachers should be seen on the same level as that of law and medicine. Not to say that teaching isn't an important profession but in order for it to even be close to the same level it first has to have the minimum amount of schooling that law school and med school entails. As of right now all you need to teach is a four year degree. Even if the amount of years and the depth of education was extended  I feel that it wouldn't be at the same level of recognition. This may be a problem that educators face but the fact of the matter is is that the supply of teachers is so great and their required skill set is so minimal. I know that many will not agree with this because it takes teachers to teach the up and coming doctors and lawyers but majority of the time those teachers have been professionals already. This doesn't make them a great teacher automatically but they have the first hand knowledge of their subject area.
     I do agree with the problems of having seniority distraction in the school and that there needs to be radical change in how teachers are meeting standards and making their way up the career ladder. Teachers that have been in the school system for a number of years are seen as more important regardless of if their teaching is good or not. These teachers should be continued to be evaluated even after their first initial years of teaching. Teachers should create standards for themselves in which all teachers will have to be responsible for. Having a "national teacher examination" may not be the best way to approach holding all teachers to the same level. I just feel that it would be tough to create a test that can evaluate teachers from different levels and different subject matters. It is a good thought though that maybe one day can be implemented in a way.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Technology and Teaching: My Philosophy

Healthy living, what it means

Initially I did not think that technology would be that relevant of a thing for myself and my classroom. However, I will say that while working with my group and collaborating on our final project together I have seen some great ways that technology can be used and implemented in my health class. For my classroom I hope that I am provided with a SmartBoard to teach my lessons off of. It actually wasn't until today that I really learned all the potential that it has for downloading applications that coincide with the class being taught. I really like the interactiveness of the board as well and how students can be a part of the lesson instead of just listening. Additionally I would love to use the Wii and Wii Fit programs to get my students jump started on the main points that will be covered in my class. The Wii Fit is a great source of technology that can keep track of my student's health progress throughout a whole semester. Finally, I would like for my class to keep individual blogs of all the progress that they are making, this can include healthy food choices they have made or exercises they find fun. By having them write about what they are doing in their weekly lifestyle will, hopefully, keep them focused on making the right choices for their body.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

C4T #4 Summary

"Beth's Thoughts on Technology in the Classroom"
     For my final "comments for teachers I was assigned Miss Beth Knittle who is a teacher in Massachusetts. Her most recent post discussed how schools are, and some still should, update the curriculum for students. It really in impressive how far schools have come in just the amount of time since I graduated high school. More schools are now offering online courses, blended learning, more advanced subjects, college prep classes, and a multitude of foreign languages. I commented back to her post saying that I agree that those schools that are still lacking in updates need to progress toward what other advanced schools are doing. While it is tricky to determine in what category some of these classes should be placed or how to determine the certification to teach them, it is necessary to expand upon just the basics of the classroom. Kids need to know all of their options and, in high school especially, they have the best opportunity to expand their knowledge base while not having to leave their comfort zone yet.

Teacher leading a class session

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

C4K #3 Summary

pitcher of lemonade

Over the past few weeks I was given three students' blogs to visit and comment on some of their work. They were Blake S. in Mrs. Lombard's class, Caro in Mr. Webbauro's class, and Andony in Mr. Gardener's class. To begin, upon visiting Blake S' blog I found that he had written a post that was summarizing "Lemonade Wars", a recent story that he had read. It was a very well written post and I applauded him for his great writing and how organized his post was in summarizing the story. Caro was my next student. In his post he discussed how he and a few of his friends had recently competed in "Weet-Bix", which apparently is a triathlon which takes place in New Zealand. I thought that was so exciting! He explained how he had the easiest time riding his bike and he encourages everyone to try it once. Last, I had Andony. He only had one post on his site and it was a poem he had written that described the 5 senses. He wrote about a motorcycle and used to senses to illustrate different ways that the bike could be seen. It was a very simple poem, consisting of only 5 lines, but had no errors in spelling or grammar.