Saturday, July 16, 2011

Day of Discovery

Yesterday I was able to attend Discovery Education's Day of Discovery conference. Although I had to start my day extra early, drive an hour and 45 minutes, and give up a beautiful, sunny Friday I was not let down. This conference had a lot to offer and it was all for free! Thank you Discovery Education, USD, and Lindsay Hopkins for organizing a wonderful event.

As soon as we arrived we were greeted with lots of helpful DE staff, beautiful decorations, a nice breakfast, notebooks, and other goodies. The day started off with a general session meeting followed by the first two individual sessions. After the first two sessions, lunch was provided, and then we attended another two sessions. The day ended with a general closing and a prize giveaway. The only bummer was not being able to attend all the sessions that were offered. Although some of the tools and information may be repetitive for more advanced tech teachers, a lot of it was new for me. I had heard of some of these sites but have not used them in the classroom. In addition, I was blown away by all the things I could do with Discovery Education beyond just streaming videos and songs for students. Now all I need is the classroom to implement it all in. If any of my fellow teaching friends would like help developing lessons are implementing them in your class I would be thrilled to help! 
Tech Ed Tools Wiki   is the link to the Wiki page I used for note taking during the presentations. I wanted something that I could share, change, and add to as needed. I am more excited about all the training resources and links that they will be emailing out to us (those who attended the conference) within the next few days. If I can, I will share them as well.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Time to Celebrate

I made it through CSUF's Masters of Science program in curriculum and instruction! Graduation ceremonies and celebrations will be this Sunday, May 22nd. While I'm supper excited I am already wondering what I will do next. I always like to have something to challenge myself and should I dare say for fun? Yes, the master's program was both of those things for me. My husband knows me way too good, just the other night he said, "I can't wait to see what your next project is. You always have something going on." I love that he is so supportive. Of course, I have to hit the job hunt hard. Any cool leads would be much appreciated.

I also know I will look into volunteering. I found a local place that is looking for a volunteer instructor to teach Excel to unemployed adults every other Friday night. Sounds good but I also really want to find something that will allow me to add to my limited Spanish skills. I am also toying with the idea to get certified in scuba diving so I can enjoy some underwater adventures with my husband. We shall see what is in store for the summer!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Week Twelve

Wow, I got a lot done in a short period of time. Once again, I have tweaked my introduction and task. While this created additional work for me, it was well worth it. I'm feeling much more confident about each step of the WebQuest now. I have a very detailed Process writen out and created new organizational charts to correlate with it. I have also been building the actual Web site. I discovered that TeacherWeb has some WQ templates, similar to Quest Garden. Since I already have an account with them, that is what I am using. This way I'm not worried about signing up for a free trial period and having it expire. I would love my WQ to be out there for others, as well as myself, to use. However, I am curious as to possible disadvantages from using a WQ template as opposed to creating one from scratch. If anyone has feedback on that I would love to hear it. My lightbulb moment this week was when I actually pulled out the Rubric and begun comparing it to what I was designing. It struck me as crazy because I LOVE rubrics, both as a student and a teacher, and yet that had slipped my mind. I know the next three days are going to be busy for me but I hope to complete my WQ by Tuesday. I still need to create an online collaborative worksheet for students and find a few more kid friendly sites. I hope to pilot it with a group of students on Wednesday. I don't expect them to actually complete it because that would take multiple sessions but I would like them to read through the procedures and ask questions, as well as, read through the sites to record the information I am asking for. This will ensure that the sites are appropriate and provide me with an apporximate time that it will take to complete the research process. Let's hope it all goes according to my plan!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Week 11

Well, I think I am getting closer to my final WQ draft. After, some feedback I have recreated my introducation and task. I think I am on the right track.

Introduction: Have you ever wondered how your life would be different if you lived with a Native American tribe and had to be totally dependent on the land, environment, and resources in your area? Well, here is your chance to find out! As a California Distinguished School our students have been invited to share our talent and audition for an upcoming competition-Survivor: Tribal Live! If your team is selected to represent our school, you will have the opportunity to compete in a series of challenges, against other Distinguished School teams across the state, for a chance to win a $10,000 for our school. 
Task: Along with your team members, your task is to spend some time living in the past among the Gabrielino, Juaneno, and Chumash tribes in order to become familiar with their way of life and learn how to adapt to the environment around you. Once you have acquired as much information as you can, your team will return to the present day and create an original tribe that you believe will be the most qualified to represent our school. Your new tribe will then complete a written application which will be submitted to the Survivor: Tribal Live Casting Director, along with a two to three minute video introduction of your tribe, and the designs for a tribal seal, which represents your tribe and can be used if your tribe is chosen for the competition.
Step 1-You will be placed on a team with four other classmates and assigned a specific area to study while living with each tribe. The areas include: Village Life and Shelter, Food and Clothing, Tools and Transportation, Arts and Crafts, and Religion and Celebrations. Your team will be given a folder containing a copy of the Performance Task, a Rubric, and an Organizational Chart. Your job is to read the performance task and rubric together. Next, the class will discuss the rubric and expectations and each team will be given an opportunity to ask questions prior to getting started.
Step 2-You are now ready to travel back in time to live among the three tribes and familiarize yourself with their way of life. While visiting the recommended sites, each team member is responsible for completing his/her portion of the Organizational Chart.
Step 3-After all five members have completed their portion you will discuss your findings with your teammates and fill in the remaining areas of the Organizational Chart. At the end of Step 3 each team member should have a completed Organization Chart and a good understanding of how each of the three tribes has adapted to their environment. Once your team feels ready you can return to the present day. No need to be sad, at any time you may chose to revisit any of the three tribes for additional information.
Step 4- Time to get creative! If you want to be casted on Survivor: Tribal Live you will need to get creative and work together to create YOUR tribe. Use the Planning a Tribe Chart to begin to make choices. Your new tribe should incorporate what you believe are the strongest elements from each of the original tribes, however, they also should be adapted to our local environment. (For example, beaver would not be a sustainable diet in Orange County).
At this point, I would also have some online resources for the local environment.
This weekend I hope to complete my process and then I can actually start creating the WQ. I am also going to be teaching my internet lesson.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Week 10: Survivor: Tribal Live

So here is a draft of my Intro and Task. The wording has already changed serveral times and I'm sure it will change again once I get some feedback. Now that I have the idea I can really see how the task guides my resources and organization. I have started developing orgainzation charts for the students to use while gathering data and designing their own tribe. I also filled in the chart I created as I went through the resources I had already found. This was very helpful. I was able to eliminate some sites because they did not provide relevant information. I also wanted to ensure that the information is distributed throughout multiple sites. I don't want to make it too easy. Finally, I discovered that there was information I could not find and will have to find at least one or two more Websites to add to my resources. I hope to start building my actual WebQuest this week.

Introduction: Have you ever wondered how your life would be different if you were 100 percent dependent on the land, environment, and resources in your area?  Sure it sounds cool, almost like you are competing on the well known show Survivor! Or perhaps you are one of the long ago Native Americans who had to adapt to their environment and survive off the land around them. How did the Native Americans adapt to their environment? What influences cause people to adapt to their environment? You are about to find out!
Task: Congratulations! YOU have been selected to be 1 of 30 cast members to participate in the upcoming Survivor: Tribal Live!  You have been placed in a tribe of five members and will soon be competing against five other tribes in a series of six challenges. Your task is to prepare for the upcoming challenges by collecting information on the Native Americans of California. Specifically, your tribe will want to know as much as possible about the location, villages and shelter, transportation, diet and food, tools, and arts and crafts of the Gabrielinos, Juanenos, and Chumash. While collecting information, your tribe will make choices based on what you believe are the strongest, most adaptable, elements from each of the original tribes. Once you have chosen one item from each of the six elements, you will chose an original tribe name and create a tribal flag to be displayed during the competition.  Together, your tribe will prepare a written bio to be printed in a ceremony program and introduce your tribe to a live audience. Since all competing tribes will have access to the same information, your success will depend on the choices your tribe makes and how you are able to adapt to any given situation. Good luck- may your tribal flag be the last one standing!
Questions & Thoughts:
-I'm not sure if part of my task would still be considered the introduction.
-I am still a little confused how to ensure my intro and task show that high levels of critical thinking will be taking place. I beleive it will but will have to compare with the rubric.
-I plan on reseraching and comparing some of the WebQuest on the Google doc that scored high.

Currently, I am thinking that all five group members will go through the WebQuest and complete the research together. Everyone will be responsible for ALL the information but researching jobs will be assigned as the following: Task manager, Navigator, Reader, Note taker. (I still need 1 more job if they are teams of 5. Maybe two notetakers or a Communication expert who asks the questions and gets approval, ect.?) I would like the challenges to be imbedded in the research but played out as a culminating activity once the Webquest is complete. I still have to figure this part out!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Week Nine

I am sticking with my first idea for my WebQuest: Native Americans of Orange County. I really want to get my task figured out this week. I know I want groups to collaborate while researching tribes: Serrano, Gabrielenos, Juanenos, and/or Chumash. I’m not sure if I want to limit the research to three tribes or have four tribes and allow students to choose which three they research. (I'm also waiting for some feedback from a few 3rd grade teachers.)

The task:
I do not have this figured out just yet. However, two ideas have come to mind.

Idea #1) After researching, students will have to create a new tribe combining different elements from each of the original tribes. Students will create a logo or seal which represents their new tribe and prepare a written report, as well as, make a classroom presentation on their tribe. I’m not sure what my hook or reason that these tribes have to come together, possibly a common enemy, natural disaster, or dwindling population or space.

Idea #2) After researching, students will have to create a time capsule used to communicate between the past and the present. Groups will decide on four modern day objects, tools, customs, food, etc. to send to a Native American tribe of choice. The items must be helpful and conceivable for Native Americans. In addition, groups will decide, as Native Americans, which four items should be preserved for the future and why. Students will have to make an actual time capsule that can hold these items, and create replicas of each item. During a presentation, students will present the items received from and sent to Native Americans. They will have to discuss the importance and their justification for choosing it. Again, I’m not sure of my hook yet.

I would LOVE any ideas or comments. Especially on which idea is best and what my story/hook can be. You can start by taking my poll!

Following is a little about my process and some possible resources.
Process: Students will be gathering information on each tribe’s location, shelter, diet, tools, and customs. (Customs will incorporate clothing, religion, and arts or crafts.) Groups will decide how to assign researching responsibilities.

A Virtual Tour of the California Missions

General Information/History on Native Americans in Orange County

Legends Associated with Native Americans  of Orange County-I thought this site could get kids thinking and analyzing information to determine what we know is factual vs. what we believe is factual information.

General Information on the Chumash tribe

Facts & Images of the Chumash Indians

Gabrielino-Tongva Tribe Council

Juanenos Tribe Council

A Variety of images that could be ideas for student to create a Tribe Seal, logo or poster.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Week Eight: My Wheels Are Spinning

Well, some of the points for this week’s blog were already mentioned in last week’s post so I appologize if this seems redundant.
First, my understanding of a WebQuest is that it is an inquiry based activity where students are seeking out information and gaining new knowledge via the World Wide Web which will then be used in order to complete a task. There are six elements which must be included in the WebQuest. An introduction which provides background knowledge what the WebQuest is for. A task that engages students and that students can successful complete. A variety of information sources that are mainly Web based. The process or steps students need to go through. Guidance is a step that is not always listed is very important if you plan to use this in a classroom setting and/or incorporate cooperative groups.  Finally, a conclusion which sums the project up and discusses the big ideas students should have acquired during the process.
So, for my project, I plan on completing a short term WebQuest, designed for third grade students. I am still heavily leaning towards focusing on Native Americans of Orange County. The standard for this is 3.2 Students describe the American Indian nations in their local region long ago and in the recent past. The power standard that I would want my task to focus on is: Discuss the ways in which physical geography, including climate, influenced how the local Indian nations adapted to their natural environment (e.g., how they obtained food, clothing, tools). Yet, I’m not sure what my exact task would be. I did get some great feedback from Loretta on possible tasks.
Here is a link to third grade Social Studies Standards:
However, another area I started contemplating is the local history of the school’s community which would be Rancho Santa Margarita, Dove Canyon, and Coto De Caza. I’ve been thinking about this one since I came across some great sources online such as original maps, letters, and city designs. The standard 3.3 is: Students draw from historical and community resources to organize the sequence of local historical events and describe how each period of settlement left its mark on the land. The power standard is: Trace why their community was established, how individuals and families contributed to its founding and development, and how the community has changed over time, drawing on maps, photographs, oral histories, letters, newspapers, and other primary sources.  I believe this standard is often skimmed over or left out altogether.
Decisions, decisions…I would love anyone’s feedback or recommendations. You can email me directly or post them on this blog.  I also hope to ask some 3rd grade, teacher friends of mine to see which one they would be most likely to use. Once I begin planning the WebQuest I am sure I will have a stronger feeling as to which one to do.
Finally, I would like to integrate the Social Studies content with Language Arts curriculum. I want to design the task so that it can be used as a Language Arts/Social Studies center during a guided reading block and have students collaborating in small groups throughout the week. 
I am actually really looking forward to this project. I may be wrong but I think the technology aspect will not be difficult which means we can focus more on the design and content. We’ll see!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Web Quest

After reviewing the Course Documents related to the Web Quest assignment I was reminded of the hypermedia assignment many of us did earlier in EDEL515. The  main difference seems to be that I used PowerPoint to create the hypermedia as opposed to the World Wide Web. I'm excited to experiment with a Web Quest and appreciate the fact that the technology courses I have had through the CUSF master program seem to build on each other.

I know I have already mentioned that my EDEL594 final project is to write a curriculum guide on lessons for teachers on integrating technology into Social Studies. This project has been influence by my experience with learning technology provided by EDEL 512, EDEL 515, and currently, EDEL 522. Thank you Prof. Donovan! Therefore, I hope to use the Web Quest that I create as one of my curriculum guide lessons. I am currently writing the guide based on the third grade California Content Standards and Capistrano Unified School District's Social Studies Power Standards and Technology CORE Standards. So, for my Web Quest I plan on integrating standard 3.2, and relating it specifically to Native Americans of Orange County.

I picked the third grade for three reasons. First, I spent the last month subbing in a third grade class and will most likely be back in the class to finish off the school year. (I'm hoping this is not until May!) Second, I love third grade because the kids are excited to learn. I think it is a great year to focus on the proper way to work collaboratively because the kids are a bit more independent. And third, because I have my daughter's third grade work samples (all of which are traditional pencil & paper products) to work with. Since my goal is to provide teachers in my school district with some easy ways to incorporate technology into their instruction I want it it relate as much as possible to what they are currently doing.

I look forward to your feedback and any advice or suggestions you may have.

Ingrid Beaty

Monday, February 28, 2011

Class Website

Wow, I've spent a lot of time working on my website. I enjoy it a lot and do not find it difficult. However, it is very time consuming. It's been fun seeing what is offered via the Internet. I ended up using TeacherWeb.Com because I liked the layout and options. It was the third program that I started setting up. Since I wanted to be able to attach files I ended up paying $5.00 for a one month subscription.

I would love anyone's feedback. I am most interested in proofreading it. I have read it several times looking for spelling errors but I may have overlooked something. I would still like to add a picture of myself to the About Me page. If you want to take a look before I actually post it on Blackboard here is the link. Also, the blog page is password protected. The password to look at it is beaty123. Feel free to pretend to be a student and leave a comment on the page. I do not actually have my own class so all the content I used is from my old first grade class.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Hello Friends!

Wow, I'm actually really excited to have my very own blog up and running. I also love how easy and quick it was. I am always amazed at how many free tech services are now available on the Internet. I will look forward to playing around with it more and adding additional features and posts. For my research project in this class I will be looking at blogging in the classroom and hopefully how it relates to students' writing skills and engagement. I think it would be a lot of fun to try using blogs in my own classroom in the near future. There are a ton of how to articles out there but I am surprised at the lack of empirical studies on students in the K - 12 grades. If anyone has some great empirical study that relates to my topic I would love for you to post it here for me!