Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Final Capstone Reflection Things 1-21

Two technological items that I was introduced to while going through 21 Things for 21st Century Educators were Evernote and Diigo. I think both of these technology applications will make me a better professional because I can learn and share with others so they can learn more as well. I can be more productive and save paper from printing by looking at my diigo highlighted articles and with Evernote I can actually clip the entire article for reading later even if the website disappears. I see Diigo and Evernote as tools that help both me and my students to better summarize and take notes so we can see the similarities and differences between the different author’s points of view. We can also take our summaries and use them to generate and test hypothesis as we extend our knowledge. I think that digital storytelling is a thing that I will be incorporating more into my classroom. I see digital storytelling as a combination of visual learning, digital images, and sometimes screencasting. Digital storytelling requires students to think through what the main message is to be shared with their audience through succinct digital images - either still or video - with a sound track or captions that will catch another person’s attention. Digital storytelling requires students to put into practice all of the NETS-S. Most specifically the student must be creative in production of an original story covering a particular topic that requires multiple types of technology to complete. Students must communicate and collaborate with their team partners as well as consider how they communicate appropriately with their audience. Students must research how to best photograph or video record their subject. Students must evaluate, synthesize, and process all of the information about their subject into the creation of their story. Managing a project like this requires deep critical thinking, problem solving, and decision making to create the best project. Students will become better digital citizens when they see how human, cultural, and societal issues converge in their story. Because of the different facets of a digital story, students will learn how to select and use technological applications to create their story. Trouble shooting these applications and transferring what they know to others will happen because projects require those skills. It will be exciting to see what happens as I use digital storytelling with my students. One thing that I will use to continue growing professionally is developing my professional learning network through Twitter. I want to give myself 15 minutes a day to log in, read the pithy thoughts of others and read through linked articles that others have found useful, and collect their tweets in my diigo library or collect the articles in my Evernote notebook. I also want to interact with the individuals I follow on twitter by commenting on their tweets and links that they share. My interaction on Twitter has been a priceless to my growth and ability to connect with others who think deeply about ideas that I care about and share what they learn with others. One aspect of digital citizenship that I want to do well and teach my students and co-workers to do well is to create a positive digital footprint. I want students to see how I interact with people on Twitter and in my blogging and for them to model that behavior in their own online presence. I want students to understand that there must be boundaries about what personal information is shared online. I want them to live a life without regret and guilt over a status update, photo or video that they have uploaded. I want to remind them of the Golden Rule - treat others as you would want to be treated. I want them to think critically about how they use digital resources and to contribute to online communities in a positive way to build up others. My views have been widened through this course because I have come to see how wide technology is and where students could get into situations where negative choices could be made. Helping students have positive experiences and helping students learn positive ways of behaving will make all the difference as I move on in the way I educate young people about technology.

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