Ways I Have Contributed in EDTC 300

This is my last post of the semester and I must say, I think i have come a long way. Not only have I learnt a lot from my Professor as well as my classmates, but I think that my communication skills and self confidence have grown as well. I have found a community of pre-teachers and teachers that I can share and communicate with, and that has made this class amazing. Rather than what I gained from this class however, this post is supposed to be about how I have contributed to my fellow EDTC 300 classmates learning.

I am a quiet and shy person, anyone who has met me will tell you the same, so when I joined this online class, and still had to interact with new people I was fairly nervous. This meant that I didn’t always contribute to the big group chats, instead I found myself observing, learning and nodding my head in agreement a lot.

To compensate for my occasional silences in the large group, I worked hard in three other areas. The first was the breakout rooms, these are smaller groups for myself and my classmates to talk in, to give us all a chance to speak. I tried to be more talkative in these than the large group chats, and I think I improved throughout the semester. I like to think what I had to say within these groups was insightful and contributed to my classmates’ learning.

The second area I contributed in was commenting on my classmates blog posts, the same as they did mine. I tried to be insightful and supportive and not just give generic questions to get the marks I wanted. I found that when people were helpful and kind in their responses to my blog, it helped boost my confidence and made me feel really good about the work I had done. I wanted to do the same for other people, in order to help them better succeed.

My third contribution to this class was my twitter presence. Before this class I never used twitter, as I don’t like sharing on social media. It makes me anxious and I always went with the theory that, “if i want someone to know what I think about something, I can always talk to them about it.” This class taught me that twitter is a valuable tool for sharing information as well as surveying large groups. I helped contribute to my classmates’ learning by participating in some fellow EDTC 300 classmates’ polls and I even joined in an education based twitter chat! I tried to tweet interesting and helpful articles pertaining to our in-class subject matter as well as education related topics as a whole. Some classmates found the resources I shared interesting or helpful and even commented on and retweeted a few of them! To me this is validation that I contributed to their learning and that I was able to help my fellow classmates in some way.


Achieving My Goal

Over the course of the semester I was assigned to learn something using online resources only. I chose to learn the ukulele, something I would be interested in continuing after the semester was over. I was really surprised at how easy it was to find the necessary resources I needed to learn the song Interlude: Moving On by Paramore. It took lots of time and mistakes but thanks to the help of UkuTabs.com and YouTube I was able to achieve my goal of being able to play and sing this song.

I made three videos of my progress throughout the semester. This first video showed my progress on learning the chords and the strum. One of the challenges I had during this stage of learning was moving my fingers from the G chord to the B7 chord quick enough, so there wasn’t a pause between them.

This second video was to show how I was able to play with the music at 75% speed. I had tried at 100% but it proved to be a little to fast for me still.

For the third and final video I learnt the lyrics, so I was able to play and sing the song at the same time. This was a little challenging as I either tended to forget the lyrics while concentrating on the chords or forget the chords or strum while focusing on the lyrics. But with lots of practice I was able to achieve my goal.

Singing Away

So, this week I promised that I was going to sing while playing the ukulele. It was a bit of a struggle at first. Sometimes I would be so focused on the lyrics I would lose the strum that I was doing as well. Sometimes it was the other way around where I would be so focused on the strum, I forgot the lyrics. But I kept trying and it got a little bit easier every time. I was really nervous during this video and I tried my best, I hope you like my attempt.

Here is my video:

Experiencing Coding


Image by <a href=”https://pixabay.com/users/200degrees-2051452/?utm_source=link-attribution&amp;utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_campaign=image&amp;utm_content=1745705″>200 Degrees</a> from <a href=”https://pixabay.com/?utm_source=link-attribution&amp;utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_campaign=image&amp;utm_content=1745705″>Pixabay</a&gt;

This week we were assigned to explore coding. Before this class I did not know that coding websites like Hour of Code or Scratch existed. I am glad I learnt about these coding websites because they have many benefits for students. Coding can help students learn problem solving, computational thinking, facilitates creativity, and more. Here is an article on We Are Teachers that talks more about the benefits of coding.

Here is my experience with Hour of Code:

Star Wars: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1RMe0-IVRDCvqJaReaRiTXyQTWS2A8ZYY/view

Harry Potter: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1wAzKvSsfSCAfGZgUP1zgPCyMfRvmOghA/view

I expected it to be hard to figure out, but it was very easy to follow along with and a lot more fun then I thought it would be. I did have a bit of problems with the Harry Potter one, I also had a bit of trouble figuring out how to do things when I could do whatever I wanted at the end of some of the tutorials (not on recordings), but that is part of the coding experience, to explore and figure out how things work on your own.

I would defiantly do coding again and would defiantly implement coding in the classroom.

Teaching Chords

This week we were instructed to help others learn. I decided to make a Piktochart of how to play the chords to the song I am doing for this learning project. It was pretty easy to use and I was able to add my own photos of what the chords looked like. Unfortunately I was not able to make the pictures very big, but here is what I made with Piktochart:

If you want to view this in a bigger version on the Piktochart website here is the link: https://create.piktochart.com/output/37883106-learning-project



How to Combat Fake News


Fake news is a big problem on the internet and most people and students cannot distinguish between what is fake and what is real. In the article, Fake News. It’s Complicated. They name seven kinds of mis-disinformation, which are:

– Satire or Parody: No intention to cause harm but has potential to fool.
– False Connection: When headlines, visuals or captions don’t support the headlines.
– Misleading Content: Misleading use of information to frame an issue or individual.
– False Context: When genuine content is shared with false contextual information.
– Imposter Content: When genuine sources are impersonated.
– Manipulated Content: When genuine information or imagery is manipulated to deceive.
– Fabricated Content: New content is 100% false, designed to deceive and do harm.

Learning how to distinguish this fake news from real news should be taught to all students who use the internet. This can be accomplished by helping students develop their digital literacy, which is, according to the Cornell University, “the ability to find, evaluate, utilize, share, and create content using information technologies and the Internet.” So how can we help grade 5 students determine if news is fake? The article, I taught my fifth-graders how to spot fake news. Now they won’t stop fact checking me. Lists seven different elements of a news article the students should check for:

– Copyright: ask students to check the bottom of the webpage to see if the information has been submitted for ownership.
– Verification with multiple sources: Students must double check the information on a few different web pages. Like in a trial, the more corroborating witnesses, the more likely the truth will be discovered.
– Credibility of source, such as between History.com versus a random unknown source: tell them to check if the source has been recently created. Sources that have been around for a while can show reliability over time and be tested by hindsight, whereas recently created sources don’t carry much of a track record.
– Date published: ask them to check how recently the page was updated to see how current the information is and whether anything has changed.
– Author’s expertise and background with the subject: Students should check if the author is someone who has dedicated time and effort to learning this subject. For example, a university professor typically has increased credibility versus a hobbyist.
– Does it match your prior knowledge: ask them if the information matches up with what they have learned before.
– Does it seem realistic: tell students to use their common sense. Does something seem authentic or probable?

The article writer Scott Bedley also implemented a game in his classroom. He found news articles on the web and would show the class an article one by one. The students had 2-3 minutes to research and had to either sit or stand depending on if the answer was true or false.

Here is an outcome from the Saskatchewan Curriculum website where digital literacy can be taught in grade 5:

English Language Arts 5
CR5.2 View and evaluate, critically, visual and multimedia texts identifying the persuasive techniques including promises, flattery, and comparisons used to influence or persuade an audience.

(a) Gather information from a variety of media (e.g., photographs, web sites, maps, diagrams, posters, videos, advertising, double bar graphs, maps, videos).
(b) Select and flexibly use appropriate strategies (before, during, and after) to construct meaning when viewing.
(c) Understand and apply relevant pragmatic, textual, syntactical, semantic/lexical/morphological, graphophonic, and other cues and conventions of communication to construct and confirm meaning when viewing.
(d) Discuss purpose, perspectives, and biases and how visual texts including First Nations and Métis resources can be used to persuade others.
(e) Recognize point of view and distinguish between fact and opinion.
(f) Identify the values underlying visual messages and recognize persuasive techniques and purposes in oral presentations and various media (e.g., promises, dares, flattery, comparisons).
(g) Analyze visual texts (including First Nations and Métis art and other texts) as sources for information, entertainment, persuasion, interpretation of events, and transmission of culture.
(h) Identify how the language, explicit and implicit messages, and visual and multimedia features (e.g., sound, colour, movement) are used to influence the intended audience.

The video below also has some good advice on how to combat fake news:

Discovering Animoto

This week we were assigned to use a new tool or app to document our learning project progress. I chose to use Animoto. It is a tool that allows you to create videos with text, photos and video clips. Animoto also allows you to add music to the videos you create. It is pretty straight forward to use, there were a set of templates to choose from, and once I had chosen a template the editing and adding  of photos was pretty easy. I think Animoto would be great for making presentations.

This is what the main editing page looks like:

This is what it looks like when you are editing a page:

All of the editing options are on the left and right side of the screen.

Here is my first Animoto video:

Digital Identity and Sleuthing

Today most people have a digital identity. It is the new normal and someone who does not have one form of digital identity can often be thought of as having something to hide. But not all people with digital identities are old enough to realize that they do have one. Parents often post pictures and share information of their children. Because of this, children have their own online identity created for them at a young age.

Some people also have multiple identities on multiple social media accounts. In the article, Having Multiple Online Identities is More Normal Than You Think, the article states, “The idea of just using Facebook as your primary online identity is actually the exception, she says, not the norm. Even back in the heydays of Usenet and IRC, having multiple identities was something a lot of people did.” Many people have different social media accounts for different groups of people. Some people use Facebook to keep in touch with family, some use it for people who they have met, but are not close to. Other people have two or more accounts on a social media site like Instagram or Twitter. One account for family, an account for friends, and one for professional reasons.

Although people need to be careful of what they say on their social media accounts. All too often people have posted something on one of their social media sites only to realize it has been misinterpreted, or they have posted something that they later regret . But by the time they realize the mistake they made, it’s often too late and cannot be undone. Sometimes these posts cause drastic negative repercussions for the person who made the post. Therefore we need to constantly think about what we are posting online and make sure what we are posting is appropriate and positive, so that it is not a negative or hurtful post to others or a post that can be misinterpreted in a negative way.

Here is a link to a reading and a couple of TED Talks that were assigned for this week. If you have time you should read and watch these!

Split Image

The Price of Shame

“One Tweet Can Ruin Your Life”

So, this week we were assigned to pair up in a group of 2 or 3 and Digital Sleuth our partner. My partners this week were also the partners I had for last week’s blog post, Kayla Kresowaty and Parker Mccormick. What we had to do was find as much information as we could about our partner on the internet and on social media. It took me about 10 minutes to find this information, and most of it I got from Kayla’s blog.

Here is the link to what I found on Kayla: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Sm1xu4yEIhbJ0rQvRwqvKlCqe01yG0V0DHr2Vwdb9KE/edit?usp=sharing

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