Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Digital Citizenship in the Elementary Classroom

(Learn Why Digital Citizenship Matters)
Recently in my SEDU 183 class at Edinboro University we were asked to research information and collect data on digital citizenship. Digital citizenship is basically referring to how to keep kids safe online. Teachers play a big role in this when it comes to educating the students about digital citizenship and it is best to teach kids about this at a younger age to avoid future online problems. I chose the elementary classroom for my project and you can look at my Works Cited page to see all the websites I used. Check out my Prezi Presentation below to find out more about digital citizenship in the elementary classroom and how to keep kids safe online!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Learning to Unlearn

In chapter three of our book, it talks about having to unlearn things in the classroom. The world is fast changing and teachers need to keep up with it by unlearning things that may have been useful in the past. This can be somewhat difficult for teachers because they don't want to change or leave their past knowledge behind. To meet the needs of new students in the classroom today, teachers need to rethink how they do their jobs and recreate the way they teach so that the students in classroom learn as much as possible. In the classroom, teachers need to unlearn things and reconstruct their new knowledge of new things to fit the needs of the students in their classroom.

Teachers need to learn new things in order to keep their classrooms up to date with current information and technology. If the teacher properly knows how to use new things, like technology, it is only going to benefit the students in the classroom. With things changing so quickly, teachers need to adapt quicker then ever to the new knowledge and information or there classroom is going to be way behind. According to our book, The Connected Educator, teachers should construct three types of knowledge in their classroom: passive (knowledge for), active (knowledge in), and reflective (knowledge of) to provide newest up to date information to their classroom.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Interactive Whiteboards in Today's Classroom

In my SEDU class we have been recently discussing interactive white boards in the classroom. I think the interactive white boards can be used as a great tool in the classroom, if used properly. It provides an alternative way for the teacher to teach in their classroom and also helps the kids in the classroom get involved with the lesson. I do think that any teacher who uses an interactive white board in their classroom should receive some sort of certification before using the board to teach the students because I know some teachers are not comfortable with technology. When teachers use the interactive white boards, they still need to teach the students and not just put something up on the board while the students copy down the information. That is not what the interactive white boards are supposed to be used for. I don't think interactive white boards will ever go away completely especially because the schools want to use as much technology as possible.

In middle school I first started to notice the interactive white boards in my classrooms. I was very interested in them and they kept my attention, mainly because it was something new. When I entered high school, I began to notice that not a lot of teachers knew how to use the interactive white boards properly, especially the older teachers. Also, a lot of my teacher would just put the notes up for us to copy down and briefly talk about them. From my experience with interactive white boards I think they are most useful in an elementary or middle school classroom because they can really keep the students focus and attention by having different activities and games being used to help teach the lesson. It also allows the students to experience the lesson hands on to help them understand it. During my senior year, we entered a brand new high school with net books and smart boards in every classroom and TVs on every corner. They tried to make the high school a paperless one and we had no choice but to use technology since we were only allowed to print or copy the very important things. People always say that the interactive white boards are most useless in math but in my stats class my senior year, we always used the interactive white boards to review for every test and complete group work and I probably would of failed the class if it wasn't for the interactive white boards. In my English class, we got to create our own flip charts using the active inspire software and we even used the clickers to review for tests which went along with the flip chart software. According to the Washington Post "There is hardly any research that will show clearly that any of these machines will improve academic achievement," I can agree with because I think that over 50% of the teachers that use interactive white boards in their classrooms, just aren't educated enough on how to use the board.

The interactive white boards can be used as a way to differentiate the lesson that the teacher may be teaching to their classroom. They provide ways to learn for multiple learning styles. Auditory learners can listen to videos or even readings, kinesthetic learners can use the board to play games or complete activities, and visual learners can view the board as a full learning experience. I think that having kids in the classroom learn hands on also provides a better way for them to understand things especially at the elementary level. I think teachers should have multiple ways that they teach their lessons to help every student learn as much as they possibly can. For tests, teachers can use different things in the Active Inspire software to review for tests and quizzes including the clickers to play review games. Interactive white boards can be useful and also keep the students attention if used properly.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013


In my SEDU 183 class at Edinboro University, we have been talking about differentiation in the classroom. Differentiation is basically students learning and understanding different concepts at different levels and paces. Just about every classroom is going to require differentiation of some sort, some are just going to require more then others. Not every student is going to learn the same, so teachers have to be willing to deliver the material to students in a few different ways. Differentiation is also about giving the student options as well, so that they remain interested in what they are learning about. Personally, I think the main goal of differentiation is to make sure that every student succeeds in their own way. Also, I think that it is a good idea to group students together by their learning styles so that they can work together.
Technology in the classroom can benefit just about every learning style that a student might have. Visual learner can see things on a screen and auditory learners can have things read to them. Hands on learning can use ipads to play different games that may benefit whatever it is that they are learning in the classroom. Also when a student has some down time or even free time, they could use the computer to research or even play games to help them learn more about a certain subject. Teachers could also give tests or quizzes by using technology. All in all, I think technology can really benefit a differentiated classroom.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Twitter and Me

I have had my own personal Twitter account for about a year and a half now and I really like Twitter the most out of all the social networks I've used in the past. The only thing I don't like is you can't upload a ton of pictures like you can on Facebook. But overall I have never had a problem with Twitter and I like how easy it is to follow people and see what everyone is doing. I keep my personal Twitter private since I do work with kids already. I really don't post anything bad, but I would rather be safe then sorry. I also like the private mode so that the whole world can't see my tweets or even follow me.
In my SEDU 183 class at Edinboro University we had to create a professional Twitter and use it to follow our classmates and other educators. This past Tuesday in class we took a class quiz on Twitter by using the hashtag #SEDU183quiz1. I thought this was a very useful tool because we could all work together as a group without talking and every could contribute their part.
I think Twitter in the classroom could be a great idea, but you could also run into a lot of problems. First off I think only high school and college students should use Twitter in the classroom and only if they are going to use it for educational reasons. In my high school, we had net books in every classroom, but every social network site was blocked because they were seen as a distraction the classroom. I can see where they are coming from, but I don't think they really knew how beneficial Twitter or any social networking site could have been to the classroom.
Me wanting being an elementary school teacher, I would never use Twitter or any social networking sites in my classroom with my students. I wouldn't even use it for a middle school classroom. First off, it takes away from the face to face learning experience and the children are just too young. If they are always behind a computer screen they may not be paying attention to the teacher and they may not develop that personal relationship with the teacher either. Also, it can trigger cyber bulling, or the students can come in contact with a person who might not be who they say they are. If homework or tests are given online sometimes it makes it easier for the child to cheat. Bring a college student and going through a high school with net books in every room, I can tell you, that I would much rather do homework on paper any day.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

The Final Frontier

In this assignment we had to read the article "Teacher Pedagogical Beliefs: The Final Frontier in Our Quest for Technology Integration?" After reading the article we completed a set of questions provided to us and used the article to answer the questions in 2-3 sentences each. After completing the above assignment, we were put into groups of three. In our groups we made a google drive presentation trying to persuade teachers why they should use technology in the classroom and provide accurate information from the article and the web. In our google drive we also had to include a few pictures, links, a chart, and a video to outside sources that provided extra information in addition to the article.

The article's main focus was to discuss the reasons why teachers use technology in the classroom. The article's  main reason was to discuss why teachers' beliefs about technology affect their technology practices. The article talked about the definition of teacher beliefs, the connection between beliefs and practices, the nature of beliefs, how beliefs are performed and changed, and implications for professional development and research. Lastly, the article provided statistical facts and information that was useful to us, the readers.

I think that our group collaborated very well together. We all meet Tuesday night on google drive and each completed a slide of the presentation at home. We used the comment section on google to provide feedback to each others work. In class on Thursday, we each completed an additional slide for the presentation and also created the last slide as a group together. After typing all of our information into the different slides, Lauren was in charge of finding pictures, Ashley W. was in charge of slide transition, and I was in charge of finding outside links and the video for the presentation. Each person in our group pulled their weight for this assignment and we all worked really well together.

Our presentation is called Teacher Beliefs: Technology in the Classroom. The different slides talk about teacher beliefs, different types of classrooms, and the different teacher experiences. We also provided a chart of statistics that we found throughout the article. We included a video about the top ten reasons to use technology in the classroom. Last, we added a few pictures and outside links that we found useful for the presentation. Finally, we added a slide at the end about our opinion about using technology in the classroom.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

All About Me

My name is Ashley Hurte and I am a freshman at Edinboro University. I am currently an elementary education major. I am 18 years old and I am from Pittsburgh, PA. I live with my dad and I have one younger sister, along with a dog. I am very friendly and organized. I also love meeting new people and I usually have a very busy schedule with work and school. I work at Shoe Carnival in Erie and I transfer back home over breaks. I enjoy going out with my friends and watching movies. Many people don't know that I have been a girl scout for 12 years now. Before coming to Edinboro, I was a member of my high school color guard team for four years and a softball player for my community for six years. I also danced for five years on a local competitive dance team, and I coached cheerleading for the elementary school that I attended for three years. Below is a video of some of the girls I coached at one of their performance. 

I think technology is an important part of learning today. In classrooms you are starting to see more and more smart boards and laptops being used. In my high school, a lot of our homework was given online and we also had a program similar to D2L. We also had net books in every classroom and all of our teachers tried their hardest to make the classroom a paperless one. Students can now learn and research more by searching the web on their phones or computers to expand their knowledge. For teaching purposes, I feel that technology can help teachers expand their knowledge of the subject they are talking about and it also allows them to teach things in more than one way.

I believe that teachers should create a positive environment for their students to learn and be themselves. Teachers help provide the students with all the resources that each student needs to be successful. Teachers should be able to teach their lessons in multiple ways so that every student can understand the concepts being taught. Teachers also educate our future workers and can make a difference or a lasting impression on each child.