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Blog Post #13: Technology Proposal Reflection #2

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 Educational Technology Proposal Reflection #2 image source: bizjournals.com  Educational Technology Proposal Process Now nearing the end of the technology proposal process, I am beginning to reflect on my experience throughout this project. I really enjoyed working on a project with real world application and that will help me at the next level of my career. It was interesting to take an active lead to solve problems and fill needs at my school. This project made me more confident in stepping up and taking on more of a leadership role within the staff. Challenges Although I didn't run into too many challenges, there were a few things that made this process a little more difficult. First, the privacy policies at my school would not allow me to work with some of my original proposal ideas. I would have really liked to work with Google Suite or even use Google Forms to collect survey information, but instead I had to do it on paper. Although I understand why we are not able to use Go

Blog Post #12: Learning Specialist Proposal Reflection #1

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  Learning Specialist Proposal Reflection  image source: pgnitem.com Technology Proposal Over the course of the last few weeks, I have been assessing my school district's needs in the area of technology. After brainstorming and speaking to administration, I decided to implement professional development on how to use the technology that we already have. Our school is a fast-paced environment and collaboration among teachers can rare during busy days and weeks. My idea was to present short, engaging lessons once a month at our Monday teacher meetings, as well as one presentation during our Wednesday staff meeting.  The Process The process so far has been pretty smooth. My administration encourages teachers and staff to give professional development whenever possible. My idea was welcome and administration made time for me to discuss the idea with them. So far, I have discovered that there is support for my idea and that I would like to present professional development to the staff. T

Blog Post #11: The Negatives of Social Media

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  The Negatives of Social Media image source: jobcluster.com Social media is used every day to connect with friends, families, and colleagues. I generally view it as a positive tool when used appropriately. This week, I decided to explore some of the negative effects of social media. The topics I researched involved cyberbullying and isolation; topics that are often discussed when addressing the bad side of social media. Here's what I found and my thoughts about these topics: Social Media and Isolation  In the Wall Street Journal article, The Lonely Burden of Today's Teenage Girls , Mary Pipher and Sarah Pipher Gilliam discuss how this generation of girls is the loneliest on record. The article states that in a research study conducted by the University of Michigan found, "... since 2007—the dawn of the smartphone era—girls have dramatically decreased the amount of time they spend shopping, seeing friends or going to movies. We found that many girls spend their Saturday ni

Blog Post #10: Looking Back, Looking Ahead

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 Looking Back, Looking Ahead image source: blogs.stockton.edu It's hard to believe that this is the final week of EDU 776. This is my first course in my educational technology endorsement program, and I've already learned so much. Technology in education is complicated and ever-changing. There are many ideas and concepts I hadn't previously considered, and will now think about in my current position, as well as future ones.   What I Learned Although I've taught a technology class before, there are many new things I learned in this course. I never thought about the "why" of technology before. The activity that stood out to me the most was the technology framework assignment. Learning about TPACK was interesting, because it really made me reflect on the purpose of the technology in the classroom. I have always been lucky enough to have access to technology in my classrooms, and sometimes I wasn't sure how to implement the tools that I was provided. Going for

Blog Post #9: Digital Tattoo

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  Digital Tattoos image source: ubyssey.ca Digital Tattoos vs. Digital Footprints This week, I explored the idea of digital tattoos vs. digital footprints. As someone with many tattoos, I appreciate this reference as I understand these choices are permanent. Digital tattoos are forever, while digital footprints can wash away. I chose several websites to find information about myself that is publicly available on the Internet. Aside from my PLN project, blog, and professional website for this course, I do not have any public social media accounts. None of my social media accounts have my real name. These are the results of what I found while using these different platforms.  Peek You image source: Peek You Searching myself on Peek You was interesting. Much of the information on this website was outdated or wrong. For example, Peek You had my middle initial as "I" when that is incorrect. My age and address were also not updated. An email was listed for me that I have never use

Blog Post #8: Assistive Technology, Accessibility, and Digital Tools

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 Accessibility and Digital Tools image source: hope-haven.org Assistive Technology Assistive technology allows the curriculum to become accessible for students with disabilities. There are different levels of assistive technology ranging from low/no tech to high-tech. As a special education teacher, I have used many of these tools to provide accessibility to my students. From the low/no-tech category, I most often use highlighters, color coding, read to out loud, and proof readers. In the mid-tech level, my students have access to word prediction, text to speech, speech to text, organizers, and e-books. The high-tech tools I use in class are computers and tablets. Although I have a lot of experience with many of these assistive technology tools, I still wonder what other resources are out there that I'm missing.  I decided to explore the Google Tools for Special Needs article by Eric Curts to get a few more ideas. Many of my students who benefit from assistive technology use a Chr

Blog Post #7: PLN and Twitter Chats

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 PLN and Twitter Chats image source: learnersedge.com Professional Learning Networks A professional learning network, or a PLN, is a network teachers build to share resources and collaborate with other educators. Before exploring this concept, I had not heard this term or used social media to build a professional network. Although I've participated in professional development at my district and have discussed topics in education with other teachers at work, I did not often go online to seek resources. Before I developed my PLN on Twitter , following pages like Edutopia on Facebook was the extent of my seeking of resources. My First "Fast-Chat" After I repurposed an old Twitter account, I decided to seek out a chat in which to participate. I wasn't sure where to start, as I was never a big Twitter user. It was really helpful to see the chat schedule in order to choose a chat that seemed relevant to me. I chose to join the #sunchat at 8:00am on Sunday morning. I brewe