First Graders in Ms. Cassidy's Class
Watch Video Here
Ms. Cassidy is a first grade teacher in Moose Jaw, Canada. She is a strong believer in using technology in the classroom. In the video she allows her students to demonstrate the type of ways they use technology in the classroom. The students have blogs, they have a classroom webpage, they use wikis, they make videos, they Skype, and they use Nintendo DS. They use all of these tools to collaborate and share not only with their classmates but with other students, teachers, professionals, etc. The kids really enjoy this type of learning atmosphere. They are excited about coming to school and working with technology.
Skype Interview with Ms. Cassidy
Watch Skype Interview Here
In the interview, Ms. Cassidy talks about how she got involved in technology. She got involved ten years ago when she got five computers in her classroom. Programs could not be put on the computers, so she started looking on the internet to find out what she could do with her students. She started by making webpages and blogging. Afterwards, she just added more and more things as she learned. The kids really enjoy it. She says that technology is not going away. It is here to stay, so we might as well embrace it and use it to its full potential.
Before this class, I never even considered using all of these types of technology in the classroom. This is not because I do not think it is effective; I just had no clue about any of it. When I was in elementary school, we did not do things like that. I am thankful for this class because I really feel like I have learned a lot of new techniques for teaching students. The only things I thought I would possibly use were SMART boards if the classes had them, grade book tools, and online portfolios. Now that I am aware of tons of other tools out there, I am thinking in a totally different way. I might incorporate blogging into my classroom instruction. I think Skype is a great tool as well. It is a way of connecting with other students, teachers, and experts. Also, I will definitely have a webpage for the class. They offer such a great way of communication. It is a great tool for making announcements. The parents can go on and see what their children have due and when. I could put instructions and information for the students' assignments. It also is a great way to showcase students' work, so the parents can see. I have only ever had one or two teachers with webpages, and they were extremely helpful. Videos of instruction can be posted on the webpage for students who were absent or needed a refresher in the material. Contact information and class schedules could be placed on there. I love the idea of having a webpage, and I will definitely have that! I think blogging is a good tool for students because I think they would write better if they new someone other than just the teacher would be reading it. When people comment on their posts, the students would feel encouraged to write more. Next thing you know, the students are wanting to write. They do not complain or groan when you say it is time to write. They get excited! That is my main goal as a teacher- to get my students excited about learning. When your having fun, it is like the brain soaks so much more in. Yes, I want my students to excel and show improvement in academic areas, but most of all, I want them to LOVE TO LEARN!