Saturday, January 21, 2012

Chapter 6 Reflections

Having access to the web allows me to communicate effectively through email. Whether its related to my job, volunteer organizations, or socially I can quickly reach a lot of people at once. With the ability to attach files and pictures, receive invoices, register my kids for sports, and meanwhile cutting back on paper the web has provided me with fast communication. Also using a reliable search engine allows me to receive a lot of information. I have also found that saving documents online is an effective tool found on the web as well.

I find that it is easy to manage students use of the web at my school and within my classroom due to the Student Code of Conduct and the parent consent form that all students and parents have signed. The students have an understanding that the computers and the internet should be treated with respect and used for school work only. With constant monitoring this has not been an issue in my experiences as a substitute teacher and art teacher.

My most used feature of the web is email. I am also a big fan of,, and social media including facebook, and pinterest. When I was selling my jewelry online I had an account with and a blog.

Chapter 2 Reflections

As a K-5 art teacher, the planning of an integrated lesson comes easily because I already have the obvious hands- on aspect of learning by using different materials and tools to create works of art. There is also the project-based approach that is implemented with each lesson. The integration of using computers to help solve a problem would be a new and interesting concept for both me and my students. As the text states " The next step in the design of the integrated lesson is specifying a problem the students will investigate and solve as part of the instructional process." (p.34) I have many thoughts and ideas of how to incorporate a problem into my lessons. For example, take color theory. My students could become detectives searching for famous color theorists, then famous art critics by critiquing the works of art and polling other students, then creating graphs with their new found information, and finally presenting there findings in a newspaper or art magazine to be shared with the class!

All teachers need objectives to serve as the basic structure in their planning and lesson development. The objective is the goal we are striving to teach our students. These objectives should be communicated to the class in a student-friendly language, so everyone is standing on common ground and has a clear picture of what is expected of them to not only learn but retain.

First and foremost, the student must be engaged from the start of the lesson! Having interesting lesson topics that include current issues and/or the student can personally make a connection with the material will be key during the processing of the information. If using a student- centered learning approach with a NTeQ lesson plan one would hope the students would be engaged since they are solving the problem at hand and gathering the pertinent information through the use of a computer. Once the problem at hand has been solved, the students will need to present this information to the class and teacher. This is a fundamental part of the processing of information. The text gives examples of having students use desktop publishing techniques, video presentations, publish results on a blog or in a wiki, or even a slide show. (p.43) Creating this final presentation will allow the student to further process the information by teaching others what they have learned.

Personally, I would use a different lesson plan when using the computers with my students. Being a new teacher I would not be ready to just add in the computer portion to an existing lesson plan. I have created lesson plans centered around Power Points that I have created for the students to learn about different media, and have used websites for interactive learning. At this point if I am going to introduce computers into my classroom as a true learning tool I would definitely create new lessons for the objective I was teaching. Now that I have learned about the NTeQ model, I will try it out with our new Common Core curriculum.

According to the text, once "you have defined your objectives, you need to determine if there is a match between an objective and a computer function." (p.33) Therefore in a kindergarten art class if the objective is to teach the basic elements of art; line, shape, color, texture; I may search for software that would allow the students to use a computer to experiment with the different types of lines and shapes we can draw.

I would not use a computer with the students for every lesson but I definitely do a lot of online research for lesson plans and examples of artists work to share with the students. As for meeting objectives, I would incorporate the use of computers at in lessons to better prepare our youth for the 21st century.

Morrison, G.R & Lowther, D.L (2010) Integrating Computer Technology into the Classroom
(4th ed.) Boston, MA: Pearson education, Inc.

Chapter 1 Reflections

In response to the first reflection from Chapter 1, I do not think teachers have to use an inquiry-based learning approach to use computers as a tool within their classrooms. There are different teaching styles and some may be more creative than others with their use of computers in the classroom. However the student- centered learning practices; inquiry-based learning, problem-based learning, and project-based learning make it simpler for the teacher to integrate the use of computers into their lesson. Ultimately these approaches combined with the NTeQ (iNtegrating Technology for inQuiry) lesson plan model will be of great guidance for a teacher who is implementing the use of computers in his or her classroom.

Being an elementary art teacher, my lessons are mostly project-based. This chapter helped me to recognize the difference of

"When students use computers to
retrieve, evaluate, and manipulate real-world
information to solve a meaningful problem, they
not only increase their 21st-century skills, but
also gain a deeper understanding of core content.
on the other hand, when technology is used to
deliver instruction, 21st-century skills are not
required and the context is less authentic and
focused more on retention of facts or procedural
knowledge. (p.4)

A light bulb when off in my head after reading this passage. I am guilty of using my laptop and projector (we do not have SMART boards in the charter school where I work) to show the children examples of art but never thought of having them do a search to find a 21st century painter! I recently just finished an Op Art lesson with my fifth graders where they were to create their own optical illusion with the use of complementary colors. Next year, we will do our research on optical illusions via Internet and use a computer program to create the optical illusions.

Secondly, I do think teachers can use tutorials and drill-and-practice software to help deliver some of the material to their students. The drill-and-practice technique does enable the students to become more comfortable with using a computer. I think we assume most children have played on a computer but this is simply not true with such diverse populations in our society. After the delivery of some information through tutorials or other software, one can continue on and use a student-centered method to allow the students to then take control of their learning with the use of computers.

As for taking a great deal of time to develop these units of instruction, of course it will be time consuming but worth it. Revamping some lesson plans to give your students a more integrated way of learning with the use of technology in the classroom will be rewarding for both students and teachers. Currently, the elementary, middle school and high school educators of North Carolina are "unpacking' the essential standards within the Common Core curriculum, a brand new curriculum being implemented across the United States. Although this change surmounts to a lot of work for the teachers and staff within a school, it is a great opportunity to ensure quality education by examining the fine details of the essential standards and transforming them into student- friendly language. With the use of technology while implementing the new Common Core curriculum, we will be educating our youth for the 21st century.

Lastly, every student will not need a computer to gain the rewards of a student-centered learning approach. It is unreasonable to think that every child in every school would have access to a personal computer at all times. With the use of group work and centers, and/or a SMART board or a laptop and projector, a one computer classroom can reach all its students by using that computer as an essential tool in learning.

Morrison, G.R. & Lowther, D.L. (2010). Integrating Computer Technology into the Classroom: Skills for the 21st Century(4th ed.) Boston, MA: Pearson Education, Inc.