2020 – What Will It Bring?

As a parent of two teenagers, one of who is just finishing his first year in college, I have not give much thought to what the world would be like in 2020 even though it is only 6 years away.  I guess that there have been many changes in my life since I have had my children and have thought that if we made it thru the 1999 change to the year 2000 and things didn’t crash, we might be ok.  Then along comes the terroristic attacks to the United States in 2001 and everything changes.  After living through this with my kids, I can’t even fathom what 2020 will be like. 

Changes in our world affect education in both positive and negative ways.  Advances in technology permit any person of any age to access information once thought to be only accessible from a university library.  Changes allow for technology to become more acceptable in the classroom as well as in society.  From the instruction in the course Building Online Collaborative Environments, I have been introduced and have built a comfort zone with many different technology usages in the classroom that I had not been taught in my undergraduate career.  I completed my undergraduate education 6 years ago and feel that the information that is now at my fingertips that I am learning will drastically change how I teach and instruct students in the next 6 years.  This will take me to 2020 – I can’t imagine what new we will have by then to educate our young people. 

It is necessary now to integrate technology in our education for all grades and levels of students.  It is necessary for all students to be exposed to and have access somewhere to technology.  If students do not integrate Web 2.0 tools into today’s educational platform, they will be left behind in everything they do.  It would take them additional time and effort to keep the pace of the rest of their technology based peers. 

I have experienced education from when school districts went from using typewriters (now obsolete) to introducing word processors (typewrites that had a memory) in a business course. We now have students answering multiple choice questions by using individual clickers in the classroom that displays the most popular answer on the smartboard.  The changes I have seen have all been positive, if used appropriately.  We all see daily where there are abuses of internet in inappropriate and unacceptable ways by students and adults alike.  Monitoring of internet use has to be paramount in our teaching of all students at all levels.  Proper usage of internet tools is becoming one of the most important things we can teach students prior to showing them the “at their fingertip” tools such as Flickr, Diigo, and Skype.  Having our students be safe from something that I am instructing them to do online is my biggest fear.  When we, as a class, post to each other’s blogs, I don’t worry so much become I am a participant in the posting process and feel that as adults we all know the importance of netiquette.  Not everyone is under the same impression nor do they value individuals and their sharing of information for educational purposes.  I fear that when I instruct students to utilize internet applications that they become prey or targets for online predators.  That is why not using last names, never posting addresses, not stating anything about family members, activities, personal likes and or dislikes is important to teach younger children.  These are the things I will teach my classes prior to digging into technology.

I have enjoyed the development and use of my own blog (https://lstupic.wordpress.com/) and feel that this is such a educational tool that can be used in a variety of different ways for my own classroom.  Using a classroom blog students as well as parents can view and contribute to discussions or posting requirements as deemed necessary.  This would be monitored by me and I would be able to police it and remove any unnecessary or inappropriate postings.   Students will also benefit from the availability of researching using Wikipedia and the understanding that, for the majority of items on there, you can trust the text but you should always use another source to back up or to support what you have found on Wikipedia. 

Throughout this course I was introduced to Web 2.0 tools that are extremely useful in the classroom.  You can use RSS and social bookmarking to have areas of interest forwarded automatically to your wiki or blog in an effort to save time continually looking daily for them.  We have researched podcasting, screencasting and vodcasting as alternative ways for students to provide presentations to their classmates or teachers, especially those who are visual learners and feel more comfortable using such a medium. 

The technology applications that I have learned about during this course also provides for faculty peers to utilize an educational platform that permits the sharing of information and questions from one to another.  Teachers can set up a grade level blog if they want in an effort to foster communication between separate buildings on the same campus when collaboration is not always something that can be done. 

My choices of educational technology will have a long lasting effect on not only my students but on their futures.  I have to integrate technology into every course I teach showing my students that you can learn both in the classroom and outside of it.  Being a teacher in today’s world permits me to show the students what all is available to them.  I want the world for my students and I want to be able to introduce them to something new that could possibly spark their desire to learn in an area that they might not have ever thought was interesting.  We have to continually strive to say with technology and incorporate it into our classrooms to keep our students attention.  Students expect to continually be presented with information and if we can provide it to them in such a manner that makes them want to learn, we have done our job!

What will it be like to be a teacher in 2020?  I don’t know yet, but I plan on continually educating myself in technology advances so that I can educate others! 



8A1 – Web Applications

I would pick Zoho Notebook as a web application for student use specifically when designing their own web page to tie into the class blog.  This application would permit students who are visual learners to create items that contain images, audio or video along with text.  This allows for many students who have difficulty with just producing text, such as my learning support students, an application that makes an even playing field.  Students can share with each other what they are doing by giving their peers read/write permission.  This is also a site where they can gather information for themselves thru an aggregate application.    I like the application since you could also connect to Zoho writer, Zoho Sheet, and Zoho mail.  There are many other applications through this application. 

Students are always ready for a challenge when it comes to working online that they might not be if asked to perform the same function with paper and pencil.  Often times working with the computer in a specific program enables learning support to complete the task at the same pace as all other students.


In reviewing the “for and against” articles I am torn between the two. I know that for Connectivism to be successful in the classroom a teacher does have to buy in 100% and the teacher also has to ensure that the students know how to locate the information necessary through all of the resources and networks.  For me, and working with 4th through 6th graders I don’t know that is something that can be achieved.  I feel as if I would spend all of my time teaching and reteaching where to find items and not getting the chance to work with having the students learn what they need to.  I also have to take into account the availability of technology to my students.  In the area I work in, not all students/families have the internet and or a computer in their home.  This makes having the students master the art of online learning extremely tough.

I also feel that students benefit from a variety of learning platforms for themselves.  Working with learning support students almost entirely I feel that students need to have both textbooks and technology to learn from.  I do not feel that one is more superior than the other in providing differentiation to all students.

View the post for Connectivism: https://spring14-bce-01.wikispaces.com/Group+A+6-A-1


A Paperless Class?

How would a paperless class change your role as a teacher?

I don’t think a paperless class would change my role at all as a teacher.  I feel that my role is not a lecturer, but as a leader.  I can still lead my students, even without paper!

How would paperless classes change learning?

A paperless class would enhance the learning in my classroom for many topics.  I know that my students would like to not “hand write” answers to open ended writing prompts.  I think that, if given the chance, my students would provide better, more in-depth answers if given the chance to type it out.  My problem to this is the fact that I do not have enough computers in my room to facilitate this.

How would you measure learning in a paperless class?

I would measure learning by the finished product that the students turn in.  There should be a rubric for the students to look at in order to understand and “see” the requirements per project, unit or report.  Class participation via blog or wiki would also count toward learning.

Would a paperless space make it easier or harder to build a learning network? Why?

I think that would all depend on the technology available to the students.  I was able to choose this class due to the fact that I have the internet and a laptop at home and can access it at any time.  My students  in my 6th grade language arts class currently, when polled to see who would be able to log into a site and “hear” a story read to them at home, only 75% of the kids had access.  In this instance it made it harder for me and the learning environment I wanted to establish for my students.  If everyone had access and was willing, I feel that a paperless space would be easier to build a learning network.

Big Shift – 7-A-1

Big Shift – Mastery is the Product, Not the Test

This shift has affected my teaching practice in the area of expected end result.  I no longer look only for paper-pencil responses.  I challenge students with options in how they feel most comfortable in providing their individual end result to a project.

I think that providing students with options in lieu of one standard way of showing what they know allows them to take ownership of their knowledge.  I will definitely utilize this tool for more lessons in the future.

My view of the Web 2.0 tools has changed toward the positive and the possible during this course.  I had previously assumed ideas of Wikipedia, wikis, and blogs but thru the work and learning in this course, I have grown to utilize them and appreciate the ease of use and the overall variety that can be provided by these.

Technology will become a more consistent utilized tool in my classroom in the future.  I am finding that technology can make learning more concrete to students who struggle with writing and or reading.  I have firsthand knowledge that students who struggle with some academics can easily excel at using technology to get their point across.  I like the idea of my students being able to do whatever they want in school thru technology.

6C2 – Skype Ideas

Face – to – Face !

I had the pleasure of skyping with Mindy who is also an elementary teacher.  We were able to share some thoughts on how we liked skype along with discussing our coursework for our individual masters degree.  Through this discussion questions came up and Mindy provided me with much welcoming information!  

I think that I could use skype with my older students in the form of “pen pals” even with the other elementary school in my district.  I know that one of my faculty members had to sell hard the idea of skyping with another school on a social studies item.  I also would need to get my administration on board with the usefulness of this Web 2.0 tool.  

I also think that as a faculty member in need of time, that skype would be useful in the collaboration of grade level teams for planning purposes and brainstorming.  Skype could be used endlessly if used right!  My hope for using skype is to open the eyes of my students to new tools they have never used; and for myself to efficiently develop lessons that help my students.

Podcast Blog

The podcast I found was related to math and specific to fractions.  It is titled “What are numerators and denominators”. This podcast is found under the site “quick and dirty tips” which has lots of podcasts related to education in it.   

I would use this podcast as an introduction to saying fractions once I introduce fractions to my students.

I would use this podcast to re-teach the concept of how to say fractions.  I have a pullout math class where the students are performing below grade level in their math class.  I like any technology tool available for students to aid in their understanding of a concept and to help make a teachable moment.  This podcast specifically is a good tool to use because it has a man’s voice on it which is different than mine (woman!) and it breaks down the specifics of how to say the number in  the numerator part of the fraction and how to say the number in the denominator part of the fraction.

Link to podcast: