ED 205

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Software

I think it is difficult to say what software is the best for students to learn. I guess the top five would be learning Microsoft Word, navigating the Internet, utilizing Powerpoint, educational games, and some type of Paint Shop Pro.

Because the largest thing I use my computer for these days is typing papers, I would have to place that as the most important software for students to learn about. Whether they are in elementary, high school, or even college graduates, students will always need to type papers, letters and much more. This extends to everyday life, even for people who chose not to attend a university. For example, even someone who works after high school rather than attending school might need to type up a resume or a letter of complaint.

As for navigating the internet, I feel it is crucial for students to understand the invaluable resource they have at hand. Teaching students how to perform good searches on pages like google helps them find the most relevant sites to further their knowledge in everything from school research to things which they just wanted to learn more.

Another educational technology that is important is the Powerpoint program. I never thought I would use Powerpoint much, especially because I thought presentations without it was much more effective, but I've come to see that's not necessarily true. And despite whatever personal conclusions I might come to in regard to its uses, powerpoint will always remain a very popular tool in presentations. It is a cleancut way to convey the things you need to, as well as an efficient tool used after high school in college and business, etc.

Educational games are important to include as well. Depending on the game, it can be very affective in giving a student a different perspective on something that he/she may have had a harder time grasping before. Or, like in my experiences, a student might feel more connected to something if they become part of it. For example, when I was in grade school, I played Oregon Trail. I listened when my teacher said the move west was difficult, that many people died from various maladies and other hardships, and those types of facts. However, it wasn't until I got to become one of the travellers, and head out west myself, that I really felt these were actual people who really went through those hardships. Thinking about how much food the wagon could hold and what supplies I needed for my journey, or things like how to take care of my friend who has Cholera...I'll remember things from that game forever. It made history come alive.

Lastly, I believe that Paint Shop Pro is an important tool to teach in the classroom. This is important to integrate into schools because students can use the editing features for anything from school projects to hobbies. Especially with the digital camera boom, a large portion of picture-takers need a program to make their pictures shine ;-) Not only this, but it is a good introduction for those who might eventually become interested in graphic design, or even those who want to learn to make a flyer and need a certain picture to appear a certain way. I can't even count the number of times I have used paint shop pro. I think this should be in schools because it will definitely be useful to students in many different situations.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Link

This is a link to a blog about technology. It does not necessarily pertain to technology in the classroom, but I think it shows how technology can be art. This can be useful when trying to think more abstractly about including technology in the curriculum and in finding more creative uses for its integration.

http://www.we-make-money-not-art.com/

Hopefully this is what you're looking for in regard to a link (because blogger is a little bit evil).

My Technologies -- B1

. Computer-related technologies in my home are kind of limited when one considers all that is available these days. I own a laptop that is almost four years old (I bought it my freshmen year of college) and although it recently had wireless installed, it isn't working too well in my house. I need to get this looked at, but while I wait, it still has access to dial-up through G.Valley. Also, I can often use my parent's computer. In this way, I am able to use high-speed internet (and their computer is much faster than my laptop, too). My friend Josh, a computer programmer, promises to help guide me in making my laptop the best it can be, but who knows when he will get around to it. I have a cousin, also named Josh, (who is also a computer wonder), that I will probably ask to help me too. He'll most likely come to my aid much more quickly. Anyway, that's about it. Seriously. I mean, we have gaming systems, but no ipods, no mp3 players (besides those on our computers) or blackberrys etc. We have DVD players, but I'm not sure that counts.
. As for my work environment, we don't really have anything of the sort. Then again, I'm in food service. Even our cash register is ancient.
. Teachers used technology mainly with powerpoint, typing papers, and research online. I hope to learn new ways to incorporate technology into the classroom besides things like powerpoints or online scavenger hunts, etc.
. As I wrote on the class forum (group 2), I think educational technologycan be defined by listing the types that are found in a classroom (use of powerpoint, ipods (like G.Valley's French students), the internet and more). I believe, however, that like other kinds of learning approaches, students should have a little bit of everything. In other words, a little audio, a little lecturing, some hands-on, some computer work. The difficult thing is that technological approaches to learning can include so many of the other approaches, it is hard for some to see when technology would be the most efficient method to use in teaching something.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Test