If I Built A School
Krissy Venosdale's blog and classroom website were inspiring to me. She is a driven teacher that is currently teaching gifted children, grades 3-6. I loved how she posted pictures of her classroom and encouraged others to use her ideas. Even the smartboard area of her classroom was awesome. My younger sister is a 5th grade teacher in the Tuscalooa area and when I was telling her about my EDM 310 class she asked me to please send her some good webistes, Krissy Venosdale's Blog was just sent to her via text message. Getting to student teacher with Krissy Venosdale, even though I'm secondary education, would be like hitting the teachers' jackpot.
Her idea of a tree in the library was perfect! While I was reading her post If I Built A School, all I kept thinking was how kids are inside most of the day. Bringing the fake tree IN the library...love it! My 'dream' school would have lots of windows, and natural light. I would definitely have the most up-to-date technology in each classroom, and learning would be project-based. I would want an interactive classroom, so everyone felt included. My school would also have an awesome outdoors area with plenty of activities for kids to do when they got off the bus in the morning, or after school while they were waiting. The lunchroom...whew, that is where we feed our minds. I would want a full organic kitchen area. It would offer the best and cleanest vegetables, whole grains, and grass-fed meats for all students. The lunchroom would serve breakfast and be open after school until the last bus left. And, of course I'm a basketball coach, so I would want three gyms. One for boys sports, one for all girls sports, and one for PE classes. That would be my 'dream' school, if I was ever afforded the opportunity to build one.
Eric Whitacre’s Virtual Choir
This use of the internet is absolutely amazing. The internet is limitless in ways we will not ever understand. People talk a lot about how dangerous it can be with child molesters constantly looking for victims, scams, etc. However, when you see videos like this you realize just how great it is at the same time. When it comes to education, I know that one of my friends is taking her masters classes via skype. She is enrolled at Troy, and doesn't have to drive there. I'm sure it's the same as online classes and lectures.
Teaching in the 21st Century
There are several key points in this video, but the one that stood out to me was the part that asked the questions about what you would do if your flight got cancelled. That hit home with me because most life lessons were not taught the first time I went to college in 1997-2001. We learned the 'old school' way with books, facts, and burpback education. When I got my first job I learned how to explore and not take NO for an answer. This video reminded me that the answer is always out there, you might not like it, but it's there. That's what EDM 310 is showing me about teaching. I'm teaching students how to learn on their own, allowing them to be independent learners. This will help them function better in society. I'm constantly blown away by what gets brought to me in this class.
The Flipped Classroom
I really enjoyed these videos, and yes, I would use this method. All three teachers recognized that this is the way of the world today. The jobs our students will need to be prepared for have not even been created yet. That is crazy to think about, but I also didn't have a cell phone until after college. Today, my cell phone is the 5th limb on my body. I loved the idea of being prepared prior to class so the teacher isn't stuck lecturing the entire time. Most younger kids go home and ask for help from parents, so the recorded lecture would be helpful for the entire family. I really liked this approach, and think it is going to be the future 'norm' for classrooms.