Thursday, 9 August 2012

Final Presentation

Class: Science 9 French Immersion

Chapter: The meiosis

To start the chapter, here some words that need to be learned and understood. I put them in a wordle to make it more interesting. Also, the size of the words express the importance of some of them.

Wordle: meiose

During the different classes, I am going to use pictures and movie to show how meiosis works. To make those pictures and movie available to the students, I will embeded them in a glogster for all of them to watch again at home.

Finally, at the end of the chapter, I always make a revision session. To make it funnier, I use a jeopardy game that I will do with them in class but also embeded in a blog for them to review before the test.

My Jeopardy Template

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Glogster. La mitose/la méiose

In Science 9 in French immersion, one of the big chapter is about meiosis/ mitosis and the developpment of foetus in Human. By using a glogster, I am able to put all the video that I find relevant for the students to watch again.

BOYD. Susan Bearden

This article is interesting, first because I got my bachelor in Melbourne Florida so this city has some nostalgic connotations to me. Second of all, I do think that we have to be alerted about the new technology coming on the market. Sometimes it is hard to follow everything that is out there. Maybe that I am getting old but the first cell phone I ever saw needed a suitcase attached to a phone to make it work! So I have tendency to not think about this device. Furthermore, stupidity, I always think that a phone is made to call people and not taking picture or see assignment on Internet.
It is maybe for this reason I am not excited to let students use their phones in class. Just as an example, in college, in this class, a lot of person uses their computer and do something totally unrelated likefacebook during the class.
It is so easy to be distracted in class and if we give to kid the opportunity to be distracted, I am not sure that it will be in the best interest.
I do agree with the article thu, it seems to be useful to bring your own device to take pictures of the board or the correction of exercises, etc... ButI wonder if they are going to use those pictures to work and not put them on their computer and forget about it. If you make a comparison, when you give paper assignment to kids, most of the time the papers are lost or in a really bad shape. I cannot imagine where the cell cycle picture will end up on?
Yes, I am for the new technologies but we need to be sure that they will be use for working and not tchating and others dispersive behaviors.

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Google docs: vocabulary list

Here an example of google docs I may use in Science 9 class. This is the vocabulary list for the chapter to be done and handle to me the day of the chapter's test. Student will be able to access it at anyimes.

Powerpointless. Ben'sblog

It was an interesting blog with a certain fun to read. Even if I do not not agree completly with his point of view. I do agree, a lot of powertpoint presentation I saw where not that exiting, sometimes pointless or too busy but this tool can be so useful and a big gain of time when well prepared. I went to college too and in Master or PhD degrees, I had to sit in this type of presentation constantly. A lot of them were boring due to simple facts: the slides are too busy and people have tendancy to read them and not develop the ideas in them. In master, I remember my boss telling me that the only writing you should have in a slide is the title and the rest should be an illustration of what you want to explain or prove. And you should never, ever read from the slides! Following this principle, I realized that the powerpoint presentation can be terribly useful. Once you know how to use the slides: create drawings, use pictures and videos while speaking, the use of powerpoint can allow you to develop the skill of teaching in a better way. Of course, we should use it responsably and not in everyday teaching classes.

Thursday, 2 August 2012

LiveBinders: Earth and Space Science

LiveBinders on Earth and Space Science for grade 10. Just few websites that I will use in class for knowledge and activities.

Collaborative projects. Peter Skillen

It was an interesting blog. But I would like to make some notations and change about Socrates. It is the only Greek philosopher that did not write a thing not because he dislike the writing and reading part per say. Otherwise, he would never have left his disciple Plato writing everything he said. He thought that teaching about philosophy and life is not a elitist thing (let's not forget that a small percentage of Greek at that time knew how to read and write) and that everybody should have the opportunity to learn from anyone.
Principle that is an excellent introduction for this blog on collaboration. We all know how hard it is to collaborate; we all had to do it and especially during our BEd program where we spent our time in group work. Some like it, some do not. I am in the second part of the equation.
He is right we he said that you can learn far away more from others than by yourself. The only problem would be to be with persons that can be compatible and useful in the obtention of this knowledge! Let's be honest, it's not always the case.
You have two solutions to make collaboration work: find people that are compatible and can work together. Unfortunately, because they are the same, the possibility to learn from each other is restrained. Second will be to form a group of totally different people with different skills and make them work on a blog type where each of them can do a part and share their capacity individually but in a group project. In my opinion, the best way to have the most successful collaboration.
Even if I do not like group work for myself, I do understand the importance and the use of it for the students. We just have to find the best way to make it effective.

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Podcast: introduction of an interview in genetic mutations

a good way to use a podcast is for interview. In the case of Science 9 class on genetic mutations, the interview will be conduct with a university professor and researcher on the field. Students can write questions they may have and I will ask them to the specialist. It is a good way to get a different type of information on the subject.

Understanding current curation. Nancy White

I like how the author try to make you understand the difference between collecting data and curating knowledge. But unfortunately, this concept of acquisition of data is really personnal and often we mix our own interest and the pertinence of the data for the students. Strangely, it's how start hoarding!
It is true that we need to have useful and pertinent data for our students. I guess the big difference between collecting and curating for me is the "useful" concept. Data given to students should engaged them in the road of knowledge and not bury them under a mass of information (if you want to lose a student, it is the best way).
I have to say that personaly, it is hard to make the difference between hoarding and curating; I still have the notebook I used in grade 1! I am collecting information on everything that cross my path. So this year I started a classification, the same way that the author is doing, but with my own criteria. First by subject, second by level, and third on the pertinence of the information (it is useful, can it be use in an activity? A demo? An article? Which level of Bloom's taxonomy? Etc...)
This classifications my own way to curate information and make sense in my hoarding!
I guess, to do so, we have to put our own interest and desire on the side most of the time to be able to focus on the need of our students. To find the fragile balance between what they need to know and what can interest them. It is not an easy goal.

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Wordle: Science 9 vocabulary

Here an example of wordle in a Science 9 class French Immersion. I compiled the important words to know of the chapter. The size of each word will show the importance of the word to know and it is a funny way to give to them the vocabulary of the chapter.

Wordle: genes

Podcasting takes lesson. Maya Smart

Podcasting is an excellent idea to use as a teaching tool. It can allow the students to synthezise the content of a class (allowing better understanding) and share it with fellow students in the class and around the world!
Personnaly, I use iTunes university as a tool to relearn things that I partially forgot with the years.
But most of all, it is a portable learning device. Students, after creating it, can take the bus to school and listen to the review of a class or read a book review.
It is a great tool. I spend two hours in the bus everyday and listen to book while in transport;things that may not be able to do otherwise.
Thisisa useful tool that I have the intention to use in a classroom. The chapter activities can be made this way on a specific project like mutation: some will do a review, others will have a discussion about the toxicity of cigarettes and debate, etc...
Also it is not just a new technology to use and another way to do activities but students will be far away more involved in the project than just draw or read a piece they wrote.

Monday, 30 July 2012

Making the most of online translators. Charlene Polio

This article reminded me some good times in College when I tried to translate through the internet some of the papers I was doing in English. I knew I was doing mistakes in English but it was even worse when I put my paper written in French and translated. One thing I realized is that if you write complicated sentences in your own language, worse it gets through translators!
I remember my English teachers trying to explain to me that I had "to think in English and not translate"... It is one of the hardest thing to do and honnestly, it takes years to accomplish.
I liked the different methods she uses to try to incorporate the translators into French lessons, they are inovative. Although, maybe that I am old school, but the translators should be restricted to word to word translation as we use a dictionnary.
It may be a good idea to see the differences between two languages and the structures.
Personnaly, the best method I got was from a German teacher, he told us to stay simple in our sentence construction: subject + verb + complement + dot. Even if you repeat yourself several times, it is alright. In time and practice, you can be able to evoluate and write bigger and more complicated sentences .
The Human mind is not a computer, we can associate things together intuitively and a machine cannot. It is for this reason that no matter how good a translator program can be, it will always make mistakes.