Final Reflection On DED 318-ED. Tech
Question 1: Discuss the TWO (2) tools that were your personal favorites from the semester and why.
One of my favorite tools that we used this year was Adobe Spark (reflection here). Adobe Spark is a website and app that allows you to present visually interesting stories on the internet with no knowledge of programming or creative design. It is really simple to use and the end results are truly awesome. It creates a scrolling website using pictures and text effects. It also makes your subject matter look professional no matter what, from a science project to a historical presentation to a family scrapbook. After now using Spark for a few projects, I now know firsthand that it has so many uses and is a great tool for school use. Students can create Spark projects at the end of a lesson to show what they have learned. I would definitely use this in my classroom as an alternative to PowerPoint for students to create their own presentations. Spark isn't cluttered with confusing features and is easy for students of any age to use. I am very excited to continue using Spark in my future classroom.
Another app that I was surprised that I really enjoyed was iMovie. I have attempted to use iMovie before on my computer but with little luck. However, I really enjoyed using the app and feature called Trailer (reflection here) and CKV project (here). With Trailer you can create videos that already are set up with a template, with video lengths and transitions. This template allows you to simply add the video, pictures, and text into the template and iMovie creates your video for you. Students don't need to mess with the length of the video, transitions, or where to put the words, all of those variables are already figured out for you with this app. I am very excited to use iMovie trailer in my future classroom. I would love to see this used to create a mini documentary about civil war for history, a stop-motion video of cells going through mitosis for science, or a trailer for a play that is being made into a movie in English class. There are many applications for iMovie in every subject, every grade, and every skill level. The students have a creative way to express what they are learning and present their projects to the class. The students can also work collaboratively or individually and create works they are proud of. The movies can also serve as formative or summative assessments and gives students a creative outlet.
Question 2: Look back through your entire blog and look at all you have learned. Reflect on what you have learned this semester...
Something that surprised me about this semester was how many amazing apps I had never heard of before! For example, my two favorite apps of the semester, mentioned above, I didn't even know existed!
Something that made me stop and think was how easy it is in today's world to incorporate technology in the classroom. With so many schools having either 1:1 iPads or various types of technology available, it is so fun and rewarding to incorporate technology.
My WOW moment of the semester was when we did our app smashing activity. We used multiple apps and website to create an entire lesson, on Thinglink. I have never done anything like this before and although it was a lot of hard work, I was very proud of the outcome.
Something that changed about my thoughts towards technology in the classroom after taking this class is how excited I am to use it. Although I knew that I would be using technology at some point because of the world we live in today, I am instead excited to find ways to use technology every day in my classroom.
Throughout the semester, I feel like I have really grown as a future teacher. I have discovered just how many ways there are to incorporate technology into the classroom. Before the semester, I would have considered using technology in the classroom by using some random math apps, reading articles online, and making PowerPoints. But now, I know that there are even more ways; apps, websites, and tools; that can be used to make the classroom more fun and more engaging. The whole point of using technology in the classroom is not to reinvent the wheel, but to find creative and fun ways to make learning more engaging and thought provoking for your students.