videos/end of class.

For the last module of this class we are asked to watch a couple of videos. They were very thought provoking, and simliar to the ones we say at the begining of the class. A vision of Students today, and The Machine is (changing) us. both on you tube.

The thing that stuck with me the most about these videos is how our audience is today as teachers. What are students are doing. I loved how the students presented all their time, what they are doing all day long, spending time on social media, reading their textbooks, eating, sleeping, everything they were doing added up to more than 26 hours a day, showing that students today are multitaskers. I can identify with this as a student. I am always doing more than one thing at a time, and it annoys me when professors ask us to read our books, I would retain information much easier if it was presneted to me in some way.

As a teacher, I will be teaching younger students, K-6 not the college level, but I still have concerns for my classroom. Like that other very popular video, I want my students to be engaged and active learners even with the “boring stuff” the content they need to know. I will be making an enormus effort in my future classroom to have my students engaged and excited to be in the classroom.

Lastly, this is my last required blog for this class!? I understand now why we were required to blog for this class, I was still a little annoyed by it, but hey, what am I not annoyed at lately I am 39 weeks pregnant and it has been the hottest summer every!

Anyway I have always thought about starting a blog for my kids to look at later, this has shown me how easy it would be and how little time, after setting it uo intially it would take, it is definatly something I am going to look more into now.

I cannot believe this class is over, and although I have A LOT of nervousness about my grade I am happy I took it. I think it has taught me some vaulable tools about teaching online and it has taught me about myself in the student role. I need to keep my goals in the forefont of my mind to accomplish what I want.

The end of this class allows me one more thing, bring it on baby #3 I am finally ready to meet you and I only have a couple weeks until fall classes start so umm come tomorrow!?




what do I know.

I’d like you to think about what you have learned in this course. Really think about what it means to have learned something. What did you learn? How do you know you learned it? Can you provide examples of things that you have learned? – be specific, give details. What helped your learning? What would have helped your learning more? What hindered your learning? What got in the way of your learning? How did you feel? And, how do you feel now?


One of the first things I have learned is to get students thinking you need thought provoking questions, like this one. To really have learned something I think it means it will stay with you, you will use it. It will be in your thoughts after the class has concluded.

I have learned a lot about creating a class. As the instructor you need to put in a lot of work before hand, making sure everything runs smoothly, you need to watch your wording and have very clear instructions. You need to think about questions your students may have before they have them. This process will have me rating my future online professors as I continue my journy for my masters.

I have learned a lot about problem based and student centered learning. This is something I will be truely striving for in my future classroom. I want my students to be engaged and focused on their learning. I want them to take ownsership of things they learn and know. Above all I want my students to like being in my classroom, creating projects and problems themselves will help them to accomplish this.

I have learned about the use of technology.  Coming into this class I thought I was a technology native. I thought I knew a lot about the internet, its uses for the classroom and ways I could utilize it. This class has pushed my limits showing me there is endless posiblities and things I will do even in my face to face class. For example, I was introduced to vociethread. This I will use to connect my classroom to another and make an authentic population for my students to present to. I would even use it to show student work at an open house.

Above this class, continueing my education at UAlbany has taught me once again about myself. I need to keep my goals in mind and accomplish what I put my mind to. I know what type of work I am capable of and sometimes during this class I feel I was not performing to the best of my ablility. I need to stay organized and sometimes force myself to do school work when I do not really want to.

Things that hindered my learning simply are my life and my motivation. I want to do well, but somtimes I know I did not put in the effort I needed to, espeically to recieve the grade I know I need to be happy with myself. I do have two small children and a baby on the way, hopefully any day now! but I do not like to let that be an excuse for myself I know I need to mange my time because of this. When things get in the way of my learning, I feel very guilty. I know I should be doing work for class but do not and feel badly about it. Now I feel hopeful, although it is very discouraging that my grade right now says 67.7 percent yikes! I really do not know what my overall grade will be or even anywhere near what it will be, that makes me very nervous!



what have I learned

Really think about what it means to have learned something. What did you learn? How do you know you learned it? Can you provide examples of things that you have learned? – be specific, give details. What helped your learning? What would have helped your learning more? What hindered your learning? What got in the way of your learning? How did you feel? And, how do you feel now?

Well one thing I have learned is that to get students thinking you need an interesting prompt like this.

To create an online class you need to do a lot of work ahead of time. Also I have realize the importance of description. When teaching and learning online you need description of everything, assignments, activities, whatever and whenever you want students to do. I know this because as a student I need to know what is expected of me, and as an instructor I do not need to answer a million questions, or a question more than once.

I learned that to keep students motivated as an instructor you should have a variation of assignments and activities. This I know because it worked for me as a student. Listening the the You tube thread, and the podcast feedback was very beneficial to me, I loved actually getting to see people instead of doing the reading it would have been.

I have learned about technology. I considered myself a technology native before, but now I know I am not afraid to try something out that I hear about. I have played with Prezi, Voicethread, Glogster, and blogging, twitter I looked at but haven’t gotten the full experience. I also learned about diigo, which again I think is cool, but it just makes me wish I had countless hours to get lost in the stuff my peers post.

I have also begun to question teaching methods, particularly ones set by New York state. During this class I just have begun to critically think about what is important for students today to learn. As a teacher I want to prepare my students for life beyond my classroom. According to the standards set by New York, I am not sure I will be doing this. I want to have problem solvers, students who think critically, who questions drive their learning, I am a little unsure about doing with with so much content that they are required to learn from the state.

What things got in the way of my learning? My life. I am a busy lady, and would have loved to spend hours reading and investigating articles or sites I thought were interesting but I guess I am not that motivated, and I have other things going on. Two small children and a baby on the way, that will hopefully wait until this class concludes to make his appearance.

I cannot think of anything else that really hindered my learning. I really appreciated all feedback in a variety of formats, and so quickly, especially questions I had, I felt like between my classmates and instructor I was never waiting long.

Other thoughts, I have really enjoyed being able to see everyone else’s classes. I don’t know that it has really taught me anything, I just like to see what everyone is doing..

Also one more week?? this class is over on the 12th? Yikes I feel like we just started and now we are almost done! at the same time I am very thankful that I will now be able to free my mind a little of this class, as I often think about it laying in bed, things I could have done, or should do



another week!

Whoa another week has passed. I am feeling the pressure now. I have added some really neat resources to my class. Thanks to the MERLOT assign,ent I was able to find some links to neat things to both inspire, teach content and motivate my students.

I also finally made a final desision about my class it will be in coroperation with a regular class. If I want this class to be realistic then I need to do it in addition to seeing my students every day.

My lastest struggle is trying to decide if I want to add a voicethread activity where my students would report to one another.

I also thought the checklist activity was super helpful I will surely be referring back to it for my finalizing process. It has showed me I have a lot of work to do.

All in all I cannot believe another week has passed. I was thankful to have a week off of discussion but should have done a lot more work on my class. I did change a lot of the design to make it more consistant. I just feel I need more clear instructions, however I will be having intruction along with this class so my student will have me as a resource. They may need instructions verbally, I would be able to provide feedback right away for questions. This has me thinking both ways, I need more work, and I have some aweosme resources already linked easily for my students to axcess.


module 4 Who are you?

What do you know now that you did not know before? How are you applying what you have learned so far to your own course? What decisions have you made about how you present yourself, your content, and how you will engage and interact with your students and assess them in your own online course?

I have learned a lot about being a successful teacher online.

~ First and I think most importantly the teacher needs to think ahead, the teacher needs to be highly organized and think about any potential questions the students will have before they arise

-How am I applying this? I am trying to make my online course have clear rules and instructions for interactions and activities. I will also have the “ask a question” portion to hopefully help my students with anything that wasn’t 100% clear.

~I have learned that providing quick and precise feedback.

-This is important for students and allows them to have the communication they need to not feel isolated in the online classroom

~Creating a community is extremely important in the online environment

-In my class I will have an opening “meeting” and encourage my students to relate and interact with one another.

~Have a space for all types of interactions

-I will have a “lunch room” area, discussion areas, and question areas.

~I have learned about engagement a lot for one article Savery and Duffy wrote, it had a lot about student centered learning, and problem based learning. It wasn’t an article about teaching online, but it made me reflect on my online classroom as well as my future classroom. I need to create questions in my student’s minds. This will inspire their learning. The student’s own questions will decide what they want or need to learn.

-I am still a little unsure I am doing this in my class. I do not know if I would be doing this in my regular classroom especially at a lower grade level where in New York we have so many standards that have to be met. Most schools do not have an open curriculum where I could mold my students and let them learn about what interests them.

This lead me to research a couple of different things, are we preparing students for the skills they need for their lives? Or are we just preparing them to pass a test. It also got me looking at schools like Tech Vallley High. This looks like an amazing place to work and attend class, it is a high school where students work on projects. Just looking at it, for an example some students were creating a mini-golf course, they needed to learn science, math and computer skills to do this. The school still takes the NYS tests but it is not the focus.

Who are you and why are you that way as an educator and a learner? What have you observed about yourself during this process? What have you observed about yourself during your own completion of the learning activities in this course? How can you use these insights in the design of your own course?

I have learned a lot on a personal level. Honestly I do not know how much of this knowledge I will be bringing with me. I do not know how much is applicable to my future room. I may create something then have my students work on it during their free time/ computer lab time but I have realized teaching elementary online has many more challenges than I originally thought.

Every time I take an online class I am reminded how self-motivated you have to be. It teaches me how much I really care. I always start seeing the syllabus and thinking I will be happy with myself if I get a B in the class. Then I can’t make myself work at the B level, I find myself thinking and doing extra work to bring it up to the A level.

I have learned as an educator I like the entertainment factor in the classroom. I am afraid it is not translating to online. I do not know if I would ever be satisfied with teaching online full time, I like to be in front of students. This information wants me to create opportunities for more than discussions and personal relationships online.

What has challenged you the most in this course? What has been most difficult or uncomfortable and why? As you go through this process as a student in this course and as the developer of your own online course, what are you thinking about?

I think the most challenging part has been this week the creation of our activities. It is much easier for me to be engaging and assess my students learning in a face to face environment. I guess it is a lot like your first years of teaching the first time might not be that great but then year after year it would get better. I also am thinking more like a teacher, I guess more as “what is the purpose for this” or “what is the goal in us doing this” This is helpful for me to achieve that A level too

Julie (4)

module 4 week 1 reflect teaching presence

whoa, I feel a little overwhelmed again this week. I want my class I am creating to be great! I want it to be an example of something I can potentially show at an interview and say look what I did, what I am capable of. This desire of wanting it to be awesome I feel like is holding me back. I feel like the most realistic way I would “teach” online is to have my student have more of online assignment or activities that we would talk about or even complete in class. I guess I should re-work the class I am creating.

Maybe it is the heat, or the fact that I am 33+ weeks pregnant, but I can feel my motivation slipping and I am holding tight to the fact this class is almost over, a month left…what!? I need to stay focused now more than even if I want to add another A to my GPA..I have the desire, like all aspects of my life, to the be the best I can be! (if only I can teach all my future students this, they will be set for life) it is completing the work that goes into being the best that holds me back.

Anyway, this week we are talking about teaching presence, watched a presentation, voicethread? Alex talks about teaching presence, how students can also demonstrate it in class, and how it is a huge part of online and all classrooms for that matter. It really made me think about my online class, how will my fourth graders be demonstrating teaching presence, yes I could require them to respond to one another, I am just unsure about the quality of their posts. I guess you never know until you try.

All this talk linked me to a meta-analysis I read explaining there are 3 types of interactions in the distance learning environment, student-student, student-teacher, and student-content. All extremely important to how the class operates, and the satisfaction the students get out of taking the class.

This week we are to lay out the learning activities of our class, this makes me nervous, going back to I want the class to rock! I am kind of holding back on this activity, perhaps I will browse my classmates classes and see some examples, this will probably help me out.




A Meta-Analysis of Three Types of Interaction Treatments in Distance Eduction DOI: 10.3102/003465430933384 4Jul 6, 2009; REVIEW OF EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH 2009; 79; 1243 originally published online Tamim, Michael A. Surkes and Edward Clement Bethel Robert M. Bernard, Philip C. Abrami, Eugene Borokhovski, C. Anne WPickett, A. M. (2001). Understanding teaching presence online. Retrieved from
Shea, P., Pickett, A. M., & Pelz, W. E. (2003). A follow-up investigation of “teaching Presence” in the SUNY Learning Network. JALN, 7(2), 61-80., Rana M.




What have I learned and how will I apply it?

I have learned a lot! First I have learned about technologies. I am unsure of exactly what I will use in my own classroom, it depends on what level I teach, but I may incorporate blogging or parts of my online creation in my units. It would definitely give my student structure. I have learned that learning/teaching online takes a lot of prep work from the instructor.

In designing my course modules I have learned that I need questions to be engaging and motivating. I need to have my students reach that higher level critical thinking. This can be hard in the online environment, and with my age group I think it will be more difficult. I have also learned I need to create activities and assessments that directly relate to those activities. I have and continue to struggle with the idea that my course could be part face to face and partly online, this would probably be most realistic for me to use it in the future, but I am unsure of how to develop instructional activities and then have more than just computer lab instructional activities in my modules.

I learned a lot from an article I read by Savery and Duffy. It discussed problem based learning, questioning and critical thinking. It’s main point was that the student’s questions determine what that student is going to learn. In the article it suggested to

-relate learning to real life experiences

– have students create the problem and work socially to find the answer.

Savery and Duffy (2001)

There was lots of discussion about creating an environment that links content to real life and making learning about more than just content.

I also learned a lot about how this relates to workers today. Employers today want students with 21st century skills. This made me question if this is really what we are teaching our students. Are we encouraging critical thinking, problem solving? Or are we just preparing students for a test.

I also learned the importance of having a coffee shop area, introductions and having clear module structures with clear goals. hopefully I will be accomplishing all these things in my class.  (pickett 2008)

I have learned that being a great teacher require you to keep an open mind and re-think how you teach.

I am sure there is much much more that I am overlooking right now.



Sacery and Duffy. (2001) Problem Based Learning. An instructional model and its constructive framework.

learning, teaching, technology

hello hello,

ok as I reflect about this week I have been very busy. I did a lot of work to my blog, I do not know why it was so hard for me to understand.

I drafted my modules for my class and feel accomplished having an outline. I decided to keep it simple, having one week per module, I want to have it as simple as possible for my audience.

We also have very interesting topic this week for discussion. We are considering if the aspect of teaching is more important than the content students learn. This brought up many questions for me as a teacher. I want my studnets to be prepared for their futures beyond my classroom, which is why a big part of my teaching philosophy is to teach my students how they personally learn according to Howard Gardner’s multipule intelligneces. Also future than that I want to teach my students beyond content, I want them to learn skills for the 21st century. These skills as defined my the partnership for 21st century skills include content, but also include critcial thinking problem sloving and creativity. This leads to mamy questions, are students getting this in the classroom? how can we as educators encourage it?

Some ways we can are by having constructivism as a theory encouraged in the classroom. Students can build upon knowledge. There can also be projects, like Tech Valley High does all the time, to encourage problem solving and creativity. Including problem based learning is also a great way. The problem is teachers do not often feel confident to do this. They need to let go of their classrooms in a way to do this.

Personally I do not know if I am that confident as a teacher. I need to not be afraid for the higher adminstration to see that teaching style in action. I think it will come over time, at first it will be difficult.

Other interesting stuff in my life…

I took a class called technology in the classroom. I highly recommend it to everyone! It taught me about all kinds of things I had no idea about, and I thought I was a technology native. Just to mention some of the cool stuff we looked into were this site, edmodo, glogster, prezi, voicethread, and woordle. I will definatly be intergrating some of them in my classroom in the future, and hopefully into my online class I am creating.



new and improved

ok, I just spent some time and energy to re-do a lot of my blog, some things I am still unsure of, categoring I am sure I will look at this more when I have some time.


As I think about the past and the upcoming portions of this class, I feel I have put in effort but I guess not enough. I am unhappy with my grades, and as a student not used to doing poorly. I want to do better I am worried that I am putting my energy in the wrong place?


Another interesting thing in my life, I am taking a class, technology in the classroom. I wish I would have completed that before this class, it is very cool! An introduction to all kinds of technology and how they can be utilized in the classroom. We talked about voicehreads, diigo, and even moodle. I wish I would have had this little introduction into technology before this class, and I thought I was a native!

Anyway, this week we are designing our modules for our class and that makes me feel a little more confident about my design. I am looking forward to this week.


module 2 what have I learned?

What have you learned that you did not know before?

My learning this week can fall into a few categories. I learned that being a good online instructor is a lot like being a good face to face instructor. You have to be prepared for students providing them opportunities to connect with content, each other, and you. I learned that as an instructor you need to create a safe environment, I learned about Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. Showing that students need basic security and insurance in their surroundings before they can expand their minds to share and learn (Diener 2001). I also really liked one of my classmates pointing out John Savey’s pointers of being “VOCAL” Visible, organized, compassionate, analytical, and Lead-by-example.

I also learned about having an effective course design. It is extremely important to be organized. Having clear instructions, and expectations for students. It is also important my students have a way to communicate with me personally, a place where they can talk to their peers and a place we can all have discussions. It is important my content is clear engaging and varied.

How will you apply what you have learned to your own course?

I have many plans for my course and my role in it. I plan on being very organized first. I want my students to have clear directions and know their expectations. I also want to be a big part in the course itself. I want to encourage a safe environment, and allow my students to connect to their peers and me. I want them to be entertained by engaging content and discussions.

What decisions have you made so far about your own online course?

Already I have made many decisions about my online class. I have decided it will be 8 weeks long with 8 modules, I wanted to keep that as simple and constant as possible. I have decided my students will discuss, participate, and have quizzes and tests for grades. I has also decided what things will be worth. I have decided how many grades they will have and what kinds of activities they will do. I have a picture in my head of how I want my course to function, I just hope I can make it a reality.

What did you observe about yourself during your own completion of these learning activities?

I learned that I am an entertainer. I found it sad that I will not be face to face with students, something I didn’t know I cared so much about. I like being in front of my students, joking and talking with them. This is something I hope to still be able to do in the online environment.

How do you interact in this course?

This week in the this course I asked my first question, I was amazed by the response with Alex’s voice directed right to me as she walked through my course. How COOL! I wasn’t impressed I guess that that is how she answered just how personal it felt. I also talked with classmates discussing student motivations and effective online design.

What is working for you?

I really liked the video “how to” part of the creation of the course, I am a visual learner and showing me how to do that was really cool! I also really like starting discussions, I posted early this time, and I felt like everyone was writing in response to me, that is neat for me. I have to admit that sometimes I do not always read everyone’s responses.

What would you change/suggest to make it better for you?

This is a good question, I do not have a lot to change, I do not feel as overwhelmed now that we are not required to write as many posts. It gives me more time to “look” at what others write and play around with my own class. I may have to re-visit this question, I am having a hard time thinking of anything I would like to change.