Saturday, January 26, 2013

Blog Assignment #2

Did You Know? –John Strange Revision

This video, Did You Know? -Strange Version, revised by John Strange, is kind of scary to think about. I think that high schools and college students already use too much technology. According to the video like 60-80% of those students have smart phones with internet. I’m pretty sure that they all have Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Youtube, and other social network accounts at the touch of their fingers where ever they happen to be. I can’t imagine that in 10 years people with have jobs using technology that doesn’t even exist yet. I know that it is all coming soon and growing every day, but personally I don’t like the thought of depending on it.

In my classroom, I will teach MATH. If using technology will help my students learn their math concepts and procedures better then I will use it. In my opinion though, all technology does in a high school math class is allow the students to cheat. Many people are looking to the future of technology as such a good thing, and it is, but no one thinks about how dishonest high school students are. They WILL find ways to cheat and allowing them to use phones, internet, and computers is just allowing them to cheat. Technology should be used for at home use to enhance learning, not take the place of it.

Mr. Winkle Wakes

The short movie, Mr. Winkle Wakes, by Matthew Needleman, is about an old man who has been asleep for 100 years and wakes up to find that the world is now technologically advanced. He goes into an office to find computers and printers. This makes him sick so he goes to the hospital. In the hospital, he finds all the procedures being done by computers and computers keeping people alive. Since isn’t helping how he feels so he leaves to find something familiar. He finds a school and goes in to see teachers lecturing and students writing and no technology being used. He is now happy because he feels “at home” without the technology. 

The movie never says anything about the fact that the students in the school aren’t learning. They are. There is nothing wrong, in my opinion, with old time lectures. This, obviously, is not the same as everyone else’s opinion but it can definitely be argued that not everyone learns the same. I learn really well from lectures. I like having a teacher tell me what they want me to know and having me do work that is a reflection of what they have taught. Others learn better from exploring and figuring things out on their own and watch videos. The problem with this is that students are lazy. They do the bare minimum and that means that you, as a teacher, have to tell them what the bare minimum is that they must know.


Sir Ken Robinson’s video, The Importance of Creativity, is very funny and light-hearted. He says a lot in a short amount of time. What I got out of it was that education in today’s world revolves around teaching math and reading and writing. He believes that schools put the arts to the back burner and this hinders students’ creativity. He told a story about a woman who they thought was ADHD but her mother just took her to a dance school instead and she learned there and became a millionaire ballerina. His point was that just because she couldn’t learn in a normal classroom with normal subjects doesn’t mean that she isn’t capable of being successful.

I do agree with many of the things that were said in the video but I disagree with some too. I don’t think that children should be allowed to decide what they want to do for the rest of their lives when they are 6. I think that every career requires you to be able to write and read up to a 12th grade level. I also think that math is the reason for people like engineers, astronauts, architects, meteorologists, and many more professions that drive the economy. This includes computer engineers which are necessary for the growing technology that everyone depends on. The arts are used for entertainment and the maths, sciences, reading, and writing are necessary for careers that actually contribute to the society.


I love Pinterest! I have already been developing a board for my future classroom. There are so many sources to use to help students learn. You have to pin a post on your board then you have the link to the page forever, and they are all in one place. The reason that it works so well is because you don’t have to do all the research yourself. Other educators all over the world pin projects, activities, and such so you just click on “education” and it takes you to every link that has to do with education. It is very organized and easy to use.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Blog Assignment #1

taken by Roanna Council
            About Me

My name is Roanna Council. I am a junior here at USA majoring in Secondary Math Ed. I’m 21 years old and have blonde hair and blue eyes. I’ve lived in Silverhill, across the bay, all my life and graduated from Robertsdale High. I attended The University of West Alabama in Livingston my freshman year to play tennis which I absolutely loved. Unfortunately, my parents started going through a nasty divorce, and I moved home to support my little sister. I attended Faulkner State for a semester while things were being sorted out at home. Once the divorce was final, I moved to Mobile to be on my own yet still close by. I have an older brother, 22, and a younger sister, 17.
When I’m home I spend my time on my fiancĂ©’s farm fishing or hunting. His grandparents were both teachers (elementary and administrative) and his parents are both high school Science teachers. His brother is a high school Math teacher, and he is also going to be a high school Science teacher. I would say that they have mostly inspired me to become a teacher. I had tutoring jobs in high school and loved helping others learn so everything just kind of fell into place. I work part time at the University in the Accounts Payable office, I am president of the Wesley Foundation (United Methodist Campus Ministry), and I am in the middle of trying to plan my wedding.

My Future Classroom

I plan on being a Math teacher hopefully in 11th and/or 12th grade. I want to be a fun teacher that students enjoy. I want to be able to build personal relationships with my students and gain their trust so that they can come to me for help with math or for life advice. I want my students to learn to love learning because learning is fun! I want to show them that math is amazing and complex and fascinating. I hope to make it easy for them by getting them interested and keeping them hooked.
 For so many students, math is the one area that they cannot excel mainly because math is all about building on prior knowledge. This is why I also do not believe in “burp-back” education. Students must learn to retain the information in order to be successful in any latter math courses that they take. Also, math is all about practice. Practice, practice, practice. If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it. With that being said though, I do not believe in giving students thousands of problems for homework. Most likely by doing this, the students aren’t going to do the work and they won’t be able to ask questions when they get stuck. I would rather them work together and separately in class with my help and without to work the problems.
One tool I think that my students will use, and use the most, is a good ole fashion pencil and paper. I’m not a fan of computers in the math world. Swivel laptop with writing surfaces are great, but just using a key board is not something I want to use in my classroom. I don’t want my students to write paragraph ABOUT math. I want them to write THE math, the numbers, the symbols, the language. I don’t believe that this would be best accomplished by each student having a laptop in my classroom. The next important tool that they students need is their text book. Although the new online texts with digital hints, explanations, and quizzes are useful, I think that the best way for a student to learn the material is reading the book, working the problems, and showing up for class. The third tool I think is essential for learning is the students’ classmates. They need group time, teaching other students, doing problems on the board, etc. Something that I have learned from the process of becoming a teacher is that you don’t really KNOW the material unless you can teach the material back. I will definitely give my students the opportunity to teach one another and learn from mistakes.
The best word that I can think of that describes the way I hope for my future classroom to be is productive. Yes, I want it to be fun. Yes, I want my students to like me. And, yes, I want to make it easy for them to learn, but the thing I want most is for my students to actually know the material I the end. I want my class to be productive both in math and in life lessons. I hope by the end of my class, my students will know how to be mature, responsible, studious, and know that grades are earned, not given!

Time Management

The video was very short but made many key points that I think are helpful. Number one would be to tackle your procrastination problem first. I don’t typically struggle with procrastination, but what I do struggle with is fitting time into my schedule to relax after all the go go go. I go to school full time, work part time, run an organization on campus, am trying to plan a wedding, and homework/sleep fit into that equation somewhere so I don’t typically have time to relax and recoup or have some fun. This causes me to get run down and stressed easily. Dr. Pausch mentioned that some way to help manage all the craziness are to make a to-do list and start with the thing that you don’t want to do first.
Something else that he touched on was comparing time to money. It’s easy to be at work because I know that each and every hour I’m there, I’m getting paid for it. And when I’m going to classes, it’s easy to remember that I better go because I paid to be there. Things like homework, rest, fun, building friendships with fellow students and teacher, though, are hard to compare with time. He says that we should view our time as a commodity that we are trading for things like we would money. He also points out the importance of setting goals both short and long term. Even if the goals have to be changed or switched around, it is still best to have them planned out so that you know where you’re headed.