Tuesday, August 28, 2007

My First Podcast

I did it, I created a podcast in my class today. I was doing Art of the Day with a third grade class and they were have a good discussion about a work of art by the artist Mark Di Suvero. This summer I visited the Denver Art Museum and one of Marks works, Lao-Tzu is outside the museum. I took a picture of the work and showed it to the class. They came up with some really great impressions of the work.
This is a link to my podcast page. It's pretty cool how easy it is to do and the kids love it.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

First week of school

The first week of school is over. I've seen all my classes and given the kids the rules and regulations of my class. Basically don't but me I won't bug you. My version of the golden rule.
The students were all very excited to be in school and happy to be in my class. They always light up at the potential of what is to come in my class and I hope not to disappoint them.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

No time for art

180 days of school to go. Not that I'm counting but that translates into 36 classes of art each year for an elementary student. 27 hours a year, a little more that a day of art each year or one week of art in their elementary school career. Not much time when you think about it.
Especially now that in Florida art is no longer required in middle school. Oh yes there is a requirement in high school that a student take a minimum of 1 credit Fine Art, but of course this has been watered down to read: 1 credit in practical arts career and technical education or performing fine arts; or .5 credit each in practical arts career and technical education and performing fine arts.
So it could be that my art class is the only art exposure that a child may receive in their entire education. I take this responsibility very seriously and understand the effect on a child's future that I hold.
Now when I say 180 days to go you understand that I see that as not too many but not enough.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

The first day of school is almost here, only a few more days and hours. My room is as ready as it ever will be. I have changed my first day plans 3 times in the last week and I think I have settled on a plan that will grab the kids attention. I have gone over bus numbers and have wrist bands for all the bus riders so that they can get on the right bus in the afternoon. I know that on Monday I'll probably be up at 4am and ready to go by 5. So I guess I'll beat the traffic and get a good parking place. I'm guessing that the parents will be arriving with their kids by 7 or 7:15. At open house it looked like they had a long summer and were ready for school to start(parents and kids).

Oh also our school is going under a major renovation, so we will also have "Bob the Builder" to contend with.
It should be a great year and I can't wait for it to start!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

I had a very interesting time today while presenting a workshop on incorporating technology in the elementary art and music classroom. Everyone was very interested and asked some great questions. I can't wait to see how others take the ideas and make them their own. Here is a link to the outline of the workshop.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Social networking in schools

From a report by the National School Boards Association the internet isn't as dangerous as people think, and teachers should let students use social networks at school.

From this article it appears that the dangers of the internet are created more by the media and political fear mongers that reality.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

I'm trying to think of ways to use Voice Thread in the classroom. Students could use this to create reports on artists and their work. Adding their own comments and observations to the images.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Sorta like a Podcast

I've been reading Will Richardson Weblogg-ed and came across this really cool audio & image site called Voice Thread.
I have added one that I made to this blog. It took me about 15 minutes to figure it out and create this.
Now all I have to do is figure what to do with this, and thoughts?

Monday, August 6, 2007


I've taken the district workshop on podcasting and it is very cool and easier to do that I thought it would be. Bradley Smrstick the area 6 Tech trainer did a great job presenting the workshop.
Like with most things on a computer we learned many ways to create the audio files used to make podcasts.
I think that by using a small hand held digital recorder it will be very easy to create podcasts with the kids in my classroom. I am going to share this with the faculty at Mary Bryant.
So far the only problem I've had is that the podcast files quickly fill my allotted server space on the IDEAS server.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Books I'm reading

Only a few more days till we are back at school. I've been reading a few books for inspiration for my class. The first is a book by Anastiasia Goocstein "Totally Wired, What teens and tweens are really doing online" This is a good book to help get inside the heads of our students and how the relate and interact with the technology around them. One interesting anecdote was the story told about the web site MySpace. Frances Harris a librarian at University Laboratoy High School in Urbana, Illinois recounts how a student wrote a paper on the poet Mary Wollstonecraft and then created a profile for her on MySpace. Soon "Mary" had friends like T. S. Eliot. Students were responding and making comments to "Mary" with blogs of poetry.
This book gives examples of how students are using technology in many interesting, unique, and collaborative ways. I enjoined the read and feel challenged to incorporate some of the ideas in my classroom this year.
I am also reading the book "Blogs, Wikis, Podcasts and other powerful web tools" by Will Richardson. In this book I came across this question Will posed in the first few pages "What needs to change about our curriculum when our students have the ability to reach audiences far beyond our classroom walls? What changes must we make in our teaching as it becomes easier to bring primary sources to our students?
Both of these books are making me rethink my curriculum and the way information will be presented in my classroom. I'm hoping that I can include some or even one of the ideas presented in these books and the blogs I have been reading. But being an immigrant to this digital world and not a native growing up with computers in the home and music on Ipods. I still
have to "translate" to the concept of a classroom that is not bound by the walls of the classroom or a specific period..... time and space.


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