Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Tool #11

One of my favorite tools that I found while creating this blog was Prezi. I remember teachers using Power Point very often when I was in middle school, but Prezi is a much more visually stimulating way to share information in a presentation. I also think it would be a great tool for students to use when presenting project over music composers or music theory.

I have transformed my thinking about the learning that will take place in my classroom by opening my eyes to new web tools that are easy to use and will create a fun learning atmosphere in my classroom. I would like to use my ipads in stations around the room more often. I think that the students would appreciate and enjoy the visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learning styles that come from working in stations.

I was surprised at how easy it was to find the plethora of web tools to use in the classroom. Now that I am acquainted with many new tools, I will definitely be using them in my classroom next year!

Tool #10

Point 1: Be careful what you post online! Once something is out there, it can be seen by anyone, so keep your personal life off of the internet as much as possible.
Point 2: Do not be a cyber-bully! It is hurtful and just as wrong as physically bullying a person.
Point 3: Be careful when taking credit for things online. That being said, do not plagiarize! It is easy to copy and paste information from the internet, but that is illegal. Use the internet to research content, but come up with your own way to write it!

I would share Cybersmart Teens with my classroom. It talks about being careful on the internet, not befriending strangers online, and keeping your digital reputation clean for when students try to get a job in the future. Students can use this website when they need help in dealing with a difficult situation online. I think this is a great resource to show my students.

I would teach digital citizenship to my class by showing some of the videos from Cybersmart. After the videos, I would start a class discussion on what they think is appropriate vs. inappropriate online networking and what to do when they find themselves in an inappropriate situation.

I plan to share the idea of digital citizenship with my students' parents by sending home a contract to sign at the beginning of the year, along with their student handbook, explaining the expectations for the use of technology in the classroom. I will ask the parents and students to sign the contact stating that they have read about digital citizenship and will follow the rules while in the classroom.

Tool #9

1. It is important to tie technology to the objective being taught in class because students relate to technology based activities since they use it constantly in their everyday life. When students and teachers can find a common ground of teaching and learning strategies, it promotes a positive learning atmosphere. Creating a positive learning atmosphere is a key factor in a classroom, and technology can bridge that gap.

2. It is important to hold students accountable because it builds a sense of personal responsibility in each student. By assigning one or two students, per class, the job of keeping the classroom technology in order, it allows them ownership over something important. Holding accountability strengthens responsibility.

3. I visited Thinkfinity, and found it could be helpful in the middle school choir classroom. It was one of the few sources on the list that had information that applies to a music classroom. I would use this in the classroom as a way for students to learn more about the history of music and music in today's classroom. I could hold the students accountable for this station by having them write down three or four new facts they learned about music.
I also like Learning Games for Kids. There are some great music games on this site that the students can play to learn about music notes and music history. I like this tool because it seems like a fun way for the students to learn about music.

4. On the Ipads, students could use Itunes to listen to recordings of choirs singing songs we are learning in class. It is a good resource to use because it serves as an ear training activity for young musicians. Another app that could be useful in my classroom is Animoto. I have used this app before and found it to be a fun resource to create music video projects.

5. Another way that the students could use the ipads in stations is by having each station playing a different music game on each ipad. There are many music theory game apps that are fun ways of learning music theory. The stations could rotate once each member in the group has had a chance to participate in the music game.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Tool #8

When I use my IPads and IPods next year, I have learned that it will be easier to manage them if they are all connected to the icloud. That way, I can have easy access to all of the information on every device and each device will be universal to everyone.

Another thing that I learned is that my itunes account can be linked to my SBISD email. This way, my personal itunes account can be separate from my SBISD itunes account. 

I plan on using the devices in my classroom by recording projects and performances. It is important for students to reflect on their work, so the recordings will be helpful in that aspect. I also plan on using itunes to download apps and music that apply to the lessons and music we are learning. 

Tool #7

Objective: To set up a Skype call with other choirs around the district where each choir would perform a song for the other choirs. The choirs would critique the other choirs with their director after the Skype call. The would discuss what the other choirs did well, and what they could have done better. They will then apply those critiques to their performance. I would like to try and implement this project next school year. It would be neat to collaborate with other choirs and to help build and support the choral programs around the district.

Tool #6

I created a Wallwisher/Padlet for my student to use as a resource for their final project in choir. The information they will find on this web tool can be used to refresh their memories on the requirements of the final project and how it will be graded.

http://padlet.com/wall/28flb5z7aa


I also created a Poll on Poll Everywhere. This poll is a way for the students to express what type of music is their favorite. This can be used at the beginning of the class as a hook to grab their attention.

http://www.polleverywhere.com/multiple_choice_polls/4e84JfWlZLi1oe7


I believe these tools encourage participation because they use technology in an interesting way to hook the student's attention toward the lesson.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Tool #5

I used Prezi as my tool.

Students have been taught about History through the use of textbooks since they began going to school. This Prezi on music history brings new insight to the information in a more technological way. This brief history of music covers the major musical eras since the beginning of time. I think this is a great way for students to learn the background of music since the beginning of time.
http://prezi.com/59fud3igyhrz/brief-history-in-music/

It can be difficult to find an interesting way to teach vocabulary in any subject. This Prezi on Music Vocabulary is quite visually stimulating. I think it is important to teach through all of the different learning styles, and this presentation helps portray the visual aspect of vocabulary.
http://prezi.com/ths2adhdwj02/music-vocabulary/

Tool #4

The document that was shared on my campus was a form that the teachers use to fill out the STARS award recipients. Each teacher is to add two students to the list that they feel work above and beyond in their class. It is a shared file with the whole school, so all teachers can see who has been nominated by which teacher. This document was helpful and time efficient in compiling a master list for the STARS Award Ceremony.

The document I created in Google Docs is a questionnaire for each student to fill out about themselves. I found it very easy to create a document in Google Docs. I can use Google Apps in my classroom when students need to access their documents for projects. I am very excited to see it's effectiveness put to work!

Tool #3

I found Youtube to be the most effective for my content area. I am the most familiar with the video site, and the students are as well. I think it is helpful to use a site that the students can already relate to, and can easily access.

Voice Lesson - How to Breathe When Singing

This is a video from a voice instructor at Berklee School of Music on how to properly breathe when singing. This would be a good resource for my students to watch and learn the proper techniques of breathing when singing.

Song of the River - Owasso 6th grade Choir

This is a video of the Owasso 6th Grade Choir singing Song of the River. This is a song that one of my choirs has been working on, so it would be beneficial for them to listen to recordings of what the song should sound like.


Copyright and Fair Use can be slightly complicated at times. I found the Disney Clip video and the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Media Literacy Education video to be interesting and entertaining ways to educate students and professionals about the law.

I think that DropBox is a great way to transfer files from my home computer to my work computer. It is also a good tool for students to access to turn in documents and view other documents from class discussions.

Tool #2

I feel that participating in an online community and a PLN are great ways for teachers to learn innovative ways to incorporate new ideas into their lessons. I have found that students respond positively in their learning when technology is incorporated in interesting ways. Personally, I enjoy sharing my thoughts publicly. I find it is a great way to get feedback from other professionals in my area of teaching.

In the future, I will be visiting http://www.meyersmusicactivities.blogspot.com/
This blog has many ideas of creating an active-learner atmosphere in the music classroom.

I will also visit http://musicteachntech.com/
This site has a multitude of resources for music teachers and is very organized.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Tool #1

This blog has been a great learning tool so far. I have not run across any problems in setting up my blog. I am looking forward to developing the information in my 11 tools blog and learning how to manage my technology.