Friday, 21 October 2011

Module 8

Syndication made really simple!

RSS is a site where material from multiple other sites is made available under one site. The idea for this is brilliant, but it also has the potential to be disastrous as there is a lot of information that could be sent to one location. After joining ‘Google Reader’, I was pleasantly surprised to find that they organise these sites for you so that you are not drowned with new updates. This would definitely make it easier to keep up to date with recent blogs, podcasts, news feeds or upcoming events. It would also save time and sanity to view all of these updates without visiting each individual site.

This is probably completely irrelevant, but due to Google Reader’s update…I subscribed to YouTube and one of the updates mentioned a TED advertising challenge called ‘Ads Worth Spreading’. is the site where all of the winners are. From the red link up the top ‘viral hits’ has become my new obsession. Watch ONLY if you have some spare time available. On page 2 ‘piano stairs’, ‘extreme sheep LED’ and ‘T-mobile dance’ are highly recommended for a feel good factor.

Booyah, module 9 here I come!

Module 7

Delicious is oh so yummy!

Delicious is an online bookmarking site that not only helps you organise and keep ALL of your bookmarks in one location, but it also enables you to see the other bookmarks that others have saved that you may be interested in. This is a fabulous idea. When I moved from my year 4 classroom to my current year 2 classroom, I lost 3 years worth of site bookmarking. This will help me organise my bookmarks not only with my work computer, but home one as well. I did have a few issues while trying to use the site on Internet Explorer, so I tried it with Firefox, and ta daaa, issues solved. I can see this site becoming a best friend.

In regards to my blog replying, had a few initial troubles leaving a post – it didn’t want to accept it, figured it out in the end.

Yay, module 7 done. Starting to feel a pretty bad cold coming on, so I'm going to try and pump as many of these modules out as I can.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Module 6

Privacy and Copyright – concerning stuff!

The first site I looked at was ‘Flickr’. I can confidently say that I am VERY experienced in uploading photos to my Facebook, but it was nice to see what another site had to offer. I loved the fact that I could upload my videos WITH my photos and keep them in one collection. However, personally, I would find uploading photos to two social network sites to take too much effort. For the classroom on the other hand, I can find lots of potential. This would be a fantastic tool to keep excursion, mass and classroom photos on. As well as, a place children could add photos of their own achievements or celebrations like sports or birthday parties. Like most people, I worry about the welfare of my students and the privacy that is provided by these sites. I did like, however, that you could choose to ONLY have your friends view the photos as opposed to making them public. Oh, if you are interested, here is the link to the photos I have posted on Flickr.

Copyright Laws really confuse me, so I was very glad when I discovered this site This site is so useful and provides you with the facts of what is acceptable so that we do not breach copyright laws. I thought it was awesome that they provide a special link to information sheets for schools. This is something that I will definitely need to read up and familiarise myself with.

Creative Commons is a BRILLIANT idea. They provide “a free, public, and standardized infrastructure that creates a balance between the reality of the Internet and the reality of copyright laws”. This is something that I will need to have a thorough look through and may be just what I need when trying to teach my class about acceptable use. FYI – Flickr has a fantastic collection of Creative Commons material.

Woohoo, half way done! See you again for Module 7.

Module 5

Smooth sailing to this point…but this one was a doozy!

Man, was this one loooong module. Ok, let’s start with ‘’ In my classroom, I’m very fond of making a brainstorm or two on my board. is an online brainstorm program. It is simple enough to use, and I can see it definitely being motivating to see bold, beautiful coloured boxes containing the information you need. I guess my only criticism would be – is this program going to save me time when I am doing a class brainstorm in my lesson…probably not. Could the children use it when they have to brainstorm individually…absolutely. I think this would make a great assessment tool to see if the child knows how certain aspects are interrelated to each other.

Glogster helps to create online posters. I was pumped to try it out when I saw how awesome the examples looked. Then came the sad realisation, that I am nowhere near creative enough to add all the elements the examples did. The site and each element took a little bit of getting used to, but once I got the hang of it, I started enjoying myself. I can definitely see this being an asset to children in the classroom – making the presentation of their work so much more hi-tech and motivating for them. Here is my simple example of my glog. I have incorporated my brainstorm in there too. Warning, it’s pretty boring.

Finally, ‘Prezi’ – an online presentation – taking PowerPoint to a new level. Creating the presentation was easy enough. The tutorials that Prezi provide are simple, straightforward and step-by-step (just what I needed). Classroom wise, I can see this program resonating the same response as ‘’. Is it going to save me time…probably not. Will it assist in my lessons being more motivating…absolutely. Can I see this being used by the children to assist in their learning…yes. Similar to Glogster, I can see the children working on a task and presenting it via the web. Oh, here is my (again) simple example of what Prezi can do.

Hmmm, I think that was all. I’m starting to see double and my take-away container of Skittles is starting to look pretty thin. Until next module…

Monday, 17 October 2011

Module 4

Taking storytelling to a whole new level

Yay, the module I actually have previous experience with! Due to having a few i-items (iPhone and iPod), I’ve become quite accustomed to using iTunes. However, before today, the only podcasts I had ever listened to were Twilight based (don’t judge!). I find that my little ones use digital storytelling quite a fair bit. ‘KidPix’ is a program where they get the opportunity to create a picture then write a caption underneath. ‘Photostory’ is similar, but instead of creating their own picture, they use photos, write captions AND narrate. Both these programs then turn the child’s creation into a slideshow. ‘Audacity’ is fantastic for children to narrate a story and is especially useful to show a child that they read like a robot (or in teacher speak – need to improve their fluency, tone and expression).

I’ve found another site I can see myself becoming a little obsessed with – ‘Storynory – free Audio stories for kids’. I can see it now, guided reading time, class story time…my cherubs will love it!

I LOVE YOUTUBE! So versatile, so entertaining, so awesome! I use YouTube to introduce units, sum up ideas, get music to meditate, inspiration/instruction for artworks, motivation (refer to recycling clip below). I also use YouTube to watch pedagogical videos for my own learning – like ‘TEDtalksDirector’. Oh and I also like BTN (behind the news) for initiating a lesson or even just explaining what’s going on in the world.

I’m going to leave you with a clip that I used to initiate last term's focus on ‘Being Environmentally Friendly’. My kids are OBSESSED with this song. Even after the term ended, this is still a favoured ‘clean-up-the-classroom' song. It is Tag Your Green Machine by nicepeter.

Module 3

Google Docs…where have you been all my life?

In May I went to a ‘TeachMeet’ inservice which was all about sharing our technological ideas and findings with other teachers (K-12) – this is where I first heard about Google Docs.

Watching ‘Google docs in Plain English’ by commoncraft was a great introduction to the potential of Google docs. I went onto the recommended ‘Atomic Learning’ website and was concerned, to say the least, that the ‘Google docs – a focus on documents training’ tutorials took 1 hour and 13 minutes. I became less concerned when I found out that they were broken into 1-5 minute clips :D    Everything from there was easy enough - the creation of the document, the editing of the document and the sharing of the document. I liked how the creator had the option to choose if the collaborator/s could ‘edit’ or ‘view’. I especially appreciated the fact that the permissions could be restricted as well.

If only I had this in uni! Doing those rubbish group work assignments where everyone had to meet up at the same unsuitable time would have been limited! Relating to the classroom though…I can see this being AMAZING for older children who do a lot of group work especially high school however, I think the only limitation is with the younger children who don’t necessarily work as collaboratively. Saying that though, brainstorming just became a whooole lot more motivating. I think personally, I will find this site most beneficial for my professional self – the one who creates worksheets, then alters and resaves, then saves to flash disk…etc. Google docs has potentially just become my new best friend!

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Module 2

Basic Blogging – if I can do it, anyone can!

Through ICT staff inservices, I had heard of what a blog was however, before Web 2.0, had never been successful in creating one by myself.

After visiting the site ‘Blogging Basics: Creating Student Journals on the Web’ by Lorrie Jackson, I’ve been given a multitude of ideas on how I can include blogging in my classroom. Whether it be - in guided reading to review a book they are reading (aka ‘boys blogging books’), an open-ended maths task, writing their own prayers of praise (creation),  argue their point of view in exposition or even asking questions at the initiation of a science unit. The possibilities seem endless.

After having an ‘epic-fail’ first blogging experience, I was pleasantly surprised to find ‘Blogger’ relatively easy to use. The only issue I seemed to have was my own indecision as to the colours and fonts to use…I have already mentioned my procrastination previously.  

Module 2 – Check

Module 3…Bring it on!

Module 1

Whoa, it’s Row FINALLY on Web 2.0

Hello Hello, my name is Rowena Hendriks and I am a primary teacher at St Lukes Primary School. I am currently in my 5th year of teaching and I teach year 2 (after 3 years of teaching year 4). I signed up for 2.0 for two reasons…
1) To advance my technological skills and equip myself with new, exciting and ever-evolving Internet-based resources…AND...
2) The majority of my colleagues have already completed it and I thought it would be an awesome time to stop procrastinating.

After watching the introductory YouTube vids, I am excited about the shift in thinking and the opportunities that now arise. Saying that though, I'm also daunted by the vast quantity of resources that have arisen. It seems to be, that if we don't do courses like these, then major advancements and these opportunities will pass us by.  Going through Jane Hart’s ‘toolbox for learning professionals’, I was excited to find out that I’ve heard-of and even  used some of these e-resources before. Who knows, maybe this Web 2.0 course is more achievable than I thought.  

Anyways, here goes nothing…module 1 over and out!