Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Last Meet not the Last Post

Today was the last day for us to meet as a cluster. Looking over the 1 and half years I have been part of this, I have learned heaps and have grown more confident in the use of using computers personally and teaching kids the skills. We shared our Action Research to the team. I loved doing the Research and I hope to do one every year for myself in a small way or as a 'petite inquiry'. It directs my teaching and raises my kids' achievement. Next year I would like to use ICT effectively in my Maths Programme.
The highlight for me was conducting the research and getting opportunities to go to conferences and present at our cluster expo. I will continue to have a professional and class blog. Being part of the cluster has been a major shift in my thinking and learning. I have enjoyed all the aha moments and have learned heaps! I loved the sharing of ideas on our lead teacher meeting days and the release time to work with teachers and the children. I would also like to thank BJ for all her support and help and for being an inspiration!
Link to my Action Research

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

U-Learn 2010

It was great to attend ULearn 2010 especially the pre conference workshop. I now have more web 2 tools that I could use with my little guys. Here is the link to Suzie Vesper's web 2.0 tools ideas.
I went to a workshop that gave me some new ideas to use the camera and ways that kids could use it through the day. It was 4 days of exchanging ideas and meeting like-minded people. One of the workshops showed us some new tricks or shortcuts using a mac. Still have not collated my notes, but will try and do so by the end of term to share with others.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Inquiry Learning versus Teaching of Inquiry...

On Wednesday we had our Lead Teacher day. It is funny how I am beginning to love these days now. BJ had planned for us to complete a task! I was not very excited at first as she said we had to create a presentation but when she told us what we were working on I couldn't wait to start. It was Inquiry learning versus Teaching of Inquiry. Over the years I have become confident in using Inquiry Learning with my students and Teaching of Inquiry is something I am trialling this year. It is basically Action research to improve teacher practice. My team brainstormed how we could complete our presentation and then we started to work on it. Luckily we had lots of photos and evidence already so this made the task easier. I thought we could have done with more time but when I saw what the other schools had presented I realised that using flickr images and relating it to the processes would have been easier. Ours was a step-by-step understanding of the 2 terms. It made me realise how much I have learned over the years and with experience I am able to articulate my learning. It took me back to the days when I did not want to be a lead teacher or be part of the LT meeting... And now I so want to be in this role in the years to come. Thanks to my ANGELS!!!!
Here is a link to my Action Research. Any feedback is welcome...
Bruce Hammonds' post made for interesting read.

Friday, July 23, 2010

From the mouth of babes!

Finally the day of our ICT Expo arrived. I had been busy preparing and practising to present a workshop on Podcasting to teachers in our cluster. I had also decided to use 2 kids in my year 1 class to demonstrate how to create a podcast in GarageBand. While they were excited, I was a bit nervous as it was my first presentation ever. Well I chose to do it so there was no escape now. The 15 teachers came in quickly. I started with the introduction and briefly talked about podcasting, uses in the classroom and the steps in creating one. My little ones then took over. They knew exactly what to do! The adults were delighted and cheerfully decided to give a go while the 3 of us hovered around supporting and answering questions. I had also prepared the 'how to' sheets. They found this easy to follow. The feedback I received was positive. The teachers thought that using 5 year olds to demonstrate was very powerful. At least half of them decided to try it in their classrooms while there were a few that said they used PC's at their school so were not sure if they would use it. I told them about Audacity and gave them my email if they needed any support. It was a very satisfying day! Would I present again? Well, may be...

Thursday, July 1, 2010

SMART Session

I have not really been using the SMARTBoard effectively in my teaching so when our school got a free offer from BH, the expert in using the interactive board, I decided to attend the session after school. Here are some things she shared with us. When you go into google search engine and type in a word of what you are looking for. When this page opens up on the left hand side is a list of words. Click on "wonder wheel" and you will get a mind-map on the topic you are looking for. This breaks the information down and you are much faster in your search.
This other site enables you to get pictures of what you are looking for in categories.
BH shared some ways we could use the lesson activity toolkit 2.0, which I found really cool and would like to use it in my teaching. So I have decided to attend a 2-day free conference at Fruitvale School in the second week of my holidays.
Check out the link if you are interested in attending.
Videos that you would like to use in Notebook software should have a .flv extension. changes videos you may find to this extension and other formats too.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Kid-pix kids

Last week I was really excited when 5 of my students completed a 4 slide slideshow in Kid-pix with voice over and transitions. They were only supported with the recording as they are still learning to read and so had to practise their retell. They were so excited and did not want to stop till it was finished. They have started one this week too but we have had a few interruptions this week.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Another Lead Teacher Day..

Today during Doughnut news I learnt that we could use Picassa to reduce the size of photos that one might want to upload to animoto or picture trail. We also had a buddy to coach us with our Action Research. It was nice to share what I have done so far with my action research and listen to mu buddy and see what she has done. My favourite part was BJ sharing the use of ipods in N.American school. I wish kids at our school would have these for learning. It is easier to use and takes less space.
Today I actually talked about how I integrated ICT into  my Literacy Programme in response to one of our collegues' question. I felt really good about doing that.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

A great week

This week most of the children in my class were able to independently save their kid-pix picture into their folders. They were eager to support each other. They also used their usernames and passwords to log into their home page. Our school had the pleasure of hosting some teachers from Australia for the day. Little Miss B from my class shared what we were learning and the goals. She shared our enviro scrapbook with them. Other children showed the visitors the various ICT tools we use in our class. On friday we created a podcast in response to Greedy Cat. From Monday to Thursday the children have turns to create a picture of a food item for him using Kid-pix. It is a healthy diet for Greedy cat. On Friday we compiled it together. Well done to my little people.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Action Research

As I have taken part in the action research I spent some time (Thank God for the holidays) reading up about action research and have set up a wiki to share my observations and how I am going to go about it. Can't wait for Term 2 to begin. Hopefully most children in my class will have improved in their Reading and comprehension and also be able to use some ICT tools independently and effectively by the end of term 2. I need to see a great difference in my kids' learning. I want to engage them and make them life long learners....!!! Will be putting my wiki link up soon. Need to get permission from my parents in the first week of Term 2.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

My class Blog 2010

I'm feeling really excited after getting all permissions from my children's parents to set up a blog. A new class blog for 2010! It is really early in the year and so lots of the work will be done by me with the children. Hopefully later in the year children will use tools to show their learning independently. Anyway, here is the link. Please do visit us and leave a comment or some ideas that we could do.

Cluster LT day

We started by members sharing ideas fom Learning @ schools. It was nice to hear about these ideas. BJ then reintroduced us to Action Research which sounds really exciting, although I need to read up and look at work other people have done. Wish I had more time in the day! AR starts with a problem and then we find ways to solve or minimise the problem. Our team have come up with incorporating e-learning into the literacy programme. We will work on this all year.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Lead Teacher Release

A very fruitful 3 days. The focus being e-portfolios. My teams were busy setting up goals and success criterias for their pupils. I worked alongside children supporting them to log in and type in their goals on their K-net page. Wow! the year 2's were really onto it. Lots of them were able to log in with just alittle help/reminder and after being at school for a year they could recognise the letters to use the keyboard to input their goals. I was really amazed and enjoyed watching them do this. Well done to all our teachers last year that helped these kids. Your efforts have paid off. The children can only get better from here on. Some Year 1 classes had sessions with me to learn to log in using a username and password. They were eager to do this. The rest of the time I put in goals for classes. I also showed my class how to use Photo booth and take pictures of buddies to put on their More about me page. The looks and excitement in their eyes and voices was something not to be missed. Hopefully everyone benefitted from this release. I got to see  different ways goals and success criterias were written and got to meet alot of kids from the syndicate.

Friday, January 29, 2010


YES! It is a new academic year next week, just can't wait to get started, well not quite, as I am still jet-lagged after my trip to my hometown, India. It was a great time with family and friends. Anyway, it's back to work or should I say, back to what I love doing! Looking forward to meeting my new little guys and working with them. I'm sure it's going to be another great year of learning and doing fun things together. We will first learn the basics of using a digital cam. This year I aim to let kids investigate for themselves and for them to show/teach me ICT skills, instead of me telling them straightaway how something is done.
On the other hand, I am a bit nervous about my role this year especially as I have two teams to support. Will try my best to be useful, supportive and available.