Tuesday, April 7, 2009

tech task #12 Elements of Good Movie

I found a trailer for new movie that just came out April 3, 2009, called Crank. This preview had a lot of excellent examples of numerous angles, (high, medium, low, close ups, etc) great shots, and definitely great production value as I for sure want to see this movie after watching the clip!

Final Project: How To Video

For my final project I chose to do a "how to" video on oil painting.

Before this project I had never used oil paints before, so this was a new challenge for me both mechanically and technically. I am a visual arts major in the arts ed. program so I thought this video would be a good way to bring technology into an art class, since it can be challenging to find useful ways to incorporate technology into this subject area. Perhaps I can make use of this during my internship or in my future classroom, by showing the video to students and having them create their own.

To begin the process of creating this video I first had to gather the materials: a canvas, paints, paint thinner, brushes, palette, and pencils. The next step was to find an image, I found a great photograph of some lilies in black and white. As I worked on my painting I stopped after every step to take pictures of the process in order to document step-by-step. Once I finished the painting I chose the best pictures and put them into Windows Movie Maker. Next I added text over some of the images to clearly display the step or process. Lastly I recorded my own instructions on a program called Sound Recorder, using my built-in microphone on my laptop. For some reason I had trouble with the voice recordings saving in order and has to re-record some parts as a result. Otherwise my video went quite smoothly, which was surprising considering this was only my second time using Movie Maker. Once I finished my video I uploaded it to youtube:

Monday, April 6, 2009

Tech Task #15 Google Map: "Regina Hot Spots"

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tech task #3

Our task was to follow someone's blog that was not in our class. I choose to follow The KinderKids' Classroom blog. I enjoyed reading this blog; I was able to keep up with what the students were learning about through posts, pictures, and videos. I thought this would be a great idea to create a classroom blog, not only is it a fun way for students to reflect on what they've learned, but its also a great way for parents to have easy communication with the class and observe what their children are learning.

tech task #18 Future Classroom

Before taking this class my vision of my future classroom was a little different. I knew it would be necessary to have my students work on computers, perhaps working on their typing skills or researching a topic; the same type of tasks that I used to use in school. However, now, after taking this class I realize how important it is to use technology in the classroom. The generation of students I will be teaching will have grown up using computers and other forms of technology all their lives. Therefore, it is my job to take advantage of their technological skills and make use of them in the classroom, rather than having them learn everything the "old fashion" way that i mostly grew up with. I now envision my future classroom equipped with laptops and a smartboard. I have already begun thinking of lessons and activities I can do with my students, such as blogger or Google tools or Second Life, etc. I'm an arts education student so it may be a slight challenge to fully incorporate as much technology into my subject area in comparison to other subject. I am prepared to do my best to incorporate technology into my classroom one way or another to ensure my students have a positive experience that can benefit them as learners.

Friday, April 3, 2009


Tech Task #14: 2 podcasts I found interesting

1. Educational

For my educational podcast I found one by The Whole Child ASCD (the association for supervision and curriculum development) on the topic of How Urban Schools Work Beyond the Boundaries of Social and Economical Conditions. The podcast consisted of three guest interviews. (This can be found on their website: www.wholechildeducation.org/podcasts )

The first was Dr. Pedro Negara who shared his personal opinion on the subject and made some very good points. He talked about the ways schools are strongly influenced by social and economical conditions that exist in the urban environment. He went on to point out how inequality has a major effect in schools as well as a definite impact on students. Children with unmet personal needs such as healthcare and food have a clear disadvantage in the classroom. It is unfair to ignore the seriousness of these issues; therefore schools are beginning to take action. The schools are now providing healthcare amenities such as doctors, dentists and optometrists for disadvantaged students. Some schools are also creating scholarships specifically for low income students. I think inequality in the classroom is a major issue that seems to have been ignored in the past, so it is crucial for action to take place. It’s great to see that schools are becoming more and more involved in improving this concern.

The second guest was CEO of the National Urban Alliance, Yvette Jackson, who spoke about her belief that a pedagogy of confidence is key to unlocking ultimate potential in students. Yvette states that all students are capable of high intellectual development given the right inspiration and support. She believes that confidence in students is key to reach their full potential and ensure a successful future. This process begins with the teachers as they need confidence in their teaching in order to help their students achieve. With teachers and students working together and forming their own support system within the classroom academic success can become a reality for all students. I believe this concept is necessary within the classroom and I realize the importance of teachers needing to teach with confidence.

The last guest was Tatiana Epanchin, principal of Monarch Elementary Charter School in Oakland California, and director at the Parent Teacher Association. She enacted supportive programs for students and teachers in order to improve the school. Her action proved itself as Monarch Elementary won most improved school that year. She realized that the teachers lacked inspiration and parents lacked in participation, resulting in underachieving students. Tatiana worked on improving communication by having team and data meetings as well as involving the students by having classroom meetings every morning where they are free to express their thoughts and feeling in a safe environment. In my opinion the classroom needs to be a place with zero tolerance for harassment where students can feel safe to discuss anything, whether with the teacher or with the entire class. The learning environment is one of the most important elements in teaching. Without a safe and respectful classroom, students will withdrawal from reaching their full academic potential.

2. Personal Interest

For my personal pick of podcasts I chose a TED Talk video podcast on photography called Photography Connects us with the World by David Griffin, who is director of National Geographic (2008). I chose this podcast because I love photographs; I think they are absolutely beautiful and I would someday like to actually learn photography. Griffin begins by talking about “flash bulb” memory. This is when all the elements come together during a significant event to define not only the event but one’s emotional connection to it. This is what a photograph taps into when it affects a viewer. Griffin goes on to explain that anyone can capture a moment: “Everyone has at least one or two great photographs in them.” He also points out how a single photograph can tell a story, or a Visual Narrative. Griffin then went on to talk about the impact and importance of photo journalism and gave examples displaying how photography can be used to address some of the most important topics in life. From capturing serious subjects such as life’s issues and hardships to documenting a fun sea lion experience through a series of shots; the famous saying “a picture tells a thousand words” holds extreme truth.

Photography still fascinates me, I think because there are endless possibilities and no limits to subject. Every moment captured is unique and you can be sure that no matter what the subject is – someone can relate to it, which I think is what makes photographs a universal language on their own. A photo doesn’t need to be translated to be understood between cultures, which is what makes it such a magnificent piece of art.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Just a Picture

I was browsing through my pictures and came across this one from our family vacation to the Rocky Mountains in Grand Cashe a couple summers ago. I thought i would post it on my blog because is reminded me how much I'm looking forward to warmer weather and getting to pull out my flip-flops.