Archive | January, 2012

Day 6: Take the Challenge!

31 Jan

I’m back!   However, I need to let you know that I may go pretty slow today.  While staying in Tucson, I stayed in the ER and did a lot of tests and even a CT scan…but they found nothing and said I am a very healthy person in general.  They had no idea about my symptoms.   However, right now, my stomach hurts so badly that I don’t want to eat anything.  I am pretty weak right now, but I will try my best to help you today.  Also because of this sickness, I feel sorry that I couldn’t finish reading your assignments.  I will give them back to you all next Tuesday. Thanks for understanding.


I checked your e-portfolio last night and found only a few of you have completed the project of designing a learning environment.  Let’s take a look of their projects and give them some feedback.


Do you think that technology also changes the classroom?  Think about the learning environment you and your peers designed, what does technology integration look like in a K-12 classroom?  Do you learn technology or do you learn WITH technology?  Are there any other different kinds of 21st century classroom?

There are 5 characteristics of a meaningful learning environment and there are 5 levels of technology integration in the classroom. Let’s watch a short video clip of a meaningful learning environment where technology is an integral part. Where would you place this lesson on the matrix? How about this lesson? How about your favorite activities from your own school experience? How do these characteristics compare to the characteristics of effective technology-supported content learning tasks from Chapter 2 in your text?


There are so many things I want you to know about teaching in K12 learning environments. Each of you is from a different background, has different interests, and different motivations for learning — alot like the students you will teach.

Teaching is not an easy job.  It can be very challenging.  As we mentioned before, the most difficult thing probably is to know your students.  Therefore, I want to challenge you to go through our Boot Camp website.  Each of you need to complete three pages of the website and complete this form.  If you miss the class today, you need to do four pages.

For Thursday:

1.  Finish your learning environment.

2. Finish your Teacher Boot Camp Response.




Day 5: Creating a Learning Environment

26 Jan

We have talked about 21st century learners, teachers and different standards in the past three class periods.  How do you feel?  Do you think teaching is a big challenge?  What is the most challenging part to you?  To know your learners?  To adopt TPACK model in your class?  To choose appropriate tools?  Or to meet the standards?  Can any of you share one thing that you think of as the biggest challenge to you right now?

However, I also think teaching can be an art.  Imagine that you are playing with the play-doh.  Teaching can be like that.  You can make it more effective and pleasant, right?  Learning environment is one thing that teachers can play with and thus maybe motivate and engage your learners more.  Before we talk about how to create your ideal learning environment, think about the role of technology in our life again.  Does technology change your room setting?  Let’s take a look at this interactive Home Technology Environment.

Does this give you some idea about what you can add in your learning environment?  Let’s create our own now.

The tool we are using is called Floorplanner (you are welcome to use another tool if you have one available) to sketch what our ideal learning environment [classroom] will look like. Once you’ve created an account, complete the 12-step tutorial to help you learn more about how to use the tool. Keep in mind that the free version of the tool will only allow you to create ONE floorplan. After creating your ideal learning environment, use create a screen shot of the image and insert it into your portfolio.

Then, you need to go back to your e-portfolio and create a new page and name it “Creating a Learning Environment”.

On your “Creating a Learning Environment” page, you should:

  1. insert the image of your learning environment
  2. have a paragraph that describes why you chose the design
  3. identify highlights of the room
  4. explain how the design reflects the needs of the learners and of the curriculum.
  5. give a sense of what it would be like to spend time in your classroom.
  6. describe  your students and yourself (their teacher).

The page should be 3-4 paragraphs in length. For an example of this assignment, see Sarah’s Portfolio.

For Tuesday:

1. Complete your reading guide 2 and upload to your assignment page by 12 pm next Monday.

2. Complete you layout of the learning environment and the new page “Creating a Learning Environment” in your e-portfolio.

Have a nice weekend!

Day 4: Are You Ready to Be a 21st Century Teacher?

24 Jan


It is a pleasure to read your e-portfolio during this wet weekend.  I enjoy all of them a lot!  Now, please take about five minutes to quickly “browse” your peers’ e-portfolio and give them some feedback.


What is your opinion about “digital native” and “digital immigrant”?   Think about these five questions and let’s talk about it.

  1. How does the idea of a digital generation impact your potential to meet the needs of your future students? Use data from Kaiser Family Foundation report on media use by children to explain your answer.
  2. Read “The Myth of the Digital Native” and think about the argument and your experiences.  Do you see yourself a digital native or a digital immigrant?  If you could have a chance to talk to Marc Prensky, what would you say?  Do you agree or disagree with him?  If you agree with him, why?  If you disagree with him, how would you argue with him?
  3. Read this short article about digital media use among P-12 teachers. How has this changed since you were in P-12? You can view the entire “Digitally Inclined” report here.
  4. Come up with 3 “Beloit List” examples for the class of 2024. Be prepared to share these in class tomorrow.
  5. Read “Digital Nativism” by Jamie McKenzie. Revisit what we talked about in class. Who is right? Who is wrong? What does this mean for teaching and learning in your classroom?


Before we talk about what TPACK means, let’s talk about chapter 1 in our textbook.  What did you learn after reading chapter 1?

  • Definition of technology?
  • What is learning?
  • What is teaching?
  • What is technology integration?
  • Standards?
  • Content area?

So…chapter 1 leads us back to one of the guiding questions we had for the two video clips we watched last Thursday…

What is the role of teacher in the 21st century?  What should a teacher in the 21st century know?  Let’s watch this short clip to get the basic idea about TPACK.

Now, do you understand what TPACK means?  Let’s take a look at this Presentation.

Here are some supplementary resources related to TAPCK.

Dr. Matthew Koehler’s TPACK website

Dr. Koehler and Dr. Mishra’s Article: What Is Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK)?
(Click Full-Text)

Application of TPACK

Learning something abstract is always difficult.  In Chinese, we have a saying that it is like you are talking about martial arts on the paper.  A coach can’t always use simulation or imagination to teach his players to play a good game.  Therefore, let’s take a look at how teachers in a school in South Carolina put TPACK into practice. (Here is the report of this school.)


  • CONTENT STANDARD– Georgia State Standards
    As teachers, we don’t really choose what we are going to teach. This is mandated at the local, state, and national levels. In the state of Georgia, curriculum standards are called “Georgia Performance Standards” and they are written for every grade level K-12 and most subject areas.If you don’t see your subject area listed (subjects such as health, family and consumer science, character education, and a few others) you can click on the link right below the Georgia Performance Standards tab to view the QCC standards – the predecessor to the GPS (not all subjects have made the conversion yet). Possible standards to use if you are interested in speech therapy and special education.  Send me an email if you’re having trouble choosing something or can’t find what you are looking for.
  • CONTENT STANDARD–National Standard
    It’s not just content standards that need to be addressed while teaching. There are national educational technology standards(NETS) for K-12. In my opinion, these standards focus on good teaching and learning – not simply on technology use. Your text is based on these national standards and contains a chapter that addresses the first four standards (we’ll talk about 5 and 6 all semester):

    1. Creativity and Innovation
    2. Communication and Collaboration
    3. Research and Information Fluency
    4. Critical thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making
    5. Digital Citizenship
    6. Technology Operations and Concepts

    Another framework I like for my own research interest is the Partnership for 21st Century Skills.  This framework covers the literacies listed in chapter 1 in our textbook.

For Thursday:

  1. After talking about learners and teachers, another important component in your teaching is the environment.  Think about the classrooms you have been to…do you like them?  If you don’t like them, why?  If you are invited to create a learning environment, what kind of learning environment will you create?  We will work on designing a 21st century classroom this Thursday.  However, I feel sorry that I won’t be able to come this Thursday.  I am going to have a workshop presentation in a conference in Tucson, AZ.   Gretchen will be here and teach you all how to create your ideal learning environment.  If you bring your sketches to share with the class, she might give you a late pass!  You might want to envision your classroom right now…think about hardware, software, layout…etc.  You are the teacher, so you are the BOSS!
  2. Keep thinking about your future students.  The Georgia Performance Standards might give you some more specific ideas.
  3. Read chapter 2 in the textbook and complete the reading guide.  You need to complete four reading guides this semester; therefore, it is OK if you want to skip this one.  If you want to finish reading guide 2 in case there will be too many papers for you to complete later this semester, please upload your reading guide 2 to your assignment page.  RG2 is due at noon (12PM) on Jan. 30 (Mon).

Day 3: e-Portfolio and More about Learners

19 Jan

Before we start today, let’s make sure everyone has completed the basic required tasks.  If you haven’t done it yet, please complete what you missed by 12 PM Saturday (Jan. 21).  Thanks!

  1. Student Information Sheet
  2. My e-Portfolio Form
  3. Learning Story


We created the “Home” page in our e-Portfolio this Tuesday.  Today, we are going to create the “About Me” page and the “Assignment” page.  I’ve noticed that we have some pioneers who created the “About Me” page as well.  You might be able to assist your classmates today.  🙂

  • Create the “Home” page for your e-portfolio
    • Give the e-Portfolio a name (maybe?)
    • List several things that you want to learn this semester
    • Insert an image
  • Create an “About Me” page
    • Write 2-3 paragraphs about yourself
    • Include several links to your favorite websites
    • Insert at least one image
  • Create an “Assignment” page

After creating these 3 pages, let’s take a quick look at everyone’s e-Portfolio and give each other some feedback.


How different are today’s learners and the learners 20 years ago?  What differences can you think about?  Let’s make a list together.

Is technology a big idea and the main theme emerging from our list?  How do you define technology?  In Larry Cuban’s book “Teachers and Machines: The Classroom Use of Technology since 1920”, he proposed that technology is the tool.  Therefore, a pen can be a technology.  Technology does not need to be a machine.  Technology can be multiple.  That is why you will see this term “ICTs” nowadays.  ICTs stands for “Information and Communication Technologies”.  However, some people believe that these tools are good for communication.  Communications are multiple.  Hence, you will see ICT (Information and Commnications Technology) sometimes.  But, no matter which term you use, the main purpose is to help our learners to learn.  It is very SIGNIFICANT for you, as an educator, to know your learners.

But, who are the 21st century learners?  Let’s watch the first video clip and talk about the ideas embedded in this video.

How Will You Teach Me in the 21st Century?

Now, let’s see how educators and researchers think about the 21st century learners.

The 21st Century Learners

Guiding Questions:

  • What is the big idea you get from this video clip?
  • Any similarity or difference form the previous video clip?
  • How important is the content?
  • How important is the skill?
  • How do you think about informal learning and formal learning?
  • Did you hear the term “digital native”?  Do you think you are one?
  • What is the role of teacher in the 21st century then?

Read about Class of 2015

Marc Prensky coined the terms “digital native” and “digital immigrant” to differentiate different generations.  People who were born after 1982 are “digital natives” who will be your future students.  People like me, who were born before 1982, are old generations and thus termed “digital immigrants”.  Based on this approach, you will find that there are still a lot of “digital immigrants” in today’s schools.  Therefore, YOU are important.  You are here learning new technologies and hopefully you can help your colleagues and students in the future.

For Next Tuesday:

  1. Make sure that you have 3 pages in your e-portfolio.  If you have question about this, feel free to email me or find some self-teaching tips in the “Resources” page.  If you still have question after reading those tips, just email me.
  2. Read Chapter 1 in your textbook– complete the Chapter 1 reading guide. (You are required to complete 4 of the 6 reading guides over the course of the semester.)
  3. How do you think about digital native and digital immigrant?  Here are some more supplementary readings about this topic (or argument).  Based on our class discussion, the video clips, readings, and your personal opinion, respond to 3 of the following questions.  You can upload the file to the assignment page in your e-portfolio.  If you prefer writing, you can submit the paper next Tuesday.
    1. How does the idea of a digital generation impact your potential to meet the needs of your future students? Use data from Kaiser Family Foundation report on media use by children to explain your answer.
    2. Read “The Myth of the Digital Native” and think about the argument and your experiences.  Do you see yourself a digital native or a digital immigrant?  If you could have a chance to talk to Marc Prensky, what would you say?  Do you agree or disagree with him?  If you agree with him, why?  If you disagree with him, how would you argue with him?
    3. Read this short article about digital media use among P-12 teachers. How has this changed since you were in P-12? You can view the entire “Digitally Inclined” report here.
    4. Come up with 3 “Beloit List” examples for the class of 2024. Be prepared to share these in class tomorrow.
    5. Read “Digital Nativism” by Jamie McKenzie. Revisit what we talked about in class. Who is right? Who is wrong? What does this mean for teaching and learning in your classroom?
  4. Send me one of your photo or tell me which photo I can use in your e-portfolio…I want to set up a page where you can find your peers’ e-portfolios.
  5. Think about who your future students will be for the assignments and projects in this class.  Which grade level?  Prek-2?  Elementary school students? Middle school students?  High school students?  And which subject do you want to focus on?  Math? Language art? Science? Social studies?

Last, this coming Sunday is Chinese New Year’s Eve.  It is a tradition that we get together with families on that day.  One exciting thing about Chinese New Year is the red envelope.  Children can get a red envelope from the elderly.  Why is it exciting?  Because the elderly will put money in the red envelope…If you are in a big family, then you can earn a lot of money during Chinese New Year.  🙂  So, Happy Chinese New Year!

Day Two: More about the Course and Create Your e-Portfolio

17 Jan

Welcome back!  I hope you all had a great MLK holiday weekend.  I know some of you are new to this class, so I will try my best to assist you to catch up with the pioneers.  If you have any question, feel free to ask me questions after the class.  Pioneers, I enjoyed reading your information a lot during the long weekend.  Thanks for sharing those things with me.

New Students: I need you to review last Thursday’s post to get the basic information about the class, to complete the student information sheet and your learning story.  You can find the post on the calendar on your right hand side of the page.

Pioneers: I need you to turn in your learning story.

We are going to start our journey for this semester.  Are you ready?


It is important to know the rules and get ready for the journey; therefore, let’s review the syllabus once again to make sure we all know the rules of the game. What questions do you still have?  Feel free to ask now.


Hopefully, you’re getting a better understanding of what our course is about. We’ll be looking at technology “in your life” and “in your classroom”. The more you find ways to personally apply what you learn in our class, the more you will reap the benefits of your new knowledge.

So – how do you learn? Before today’s class, you wrote a story about a time that you learned how to do something. As a class, we’ll share what we learned and how we learned it.

Guiding Questions:

  • What did you write about?
    • Was it something you really wanted to learn?
    • Was it something you were required to learn?
    • Was it something you wanted to explore?
  • Why was this learning experience special?
  • Did someone teach you?  Or you taught yourself?
  • Did your motivation to learn the skill affect how quickly you learned it?
  • Did you utilize some type of learning tool to acquire the skill?
  • Do you still possess the skill?
  • If you were to teach someone this same skill – would you teach them the same way?
  • What does any of this have to do with technology in your life and in your future classroom?

Activity– Aderhold Scavenger Hunt

We usually say people learn in different ways.  Some people are visual learners; others are auditory learners; still others are kinesthetic learners.  It is important to think about these different learning styles when you design your class.  Now, we are going to play a game to intermingle at least two of the learning styles, visual and kinesthetic.

Did you find out more fun facts about Aderhold?  Did you enjoy working with your partners?  Did you enjoy the class?  This is part of your participation.  Let’s talk about participation for a few minutes, since participation will take 10% of your final grade in this course.  In this course, participation is not based solely on attendance. Just showing up for class isn’t enough.

What should participation look like? What gets in the way of participating? How can a class be structured so that it’s easy to participate? How is participation viewed differently from a teacher/student perspective? Why does this matter in a technology course?


Even if you don’t have a website, you probably already have an online presence – through Facebook, Twitter, etc. As a learner in the 21st century – it is important for you to know how to create your own website. We’ll be working on this project, the e-portfolio, throughout the semester. Today, we’ll build the structure of your site, create an introduction page, and write your autobiography page. You’ll be using your website throughout the semester to store, display, and reflect upon course projects and readings.

Google Sites is like a combination website, blog, and wiki all rolled into one. We’ll be using it for all three functions. You’re going to be really amazed at what you can create without knowing anything about html code!


Justine’s Class Project Site

Thomas Lay After-School Program

K-12 Classroom Website

Sample EDIT 2000 e-Portfolio


  • Create the homepage for your e-portfolio
    • Insert an image
    • List several things that you want to learn this semester
  • Create an “About Me” page
    • Insert at least one image
    • Include several links to your favorite websites
    • Write 2-3 paragraphs about yourself

We’re just getting comfortable with the tool – so we’ll mess up a few times – but in a few weeks we won’t remember what is was like to not be able to create webpages. Here’s a link to the Help section for Google Sites if you have questions.

For Thursday:

  1. Make sure you finish the student information sheet and your learning story.  All learning stories turned in after Thursday will be considered late submission.
  2. Finish your “Home” and “About Me” pages in your e-portfolio.  We will share with each other on Thursday.
  3. Complete the “My e-Portfolio Form“.
  4. Make sure you have the textbook by Thursday. We will start to read the first chapter this Thursday.

** If you have any problems about your e-portfolio, feel free to email me any time.




First Day of EDIT 2000

12 Jan

What do you need to know for the first day of class? You need to know what the class is about, who your instructor is, what materials you will need, and what you will be doing this semester. I’m going to briefly cover all of these things during today’s class.

While you wait for class to begin, please complete the following tasks.  Thanks!

  1. Create a name card and try to know at least one of your classmates’ name.
  2. Create a Gmail account if you don’t have one.
  3. Complete the student information sheet.

What is this class about?
It’s about learning to use technology effectively in your own life so that you can (and will) use it effectively in a K-12 classroom. You can view the syllabus for more of the fine print – but that’s the main idea of the course.

Who is your instructor?
My name is Szu-Yueh Justine Chien.  Feel hard to pronounce my Chinese name? Then you can just call me Justine.  I am currently a doctoral student in Learning, Design, and Technology program at UGA.  I was an English teacher in a high school in Taiwan before.  In addition to that, I also taught in elementary schools, middle schools and a college before.  I just LOVE teaching!  I came to the States to learn more about technology integration because I hate seeing my students learning the same textbooks I used in high school.  I want to help foreign language learners to fall in love with whatever foreign languages they are learning.  The advancement in technology can help so much in language education, I believe. Want to know more about me?  Add me on Facebook, Twitter (though I seldom Tweet), or my personal blog.

What materials do you need?
The course textbook: Supporting Learning with Technology: Essentials of Classroom Practice – UGA custom edition.  Except for the textbook, you may need an USB drive, a headset or microphone.  You may need a digital camera, but not required.  You can get these from OIT on the second floor in this building.

You’ll need an open mind and a willingness to try things you thought you couldn’t do. You’ll also need to be able to work independently – as this is a fast-paced course that requires your full participation. That means sometimes having to figure out something on your own – rather than waiting to get the answer from me or a classmate.

If you think you have these ready, then you are pretty much set for this semester.

What will you be doing this semester?
You’ll be learning more about technology tools that you can use in your life now. And you’ll apply what you’ve learned to a K-12 classroom setting. All of this will be done through project-based learning. Don’t know what that is? I promise you will soon enough. You’ll be doing a lot of work, you won’t be bored, and you certainly won’t hear yourself saying, “when am I ever going to use this?”

For Tuesday (Jan. 17):

  1. Complete the student information sheet
  2. Get your textbook (Still can get it in the UGA bookstore)
  3. Find a photo that you would like to use it on your autobiography website and also send it to me.
  4. Most important: Write a story about a time you learned how to do something: ride a bike, drive a stick shift, multiply fractions, iron a shirt, etc. It could be something you learned 10 years ago or just last week. This should take at least 2 handwritten pages (or 1 1/2 typed pages). It’s important for you to learn early on that I loooooove details. I can never get enough detail. So . . . be detailed! This is due at the beginning of class on Thursday – no excuses!
  5. Try to think about a student group that you want to focus on for the assignments in this semester. Grade level? Subject?  That will be helpful during this semester.

That’s pretty much for today and next Tuesday.  Have a nice weekend and see you next Tuesday!