Archive | February, 2012

Creativity and Innovation- Day 2

28 Feb

My life is crazy since last Thursday…I want to share some of the things and events with you all.

First, I went to a fantastic school last Friday.  I got this notification last Thursday after class and decided to join my classmates for the field trip.  We went to the school in Hall County.  DaVinci Academy.  This is really a dream school for both students and teachers.  No principal.  Only 10 teachers and 240 students.  They were having the museum exhibition about Africa and Egypt last Friday.  Students do the research, set up the exhibition and explain everything to visitors all by themselves.  The students don’t have textbooks and the teachers create their own curriculum…this made parents a little bit concerned and worried in their first year.  However, the test scores from their students proved that they can still achieve the goals and all the standards.

Second, I met my research participants– the immigrant adolescents.  They share part of their stories with me and thus broaden my horizon about my research ideas and passion in working with immigrant children.

Last, I had a conversation with the Taiwanese professor and made some conclusions for our project…therefore, I want to talk about this telecommuncation project first.


March 10: Personal Intro Due

March 12-16 UGA spring break
March 20: Feedback to Intro Digital Stories Due
March 21-28:  VoiceThread part I
March 29-April 5: VoiceThread part II
April 10: Project Wrap-up

Two of you will be in a group to communicate with 3 Taiwanese students.  They are all elementary teachers.  Some of them are English teachers, but some are not…You will find out more fun facts about your partners later.

Personal Introduction Digital Story
1. Choose 10 photos that include your self image and you believe that can represent you or your story.
2. Talk about yourself.  There is no guiding questions or limitation about your story.  Share whatever you are comfortable with or whatever you are glad to share with others.
3. Reminder:  Based on the previous experience, we will suggest that you include some simple text in your images and talk slower…because they are all foreign language learners, right?
4. The story itself doesn’t need to be long.


I checked with Dr. Cramond and got the demonstration test of the creativity test they used in the Torrance Center.  Due to test security, we have no access to the real test.  However, the sample will give you some ideas about how creativity can be evaluated.


We didn’t finish this part last Thursday, so let’s finish it.

We all think about and share the traits of creative people in the Google Doc.  Let’s talk about them a little bit.

Some traits of creative people can be considered weird behavior.  As a teacher, do you think that you are prepared to help those creative kids?  Let’s watch this video of a creative girl.  What traits do you think she has?

Here are ten more video clips about this topic.  Each of you will be assigned one video clip and write a short paragraph about the big ideas you learned from that video clip.


One of the creativity and Innovation projects is the creation of Slowmation.  It’s very similar to digital stories.  We are going to try VoiceThread for the Communication with Taiwanese project.  For this Slowmation project, we are going to use another software named SAM Animation.

Slowmation is a project developed by Professor Garry Hoban at University of Wollongong in Australia.  Let’s watch some examples.

Dinosaurs– My favorite one…Can you believe that this was created by a four-year-old?

Using Technology to Communicate– Something fit in our course.

Pythagorean Theorem— created by EDIT 2000 students last May.  This is a 3D animation.  Great idea and set up..but the sound is a little fuzzy.

Shapes— Another EDIT 2000 students’ project.  A 2D animation.

Now, you need to learn how to create digital stories for both projects.  One is all about yourself and the other is a creation.

What is a story?  A story has the introduction, the climax and the end.  So, what you need to know is storyboarding.  Think about the plots.  This website, kdmc, can give you some rough ideas about storyboarding.  Or the digital storytelling website hosted by University of Houston can also give you some ideas.  For the Slowmation project, the story is usually about one minute.  To make that 1-minute story, you probably need 150 photos…because you may not get perfect images all the time.

Also, remember what we talk about the copyright issue.  If you want to use some background music, make sure that you are not breaking the rule.  We will talk more about this issue this Thursday.

I think this is enough for today…so,

For Thursday

1. Complete your Video Feedback and we will talk about the video clips this Thursday.

2. Think about your digital stories…for the Slowmation one, start to communicate with your partner.


Creativity and Innovation– Day 1

23 Feb

Before we start our new series, we have several housekeeping things that need to be done.

1. Web 2.0 tool commercial:  We don’t have a winner yet, because we still need to watch Meghana’s commercial.  Therefore, you all will get the feedback and scores next Tuesday.  We will also know the winner next Tuesday.  And I changed my mind…The grade of this assignment will be completely from the average score you get from your peers and me.  It makes me feel less authoritative. 🙂

2. If you get a note about your commercial project and communication paper, then you know what you miss.  There might be some possibilities for you to earn those points back in the future.  However, this is just a reminder for you to keep track of your assignment.

3. I uploaded the grade distribution of each project for this semester for now.  That’s the latest version; however, I may still reserve the right to change it.


1. Meghana’s commercial

2. Choose one classmate’s Web 2.0 tool and think about one way that you can use to enhance the communication and collaboration with your students, your students’ parents, other school teachers and administrative staff.

3. Update of the third project: We decided to try two different ways of communication.  The first one is a digital storytelling project.  You need to create digital stories and share it in a social network.  We are still thinking about possible social networks, but we will keep you updated.  The second one is the VoiceThread.  The professor in Taiwan has already purchased the updated version.  Once we start this project, you will get the invitation from VoiceThread.


Creativity is strongly encouraged in education.  Dr. Bonnie Cramond at UGA is one o the leading professors and researchers in this field.  If you are interested in this field, you can check the Torrance Center at UGA.

Let’s take a look at this creativity map.  What are the fun facts that you notice?

Now, let’s share the most creative products or things that you have created before.

There is a very common game to test your creativity…I really struggle with it a lot.  Let’s try it together.

Kindred Relationship


Some traits of creative people can be considered weird behavior.  As a teacher, do you think that you are prepared to help those creative kids?  Let’s watch this video of a creative girl.

Here are ten more video clips about this topic.  Each of you will be assigned one video clip and write a short paragraph about the big ideas you learned from that video clip.

After this, we will work on creating a chart of the traits of creative people.  This time, please choose a color to represent you.

For Tuesday:

1. Finish the paragraph about the video assigned to you.

2. Work on the chart of the traits of creative people.

3. Complete the reading guide for chapter 5…we will skip chapter 4 for now.  Remember, you need to do 4 reading guides this semester…so make sure you must do this one you can take a rest.

All of these are due at noon next Monday. 

4. I will finish all the grading of your assignment and project that are due before today and give you a grade report next Tuesday individually in class next Tuesday.  If you have any question about your grade, you can check with me then.

Have a nice weekend!

Communication and Collaboration– Last Day?! (Maybe)

21 Feb

I experienced the worst communication last week.  The hotel where we stayed last week has no service for cell phone at all.  The Internet service was also on and off.  My roommate needed to go to the hallway every five minutes to reconnect to the Internet.  Mine was a little bit better, but I still couldn’t get online last Wednesday night most of the time.  Therefore, I didn’t get to post our course blog in time.  It was very annoying when you needed to communicate with someone and the communication tools were not working at all.


I hope you are all excited about the class today, because we are going to have the Red Carpet Premium!!  I am so excited about all your commercials.  Instead of asking for volunteers to go the first, I will randomly choose the first one.

Now, we’ve watched most of the commercials.  Let’s try to answer several questions:

1. Choose one classmate’s Web 2.0 tool and think about one way that you can use to enhance the communication with your students, your students’ parents, other school teachers and administrative staff.

2. How can you use the tool to collaborate with others?


I am not sure whether this is the first video you created, but I am pretty sure that this is something that you spend a lot of time and energy in.  Think about other products that we are using in our daily life now.  Do you respect the copyright?  Do you know anything about plagiarism?  Let’s watch two videos.

How will you think if you find out others using your products or assignment without telling you?  Have you ever downloaded songs, movies or other media products illegally?  Do you buy the software?  Do you copy and paste texts from the websites to your papers?  There are so many things that can break the rules.  Here are some more resources related to this topic.

A Fair(y) Use Tale: A witty video on YouTube that shows the extreme of fair use using Disney movies fairly.

Creative Commons: How to license your work and find resources that you can use with permission

Google Advance Image Search: Where you can find images to use with permission Where you can find whether you break the rule of plagiarism  Similar to Turnitin, but free

For Thursday:

1. Remember that your Communication and Collaboration project is due tomorrow morning.

2. Make sure your commercial is uploaded to your e-portfolio with description

3. Create a new page in your e-portfolio and name it “Creativity and Innovation”.  Then create a sub-page under that page and write a short paragraph about the most creative idea or a new creation you have ever come up with before.



Communication and Collaboration

16 Feb

Hi all,

Today is your work day.  We are not going to meet face-to-face today.  All the best to your exams and assignments.  🙂

Again, if you have any question, just feel free to email me anytime.  I will respond to you asap during the conference.  Thanks!

Communication and Collaboration– Day 3

14 Feb

I sent out two emails to all of you last Friday.  If you didn’t get any email, please let me know.  Thanks!


I hope you will have much more time to play with Jing this week and make a good video.  Just remember to be careful about the most tricky part of Jing: the product link. I am looking forward to seeing all of your commercial next Tuesday!


We are going to work on our second project for the section of communication and collaboration.  Now, let’s answer one question:  Who are you communicating with at school?  Your students?  Definitely!  We spend a lot of time talking about this group of people.  The process of creating your infomercial is to help you think about possible tools that you can use to teach and communicate with them.  But there are still several groups of people that you need to communicate with in K-12 learning environment.  Parents, other teachers, and library media specialists, superintendents, and even teachers in other places……right?  Do you still remember the project we read in chapter 3?  The “Geography Mystery”?  Two teachers in different states work together.  Can you do that?  So this project is going to ask you think more deeply about all these possible communication.  You have several choices and you just need to choose one.

Group 1: Communication with Parents

Choice #1
Here is an interesting research paper showing an example of parent and teacher communication.  After reading this article, write a review and how you think this paper helps you or not in your future career. Develop a plan for using technology to communicate with parents.

Choice #2
Explore this interesting website and this review. Both authors explored several tools that can help teacher-parent communication.  After browsing the complete website and reading the review, tell me how you think about the tools and choose two tools that you think you will use in your classroom and how you are going to use it to communicate with parents.

Choice #3
Read this article.  Does this article help you understand more about parent-teacher communication?  Do you think it is a challenging task to communicate with parents?  How do you think about the parent role and the teacher role?  Do you think this theoretical framework will work?  Based on the theoretical framework, develop a plan for using technology to communicate with parents.

Group 2: Communication with Other Teachers

Watch this video, read this article, and this teacher’s blog post.  Then tell me how you think about teacher collaboration and how you are going to collaborate with other teachers in the future.  Write a short lesson plan as an example.

Group 3: Communication with Library Media Specialists

Read this article (you need the library Galileo password which you can find on the webpage of the UGA library).  Do you know about school library media specialists before?  Have you ever met one?  How do you think that you can possibly work with them in the future?  Except for your review and feedback to this article, you should also include a short lesson plan that you want to work with library media specialists.

Group 4: Communication with the World

Read this article and this article with a video clip embedded.  Think about how you can help your students or yourself to communicate with other learners and teachers around the world.  The second one may not be a good enough example; however, the assistive technology helps special education children broaden their horizon and connect to others.  It is an important way for children of special needs to learn how to communicate and collaborate with others.  After reading these two items, tell me your thoughts and write a short plan that you are going to use to help yourself and your students to communicate with others around the world.

Group 5: Lesson Planning (Think Like a Teacher, TLAT Project)

Identify a Georgia Performance Standard for your subject area/grade level that requires students to communicate and/or collaborate. Create a lesson plan that provides students with the opportunity to use technology to support learning your selected GPS Standard. Here is the writing guide.  Please download it as a Word document and then edit it.  Don’t send me the Google Doc link.


1) All responses should be at least 3 pages, double-spaced.

2) All responses should be in Word file and be uploaded to your assignment page in your e-portfolio.


I am working on this project right now, since it’s still winter break in Taiwan…We probably will start this communication practice project in mid-March and will work on it for a month.  More details coming soon!

For Thursday:

It’s a work day.  DON’t come to Aderhold, unless you want to use the computer in this lab to do your commercial.  You should work on your commercial and communication/ collaboration project.  Both projects are due on next Tuesday, Feb 21.


Communication and Collaboration– Day 2

9 Feb

I finished grading most of your assignments except for the Teacher Boot Camp responses and put the gradebook link accessible in this course blog.  Hope you all can see it.  Later I will send you my feedback to your assignments.  If you have questions about the grade, please email me.  Thanks!

There are several things that I want to talk about after grading your assignments.

1. The idea of “scaffold”.











2. Format: Word document.

3. If I find more that two typos in your assignment, I will take out 0.5 points.  Make sure you make good use of Word.  Use the spell check and grammar check.

4. Avoid unfinished sentences…

5. You can resubmit your assignment once to earn those points back.


We want to make this really serious and official like the commercials for the Super Bowl.  That’s why I will encourage you all to choose some new tools and spend a little bit time playing with it to know the basic ideas of that tool.  In addition, I want to see eight different tools to make it more like a real competition.  🙂

Let’s look at some professional ones.  Here is the list of the Super Bowl Commercials of 2012.  Which one is your favorite one?  Tell us why you like it.

Here is a Taiwanese commercial.  Tell me what you learn about this product after watching this commercial.

Here is another one in Korean.  How do you think about this one?

Here is the Time’s list of 25 best/worst infomercials.  I believe you will learn what are important for a good commercial after watching all these commercials.

All these are professional ones.  Let’s watch two commercials made by the students in other EDIT 2000 classes.



Now do you have much more ideas about what your commercials could be like?  Plan what you are going to include in your commercial.  You’re selling a product and teaching us a little about it – more like an infomercial.  Except for making the commercials, I also want you to be the judges.  Please list the criteria to evaluate your peers’ commercial here.  Then we will use this for next Tuesday’s evaluation.


Think about the tool you want to promote and the way you want to promote it.  You kind of need a storyboard or  a simple draft presentation.  Then you need to use the software Jing to create this commercial.

First, you need to download Jing and make sure it works.  With the free version you can only record 6 minutes or less. We want to stick to less than 2 minutes.  You’ll likely want to test out Jing a few times to make sure everything is recording properly.

You can have your tool as the screen image the entire time you are talking about the tool or you can have some powerpoint slides or other images to use along with the actual tool. If you’re absent from class today (or just need a refresher) view Jing tutorials here:

If you’re having trouble downloading Jing – you can try: Not quite as good as Jing – but it works.

External microphones are great if you don’t have a very loud voice.  If you don’t have a microphone or headset, you can check one out from room 232 Aderhold (you’ll need your student ID).


When you are finished, create a new page on your website called, “Communication and Collaboration.”  On that webpage, write a short description of your tool and why you chose it, provide a link to your tool, and provide a link to your Jing commercial.  A screenshot of your commercial would be great, too (and you can use Jing to create the screenshot!) This is due before we meet next Tuesday.

Fore Next Tuesday:

Finish your commercial.  The Oscar is going to be held in room 618 at 12:30 next Tuesday.  Each of you is competing for the best director, the best script writer, and the most creative one.  All of us will be the judges.  Can’t wait to see your commercials!

Communication and Collaboration

7 Feb

I finished grading part of your assignments and found that there are somethings that we need to make it a little bit clear.

1. If you haven’t done any reading guide yet, then you are already missing one assignment.  Some people have already done three and just need to finish one more; others have done two and just need two more; still others have done one or zero…then you should know that you need to do the rest of the chapters.  There are only six chapters in the book…so make sure that you have at least finished one reading guide before this weekend.  You can turn it in, but it will be considered late work and you will get one minus point.

2. As for the digital immigrants discussion, you are supposed to upload the file to the assignment page.  I only got three files.  However, I think that maybe I didn’t make it clear enough in the blog post and in my email.  Therefore, I will consider that a bonus point.  If you have submitted it already, you earned one bonus point already…For those who haven’t submitted, you can upload before we meet on Thursday.  Then you will earn one extra point as well.

3. You can now see everyone’s e-portfolio through our course blog.  I will suggest that you leave some comments to your classmates to let them know how you feel about their e-portfolio. It is always good to hear others’ voices.

Okay Dokey…so let’s move on.  From the things we’ve talked about so far, did you see how important communication is?  One big focus in all the standards that we have for 21st century teachers and learners is collaboration.  During collaboration, you need to communicate with others a lot.  So we will spend a few classes talking about this big idea.


What is communication? What is collaboration? What’s the difference between collaboration and cooperation? If you have read chapter 3, could you tell us the difference between collaboration and cooperation?

Let’s look at two images related to the ideas.

Think about the video clip we watched last week.  When the kids are working on publishing their own magazines, is that cooperation or collaboration?


What standards require communication? Collaboration? View the Georgia Performance Standards site to access K-12 content standards:

NETS Standard for Communication and Collaboration

Students use digital media and environments to communicate and work collaboratively, including at a distance, to support individual learning and contribute to the learning of others. Students:

  1. interact, collaborate, and publish with peers, experts, or others employing a variety of digital environments and media.
  2. communicate information and ideas effectively to multiple audiences using a variety of media and formats.
  3. develop cultural understanding and global awareness by engaging with learners of other cultures.
  4. contribute to project teams to produce original works or solve problems.

All these are expected for 21st century learners.  As a teacher, how can you do this and still make sure students understand shapes, the causes of the Civil War, parts of speech, and the phases of the moon? And don’t forget – your students are supposed to differentiate, be culturally responsive, make sure materials are accessible to all students and a host of other expectations. Oh – and the learning should be engaging to them . . Can technology help or hinder the process of communication and collaboration in K12 learning environments?


What kind of technologies do you use to communicate with your friends, families or teachers?  What kind of technologies do you use to collaborate with your peers while working on a project?

I use Skype a lot to communicate with friends and families back in Taiwan.  However, more and more communication tools just come out in the market in the past few years. A lot of people use Twitter nowadays.  What is Twitter?

One thing I use to collaborate with my peers the most is Google Doc.

There are many other communication and collaboration tools.  Go to the Go Web 2.0 site and you will find thousands of new tools. You might try exploring under the “kids”, “collaboration”, and/or “communication” tabs on this site will show you some additional tools you might want to learn more about.

Another great place to look is Edutecher. And the Matrix lists some tools as well.

Here are some popular ones that we might talk about in the next few classes if we have time.


Each of you is going to create a commercial about one technology tool. I am expecting to see some new tools instead of Skype or Facebook or Twitter!

Let’s look at some examples.



So what you need to do are:

1). Explore the tools and find one that think it is interesting and good for your teaching in the future.

2). Fill out the form to let us know which tool you choose.

3). Check out what others have chosen and do not choose the same tool.  You can find others’ choices here.

4). Start thinking about how you will create a commercial about your tool. What are its features? Why would a teacher, parent, administrator, resource teacher, and/or student use it?

5). We’ll be using a software called Jing to share what you know about your tool so you’ll need to download Jing before Thursday.

For Thursday:

1. Download Jing and make sure it works.

2. Complete the form about the tool you chose and start to think about how you are going to create your commercial.

3. Also, think about how you are going to evaluate the commercial.  Consider yourself the judge of Oscar.  We are going to brainstorm the criteria together.  I am not the one who has the power to judge your commercial.  🙂  You can list the criteria here.