Tech Task #12

March 11, 2009

For tech task #12 we were asked to find a video that incorporates good shots and angles. I found this mazda commercial that I think fits the bill. I liked that this commercial starts by establishing where it takes place and also the point of view that we will be focusing on for the rest of the video. I also really liked the shot where you can see the dog in the rearview mirror because then it is like we are looking from the car’s viewpoint. Finally this commercial is just funny. I hope you enjoy it!



March 5, 2009

I made a quick video using a bunch of different pictures of my family using animoto that I want to share. I am using it for a presentation in my ECCU class. For the presentation we need to bring artifacts that represent who were are. I wanted to highlight how important all of these people have been and continue to be to the person that I am, so I though this would be a great way to do it. I must say that I really like the way that animoto did all the editing for me because I can be very indecisive and it was nice to just have it laid out for me. I’m also not even that sure that my editing skills would compare, oh well. I hope you enjoy the video!

Here it is!

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March 4, 2009

Last Wednesday’s class we heard from Alan Levine on digital storytelling, and he showed us his wiki on 50 web2.0 ways to tell a story. As a tech task this week we were also told to use at two of these 5o ways to tell one of our own stories. So I started playing around and of course got easily distracted. I ended up not telling a traditional story in the sense that I did not add any text. Essentially I created a slideshow of my wedding using smilebox. I had added text to many of the pictures but I felt like it didn’t belong, and that the pictures were strong enough images to tell the story by themselves. I found smilebox to be the easiest tool that I have used so far. I really liked that I was just able to drag and drop images rather than waiting for them all to upload, only to realize half of them didn’t work. I did have a few things that I think could have been improved in smilebox though. First there is an option to zoom in on your picture, but not one to zoom out, so I found that quite a few pictures were being cut off because of that. Also the was no way to remove the box that was meant for text in my theme so the empty text boxes had to remain on the slideshow. Lastly there is not an option to record your own audio. Although this particular slideshow distracted me from the real assignment I am still glad that I made it because it is did allow me to create something that will help me remember the story of my wedding in a different format than what I already have. It also allows me the chance to share some of my favorite moments from that day with a larger audience. So I posted my final product so far below, hope you enjoy it!

I also have to mention that all the photographs were taken by Andy Sammons.

He was such a fun photographer to work with.

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Wedding Slideshow
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Mentorship Update

March 4, 2009

This week I had my first experience with Skype. A classmate, Krysta, and I are both mentoring Chad Brannon’s class and on Monday ad the opportunity to Skype with them for the Read Across America Day (which was also Dr. Suess’s birthday) It was really cool to be able to connect with the class in an almost face to face way. Krysta and I were put onto the screen at the front of the room, where as Chad pointed out our “heads were huge!” Since the class is starting a new unit on genetics we read a article about twins who were purposely separated in order to test the nature versus nurture debate. I think the highlight for me though was being able to interact with the studnets and seeing how engaged they were just by having us there. 

With Maura Mortiz’s class I have been reading their essays in google docs and then giving them feedback on what I have read. It is pretty cool to have access to their essays and to be able to be a part of the process from a distance. However one thing that I have found frustrating is that when I just glance at the docs on my igoogle page it only shows when I last edited them not the students so I had no way of knowing when something had been changed without directly going into the document. Also I feel a bit disconnected from it because other than the first introduction I haven’t really been in communication with the students, I leave them messages and they make changes but don’t response to me. I have been very impressed with their writing so far though, and i really enjoy the piece that they are writing about too, I will admit I do feel a bit cautious at times about leaving feedback though as I am not always that confident with my own writing skills. Overall though I am really enjoying it all and can’t wait to see what the next few weeks will hold.


Tech Task #10

February 25, 2009

The object of this tech task was to sell yourself using only four pictures. I found this very difficult. Not because I wanted to use more than four pictures, but because I have a hard time with the idea of selling myself to someone. In the end though I decided to go with the very simple idea of I would not be who I was today without the people that I surround myself with. The people that are close to me make up my world. Who they are and the decisions they make greatly affects me and who I am right now, who I was in the past, and who I will be in the future. 

I used glogster for the project like many of my classmates, as it was something I had never tried before. It is a very user friendly program and allows you to use some great effects without much effort. I did get a little frustrated when I went to save my glog and I got timed out and had to start all over again. However that was my fault not glogster’s. My final product really doesn’t showcase what you can do with glogger but I again wanted to keep it simple.

I had troubles getting it to embed so it can be viewed at the following link: http://jhbest.glogster.com/ecmp-355


Mastercard video

February 23, 2009

Posted below is my mastercard video for tech task #9. As I was uploading it this morning I was checking my google reader and realized that one of my classmates videos was really similar to mine. Check out Marcy’s blog to see it. I was really glad too see that I wasn’t alone in the world when it came to this problem with my dog. All the pictures in my video are unfortunately actually items that he has wrecked, it sure is a good thing he is cute! 

I made my video using imovie, which although I had used before, I found that I was pretty rusty, and that it provided its challenges. I’m also a little disappointed with the quality of the video after it uploaded, but it was my first crack at putting a video on youtube so hopefully next time goes smoother. I hope you enjoy the video!


Mentoring Project

February 13, 2009

For my ECMP 355 class we are participating in a project where we are working collaboratively with practicing teachers and their classrooms. I have had a chance to connect with the three rooms that I am going to be working with. I thought I would share with you some of the things that I will be doing with these classrooms.

One of the teachers that I am working with is Chad Brannon and his grade 7 science class. Chad’s class has a wiki set up, on which I was able to send a message introducing myself a bit to the students. They also have just finished an large online project on the Body Systems. They will be starting a new unit on Genetics in a couple weeks that I will be getting a chance to be involved in. A colleague of mine,who will also be mentoring this class, and I are also hoping to get together and Skype into the class before then to get to know them a bit more.

Another teacher that I will be working with is Maura Moritz. She has an Elements of Composition class that I am starting to work with. The class has students from grade 9-12. The students have read the story “A Brief Moment in the Life of Angus Bethune.” by Chris Crutcher and are now writing a collaborative essay on the writing style used in the story. I am working with three different student groups using google documents as a way for me to see their work and give feedback. It also allows them to share their work with each other.

Finally, I am working with Stephanie Attfield, who teaches 4 math classes and 1 pre-algebra class. We are still working on figuring out exactly what we are going to be doing but she has suggested looking at linking math skills with career opportunities. I am looking forward to see what we can develop.

I am really excited for all of these opportunities, and the chance to work with each one of these teachers. I am hoping that I will be able to contribute to their classes in a positive way and also that I will be able to take away some great ideas about how to successfully incorporate technology into the classroom. If you are one of the many teachers participating in this mentorship program thank you for this great learning and networking opportunity.