McIntyre, Laura Lee, Tanya L. Eckert, Barbara H. Fiese, and Florence D. DiGennaro-Reed. "Family Concerns Surrounding Kindergarten Transition: A Comparison of Students in Special and General Education - Springer." Family Concerns Surrounding Kindergarten Transition: A Comparison of Students in Special and General Education - Springer. 1 Dec. 2010. Web. 7 Dec. 2014. .
The first site that I evaluated was bigredhair.com/boilerplate. My initial impression of the site was that it did not look professional. The print wasn't centered, there were links to a lot of other pages, but not a lot of content on the main page itself. I did find more information at the bottom of the site. Initially I was unsure of the intention of the site, but after looking at all the information I thought that its purpose was to inform the public about the (fictitious) history of the boilerplate soldier and to sell products. I didn't know who was responsible for the site at first. I finally figured out that the names that were listed on book were the authors of the site. The authors of the site are involved in the comic book genre and note that they are going to digitally reissue the entire 1989-2005 run of Heartbreakers and it will be available on ComiXology. This bit of information made me think that they had "digitally" remastered some of the pictures on the boilerplate soldier site as well. The site had tag lines from various people and reputable newspaper etc. I didn't get the impression that the tag lines were direct quotes. They just threw in a couple famous names to make it sound legitimate. The suffix of the site was .com which makes me think they are out to make money. I would not include this site in my bibliography. It is very questionable and I don't believe it is reliable.
The second site that I evaluated was google.com/technology/pigeonrank. The site does cover the topic of using pigeons in Google's IT department quite well. It had figures, data, charts etc. which all made the site look very professional and appealing to the eye. I understood what they were trying to convey I knew the date it was created whose research and information the site was based on. On the surface the article was meant to inform the public about how Google is able to provide quick and accurate search results. It was just a one page article so I didn't have any problems navigating the site. I didn't find any errors in spelling or grammar. The article was well written. It had google and technology in the web address, so I can see how people would be confused. It was so ridiculous to me, I knew there had to be another explanation. After I got to the bottom of the page I realized what was going on. It was an April Fool's joke. :) I would not use this site in my bibliography.
I teach special needs high school students who function between the Kindergarten and 3rd grade level. I felt that looking at the elementary databases would best suit my class. I chose to look at the e-Library Elementary and Kids InfoBits. I found that Kids InfoBits was easier to use. I liked the fact that you could click on a realistic real world picture to help you in the search process or you could type what you were looking for in the search engine. It is a site that I don't believe my high school students would find babyish. On the other hand the e-Library was very child like with cartoon characters etc. I believe they overdid the cartoons actually. It wasn't as easy to look at....I got distracted trying to figure out what each character was. (I just went back to the site...I think the icons are eyeballs :) I also found that I had a harder time finding information about my topic. The content of both sites was appropriate and they were full of good information. Once I figured out how to use e-Library it was useful. I also believe both resources to be credible since they were both listed on MeL. I'm almost ashamed to admit it....but I had never heard of MeL before this assignment. It will prove to be a great resource for my students. Both of these resources support the best practice of generating and testing hypotheses
I just thought I would add a screen shot of my score. I actually ran a document about Transition that I used earlier in this course though Paper Rater and found that 0% of it is original. Paper Rater listed about 3 different sites that this document was compiled of. After I have taught my students about plagiarism we can use this tool to make sure we are staying on the straight and narrow. This tool will help them to write original papers and not rely on cutting and pasting. Paper Rater will also help me to figure out who may need more help with their writing. I like that this particular tool has a spell check, grammar and word choice help. It is a very useful tool to help develop my students into proficient writers.
I have unwittingly broken several copyright infringement laws through the years. I have used Google Images countless time for my class assignments as well as my daughter's projects without even a thought about whether it was legal to use. I figured if someone loaded the images to the internet then it's okay to use them. I can't even say that I was using the images to teach, give a criticism or do a parody. I just used them for my personal needs and occasionally to jazz up the cover of a work binder.
In college I did copy whole books....I didn't sell them but I copied them (at work) for myself and a couple friends and returned the book to the store. I'm certain that breaks a law or two as well. By doing that I denied the person who owns the copyright the right of making money from their work. In fact I'm sure that breaks some laws....because I learned that while facts can not be copyrighted, the Expression of them can be. A college text book is nothing more than the expression of facts....which I avoided paying for.
One other incident springs to mind...many years ago, a family friend who worked for a large company somehow got a copy of well known software program that will remain nameless. She gave it to me and I loaded onto my computer. I knew I was getting something for nothing....I felt a little bad....but I quickly got over it and started using my new program....I didn't know the scale of my wrong doing until now.
Overall, I learned a lot of what I should and shouldn't be doing with other people's images and intellectual property. I learned about some of my limitations and what I can use as an educator. I also learned that my ignorance of copyright laws could've gotten myself and my district into a lot of trouble. In the future I will think twice about what I'm using from the internet and make sure what I plan to use is actually in the public domain.
I started the activity by polling my students about which App or Site they like to use socially. I had already done some research so I knew some of them....I was surprised at how many my students actually were aware of. This is a list of the sites/apps we generated as a class:
I asked them if they knew steps on how to stay safe on the internet. I got responses like don't use your real name, don't tell where you live or what school you go to. I shared what I had learned about Digital Communication with the class. (When you forward messages you're forwarding other people's info, not putting personal information in email addresses, to have a good dose of skepticism when opening an email from someone you don't know, sending and receiving instant messages etc.) We had a good discussion on this topic then I put them to work. They had to do a website scavenger hunt. They logged onto the computer in pairs, pulled up their favorite site and were challenged to look at it through different eyes. Their assignment was to write down at least three things that can be looked at as a misuse of personal information or can be looked at as someone not being a good Digital Citizen. The students really got into the assignment. While walking around I heard very good discussions going on between the partners about whether various things were appropriate for the internet or not. The activity went well and the students really enjoyed learning about the dos and don'ts of internet safety. A couple students stated that pictures that were posted were not appropriate. There were some topics that people had posted that my student's thought were inappropriate. It was a very good lesson and I believe it will help them look at their computer/technology use more critically from now on. I know I will! I even changed the information on this blog in the Author section. I felt that the way it was worded previously just gave too much information.
The theme of Digital Citizenship that I decided to focus on was Digital Communication. I have learned various things in this course about how people communicate on line. I have learned how to use Evernote, Google Calendar, Skype, Lino and Todays meet just to name a few. All of these resources are great tools that can be used at work and in my personal life. As I was researching Digital Citizenship I was interested to find out that I had unwittingly been invading other people's privacy. I never considered that forwarding an email to someone that had been sent to me was not only sending an email but it was also sending the information of the person who had originally sent the message. I also learned that your email address should never include information such as your birth date or year. I never thought about how easy one could make it for someone to guess more of your personal information if you've already given them your birth date. It seems like it is a recipe for identity theft. Since I researched Digital Communication, I know that I need to make some changes with how I do certain things.
Shortened URL: http://goo.gl/xa2aSR
The Zamzar conversion tool can be very useful to me as a special education teacher. I have quite a few reading levels in my classroom from the very confident student who reads on the 11th grade level all the way to the struggling reader who reads on the Kindergarten level. This tool would help level the playing field a little for the struggling reader. They would be able to listen to the information and comprehend it, instead of "making their way" through the reading themselves and having no comprehension at all because they were so focused on decoding the words that they forgot to pay attention to what they were reading. Zamaar is great! I'll definitely be using this tool again.
I used TodaysMeet in my classroom to review for an upcoming Government test. I really enjoyed using this resource and the students did as well. It added another element to our review process. The students really enjoyed the incorporation of technology into their government lesson. The students had to actually think about their responses before answering so they had to use their heads and their hands :). I found that it allowed everyone to have a voice in the lesson/review and I will definitely be using it in the future.
I learned a lot from all of the resources that were shared in Thing 5. The one that I believe that I can use as a cooperative learning lesson in my classroom would be Google Docs. I could use Google Docs as a discussion board of sorts. I do weekly current events in my classroom. I could upload an article to Google Docs and have the students go read it. Each student would be responsible for posting at least one comment and one question. Using Google Docs this way would definitely help develop our discussion during current events time.
Reflection on Dropbox:
I believe that using Dropbox will help make life easier! It will be a nice to save or back up everything. I loss the pictures I took of my daughter on her birthday, so having someplace to put them will be very helpful. I also like the fact that you can share files with others. I will be able to share files with colleagues and with my students.
I learned that there are options for storing the helpful sites that one may run across while surfing the internet other than just hitting the bookmark button. Even when I use the bookmark button I rarely find the site again because they aren't organized. I have my decorating ideas and recipes that I want to try, mixed in with educational websites. Other than using then using Symbaloo to organize, it will also be a helpful resource for my students. I will be able to post certain sites that I may want them to use for various assignments in one easy to use and easy to find location.