Friday, August 31, 2012
Creating New Documents: Examples
I began using Google Docs for the first time last year (my senior year of college). Over the past year, I have been led to discover the versatility of this tool. At first, I used this feature with classmates to create papers for group assignments. Recently, I have used Google Docs with friends to organize potlucks and with professors to sign-up for presentation times and topics. Additionally, while working closely with an English for International Students teacher at a private high school, I saw her using Google Docs to monitor students’ work and provide editing suggestions during in-progress assignments. So far, this tool has proven useful to me in school, in my personal life, and in my professional field and I’m sure there are many more ways it could be used that I haven’t even thought of yet!
Potential uses for Google Docs
In the elementary classroom, Google Docs may be used for such things as sign-up sheets (computer use during indoor recess, group projects, etc.). Additionally, teaching productivity may be enhanced in elementary schools using Google Docs when applications are used to collaboratively create and share lesson plans, notes about student performance for team teachers, presentations for shared unit plans and lessons, administrative sign-up sheets (bus duty, kitchen duty, etc.), parent sign-up sheets (parent volunteers, supply list, etc.)
How I Uploaded my Résumé
I am most familiar with the ability Google Docs provides to create a word document and work collaboratively on the document with one or more people at the same time. However, just a few weeks ago, I discovered that documents could also be uploaded to Google Docs to allow for collaboration on previously developed documents, spreadsheets, etc. In completing the Google Docs Résumé assignment, I uploaded a PDF for the first time. I originally created my résumé in a Word document. To protect my privacy, I covered my addresses and phone numbers. In addition, to protect the file from being altered, I converted it to a PDF. While uploading the file I was prompted as to whether I wanted to change the file format; I simply made sure to uncheck the boxes in the prompted to keep the original format.
Before publishing the document, I was nervous about making it public. I was relieved to learn that Google provides options regarding who you want to share your document with. I was able to limit the viewing of my résumé to people at SU, allowing them to find and access the document. However, I could have refined the options further to say that I wanted only people at SU with a link to be able to view it. Therefore, while working in my school’s Gmail account, I will be able to limit my viewers to individuals in my network. If you are in the SU network, click here to view my résumé.
To answer the question, “What advantages and disadvantages does cloud computing with Google have over traditional desktop applications?” it was necessary for me to learn what cloud computing is. Through some quick glances at various websites, I have found out that cloud computing enables people to make use of various applications through the use of the internet, without accessing the applications on their personal computers. That is, applications are hosted by cloud computing resources using networks of remote servers. In theory, I would not need to have Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Excel, etc. installed on my computer in order to make use of these application’s features as Google provides Google Docs were these files can be created, stored, and managed. For instance, cloud computing seems are very practical for businesses and institutions. A school administrator may choose to have teachers and students use a cloud computing resource instead of spending money to furnish each individual computer with a software package.
Question: “What advantages and disadvantages does cloud computing with Google have over traditional desktop applications?”
Advantages: 1) Google applications are free, 2) projects sharing either publicly or with select people without the use of email or flash drives, 3) collaborative and simultaneous creation of projects, and 4) projects are safe in case of computer crash
Disadvantages: 1) projects not accessible without internet access, 2) publishing online is never entirely private, and 3) projects can be altered by colleagues our yourself in undesirable ways (no previous versions available)
I believe that this activity and the use of Google Docs as a professional best corresponds with the ISTE-NETS-T Standard three and its components. I believe that Google Docs can most thoroughly be used to enhance a teacher’s professional abilities. I believe that if one used Google Docs in their school community in the ways I suggested above, in regards to teaching productivity, they would be engaging in processes that would meet each of the components of this standard. Cloud computing is an emerging technology. By using a cloud computing resource such as Google Docs, teachers demonstrate an ability to adapt with the times and learn the newest technologies before and alongside their technology savvy students. Working with teachers and parents in the school community through Google docs allows for the sharing of resources and knowledge, a demonstration of collaboration and the ability to communicate ideas. Any teacher who is able to make use of Google Docs and does so proficiently, proves themselves to be engaged in professional advancement in the field of digital technology and able to contribute productivity to a large community and so, successfully meets aspects of standard three.
Wednesday, August 29, 2012
My name is Lorri Deavers and I am a future teacher in SU’s MSEd Individual Focus and Initial Teacher Licensure programs. I graduated from James Madison University in 2011 with a major in Interdisciplinary Liberal Studies and minors in Elementary Education and Spanish. While a technology course for teachers was offered at JMU, students were allowed only one elective. I decided that I could teach myself to create some of the projects that fellow students were lcreating in class—I was homeschooled after all.
So far, I have created a website and blog for my future classroom. I am hopeful to learn how to create and use PortaPortal, Prezi, Webquest and Videos for the classroom. In addition, I am interested in becoming more familiar with SmartBoard technologies and iPads and the role they play in the classroom. More specifically, I am interested in discovering how iPads assist or raise issues for students with disabilities (i.e. students with tactile issues).
I am a strong believer that critical thinking and knowledge develops from following your interests and engaging in self-directed, hands-on learning. I believe that many technologies provide us with ever expanding options for engaging ourselves and our students in these types of learning experiences. I am excited to discover, through this online course, new ways of interacting with and learning from the world through online technology.
Tuesday, August 28, 2012
The format for the majority, if not all, of my future posts will appear in the following format and address the following.
4 Part Format
3) Link to tool
4) NETS-T standards reflection
Narratives will Addresses:
- What I did
- What I learned
- How I intend to use it
- How the activity or product relates to the NETS-T standards