Welcome to my Tech Tool Box

As an educator I have discovered the wonderful potential Web 2.0 Tools have to empower student learning. This blog is a place to discuss and share strategies and discoveries that assist educators in their goal of educating each learner to their fullest potential while creating a curriculum which is rich, diverse, and engaging for students. Join me in my quest to get and keep students excited about a lifetime of learning.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Power of Podcasting

I really enjoyed seeing all of the available resources and apps for podcasting. There are so many available that it makes it easier than it was a few years back when I first tried to make one and it seemed overwhelming to me. Since I have a Mac I created my podcast in Garageband which was effortless and really quick. I have used audacity before and feel it has a greater learning curve. Garageband makes it easy to add images in from i-photo as well.

Podcasts in the classroom can be used as a teaching tool to engage the students at the beginning of a lesson and motivate them to learn more. They can also be a great way for students to collaborate and make their own podcasts showing the knowledge they have gained, what a great assessment tool for auditory learners. I feel students would jump at the chance to create a podcast book report or presentation over a written on any day of the week. Creating  and teaching with podcasts incorporate the following NETS standards:

My Podcast about the artist Chagall     

Listen to this episode

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Teaching Visual Literacy using Online Photo Sharing

Well I love the opportunities that online photo sharing sites create for the classroom. Being an art educator visual literacy plays a huge role in interpreting and finding meaning in works of art. Visual images are how people process the world around them, the good, the bad and the awestruck moments of life. As learners, students need to be able to understand the images they see by learning how to interpret, evaluate, and find meaning in them. Educators need to encourage learners to look for clues, communications, feelings, and meaning in the images they encounter and create. I found creating and using a Flickr account was a breeze, especially if you set up your Blogger, Google, and Flickr account all through your Google account it works  seamlessly together and there are less passwords to remember.

I would use Online Photo-Sharing Sites in many ways in my art classroom. One as an Art History and Art Criticism tool. I would teach a unit on Architecture, teaching the traditional "Elements of Architecture" i.e. columns, symmetry, facades, etc. and then have the students find or use photos I put in a Gallery which represented these elements. It would be a worldwide scavenger hunt from ancient Rome, to modern contemporary homes who still use those basic elements worldwide. I would add to the fun and have them map point their photos and annotations in Flickr. This lesson incorporates the following NETS standards.

  • Communication and Collaboration a.interact, collaborate, and publish with peers, experts, or others employing a variety of digital environments and media b.communicate information and ideas effectively to multiple audiences using a variety of media and formats  c. develop cultural understanding and global awareness by engaging with learners of other cultures.
  • Thinking, Problem Solving and Decision Making b.plan and manage activities to develop a solution or complete a project c.collect and analyze data to identify solutions and/or make informed decisions.
    (Taken from the ISTE NETS and Performance Indicators for Students  NETS

    Flickr Tour
    Flickr Resources
    Big Huge Lab Photo Editing

    Flickr Slide Share Ideas and Tutorial


Texting! by theshizniz
Texting!, a photo by theshizniz on Flickr.