Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Digital Storytelling

Blog Post:Discuss the benefits and challenges that you anticipate from integrating video into your classroom. How can you best leverage this content to provide your students with enhanced learning opportunities? Do you use existing sources for high quality, relevant materials for your curricular area? If so, list the top two and briefly critique each resource. How can you integrate these resources into your curriculum in a meaningful way for your students?

As a dance teacher I often integrate video into my classroom.  Weather it be watching a dance performance, instructional video, history, or a workout video.  Truthfully I only use videos when I have a sub or it is a shortened period.  This is due to the way the TV is set up in the dance studio which is not optimal for student viewing and makes it a challenge.  In the future if it could be moved there are so many wonderful instruction videos taught by famous dancers that the students could benefit from.  In a past lesson I talked about how great it would be to have a live feed from a dance instructor in another state or country teach a master class.  However, until my dance studio is set up to integrate these resources in a meaningful way my hands are tied.

Monday, August 6, 2012


Blog Post:What challenges and potential benefits can you see in utilizing podcasting technology in the classroom? Although we often use podcasts to convey information to our students, what are the benefits of having students develop their own podcasts? How can you incorporate the concept of long term student podcasting in your curriculum (students recording a series of podcasts over the course of a semester)?

By using podcasting students will be able to demonstrate their understanding of the techniques taught in dance class.  Students can investigate, design, create, and even teach via podcast.  I can not only post the dances and techniques I teach in class but the students can post their choreography as well.  

LMS (Moodle)

Blog Post: How is an LMS (Moodle) different from a standard teacher website? As you work with Moodle, what advantages do you see it affording your students? How can Moodle help you transform your classroom into a more student centered learning environment?

Moodle has the benefits of a website but with many more learning activities that can be built in for students. Teachers can set up materials needed for classroom activities and have online discussions.  It is also safe and includes many online features.  I can customize it and add new modules and themes.  In the future I will add a Modern Dance module as well as Hip Hop. 


In addition to being a dance teacher I also direct the dance company at Niles West.  This past year was the first year I had to deal with one of my company members using choreography she found on You Tube and claiming it as her own.  Although the lesson plan I put together dealt with plagiarism in terms of a written assignment it made me think about not only academic integrity but also creative integrity.  There really are no rules and regulations in the dance world in terms of choreography.  The more famous you are the more recognizable your work is.  Although stealing choreography most likely would not happen between more well established companies with You Tube it is easily done at the High School level.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Wikki Blog

Blog Post: Brainstorm ideas for how you might use a wiki in your classroom or school (clubs / teams) to create a meaningful project for collaboration and learning.

Make sure to respond to at least two other posts by colleagues in your course.

For my Wikki Assignment I set up 5 pages with 5 famous ballet dancers.  The students will the be assigned a dancer.  Students need to research 5 meaningful facts about that dancer then post then to the site.  

I think this is a great  and fun way for the kids to learn about dancers they would never have heard about before. 

Linux/Foss Blog

Read the article Open Source Content in Education: Part 2 - Developing, sharing, expanding resources.
Blog Post: Reflect on how the concept of Open Source content is compatible with educational philosophies such as the concept of the democratization of knowledge and development of an educated population.
Post responding comments to two new colleagues' blog posts.

"The climate in education and society is changing - some changes are positive, others are negative. All, however, are impacting the function and role of public education."

I have been very hesitant to embrace the "Internet" model and the concept of Open Source contentAs a dance teacher I am physically engaged with my students 5 period a day.  Through open source content I will be able to have my students be able to take a class from a dance instructor across the globe. 

"Preservation of openness and sharing (at an educational level) is critical for the creation of a culture that values innovation, progress, experimentation, and development."

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Skype Reflection

Schedule and conduct a synchronous video meeting using Skype with one or more classmates.

Blog Post: Post a reflection of your experience. List potential instructional situations where 
synchronousmeetings would lead to innovative or improved learning experiences for your students. Post comments to two new colleagues' blog posts.

I have been using Skype and also FaceTime with many of my dancing colleagues for sometime now.  There are many times I have a question about a certain technique and talking over the phone is just not as helpful as visually seeing it done.  In the future I could have my girlfriend in New York who is a company member of Lehrer Dance actually teach a master class to my students via Skype or FaceTime.