Category Archives: ed533dc

Voicethread Lesson!


DIAGNOSTIC PHASE: Harvest Festivals Around the World


–          Students will watch the Voicethread presentation on Harvest Festivals, and then they will create one of their own in a group based on one festival that they learned about.



Anticipatory Set: Describe your Thanksgiving tradition. What do you do on Turkey Day?

Instruction: Have students watch the Voicethread on Harvest Festivals: Ask them to make comments, post questions, etc. while watching.

As the harvest season approaches, this is a great time to learn about different cultures as well as agriculture, geography and astronomy. This Thursday, all of us will be spending time with our families and loved ones in celebration of Thanksgiving, the day that our ancestors came to America. In the following clips, you will explore some other traditional harvest festivals that are also celebrated at this time around the world.

Chusok, also known as the Korean Thanksgiving, is held on the 15th day of the lunar month. During this time, Korean families take time to thank their ancestors for providing them with rice and fruits.

The celebration starts with a family-get together, where everyone enjoys a special dish of rice cakes that are made of rice, beans, sesame seeds, and chestnuts. The families then pay respect to their ancestors by visiting their tombs.

The August Moon Festival is one of the most celebrated Chinese holidays. Families celebrate the end of harvest season with a big feast, consuming mooncakes. Chinese legends say that the moon is at its brightest and roundest on this day.

The Yam Festival is held in the beginning of August. It is widely celebrated in Nigeria. People offer yams to Gods and ancestors before distributing them to villagers as a sign of thanks.

Pongal is a popular harvest festival in South India. It is named after s sweet rice dish and is celebrated in January, lasting for three days. People celebrate by offering goods to the Gods and engaging in numerous festivities with friends and neighbors.

Succoth is a Jewish Harvest Festival celebrated in September and October. During the festival, Jewish communities hold festivities in succahs, large booths made of blue and gold fabric.

Têt-Trung-Thu or the Mid-Autumn Festival is a popular Vietnamese holiday. Parents buy lanterns for their children so they can participate in the candlelit ceremonies at dawn. Children participate in arts and crafts, and adults participate in dances and serve mooncakes.

Now that you have learned a little bit about different cultural festivals that are celebrated around the world, I would like you to continue to do more research in a group. Each group will be assigned one of the festivals mentioned in this video. Your group will be responsible for researching more about that particular festival and creating their own presentation. You will become the experts that will teach the class all about these holidays!


Guided Practice/Independent Work: Students will research one festival in depth, create their own voicethread in groups, and present it to the class.


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Work in Progress – My Dreamweaver Site

I’m really not sure how I feel about Dreamweaver… but I think my site is coming along slowly. Please check it out! I will continue to add my projects, lessons, and videos.

Jessica’s Ed Media Site

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My Reflections: A Possible Grant Proposal

My Reflections: A Possible Grant Proposal

            In the Connected Educator: Learning and Leading in a Digital Age, Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach states, “Only through reculturing – changing the values, dispositions, and beliefs we have about the purposes of school – will we be able to shift teaching and learning to a higher level” (617). I believe that this quotation represents the challenge that we, as educators, must embrace in order to bring technology into the classroom and engage students in a digital school environment. The school environment has not changed in the last fifty years. When one thinks about a school, what comes to mind? Students sitting in rows with a teacher standing in front writing on a chalkboard? Or students sitting in groups utilizing different technologies in order to meet their learning goals while the teacher roams around the classroom engaging with his/her students? I believe that most people would think about the first scenario, even though the second one has the most potential to reach children that live in this new technological world.

This class has forced me to think about the processes of learning that we see today. With all of these new tools at our disposal, why not integrate them into the curriculum? Most students are utilizing these technologies at home. I believe that it is imperative for schools to integrate these technologies into unit and lesson plans in order for students to become engaged and receive an education based on authentic scenarios that they may find themselves in the future. We need to keep up with these constantly changing technologies in order to better prepare our students for what will come in 2050 and beyond!

Taking my experiences in this class, I would love to utilize a flipped classroom, collaborative format in my prospective classrooms. I would love to be able to record my own lessons, as well as have my students record their own work. In order to make this a reality, I would like to write a grant proposal for twenty iPads and one Smartboard for my classroom. My students would be able to take the iPads home and watch the videos for homework, as well as create their own videos in class using the iMove app. I would be able to integrate more technology into my lessons through the use of the Smartboard, as well as display my students’ movies to the rest of the class. With these tools at my disposal, students will be able to complete their online assignments at home, gain experience using a new technological tool, and use their creativity to create authentic assignments that can later be posted on a class websites for others to see and benefit from.

Reculturing needs to start in the classroom, and what better way to help our future students by starting this process now.

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Pros And Cons Of iPads In The Classroom

I really enjoyed reading this article. Elizabeth Woyke’s article discusses the pros and cons of using iPads in the classroom from a study conducted at the University of Notre Dame. Students were given iPads as a replacement to most of their needed textbooks. Overall, students had a favorable experience when using the iPads, but still felt that improvements were needed and the cost was simply to high.

Check out the full article here.

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Five Ways Readers are Using iPads in the Classroom

While scanning Google articles, I found this great article that highlights how teachers are utilizing iPads in the classroom. As a prospective English teacher and Technology specialist, I found this to be a great article for inspiration and ideas!

Five ways readers are using iPads in the classroom: 

1. Intervention

2. Enrichment

3. Assistive Technology

4. Digital Literacy

5. Organizing Resources – and for Reading

Check out the full article:

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Teaching and Learning: Using iPads in the Classroom

Check out this article written by Ben Johnson, a school administrator, discussing the benefits of incorporating iPads into a classroom of kinesthetic learners. He names some great applications that are available for students!

Here is the link to the full article:

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The Connected Educator: Quote # 10

I can definitely see how “classroom responsibilities and pressure to raise students’ standardized test scores” can prevent teachers from focusing on their leadership opportunities in the classroom. The state continues to demand high standardized test scores from all students, placing blame on the teachers if students’ scores are not up to par. With these scores looming over their heads (and potential jobs and salaries), I could see how teachers would concentrate most of their effort on preparing students for these tests rather than creating collaborative environments that support authentic learning opportunities and leadership potential.

My hope is that this will slowly begin to change. I do not understand the emphasis placed on standardized test scores when we are also emphasizing the importance of differentiation. Ironic, isn’t it?

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