My summary of learning

For my summary of learning I decided to make a prezi presentation which can be found here.  I chose to use Prezi because I could include video, screencast, and photos which allowed me to display many of the tech skills I’ve gained while taking this class.  I really enjoyed going through all of the work I’ve done this semester and aside from a few computer crashes (thanks iMovie) it was a lot of fun to make.

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My knitting project: Final reflection

If you’ve read some of my other posts surrounding ECMP 355 you may have noticed that for my learning project I’ve chosen to learn how to knit; preferably a scarf. Although I did not quite get the scarf I was hoping for; as it was more difficult and time-consuming that I’d expected; I’ve adapted my goals to learning the stitches needed to complete a scarf. These stitches include the cast on, knit, and purl stitches.

Here are the posts surrounding the beginning of my project

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2

and here are my original posts surrounding these stitches

Cast on

Knit stitch

Purl stitch

To summarise what I’ve learned and to give back to the online community I decided to go back and create how-to videos similar to the ones that I learnt from

Cast on

Knit stitch

Purl Stitch

such a complex task online was difficult and making these videos has shown me how much effort people put into making videos that teach others a skill, as I didn’t have the best lighting or camera’s available and I could not get a camera angle that could show me completing the stitch properly. This online forum was also beneficial as it allowed me access to help when I ran into a problem with the knit stitch and there were numerous tutorial videos to choose from. Overall through completing my own and viewing the results of classmates learning projects I have learnt that there are both benefits and challenges to online learning and that my students will have the opportunity to explore whatever skill they would like online, so I must never assume their knowledge, as with the internet it is neverending.

My knitting project: Purl (Part 5)

Today I learnt the pearl stitch which makes up the body of the scarf.  I have been following along with the same series which is good because the camera angle and lighting really help me get through some of the tougher stitches.

I’ve found learning over the internet a lot more time consuming as I don’t have the ability to easily show someone when I am having trouble rather I go back to that forum from part 4 or rewatch the video.  After quite a few tries I finally got the hang of the pearl stitch as this video was a little harder to see what exactly was going on.  As you can see the stitches are quite loose and would make a nice chunky scarf.

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Starting from scratch

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For my ECMP 355 class we were challenged with using Scratch; a coding site designed to teach students basic coding skills. At first I found this very difficult as I have never coded before and kept restarting the project. As a visual learner it was difficult for me to use with just the written instructions I found on the site so I ventured to YouTube where I found this video. Once using this video I was able to complete this project in a way I was happy with.

I believe that Scratch can be a great tool to teach students how to code if students are given the resources they need to use the website.  Coding is important for students in today’s world because as we’re becoming more technology centered more jobs are requiring the knowledge of coding.  Code is another language that is becoming more and more  necessary to communicate as a digital citizen.  Here is my project; let me know what you think!

The Delivery

For my ECMP 355 class we were challenged to create a five card flickr story to demonstrate our use of digital storytelling. Mine is titled The Delivery.


Five Card Story: The Delivery

a Five Card Flickr story created by Lexi Milligan


flickr photo by bionicteaching


flickr photo by bionicteaching


flickr photo by bionicteaching


flickr photo by Serenae


flickr photo by bionicteaching


One gray and dreary day Lucia was told by her mother to deliver a cake to their new neighbor the elderly Mrs. Stueck. Now Lucia was not normally a fearful child but there was something about that house that unnerved her. Not wanting to disobey her mother she set off to complete the task at hand…that is until she reached the gate. You see; the gate was old, grey, and run down; something Lucia knew was a sure sign of a haunted house. Her nerves getting the best of her she decided it would be best to try the back door, but to reach the back door Lucia had to go through the deserted alley and past many cold metal fences. As she was just about to knock on the door Lucia heard something creeping down the alley, and with the cake still in hand ran from the horrifying creature that must have been chasing her. Out of breath and exhausted Lucia reaches the park just down the street and collapses onto the bench next to the tree, and eats the cake. For it’s tiring work trying to deliver a cake.


Ed Tech and today’s parents

Recently I read this blog post about how teachers/schools can use technology to increase parent engagement.  I found this useful because in my own school experience parental involvement was minimal right from elementary school.  It was 2000 and at the very beginning of the push for schools to go paperless which is great; what wasn’t so great was that the tech hadn’t really caught up and many homes didn’t have computers quite yet.  Rather than finding other ways to communicate with parents they relied on having students writing notes about school events in their agendas and hoping parents remembered to check them.  The article goes over 5 tech that can be used to connect with parents including social network accounts, iTunes U, Remind HQ, Seesaw, and Blippar.

I use remind HQ currently to get updates about #Saskedchat  and love the system.  I have known for awhile that I want to use it as a tool to remind my students of homework or just for class/school updates, as I know as a university student there have been a few times where I could’ve used a reminder about assignments, room switches, or even if a class is cancelled.  I also love that it is a safe and secure system with no students receiving your number and that students can get the reminders as texts to their phones. The idea of using remind for parents is one I had never thought of before but would be great when needing parent signatures, snow days, and big homework assignments, and would allow parents a glimpse into their child’s school life.

I also like the idea of a class social network account, and would probably go with a class blog and Twitter account.  I like the idea of parents getting to see what their child is working on in real time. And as a student at Globe Theatre School seeing snippets of our classes on their youtube channel was always really exciting.

Posting short videos like this of drama students rehearsing a scene or English students giving a presentation would both be beneficial for students who could watch their rehearsal back and learn from it and to parents who can see their child’s learning in progress. A class blog would also allow parents to come to you with any questions or concerns they may have about the lessons rather than hearing something from their child.

The other three I can’t quite see myself using in my classroom as I think that too much tech may overwhelm parents who do not have as much experience in using technology. iTunes U, Seesaw, and Blippar are also less common and thus there would be more of a learning curve for both teacher and parents.

Digital citizenship in the high school classroom

The Ministry of Education here in Saskatchewan is making digital citizenship a mandatory part of our curriculum as per the digital citizenship continuum; using both the continuum and the Saskatchewan curriculum I was able to create some lessons to teach in a grade eleven English classroom.

Lesson 1 

Outcomes and indicators

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Connection to the continuum:

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I would use this lesson at the very beginning of a class; as it sets the tone for use of technology in the classroom.  For this lesson I would begin by explaining what terms of service are and where they can be found; then moving into a class discussion as to why these may be important.  I would then have students go online and find a terms of service page and write a journal entry/blog post about what they found/why certain points may be in the terms of service.  The next day I would work with the class to create a terms of service/responsible use policy for use of technology in the classroom.  This policy would then be displayed in the classroom and sent home to parents, and be a guide for students as to responsible digital citizenship.

Lesson 2

Outcomes and indicators

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Connections to the curriculum

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For this lesson I would have students in groups of two or three research one of the following topics in regards to online activity/digital citizenship (piracy, gambling, shopping, online fundraising, digital currency) and create a powerpoint based on the information found.  After they present to the class each student would write a blog post/journal article looking deeper into one of the topics that interested them.

Does Twitter belong in schools?

The following conversation has been written in two parts to examine potential perspectives on a classroom Twitter account. Madison Osterhout has taken on the role of a questioning or concerned parent, and I have written the response as a teacher, to advocate for the use of Twitter.

It is important to recognize that not all parents or staff may be ‘on board’ with the use of Twitter in schools, at least not initially. As with any tool or pedagogical technique, we as educators must thoughtfully consider why we do what we do, and be able to explain our reasoning to others when necessary.

Dear Teacher,

When my daughter came home today, she told me the class will be using “a classroom Twitter account.” She’s excited, but I have reservations. Namely, how is Twitter of value to students? And why does it need to be in school? In my opinion, kids are spending far too much time on their devices nowadays. It’s all I can do to get my kids to look up from their phones when I am trying to talk to them. It just seems that social media is taking over and we’re losing something as a society. Everyone is on Facebook, Twitter, and those other social media sites at all hours, filling up every spare minute of their day. And now the thought of it being a part of my daughter’s schooling, too? I just don’t understand. I send my daughter to school to learn, not to waste time online. I’m just not certain that it is a wise use of class time. I certainly respect you as an educator, and hope this letter is not taken in the wrong way, but I am hoping you can help me understand. Like all parents, I just want my daughter to receive the best education possible. 

Thank you,

A Concerned Parent 

The importance of place

In the article “Learning from Place: A Return to Traditional Mushkegowuk Ways of Knowing” there were many examples of both reinhabitation and decolonization happening throughout the narrative of a research project. One way this project encouraged reinhabitation is that they encouraged young people to converse with older generations about the river because ‘this connection to nature and land was all the more significant for its contributions to an additional dimension of development: the cultural identity of the people”. Allowing the students to take ownership for and reinhabit the land. Decolonization was supported by research project was that the advisory group was formed with the band council “so that the Cree could track environmental and social changes on their own terms for their own purposes”; this is important to decolonization because society’s colonial wallpaper encourages us to get so caught up in helping people that we neglect to ask their own ideas or opinions on the project,

I definitely want to consider place in my own classroom; I will do this by first asking myself who feels comfortable in my classroom and in the school as a whole. I would also like to get my students opinions on the place where they are learning; maybe by having students write in their journals describing their favorite place then sharing with the class what makes up a safe, comforting, and open place. Through English and drama I plan to encourage the exploration of place both through reading and analyzing texts and through play; using my students insights to mold and create the place that is my classroom.

Feedley – an important resource for ed tech minded teachers

I chose to explore Feedley because I liked the clean and organized layout. I then searched the words Education, Ed tech, and Education Technology and found many education-related sources. One of my favourite sources I found through Feedley is the Educational Technology and Mobile Learning feed, as I have found the entries very useful. The best part about this source is that every month they have a “new educational web tools series” every month; describing and explaining a list of tech tools related to a specific topic; for example this months topic featured “five interesting tools to use for different educational purposes”. Feedley is a good place for new and pre-service teachers to go when wanting to integrate ed tech into their lessons, as it acts like a jumping off point by giving a wide rage of ideas and uses for the wide variety of ed tech that is out there.

edit: I had this set to post on October 18th, 2015 but it never showed.