What and Where are you Teaching?

By now everyone should have completed the first 3 pages of your website:

  • Home page and what you hope to learn in EDIT 2000
  • Autobiography page
  • Blog page with learning story and response to Chapter 1

Please see me if this is not the case. We will be working on a project today and Wednesday, designing an ideal classroom layout using Floorplanner

Google Sites

Your Google Sites should all be accessible to each other now on the class blog. Look for the pull down menu under Student Sites. I’d like to give you an opportunity to share the wonderful sites you guys have created with the class. I won’t force anyone to share, but will give a late pass as an incentive. When you talk about your site, you are welcome to pick and choose whatever you’d like to talk about.

Debrief Meaningful Learning

You were asked to respond to one of the following questions or choose to respond to the Chapter 1 reading with your own wonderings or questions:

  • What is your theory of learning? From your perspective, how do people learn? What are the important processes?
  • Which of the skills described in this chapter are most important to you as an educator? Which are most important to comprehending and being able to apply ideas in your discipline?

We’re going to attempt another one of those protocols to change the way we talk about ideas in class. This one is called Wagon Wheel. Make an inner and outer circle with the chairs (facing each other and preferably the same in number – 10?). You will have 30 seconds each to tell your partner one idea that caused you to change your perspective or one that resonated with you. Every minute I’ll ask the outer circle to rotate clockwise. By the end, you should have talked with 10 of your classmates.


One of the benefits of blogging is receiving comments from the global community responding to your writing. Some people may agree with you, while others may adamantly oppose your views. Either way, it’s an interesting experience to know others read what you write versus only your instructors. You may be able to relate with comments received from Facebook friends. I know when I post a comment or picture, it’s nice to see others respond (most of the time). I’d like for you to get in the practice of leaving comments on your classmates’ blog postings throughout the semester. Instead of me counting the number of times you comment or judging the quality of your comments, I’m going to see how this plays out to start with. Unfortunately, one downside to Google Sites, is that comments are not allowed. This really defeats the purpose, but one day this may change.

When we have class again next Wednesday, we will start transferring our Google Site “Announcements” or “Blog Postings” to either WordPress or Blogger. Don’t fear, we’ll set our blogging sites up together and I’ll be sure to give you plenty of tutorials and guides.

Content Standards

State Standards

As teachers, we have far more control over how we teach rather than what we teach. Content is mandated at the local, state, and national levels. In the state of Georgia, curriculum standards are called “Common Core Georgia Performance Standards”, or CCGPS. They are written for every grade level (K-12) and most subject areas. You can view the standards for your subject area on the left navigation of their website. If you don’t see your subject area listed (subjects such as health, family and consumer science, character education, and a few others), view the “QCC Materials.” If you are interested in speech therapy or special education, consider looking at the “IEP Goals & Objectives Bank.” Let me know if you’re having trouble choosing a subject or can’t find the standards for your subject.

National Standards

When we look at standards for teaching, we have to consider that there are National Educational Technology Standards (NETS) for K-12. Generally speaking, these standards focus on good teaching and learning; not just technology use. We’ll talk about 5 and 6 all semester:

  1. Creativity and Innovation
  2. Communication and Collaboration
  3. Research and Information Fluency
  4. Critical thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making
  5. Digital Citizenship
  6. Technology Operations and Concepts

In addition to the NETS, we will also be referencing The Framework for 21st Century Learning.

1. Core Subjects and 21st Century Themes

2. Learning and Innovation Skills

  • Creativity and Innovation
  • Critical Thinking and Problem Solving
  • Communication and Collaboration

3. Information, Media and Technology Skills

4. Life and Career Skills

Creating a Learning Environment

Once you’ve gotten a better understanding of who you’re teaching and what you’re going to teach, you can focus on creating a learning environment to bring it all together. What should the physical environment of your future classroom look like?

First, let’s take a moment to look at some Pinterest photos from Gretchen’s board.

Next, we’ll need to get a graphic of your classroom up onto a new page in your portfolio called, “Creating a Learning Environment”. We’ll use a (sort of) free tool called Floorplanner to sketch what our ideal learning environment [classroom] will look like, but you are welcome to use other tools. Before we use the tool, let’s practice taking a few screenshots. Here’s a tutorial in case you want a reference in the future.

Once you’ve created an account (meaning, you are now logged in), complete the 12-step tutorial to help you learn more about how to use the tool. You’ll need to click on tutorial to the left of the screen (see screen shot below). Keep in mind that the free version of the tool will only allow you to create ONE floor plan.

The first link will take you to a tutorial.

You may also want to watch this video to help you get started.

To Be Continued Next Class (Wednesday)

After creating your ideal learning environment, use create a screen shot of the image to create a screen shot of it (you can’t use the “create an image” option on Floorplanner because we’re using the free version) and insert the image onto your “Creating a Learning Environment” web page. Then, respond to the following directly on your “Creating a Learning Environment” web page:

Keeping an audience in mind (parents and/or students), give a narrative for your classroom layout – why you chose the design, what are the highlights of the room, how it reflects the needs of the learners and of the curriculum. Give a sense of what it would be like to spend time in your classroom. Describe your students and yourself (their teacher). This should take 3-4 paragraphs to describe.

For an example of this assignment, see Sarah’s Portfolio.

***When you log back in to Floorplanner – use the “Easy Login” link on the right, otherwise, you won’t be able to log back in.

For Wednesday

Complete your digital generation reflection blog. We will discuss your opinions on the digital native/digital immigrant debate at the start of class.

For Friday

Complete your classroom layout using Floorplanner. Make a new page for your Google Site titled, “Creating a Learning Environment”. This is where we will be inserting a screen shot of the Floorplanner classroom layout. We will add a screen shot of it to your “Creating a Learning Environment” webpage and respond to the questions listed below (type them directly on the webpage ) (This is the part of class we didn’t get to today.)

Keeping an audience in mind (parents and/or students), give a narrative for your classroom layout – why you chose the design, what are the highlights of the room, how it reflects the needs of the learners and of the curriculum. Give a sense of what it would be like to spend time in your classroom. Describe your students and yourself (their teacher). This should take 3-4 paragraphs to describe.


One comment on “What and Where are you Teaching?

  1. Pingback: Creating a Blogging Community | UGA Edit 2000

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