Module 2 – Cybersafety and your students

Wow.  I found the simulation on cyberbullying quite confronting!  While I realise that cyberbullying does exist, I guess I didn’t really understand how quickly things can escalate on social media for students and just how ruthless it can be. Ensuring students understand how they can manage their social media interactions is essential and definitely needs to be explicitly taught and reinforced at school.

Connect.ed (2011), state that student can:

  • block senders in chat rooms and social networking sites
  • change their social networking profiles
  • keep passwords secret and mobile numbers private
  • not reply to nasty messages and/or block the sender if they are in a contact list
  • if the bullying persists, tell someone they trust
  • help them to list trusted people
  • keep any hostile messages sent by IM or SMS, print out any text, web content or emails and keep links to web pages or user names in IM
  • use website reporting tools to report cyberbullying
  • visit the Cybersmart Online Helpline for free and confidential online counselling or call Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800
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Module 1 – The Connected World

The first module of Connect.ed that we have been asked to work through addresses the digital culture of our students.  It is interesting that the first video referred to the amount of time students spend on social media, but more so how things have changed for students with regard to how they access information for school.  No longer do they need to go to the library or look into that library of encyclopedias at home to find the answer to questions and help with assignments – all you need now is the internet and you can find out what you want quickly and easily.  Will technology cause libraries to close?  The other issue (which also was raised in this video) was the impact of texting on the potential spelling skills of students.

Web 2.0 refers to a range of websites and applications which allow collaborating and sharing information.  Students engage with this daily in order to have a voice about what is shared on blogs and other applications.  Students use the internet for social interaction, self awareness and education.

Social networking used by students include:

It surprised me that the above are all considered social networking devices and even more surprised that I have seen 4 of these in action!  Those new to me include MySpace, FormSpring and SuperclubsPLUS.

As educators it is up to us to ensure we assist students in becoming cybercitizens by addressing digital media literacy, positive online behaviours, peer and personal safety and e-Security.

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What do I know about Lesson Planning?

During the Week 9 content, the question of what I know about lesson planning seemed simple.  I came up with the following:

  • context
  • student abilities
  • school resources
  • curriculum – what needs to be covered
  • what do i want students to learn
  • prior knowledge
  • students interests
  • strategies – learning styles
  • types of questions to ask
  • activities
  • resources needed for lessons
  • assessment

After reading the ideas other students came up with I realised there was a lot that I didn’t include in my list and just as many that I hadn’t even considered.

Needless to say I will be adding to my list further before planning my lessons – and before meeting my mentor teacher to ensure that I am fully prepared for my upcoming practicum.

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Preparing for Prac

So I have finished the Week 9 content and I can’t believe the amount of information regarding prac.  It is fantastic to have such a comprehensive explanation and outline of prac – the most extensive I have seen. Working through EDC3100 has certainly been an eye opening experience.  Just when I thought I knew how to prepare for prac and what questions to ask of my mentor teacher, there is more! It will be very helpful to me when I meet with my mentor teacher tomorrow.  I am running a bit behind where I would like to be right now – but I just have to keep on going right now.


Being introduced to a range of questioning methods for including ICTs in our planning while on prac (and in the future) has been extremely helpful.  I worked through the final part of Week 9 last night and have to admit my mind was a bit of a boggle.  What a lot of information.  I love the ICT Troubleshooting Checklist.  I will definitely be using this for my prac and hopefully adding to it as well.  

Now…… big breath …….. time for Week 10.

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Catching up…..

Wow……………..I feel as though I have run a marathon this semester. But not long now and it will be all over for another semester.  It is now time to get through the last of the online content (and my blogging) before starting prac next week.  At the beginning prac seemed so far away, but it here we go again  ……… it sure has snuck up on me.   I have been working through the online content and have just completed Week 9.  I am now suffering from brain overload.  But on I continue.  The plan….. get through Week 10 content by the end of the day (or if I am realistic – tomorrow) and move on to completing the initial stages of my Assignment 3 – and start an assignment for another subject – all before prac next week.  Nothing like a bit of pressure.
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Special Education Confusion…

During completing Assignment 2 I found it challenging to determine how to complete each section with a Special Education context.  I had recently read on the Australian Curriculum website under the tab Student Diversity – Students with Disabilities how to personalise learning by adjusting the content.  The idea is to ensure the students (regardless of ability) have access to the same curriculum as their peers, but to use learning content from other more appropriate (academically) learning levels.  To me this does make sense as it would ensure the student is being included in their year level work and learning what their peers are with a few slight adjustments specific to the individual to ensure at least basic understanding of the content.  I remember seeing somewhere (not sure where now) that to complete the Unit of Work for Assignment 2 to just choose the learning content from the levels the students are working at rather than that are age appropriate – I have done this for my assignment so hopefully this is right.  I am unsure if this is what is actually done in a school setting however.  I realise that a lot of students with special needs have specific IEP’s in which they follow, but it will be interesting to find out if this is how some teachers adjust the curriculum to meet all learners abilities. I would be happy to hear from others in this area!

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Assignment 2

I must say I was extremely happy with the extension that we received for the submission of Assignment 2.  I would have struggled to finish and get it submitted on time – let alone finish all my blogging.  Of course it isn’t until the lead up to a due date of an Assignment that the unexpected happens causing a crazy catch up.  

Working on and completing Assignment 2 was a challenge and actually took longer than I initially thought it would!  Regardless of this however, I do believe that this subject has provided the most comprehensive and supportive outline and instructions for completing a Unit of Work.  I must admit that I have always struggled with understanding what to put where always and how to write the rubric (I hope I did do this right though).  I had never had another Lecturer advise me to use the QSA Elaborations when completing the Criteria section of the Unit of Work, how to do this successfully and how this links to the Australian Curriculum.  When I think about how I completed my previous Lesson Plans I don’t know how I actually did it without this insight.

The support we receive in this subject is amazing.  I love the fact that we have sample assessments to have a look at so we can see if we are on the right track.  I would have liked to have had access to some sample special education Unit of Work though as this would have been helpful to make sure that I had the right idea.  Anyway the Assignment is in and now onwards and upwards to prac and Assignment 3.

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Resources Resources Resources

I am loving your free “things”, especially the images. I am still not 100% confident in using images online (especially on my blog) as I am constantly concerned about breaking copyright. But this might be just what I need. I had a look at your free graphic organiser for IWB but the pricing must have changed. I did “buy” for $0.00 the Building a Story e-book which will come in handy I am sure.

Adventures of a preservice teacher


Ohhh I do love books, my family has owned two bookstores and I have grown up surrounded by books my whole life, so I just have to share this post from another students blog that shares a great $1 book sale on scholastic’s website! I notice that this is the US version of scholastic, however a majority of these resources are e-books so we should be able to access them. What a great treat 🙂

Also, just found this and it is FREE – I love FREE things so here is the direct link for a graphic organiser on IWB’s e-book that is listed at $0.00

Something else that I stumbled upon was this website that is for images that are free and able to be used commercially and non commercially without attribution.

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Ways that provide effective feedback for students!

Providing feedback to students is one thing – but effective well that can be challenging sometimes! I have seen and used a few of these before, but this will prove a very useful resource in our upcoming pracs. I have found “giving feedback in a timely manner” and “feedback referencing a particular skill” to be very useful with students with special needs.  I learnt very quickly working as a Teacher-Aide to ensure that you don’t just say to a student “good job”, “that was really good” as this doesn’t actually tell them anything!  Being specific is very important (especially when it is certain behaviour that you want to encourage) as students will remember that more and try to replicate that in the future.  Thanks so much for sharing. I can see this being a useful addition to my Scouting as well. Fantastic find.


I found this link by Anna Murphy quite useful in giving students feedback in the learning environment. This link can teach YOU as a pre service teacher to find strategies and ways that provides students with encouraging and supportive techniques to succeed in the correct ways of learning. As teachers it is a nature responsibility in providing feedback in a manner that every student feels confident and comfortable in the classroom or outside schooling environment and not have a feeling of defeat. Through this link the effective learning feedback approaches range from the school environment, student peers, educators, outside of school and parents. It is important that every student should leave school feeling the accomplishment of been taught something they understand.

Have a look for yourself!

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The TIP Model

I have been reading about the TIP Model.  Looking at the TIP Model, I like the idea behind it – that ICTs should only be used when there is an advantage for its inclusion.  The use of ICT in teaching and learning should not just be included “because”.  There should be relative advantage to its integration into learning experiences.  The idea that as teachers we can use ICTs in an instructional way to assist us with our teaching of those curriculum areas we may have difficulty teaching appeals to me. The trick now is choosing the correct ICTs to use for the learning problem.  

When reviewing the table – “Technology solutions with potential for High Relative Advantage (adapted from Roblyer, 2006, p. 45)”, I can see that there are learning problems listed in this table that could have relevance in my upcoming Unit of Work.  In my context the learning problems that are likely to arise for my students (Special Needs) would include:

  • Concepts are new, foreign
  • Concepts are abstract, complex
  • Time-consuming manual skills interfere with learning high-level skills
  • Students cannot see relevance of concepts to their lives
  • Students need skills in working collaboratively. opportunities to demonstrate learning in alternative ways
  • Students need technical competence in preparation for workplace.

Whilst I believe that a wide use of ICTs in their learning would benefit immensely, I must admit I am finding it difficult to “think outside the box” with some of these ideas as I am used to making up resources and using hands on resources in lessons with Special Needs students.  The trick I believe is finding the resources that would best suit my students and go with it!  So much to learn…..

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