Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Copyright Laws

     Before learning about copyright laws for teachers I was unaware that teachers had to follow such strict rules. Teachers are only allowed to show 10% of a video or 3 minutes, which ever is shorter. This includes materials such as showing videos, music, pictures, etc. Teachers need to be very careful when presenting this kind of information to the class. I was very surprised to learn this law. I guess I just kind of figured that teachers have free choice to show anything in the classroom. Copyright laws never concerned me, until now. 
     I know many of my teachers violate this law almost everyday. Many of my teachers show youtube videos in my classrooms. Many of my teachers print things right off the internet and hand them out to us (the students) without ever giving credit to the source. I know this law is also violated outside of school in places such as restaurants. I often see signs to follow people on Facebook and the restaurants usually have the Facebook logo printed on the menus.
     I believe it is my job to educate my students about the copyright law. In sense this could be related to plagiarism, which is a huge problem. Children need to be aware that it is not okay to copy other peoples work, or to share videos online, without getting the proper permission. I could educate students about this topic by asking them to place themselves in the shoes of someone who put a lot of hard work into creating a video for website. I would then tell them to pretend they found out this video is being shared to other people, without your permission, or without giving you credit. The students would most likely respond that they would become very upset. I would then explain that this is why it is not okay to do this to other peoples work.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Interactive Whiteboards

      I think interactive whiteboards enhance learning in so many ways. There are so many activities you can do with the interactive whiteboards. Lessons can now be more hands on and can involve students coming up to the board to many things, besides just using a marker to write. Students and teachers can use the interactive tools to measure,  match states, draw letters, watch videos, play games, and so much more. This technology was a little difficult to learn how to use. The Smartboard can be very picky about certain things, so sometimes this can be very frustrating.
     There are many benefits of having a Smartboard installed in your classroom. Learning can be fun for the students, with using all the different interactives. Interactive whiteboards can also be used as a center activity in the classroom. Students could go to the whiteboard during center time to do an activity that the teacher has set up.  I think the magic pen could be very beneficial to use when teaching a geography lesson, you could zoom in on certain areas. Downfalls to having an interactive whiteboard in the classroom could be that sometimes the whiteboard will act up, so you have to think on your feet to alter the lesson, or fix the problem. Also, sometimes the pens can be a little tricky to use so the students and the teachers need to learn how to use them. 
          In the past I did a current event lesson on Chile. I could have used the whiteboard to show pictures of Chile and to zoom in on certain areas. I have done a lesson on the Underground Railroad, the interactive whiteboard could have been used to play videos, show pictures, and as a post assessment tool using the games. I have also done a counting lesson for kindergarten. I could have used the Smartboard to show the students the order of the numbers. Then I could of had them come up and drag the correct numbers into position.