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Kerrie Craske- Teacher & Learner

"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." -Nelson Mandela

Month

January 2016

Shift in Education

I have recently began expanding my Professional Learning Network on Twitter by following educational accounts. I have discovered an interest in accounts that encompass knowledge on the future of education and the evolution of teaching and learning.

The other day I came across MindShift on Twitter, which I will be talking more about in this blog. MindShift is accessible on twitter which also led me to their blog. Katrina Schwartz is a contributor to MindShift and a staff writer for their blog. I have already gained a lot of knowledge and resources from viewing it. MindShift wants to develop an insight into future education for lifelong educators. It has an endless amount of topics, some of which encompass digital tools, culture, new innovations, and personal stories. Below I will share a little about some aspects of the blog.

Growth Mindset

This provides opportunities for teachers to grow in their learning and understanding of education. One blog I enjoyed that relates to technology is about ClassDojo and its benefits for students. It engages students in the classroom and reinforces positive behaviour. I have never used it a classroom before, but I think it would be a unique tool to try out. I just discovered it has 40 different language translations- which is great in having parents of our multicultural society become a part of their children’s experiences at school.

Games and Learning

With our technological society growing each day, I think it is important to integrate technology into the classroom, but only at appropriate times. This area of the blog demonstrates how to integrate different games into student learning while still following curriculum. It is interesting to see the reasoning of how some of these games can enhance student learning. I particularly found this read valuable. Be sure to read about the 7 components of game-play that fit into curriculum.

I now look forward to continuing to read this blog and Twitter and discover new valuable resources and opinions to help shape my professional learning as a lifelong learner!

 

 

Abandoned Teaching

I recently read an article about why so many young teachers are quitting their professions. Although this article is based out of Australia, I still believe some of the facts are true for here in Canada. I couldn’t ever imagine being anything else but a teacher, as probably many of these educators did too. So why are they leaving schools?

Screen Shot 2016-01-28 at 1.56.12 PMThe results of beginning teachers leaving are devastating. School achievement, effectiveness and collaboration declines, and having to find replacement teachers can be a struggle. The article suggests that some reasons for teachers leaving schools are because they are overloaded with work, there is a lack of communication and supports between educators, and personal safety.

I’m interested in finding out what your thoughts on teachers leaving the education system so early in their careers. Why do you think teachers are leaving? What could be implemented to provide teachers with more supports and safety in schools?

 

Do I Have Proper Archer Form?

This past weekend I had the chance to get some training with archery. I learned so many things about myself, how I learn, and what I need to improve on.

Recording myself allowed me to review my archery form and stance. I will be able to compare my progress every time I practice. Even though I watched some starter videos online, I got my boyfriend to help me out. I learned 3 things throughout this practice session:

  1. Do not take up archery in the winter- your hands will freeze!
  2. TRY to be patient with your teacher.
  3. Do not practice the day after you cut and haul trees- your arms will be sore!

Above is my stance. The first photo is of the first time I shot at the target. My form was not correct; my feet were not apart enough and I did not pull the bowstring back far enough. The middle photo is me at the end of my practice with a much better form. The last photo is me getting some “proper form” lessons from Brody.

To begin, I had trouble pulling the arrow all the way back, I thought I was so weak! I found out the draw weight was too high so I turned it down and it was easier to pull back. I thought that learning the sport of archery would be easy to catch onto, but I need to do a lot more research and learning to become an expert.

If you have any tips or tricks for me, please let me know!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Feedly Fun- Creating Professional Growth

This week for ECMP 355 we were asked to sign up for a Feedly account and discover the big blogging world. Feedly collects RSS feeds, where numerous blogs are displayed and easy to find for you to follow. At first, I was overwhelmed with how to find the blogs I wanted to look for, so I went to google and found this blog that helps you set up and navigate a Feedly account!

Feedly has allowed me to further develop my professional growth as a pre-service teacher by following blogs that are relevant to my lifelong learning. I began by searching by #topic, which didn’t provide me the results I wanted. I then searched by title, which worked a lot better. I even used our #ecmp355 page on Twitter to help me think of ideas about what kinds of blogs I could search for. I am a very organized person, so when I discovered I could organize my blogs by different categories on Feedly, I was pretty excited!

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I was looking for blogs that would help me become more technologically literate. I also wanted to find blogs that encompass my past experiences as a teacher, including using appropriate classroom management, being prepared, developing a positive classroom culture, and teaching strategies.

One blog that really captured my attention is ilearntechnology. This is an educational blog that talks about using different technology resources within the classroom and provides real life critique of them. The writer of this blog has been a technology integration specialist for 5 years, who’s goal is to help teachers fall in love with technology. This blog is relevant to my professional development because I can use these forms of technology and understand the personal stories of how they are used in order to integrate them into my own classrooms. My favourite blog post I read is Using Technology to Differentiate Instruction. It provides a huge amount of technology that can be used to meet the different learning styles within the classroom. Check out TeachThought, another blog I really enjoyed following.

Let me know what your favourite educational blogs are  so I can continue to develop my professional growth as an educator!

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The blogs I chose to follow on Feedly.

Archery 101: dominant eye, form and stance

Only 3 more days until I get to use my compound bow for the first time! I felt a little unprepared, so I thought it would be important to learn about proper archery form and how to determine what my dominant eye is.

In order to do this, I checked out Youtube! There are SO many videos of people teaching archery tips, so it was hard to choose. I came across Howcast which is a youtube channel that posts the most random videos, but they are all informative and get straight to the point!

I began by determining what my dominant eye was, and I am right eye dominant. Learn which of your eye’s is dominant here.

Next, I learned about proper stance. I have practiced holding my bow in resting position and I now know how to put it from a resting to ready to anchor position. I watched quite a few videos on archery form, but I found this one the most useful. I really enjoyed how someone was doing the explaining of how to hold it, while the other person demonstrated what to do.

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Check out my blog next week to see me in action and using the bow for the first time!

Discovering the Bow

I recently just received my first bow and arrows! Below is a simple compound bow that I will be using without the additional features like a sight. My boyfriend and his family have done archery for most of their lives, so it is with them where I will gain a lot of my practical experiences.

Living in Regina in the winter is somewhat difficult for practicing, however I am looking for indoor practicing ranges and I will practice when I go outside of the city for safety purposes!

A while back, I took my Hunter’s Safety Course online. I remembered there was a whole chapter  on Archery, however I did not pay much attention to it because it was not my main focus at the time. I went back to the course page and was excited that I could still access my course to refer to any material that I previously learned.

I am using this Course now as a means of online learning. The chapter on Archery highlights archery gear, archery safety, different types of bows and arrows, and how to properly shoot a bow.

My critique of this online course is that overall it is very beneficial, especially for an independent learner. If you like group learning and asking questions, I would recommend taking this course in person. I really enjoyed taking it online because I could access it at any time. The material is presented very concisely and with lots of visuals, diagrams and virtual experiences. I particularly like the audio option where you can listen to someone reading you the information or you can read it yourself. My favourite part about this online Hunter’s Safety Course is that it allowed me to go back and access the course that I signed up for a long time ago.

This week, I started learning about different parts of the bow string and bow to help me gain a better understanding of what I am using. Next, I will be learning about the different parts of an arrow to help me understand what I will be using during my hands on experience.

 

My Life & Learning with Technology

Hi! I’m Kerrie Craske. I am in my fourth and final year of University in the Elementary (PreK-5) program at the University of Regina. I recently completed my internship in Yorkton, SK in a grade 1 and grade ½ classroom.

I grew up in small town Preeceville, SK with my brothers and parents. I really enjoy music and growing up I had the opportunity to play piano and obtain my Grade 8 Royal Conservatory Piano certificate, which has enabled me to teach students of my own. I was involved in curling and badminton and I recently helped coach cross-country during internship which I really enjoyed! I have a passion for the outdoors. I enjoy anything that has to do with nature and travelling, including fishing, hiking, camping and exploring new places. I want to continue to expand on my love for the outdoors, which is why I am learning the sport of archery for my ECMP 355 Learning Project.

I began developing my Professional Learning Network a few years ago in ECS 210 through creating this blog. I didn’t continue it, however I am excited to use it again to connect with other educators and professionals.

In my internship at Yorkdale Central School, I was provided the opportunity to use various technology tools in my teaching. Here I learned that technology can be a very beneficial tool in the classroom when used appropriately. My students had the opportunity to learn about safely sharing their work in an online space through Kidblog. Facebook was used as a communication tool for parents to see what their children were learning each day. iPad’s were used for literacy and numeracy development from apps like RazKids and Mathletics.

I believe that technology is a tool that needs to work with curriculum, and not take priority over it. Curriculum is highest in importance, and if a technological tool is available to support that curriculum then that is an asset. Technology allows for us to ask questions about almost anything and it provides us with an answer. I think that there also needs to be equal opportunities for students to learn in a natural environment where they can explore and discover the world they live in.

What do you think about the use of technology in the classroom? Do you believe that there needs to be a balance between a technological environment and natural environment for students? 

Becoming an Archer #Learning Project

When I first learned I had the opportunity to be actively engaged in a learning project for my online ECMP355 class, I knew exactly what I wanted to do. The learning project could be anything that we wanted to learn, but it had to be complex, worth learning, and of great interest to you.

In the fall, I decided that I wanted to take up the sport of archery because it looked fun,  challenging and rewarding. My goal was to begin learning archery in the spring when the weather was nicer, however I have decided to begin now.

Pre-Assessment:

My knowledge of archery is minimal. I have used a small plastic bow and arrow maybe once or twice in my life at camp when I was young- shooting at bales. I recently took my hunters safety course, and although there is a section on archery and shooting with a bow, it was not as relevant to the course as other areas. I have attended archery events in the past, so I have acquired some knowledge about the skills, form and technique required.

Future Goals:

  • Knowing about different types of bows and arrows and what is most suitable for me
  • Learn about the different components of the bow and arrows
  • Learning the proper shooting form
  • Learning how to aim, set, release and follow-through.
  • Hitting multiple targets at different ranges
  • Knowing and teaching others about the safety of using a bow and arrow
  • Consulting with professional archers and learning about different perspectives and knowledge of the sport
  • Participate in an archery event

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