Sunday, January 27, 2013

Blog Post #2

Did You Know? 3.0- A John Strange 2012 Version

I found this video to be very interesting. I have seen a number of these statistics and facts before, but my eyes were opened as I was reminded of several of them. I find it particularly interesting that Americans are viewed as being behind when it come to education issues. The fact that India has more honors students than all of the K-12 students combined in the United States is alarming. In The United States we are taught English from the very start of school. We do have the option to elect to participate in learning a foreign language, but overall a majority of Americans are not fluent in more than the English language. What is alarming is that in other countries such as China they are forced to learn another language and if that continues there will be more Chinese speaking English than all American English speaking individuals. That is alarming because this means the Chinese will be able to do many more things and have a greater influence on products in America.

Another statistic that I see as rather interesting is that forty-eight hours of YouTube videos are uploaded every minute along with over 1.3 million text messages sent worldwide in that same minute. I never realized how long it took for a text message to send (18 seconds). I was wrong in thinking that text messages were sent and received instantaneously. This video points out several major issues to me. The first is that we need to place more of an emphasis on K-12 education in America in order to succeed and not allow other countries to continue to bypass us in knowledge. The second issue is that technology is ever changing and a part of everyday life. Knowing that technology is important in our culture, it is our job as teachers to ensure that our students know how to properly use the technology that is part of almost every part of life.

Mr. Winkle Wakes

This video is significant because it shows how much our culture and society have changed in a one hundred year time span. Mr. Winkle is simply overwhelmed by the amount of change and the presence of technology in just about every area of a person's life. Mr. Winkle had never seen the weird looking machinery that we use in every area today. Mr. Winkle continued to try and escape to a place where he felt comfortable and knew his surroundings, but everywhere he went he became more uncomfortable until he entered the school building.

Mr. Winkle's video showed the lack of technology that is used in school, but is widely available for use. As a future teacher, it makes me sad and frustrated that the schools have not embraced technology like every other field of America has adopted it. This video reflects poorly on the education system, because we should be teaching our students to be sucessful in their future endeavors. By ignoring the advances in society, we are setting our students up for failure. If Mr. Winkle was to fall asleep for another few years, I would want him to come visit my classroom to see how technology is being used in the classroom and that we aren't failing our students.

Sir Ken Robinson: The Importance of Creativity

Ken Robinson makes very valid and intersting points regaurding creativity in the education system in his video The Importance of Creativity. Robinson got my attention when he made the statement "creativity now is as important in education as literacy, and we should treat it with the same status." Creativity has been taken out of the schools in many areas and by taking creativity out of schools we are creating cookie cutter students that all do the same exact thing. Removing creativity means we are forcing the students to conform to one set of ways, ideas, and beliefs.

Ken Robinson also makes a very good point when he points out that Picasso once said "all children are born artist, the problem is remaining an artist." In today's society we are being educated out of our creativity. We are being taught that mistakes are the worst thing in life that we can do. Mistakes are some of the best learning experiences for humans. By taking creativity out of people, we are instilling in them that their is only one correct way to do things. As future teachers and those that will have a large influence on the future of the education society in America, we need to consider what Robinson pointed out that the education system is shifting beneath our feet. We also need to reconsider our view of what intelligence is. We are limiting the definition of intelligence and it is hurting our students. My challenge to future teachers is to reconsider how you will grade your students, will it be based on the fact that there is one correct answer or based on their participation? We need to nurture children's creativity in order to avoid creativity being completely removed from the future generations.

In Light of Mr. Winkle Wakes

Mr. Winkle Wakes can be considered a wake up call for the entire education system. Why are the school not embracing and taking advantage of all the wonderful technological advances available to them? As teachers we will have the option to use the latest technology to teach our students in the classroom. By teaching using the technology and allowing the students to learn then we are creating students that will be better prepared for the real world. We do not another video made simliar to Mr. Winkle Wakes because we are allowing our computers to build up dust as we have them sit there without use.

We have so many resources at our disposal to use in teaching, so why not take advantage of them? We have made major advances in the past five years alone, so imagine in ten years from now, what technology we will be using. Technology will continue to develop in the future. I have a feeling that in ten years, out classrooms will be centered around technology and electronics. There will be no need for copy machines as we switch to every students submitting all assignments, tests, and quizzes on the computer. It is exciting to think about what the future holds in regards to technology in the classroom.

PINTERESTing My Classroom

I have been a member of Pinterest for over a year now and can easily spend hours pinning ideas away on my many boards. From the very beginning I have had an education board called, "Learning in Unique Ways." I do not want my students to be taught using the old powerpoint and lecture methods that are so popular, I want to use hands on activities that allow my students to engage in learning. Pinterest is a wonderful resource for teachers, because it is an easy place for teachers across the country to share ideas for classrooms and teaching. You can find almost anything on Pinterest. Engaging students in using Pinterest is also a wonderful idea because when you give children more ownership in the work they are doing, they have pride in their work. They are also more willing to pay attention and gain from the activity if they took part in planning or picking it out. Pinterest is a wonderful way for teachers to share resources.

Pinterest in Education Picture


  1. You misunderstood the comparative data on China, India and the United States. India has four times the population of the United States and China has five times the population of America, This means that the size of the population leads to the large numbers of "honor students" or English speakers when India or China are compared to the United States. You could also say that the 20 % of the population in China with the largest ears (or 25% of the population with the largest ears in India) outnumbers all of the people with ears of any size in the United States.

    Thoughtful. Interesting.

    1. Thank you very much for clarifying the comparative data on China, India, and the United States. I clearly misunderstand it and now I see how that happened on my part. I went back and re-watched the video again after reading your comment to obtain a better understanding. Thank you for clarifying my misunderstanding.