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Reading Discussion Questions (15 pts.)

In order to facilitate class discussion based on weekly readings, you will be required to post 2 discussion questions each week that pertain to the readings.  Discussion questions should a) show that you have done the reading, and b) provide a thoughtful jumping off point for further discussion of the topic.  For example, you may ask for clarification of a particular point made by the author, challenge the author's assumptions, relate the work to your own experience, etc.



Blogging (40 pts.)

The class is broken up into 4 blogging groups: Red, Blue, Green, and Yellow.  You will be assigned to one group, and expected to post with that group as indicated on the syllabus.  In addition, each time your group posts, you are also responsible for commenting on at least 1 of your fellow group members’ posts.  All posts are due by 9:30 am the day before class, and comments due by class (this lag is to give plenty of time for your classmates to read and respond to your posts).


To receive full credit for blogging, you are expected to complete all assigned blog posts and comments, in a thoughtful manner.


A note: while the blog is an assigned component of the class that makes up a part of the overall grade, it is intended to be a less formal space for personal reflection on the course materials and your own relationship with technology. While the written assignments are closely graded for good writing (grammar, spelling, etc.), on the blog I encourage you to write freely! It is your space, and you’re free to use it above and beyond the assignments, to post about anything that strikes you as interesting (though preferably with at least a tangential relationship to the course).



Learning theories project (50 pts.)

The goals of the learning theories project are twofold: 1) to give you a chance to investigate more closely one of the learning theories discussed in class, and 2) to experience using a wiki for collaborative group work and knowledge sharing.  The class will be broken into groups of 3, and assigned one learning theory from the following list: Operant Conditioning (Skinner), Cognitive-Behavioral Theory (Gagné), Developmental Theory (Piaget), Multiple Intelligences Theory (Gardner), Social Development Theory (Vygotsky), Problem-Based Learning, Communities of Practice (Lave & Wenger).


To complete this project, you will need to:

     1. Read up on your theory.  In addition to your readings, the following websites will be useful as a start.  I expect that you will draw on information from multiple sources (at least 3) for the project, so you may need to investigate beyond these sites.

Funderstanding - About Learning


Learning Theory Resources

Concept to Classroom

Theory Into Practice Database


     2. With your group members, construct a wiki page for your write up. Go to your section's learning theories page (Wed section learning theories page) (Mon/Wed section learning theories page) for further details on creating the wiki page.  


     3. The write up that your group contributes to the wiki should provide detailed information for each of the following components:


• Introduce and describe the theorists’ contributions to the theory (5 pts)

• Describe at least 3 main characteristics of the theory (10 pts)

• Explain the strengths and weaknesses of the theory (10 pts)

• Explain how the theory is associated with either directed or constructivist instruction (5 pts)

• Provide at least one example of how technology can be integrated into classroom instruction that uses the learning theory you choose.  Be detailed with your examples.  What would the classroom look like?  Subject, grade level, etc.?  What would instruction look like?  What are the goals for instruction? What would the technology integration look like?) (10 pts)

• Writing should be clear, well organized, and no errors on grammar or spelling.  Be sure to cite all sources. (5 pts)

• Project should take advantage of the available wiki features.  Your project should contain several linked wiki pages, links to outside websites, and include images (5 pts)


     4. You will be given class time to begin work on the project, but you will be expected to work on the assignment outside of class as well.




Content area software evaluation project (40 pts.) Download the detailed instructions and rubric!

Project overview: In this project, the class is divided into small groups by content area.  You and your partnter(s) will identify a piece of educational software that you think has potential for teaching and learning in your content area, review the software using the provided rubric, and present your findings to the class in a PowerPoint presentation (see below).   In addition, a summary and reflection will be due after spring break.


Helpful sites for finding instructional software to review and some suggestions to get you started (note that these suggestions do not constitute an endorsement of these software):


Google Directory - Educational Software - links to software directories organized by subject

Gamco Educational Software - titles in math, language arts, reading

LeapFrog - various educational games and products (online demos available)

IntelliTools - products for reading, writing, math

Tramline - virtual field trip creator

DigitalFrog - dissections, virtual field trips to wetlands

English eLearning - pronunciation software


You will be given time to work on the project in class, but you will be expected to work on the project outside of class as well.


Content area software evaluation presentation (10 pts.) Download the detailed instructions and rubric!

You and your partner(s) will present findings from your software evaluation.  The presentation should be professional; pretend that you have been asked to evaluate and discuss software choices to your colleagues in your department.  You will have 6 minutes for each presentation; these will be timed, and you will be cut off, so practice ahead of time.


Some things to keep in mind for the presentation:

• Presentation should be clear, concise, easy to understand, and professional

• All group members should participate in presentation

• Include screenshots of the software and/or live demonstration of the software




Digital storytelling project (40 pts.)

Digital storytelling incorporates audio, video, and still images as a form of multimedia writing – to tell a story.  For this project, you will create a digital story on your choice of topic:


1. your multimedia technobiography - an important moment from your technobiography, translated into multimedia form


2. a digital story that informs or instructs in your content area (remember that it should have a narrative story arc!)


We’ll work on much of the project together in class; you’ll be expected to do some additional work outside of class as outlined below.  Refer to the Digital Storytelling PowerPoint for details on each stage of the process.


(WEEK 1 in class - Writing)

1. Write an initial script.

Guiding questions in creating an effective script:

- Does it have a narrative structure (beginning, middle, ending)?

- Does my script address the elements of effective digital storytelling (Lambert, 2007)? Does it have…

    a point of view

    a dramatic question

    emotional content

    economy (2-4 minutes)


(HOMEWORK - Preparing.  Bring in the following:)

2. final version of your script

3. completed storyboard (using the storyboard handout)

4. necessary digital materials (images, sounds) – save to Web Disk, or bring on Flash drive

Finding Images: Google, Picsearch, AltaVista

Finding Audio: AltaVista


(WEEK 2 in class – Constructing.  By the end of class on Week 2, you should have a completed, exported movie in my Blackboard Drop Box (remember to click the Send File button!).)

4. Sequence the images in the video editor.

5. Add the narrative track.

6. Add special effects and transitions.

7. Add a soundtrack if time permits.

8. Save and export movie in compressed format


Grading Rubric (40 pts. total)

- Demonstrates at least 5 of the Seven elements of Effective Storytelling  (30 pts.)

    a point of view

    a dramatic question

    emotional content



    the gift of your voice (via narration)

    an accompanying soundtrack (Lambert, 2007)

- Mixes images, narrative, and soundtrack in an effective manner that takes advantage of the features of each medium (7 pts)

- Contains copyright acknowledgment (3 pts)



Practical teaching experience project (40 pts.) - download complete rubric

For this project, you will be put into subject area groups to plan and execute a technology-supported lesson – the practical teaching experience. The purpose of the practical teaching experience is to provide an organized approach for preservice teacher candidates to teach a standards-based, technology-supported lesson.  Planning, assessment and reflection are vital parts of the practical teaching experience. 


The final project consists of 3 components: the technology integration lesson plan, the practical teaching experience in which the plan is implemented, and a self-evaluation. The technology integration plan is to be completed by the group and handed in.  Note that the self-reflection is individual; each student should complete their own self-reflection to hand in.  The practical teaching experience is an in-class teaching presentation, for which you will have 15 minutes.  You will be timed, and cut off, so please practice ahead of time.



Online portfolio project (70 pts.)

(review web development slides) (OTS SharePoint help docs)

(sample portfolios here and here and here)


As a result of this course, students will create a professional online portfolio.  This portfolio should include all projects, presentations, papers, and activities completed as part of this class, as well as relevant personal and professional information.  This portfolio should show a full understanding of what you have learned throughout the semester.  This portfolio should show your growing understanding and beliefs about the use of technology and how to integrate computer related technologies into the k-12 classroom to improve student learning.  This portfolio, along with your final project, serves as a culminating artifact displaying your professional knowledge, growth, and experience with relation to technology, learning, and teaching.  


Grading Checklist


Content (see below) - 60 points

Web design (readable, professional, navigable, correct grammar and spelling) - 10 points


A complete online portfolio should include a page for each of the following components (60 points):

- An introduction page with name, professional info, and picture

- Inspiration web

- Summary of and link to learning theories project

- Content software evaluation project (summary of findings; links to download the BCPS evaluation form that your group completed, and the PowerPoint presentation)

- Assistive technology (take a screenshot of the alternative text dialog box that pops up when you insert an image Sharepoint) (Making a screen shot in Windows XP) (Making a screen shot in Mac OS X)

- Blogging & Web 2.0 (screenshot of one of your blog posts; link to the blog post)

- Digital storytelling (brief description of story; picture from story; screenshot of video)

- Practical teaching experience (short summary of your mini-lesson; link to your lesson plan, presentation, and reflection)

- Reflection: review and reflect upon the views on classroom technology use blog post that you wrote at the beginning of the semester. 

  • Link to the original blog post 
  • Answer the following questions: Are your thoughts and ideas about classroom technology use the same, or have your ideas changed?  Based upon what you have learned throughout this course, how might you change or improve your original technology integration strategies?  Do you believe your thoughts and understandings about how to integrate computer related technologies into a learning environment have changed?


- In addition, for each of these components you must identify one or two of the MTTS and briefly discuss how you see your work on the project as being representative of the outcome prescribed within the standard.  In order to do this, you'll want to include a sentence or two that introduces the particular activity or artifact.


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