Contributing to Learning

For this semester we were tasked with finding a way to contribute to others learning, inside and out of our particular class.


To begin with, I participated in a saskedchat on Twitter that I found particularly interesting.  They would send out questions, and to answer them you would tweet in your answer using #saskedchat.  Unfortunately, I participated in very few of these chats.  As life take a hold of you, sometimes you must only follow.  Saying this, the ones that I did participate in were very thought provoking.

Then even though I did not help much on certain blogs, I prefer to help in real life face-to-face contact.  Speaking of this, during this semester, my friend Kelsey is taking Precalculus 30, and throughout this semester an going into the coming months I have been tutoring her and helping her with understanding the main concepts of the class, meeting on a regular basis to fully complete the learning.  Considering that I am a math major, I appreciate the chance to help in any way that I can.


As I move on from this semester, I will try to help any way that I can in aiding my friends and colleagues in their learning.


Summary Of My Learning

So for this semester, we have taken in a lot of information about how to use technology in the classroom.  This information will travel with me as I move towards my career of teaching.  Elizabeth Dornstauder, Kyle Teron and I created this video showing what we learned, in a format that is more interesting to us.  So please enjoy our summary of learning, infomercial style.

EDTC300, Learning Project

My Journey

So throughout this semester, I have been taking a look at a skill that I lost at a young age.  This particular skill is playing the piano.  Most musical people would recommend that if you were to learn a musical instrument, such as the piano, you should do it at a young age, as when you are young you pick up on simple concepts faster than if you were an adult.  But instead. I decided to learn at the age of 18.  If you were to ask me how it went, I would say something along the lines of, “It was hard, and I have a long way to go”.  This is true.  Mainly I focused on the concept of chords and how using the simple method of chords, you can play a pretty impressive song.

With the help of both my friends, Kathleen Houston, Kelsey Howatt and the use of the internet, I was able to produce a video of myself playing chords to the song “Lava”.

As well, I was able to test out several different ways that you could access a piano.  Either in person or by using several websites that turn your keyboard into a piano.


In the end, I found that no matter what you see online, you must practice on whatever you want to achieve, whether that is piano or some other type of skill that you would like to have in your repertoire.

EDTC300, Learning Project

Trying It Out

As I stated in my previous post, I found a great piano cover of Creep by Radiohead.  I decided to play the chords on top of the song.  So far I have tried to go through songs using chords.  Possibly in the future I can take this song and learn both base clef and treble clef of the song instead of just the chords.


EDTC300, Learning Project

Learning How To Play “Let it go”

I found this interesting video where this man teaches the viewer step by step instructions on how to play the Disney song “Let it go”.  It really lets a beginner like myself jump into songs without worrying about learning them by themselves.

It brings in past knowledge like, which fingers correlate to which number, and note names as you play, so even if you have musical knowledge but no piano knowledge, you can follow along quite nicely.

A great thing that he does in this video would be that he allows extra practise time in the video by leaving a few seconds of space for the viewer to practice but also he gives certain times where you can pause the video and practise on your own until you are comfortable with the section that you are on.

What is amazing, and a great learning tool is that at the end of the video, he allows you to play what you had just learned but with some added chords that he plays while you attempt the melody.

Sadly I did not get a chance to film my attempt at this song, but nonetheless, it is helpful and super easy if anyone with little piano skills (like myself) can learn to play a classic Disney song.


Frozen Teaches Me How to Code

So recently I decided to try my hand at basic coding.  Using the website Hour of Code I decided to try one of their activities to see if I could do anything close to coding.  Knowing that I have no idea what coding is and how to complete any type of action, I chose a beginner level.  I found this wonderful Frozen game, where you have to use coding to create snowflakes in the ice, using Elsa and Anna to complete the coding task.

It started out really easy, creating lines, then moving on to completing squares.

I began to feel more comfortable with the levels and challenges started to get harder than I originally anticipated.  The first time tried out level six, I got frustrated and had to take a break to figure out how to complete the task.

After I got the hang of level six, I felt like with a little time I could figure out the rest of these levels.  Instead of squares at this point, the snowflakes began to have different looks.

Getting closer to the end, I had a feeling that I could finish with success  More and more different designs were harder and harder to complete.  With the helpful hints from Elsa, and some quick hints in short clips before the levels aided me as I figured out how to code these snowflakes.

I had finally succeeded in my hour of code activity.  For the last level, they allowed me to create a snowflake of my own.  I decided to make an intricate snowflake using the techniques that I learned from this experience.


Coding, in general, is a great thing for all students to learn, even if it in part.  Understanding the basics of how to create things online is a great thing to have in your back pocket.  Teaching children to code at a young age could open many things for their future if they can understand how to code.  Using different programs like Hour of Code can help in classrooms to motivate students to learn more.


What is Fake News Anymore?

In this day in age, fake news seems to be all around us.  Whether it is online, on our televisions, or even in the public.  We need to make sure that we can pick out what is real and what is a fabrication.

In this article, “Fake news. It’s complicated”, it described what fake news is, and how to catch if something is fake news.  I would recommend a read of this article, it shows the purpose and how to go about fake news.

Fake news is defined as: “false, often sensational, information disseminated under the guise of news reporting” (Collins Dictionary)

In a classroom, it is very important to introduce your students to fake news and show them how to overcome the fake news on the internet and how to interpret the real from the fake.  Doing this at an early age and grade allows for the student to see for themselves what the world holds without being hindered by fake news that is being put out as a real fact.  Especially as they become of age to create accounts on Facebook and Twitter where fake news is common.

EDTC300, Learning Project

Even More Chords Make a New Song

So recently I found a great song that I have been obsessing over.  I found the piano arrangement of Creep by Radiohead.

First I found a video of someone playing the song, with full technique and all parts displayed in the sheet music.

But because I am not fully confident with actual playing yet.  I will be using chords again to create the song.  I found the sheet music online in PDF form.

The chords in mind are C major, C minor, G major, and B major.  With the help of one of my music friends and a website showing each chord and how to play it.

Video to come soon.


Digital Identity

Digital identity is a very tricky thing to wrap your head around.  The internet can either build you up, even to a point of being a celeb of sorts.  But it can also tear you down, even as far as where you’ve lost everything that you once knew.  This is evident for a woman named Monica Lewinsky as she speaks in a Ted Talk about her story of how the internet broke her and stole everything from her while sitting behind a screen.  She made a simple mistake when she was 22 years old, and it gave way to bullying and the destruction of her identity on the internet.  And as the internet continues to grow, the negativity increases with it.  This caused Monica to retreat into the shadows and hide for a long time until she decided to speak out about her story and try to stop anything that either is happening or will happen to any others, that happened to her.

Something very similar happened to Justine Sacco when she tried to make a simple joke on twitter to get a reaction from her followers.  But as described by Jon Ronson n his Ted Talk, “How One Tweet Can Ruin Your Life“, he shows exactly that.  As did Monica, Justine made a mistake that cost her everything.  As she was entering a plane headed to a vacation shop, she made a remark that she would regret.  As the title of the Ted Talk states, this tweet ruined her life.  So no matter what platform, people are watching you.  What you post, what you like, what you comment on, absolutely everything.

What was really helpful in the case of digital citizenship is that I found a website specifically made for digital citizenship.   The website “Digital Citizenship” allows for curious teachers, future teacher, or any wanting to learn more about digital citizenship.  They also allow for the researcher to find additional resources if the website doesn’t have what they are looking for.

Then there is a wonderful article called “The IRL Fetish” which describes the fact that we use our technology constantly in our lives whether that is while walking in public or having a meal with your family.  Your technology is always there either in your pocket, in your bag, or in close reach.  We have lost the reality that we once knew because of these things that we hold so dear to us.  The fact is, that we are, in a way, addicted to being in the online world rather than in the real world.  With that said, as the internet grows and grows, what we are online, becomes more important than who we are in the real world.

Finally, this might be a short video but it is very impressive on how it displays the importance of the consideration you have before posting online, and his comparison to this posting to an electronic tattoo.  And because of these electronic tattoos, what we post and say online is forever just like a real tattoo.  I would definitely recommend you take a look at this shirt Ted Talk.