Monday, May 7, 2012

Technology in the Classroom

Technology is definitely an important thing to encourage and teach in the classroom. It is not only important for the future career choices of the child but so much of society is using the internet. The benefits of using technology are numerous. Technology can create better communication with students and encourage them to want to learn. It can also help students who may have trouble understanding or focusing during classroom lectures. Technology is a tool for the extension of learning, not just a facebook checker, and students need to realize this power. The challenges may come in when technology adapts quickly and I cannot keep up. I am quite quick to pick things up but technology is constantly changing. One thing I know I might struggle with are smartphones and ipads. I have never personally had either and they can be quite confusing at first. The most important lesson I will take away from this class, however, is that if you are willing to learn, technology comes quite easily and there are endless possibilities with a tool like technology. If i am to take away anything from this class it is certainly the knowledge that there is always so much more to learn.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Vidjyas and All

The group video project was a lot of fun really. I think my group's video turned out well but I do think it could improve in the editing. There should have been some fades in the music but it wasn't too bad. Next time I think I would spend a little bit more time editing it with my partner but given the circumstances, it turned out great. I already knew how to do most of the stuff presented in class but it was nice to hear it all being taught to me again and I really am not very organized when it comes to filming so I might start getting more organization. If I were to incorporate digital video into my classroom, my age level would be in high school. Film is something that can be a little challenging for students to understand because there are so many parts to it but I think as far as teaching them how to properly organize a project, film is a great way to help them learn this process. The content area would probably be a mock-u-mentary style focusing on an artist and incorporating historical information on them. The preparations that I would have to do include finding cameras that they may use and making sure there is editing software for the students. Some of the challenges would be teaching them the difficult process of writing a script, filming it, and editing it, as well as any technical video information they may need to know in order to properly import the footage. One of the biggest challenges that will arise will be keeping the individual groups from fighting with each other because no matter what age, they all will have their opinions of each other. Here is the step by step process: For their mock-u-mentary, my students will research an artist from any time period and make a script that addresses important factual information on top of an interesting plot. Each film should be around 3 to 5 minutes long. Before filming they will write up a shot list. They will film/act out the artist and what might be his everyday doings as well as the important historical events that befell him. After filming is complete, they will edit the movie on whichever program available and add any sound or effects needed. They will then upload it to youtube. I will need to teach them how to properly edit, some common filming techniques as well as rules, such as the 180 degree rule, some copyright laws, and teach them (if they don't already know) how to upload a video onto youtube. Assigning groups may be the best way to prevent friend drama but if I do this I will have to be sure to give them time in class to film their movies.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Web Graphics and Stuff

Of all of the skills we covered in class regarding graphics, I learned three new things. The first was mainly about how the pixels per inch needed to be 72 in order to make it work properly as a web image. The second was how to resize the image without using a different program. The last was how to save it to web compatible formats. These did not have much to do with the program itself (especially since the program can do soooooooo very much more) but they were still technical things that I needed to know. I don't know if it will affect my image use on the web considering that I do not use images on the web very often at this moment. I guess it could be helpful to teach in the school system, just because everything is going to be more technologically advanced and the more they know about it, the easier everything will be for the students. I don't know how many of them would actually use it but I think it would be helpful to know just so that they could apply the same knowledge to other things as well. I often adapt knowledge of other things to problems that I experience, so I know it helps me when I know the basics of things.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Excel in Class

My five ideas for using Excel in the classroom are as follows: #1. A List of expenses and materials for each project to determine a price range for selling the work. -This would require keeping a budget of expenses such as the price of paint or canvas when making a painting. -Another thing I would have my students factor in is the amount of time spent and tell them to give themselves a base rate of about $8 to $9. -As mentioned before this will help them determine a price range as well as teach them how to manage their own time and money on projects. -NETS-S Standard: 4. Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making c. Collect and Analyze data to identify solutions and/or make informed decisions. Since art supplies are incredibly expensive and often times field trips are cut from budgets, I would use excel for encouraging fundraising. I would probably introduce this into art club and there are several different things I could use excel for in this case. #2. If we were to have a t-shirt sale at the school with an original design from one of the students, excel could be used to organize and tally up the data received from the voting process. -A chart could be used to sum up and present the data. -NETS-S Standard: 3. Research and Information Fluency d. Process data and report results. #3. A set goal in mind could be put in place so that the students can figure out how many shirts they will need to sell in order to get the correct amount of money. This could help them strategize and plan ahead as well as teach them to once again make a budget. They could also allocate certain amounts of money collected in different ways if they were doing several fundraisers here. -NETS-S Standard: 1. Creativity and Innovation d. Identify trends and forecast possibilities. #4. Another way that the students could use this is by organizing the information received by the people who bought tee shirts. They could use excel to create a list of the names, sizes, amount of shirts bought by each individual, and forms of payment used. This is a great way to teach students how to organize information so that there are no horrible mix ups and everything is clearly organized. This is an important skill to have because everyone takes money very seriously and if something goes wrong the consequences could be very bad. -NETS-S Standard: 3. Research and Information Fluency b. Locate, organize, analyze, evaluate, synthesize, and ethically use information from a variety of sources. #5. This one is specifically geared towards my curriculum and it is supposed to demonstrate the change of worth in artwork over time. The project would ask the question of how a painting sold in the 1600's for 12 American dollars might increase in price by present day. It would ask specific numbers and require a certain formula to increase the currency amount in excel. By using excel as a tool, they would not have to do too much math, but would still get the idea that time increases the worth of an item by a lot! They would also be asked to compare and they would have to give specific reasons why something might increase in price over time and do research to find famous works of art on so that they can compare it to the standard prices of artwork during the time the work of art was made. -NETS-S Standard: 4. Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making c. Collect and analyze data to identify solutions and/or make informed decisions.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012


I had already known a bit about copyright laws before the class especially in relation to movies being publicly viewed, but there were still a few surprising things to me. First, I had no idea that copyrights were protected in the constitution and that surprised me. I also found it intriguing to know that the laws are somewhat vague and it depends on the people judging the case at the time to see what side they will choose. During the jeopardy game in class, there were times I thought that the copyright was not violated because of one thing, when it really wasn't violated because of some other weird reason such as market values. I have seen copyrights being violated all of the time in schools and outside of them. I had a teacher that would copy books and give them out to the students rather than purchasing multiple textbooks for everyone within the class. I have also had teachers show a film for class that had nothing to do with what the class was learning. Outside of classes there are waaaay too many instances to count of people breaking copyright laws. One of the primary ways this is done is through downloading music illegally. Other ways people break copyright laws are through copy and pasting images and watching movies online for free. The internet has made stealing things much easier and copyright is struggling to keep up. It is important to teach copyright respect to students because they will be using the internet and using information they found and they do not want to be penalized for it ever. I would do it to inform them on what is right and wrong so that they are not getting in trouble doing illegal things. I will do this by making a good example of myself and teaching the students to use their "own" pictures and designs to make art. I think this is a good way of discouraging students from stealing other people's photographs and designs.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Smartboards in the Classroom

Interactive whiteboards are awesome learning tools. They allow for so many different possibilities in the classroom. It is nice to do demonstrations right in front of the children instead of making them get up and stand around a little table. The technology is very easy to use. The pros of the Smartboards in the class, are that they can grab the attention of the students very easily. They are much more entertaining than just looking at a normal whiteboard. The cons of installing them into the classroom are that I would have to worry about it getting damaged or it could malfunction and ruin the entire lesson plan I had for the day. If I were using this for past lesson plans, I would probably have to change my lessons to fit around it more. One lesson focused on drawing faces and I could see using the magic pen tool to zoom in on important parts of the face and demonstrate the process better. Overall, I love the smartboard and I look forward to using it while I am teaching.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Michel Hazanavicius knows what he is doing

When I first heard about The Artist, I thought the idea of a modern day, black and white, silent film was interesting but not something that would be incredibly entertaining. I was dead wrong. This movie won 5 Academy Awards, including best picture, but what really impressed me about it was how it took film, more specifically, a wide release film, and made it back into a respectable art form. Lately, with the sudden fad of 3D movies and the entertaining movies that are bled dry by the many sequels following them, film has been very much about making money and not taking risks. As I look at the film department here at Albright College, it is run by older men who despise big money movies because they destroy film as an art form, and I think Michel Hazanavicius (Director of The Artist) felt this way too. His film is not only respected by the academy but a piece of art that can be respected by artists everywhere.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Explore the world without leaving your seat

I have loved all of the new software skills that I have recently acquired. I have never been too attached to technology but have always liked how simple it makes normally difficult tasks. I loved how Publisher had a bunch of different templates for flyers and Newsletters. These are things that could take hours to set up and figure out, but with the templates, it is as easy as clicking a button and adding words. Which is an AMAZING time saver. I am excited to learn more about what I can do with the Smartboard because I can see using that tool a lot. The best bit of software that we have discussed in this class, however, is the wonderful I love stumbling, but I hate the fact that there is no way of storing websites that I like on it. Diigo is that missing link that I have wanted to know about for SOOOOOOO long. I found some awesome websites the other day while stumbling, and thanks to Diigo, I can find them easily. I think this will be great for research projects, I will definitely introduce my students to it, I can also see it being useful as a way to create resources for my students, which is why I bookmarked so many art museum websites. I may not be able to take them to le Louvre, but with the internet they can still experience the art within. In addition to showing my students in the future, this is the type of thing that I need to introduce to my mom. She tends to bookmark EVERYTHING she comes across online, but she uses the bookmarks tab at the top of the web browser. She also will save links in a word document that she leaves open all of the time. She loves to do research so I think she will love to use this.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Are these fish real?

Watch as contemporary artist Riusuke Fukahori creates amazing artwork using simple materials like glass, paint, resin, and wood. I came across this while looking for contemporary artists.

I give Social Bookmarking a big thumbs up

Social Bookmarking definitely has a place in the art classroom. Art education deals with a lot of art history, but something that teachers seem to fall behind on is contemporary art. I think technology is the way of the future of schooling anyways, so it is important to not fall behind. There are also such amazing sites online that can excite students. I know that sometimes I feel more inclined to do work for  this class, just because it feels as if I am exploring unknown territory. The internet is like the deep ocean and space, in that there is so much to see and so much that is new and unexplored and humans are naturally very curious so children are amazed by the wonders of technology. I think social bookmarking will definitely help me as a student, in fact, I wish I had it last semester when I had to do a LOT of research papers for my ridiculously thorough Sociology of Education Class. It seems like it could be very useful for reasearch papers because I could have organized the sites better and had them all available to me just by signing into my account, rather than printing them all out. Plus! You can highlight things, and that seems extremely useful to me because highlighting things and rewriting them right onto my essay is the very first thing I do before starting my research papers. Anyways, I digress, social bookmarking is quite nice and waaaaaaay better than normal bookmarking.

Personal Learning Network

        My resources come from a couple of different areas. One place that I find to be very good for introducing me to contemporary artists is I use it a lot to find resources and discover new art techniques. For instance, there is a lot of street art that is being done and hundreds of youtube videos that explore new concept. Here is one I found just now when I stumbled and interest in art, Another resource I find to be rather reliable are my classmates. Whenever I have a question or even need advice, they are very helpful. I especially find this useful in my art classes since it is such a subjective subject (I love that wording), anyone who can see can give their opinion on the aesthetic value of a picture but other art students know exactly how to improve it. Professors are great resources as well, especially for when classmates are unsure of how they might help. I also like to use books as resources and find them extremely useful for describing processes for using certain mediums. My favorite is a book called Art Effects by Jean Drysdale Green. This book shows so many different techniques for applying art mediums and it explains the processes. This is my current learning network; however, I will have many more after this class.

Inspiration for Art in the Class

          When I was first explained the program, Inspiration, I thought of it as something that would be most useful in content areas such as English or the sciences, but the more I think of it, the more ideas it gives me.  Here are a couple of effective uses for Inspiration:
  1. Inspiration can obviously be used as a timeline for different movements in art history. This would be very useful for me to organize information for my students.
  2. In terms of art history, it can be very useful for creating connections to different movements. Not all points in history are linear in time and some artistic movements relate to periods in time that are in a completely different era. For instance, Neoclassicism period paintings that were done in the early 19th mirror the Greco-Roman style during the Classical period. Students would be able to make these connections very easily with a nicely made chart using Inspiration.
  3. A web could easily represent an art movement in the center with artists and their famous paintings surrounding the outside.
  4. Webs can also be helpful for displaying the elements and principles of design.
  5. I could use diagrams to represent colors on the color wheel, as well as give them labels not only for their color but also for their order in the wheel. 
  6. Students could use this program very effectively when they are doing presentations. They could use Inspiration to create charts such as a Venn diagram, a timeline, or a tree to show the progression and influence of movements through time. 
  7. Webs can be used as a planning device for projects. When a student is struggling with inspiration for a project, he or she can use a web to plan out important ideas and materials that could be used.
  8. I could use Inspiration webs for critiques. They could write down the name of the artist and write where he or she could improve in the artwork.
  9. Outlining is an important thing to teach my students because they will be expected to be able to take good notes and write essays their entire high school/college careers. I would tell them to use inspiration to make outlines for presentations, essays, etc.
  10. The last effective way of using Inspiration could be for helping me plan out an entire unit. If I create a web then the individual arms are lessons that I should include within my unit.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

EDU 350 Google Docs is Magical

         I had used Google Docs during my early field experience class, but I did not realize the extent to which everything can be done. I find the fact that it allows a person to create documents, charts, PowerPoints, etc quite impressive. The thing I like most about it, however, is its sharing capabilities. I have had many instances working with people on an assignment at college, where absolutely none of our schedules matched up and I remember saying that we should email each other our different parts of the assignment. No one seemed to understand the concept but had I known about Google Docs, I definitely would have pushed the idea more. It is such a revolutionary idea but it is still very unknown to everyone. As far as education goes, I really hope that it is integrated into lesson and curriculum planning. I think some of the flaws of education are due to the fact that each class is so separate from each other when it is not necessary to do so. If educators were to use Google Docs, then there could be greater collaboration and perhaps a better understanding of each subject for the students. The disadvantage of this is that with everything being in the clouds, there might be higher stress levels associated with technology. It is already somewhat stressful to have ALL of this connection to everyone ALL of the time. Sometimes it is nice to just have a break from technology.

EDU 350 Blogs in the Classroom

           Even though blogs might be most beneficial to English classes specifically, there are ways to integrate blogs into the art curriculum. It is quite common to see artists share their works in a blog and sometimes that is how they get their name out there. I know that when I use Stumble with art being one of the items on my list of interests, I frequently am redirected to artist blogs. One way I could integrate blogs into my art classroom is through research. I could ask my students to create a blog and follow other artists' blogs. They would comment on the artwork and perhaps explore some of the different techniques that they may have learned from following these blogs. Another use for blogs within my classroom, would be for my students to share their works by posting them on their own blogs. I could see this as being a homework assignment, where I might tell them to do a sketch of something and post it up so that I could comment and grade them on their design and techniques and I would not have to buy sketchbooks using the budget. Another use for the blog in the classroom might be a blog posted by me. If I had a blog and they subscribed to it, I could post pictures and ask them to comment on certain principles of design within it. These are just a few of the things that can be done using blogs but the disadvantages are that not every student has access to a computer at home or a camera or scanner with which to post the pictures online. If I were to do these assignments, I would have to make sure they had access to a computer and internet either at home or at school.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

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