|Where to begin? |
As you are reading Chapter 2 (Technology Fundamentals), you will find that there are many categories of technology.
I'm sure you already knew that
This week your assignment will be to create a "place" to organize your technology for use as teaching and learning tools. You need a
Well, a homepage to begin with, but probably other pages as well.
Here are some things you might place on your HUB:
Your biography, general information about you (include a picture!)
Internet links (see below)
Information and graphics for learning music content
Contact information for you and your program
Information you want your students and/or parents to know
Showcase of student work for parents and others
Schedule of events for your program
Classroom/rehearsal hall rules and guidelines
Assignments for your students
Opportunities and news
Links to add to your HUB:
So much is in the Cloud these days, you can use your HUB to gather these resources for your students.
Outside links for learning music content
Your favorite music sites
Your classroom/ensemble program Facebook page
Pinterest boards (Pinterest rocks)
Performance example videos (aspirations)
Loops to use for improvisation
Ear-training/musicianship tutorials and skill drills
Wouldn't it be great to have all of this information and all of these tools available to your students from one spot to which you would have access in class and they would have access 24/7??
I'm glad you agree because this is your Assignment #2 - to create a Technology HUB
If you already have a personal website or a web page, then you can begin with that.
If not, there are many resources to build your own. Feel free to use any that can be accessed easily by you and your students, but here are a couple of free ones:
Why do all of these start with W??
What, you may ask, does this have to do with using technology in the music classroom?
I use a HUB to gather resources for the classroom also. Every class has a page and every page has links. Check out these examples:
Songwriting Music Theory others
I use Altervista to create webpages for my courses. They keep the links, apps, class content, and assignments handy to use during class and for the students to access at any time.
Here is an example that I created on Weebly. I had given my undergraduate students an assignment to create an ePortfolio, so I created one for myself as an example: http://vvjohnson.weebly.com/
Read about Kelly Riley, a music teacher, who took her classroom online with WordPress
Here is a terrific example of a HUB created by a student in this class recently. Thanks, Phil Rumbley!
There are many examples of music teachers who have taken their music teaching online through blogs and websites. Do a quick Google search and find some examples on your own.
There are many great sites, like this one: http://www.musictechteacher.com/
Now that you have seen a few examples, choose a platform (if you don't already have access to one) and get started on your HUB.
Here is my suggestion for organization of your HUB:
Homepage: You can name it anything you like, such as Mr. Christopher's Choir Camp or Jones Elementary School Musicland (I hope you are more creative/less lame than that!)
Your homepage should include information about you and about your music program. You may be able to use some of the information and graphics you used in Assignment 1!
From your homepage, you should have these pages linked:
Responding to Music
These are the big categories that we will be studying for the remainder of the course, so as you find resources, you can add them to your pages.
Your HUB grade will be based upon the accessibility of your website and the variety of usable links available for your classroom and your students.
At the end of the course, you should have an excellent tool for adding technology to your classroom.
Part of your final project grade at the end of the course will be your completed HUB with the additional hyperlinks and content that you have found throughout the course.
Characteristics of good websites and how yours will be graded:
Attractive to look at; inviting and interesting; aesthetically pleasing
Use photos and graphics on every page; this is a visual medium!
On the 1st page (home page), put your first photo/graphic high enough that visitors don't have to scroll to see it
Consistent layout across your site
Good use of color (a few primary colors, but don't overdo)
Easily readable font (12pt font is too small!) Look at your page on a laptop to check the finished size.
Quality graphics (nothing pixelly)
Use headings and subheadings; short and organized copy (no really long paragraphs in small font); bullets
No writing errors (capitalization, punctuation, spelling, grammar, syntax, etc.)
Obvious purpose for each page in the site; this increases engagement; use headings
Easy to use; people can figure out how to get around easily; consistent navigation from page to page
No broken links
First-rate content (relevant, correct, usable)
Keep your target audience in mind
Many usable links; a few words to explain what the links are is helpful; use hyperlinks, not long URLs
After building your HUB, follow the link yourself and pretend you are visiting for the first time. Then have someone else look at it and ask him/her the same questions.
Is it easy to navigate?
Is it interesting?
Is it boring?
Does everything work?
Would you be engaged as a first time visitor?
Will your students think it is cool?
Are there many links you can use in your classroom?
Are there many links your students can use to work on their own?
Will I give you a good grade?
Majority of pages missing
One or two pages missing; navigation difficult;
All pages present; navigation could be more clear
All pages present; some headings and sub-headings used; navigation clear
All pages present; headings and sub-headings used; purpose obvious for every page; very easy to navigate
No photos/graphics; text difficult to read; unacceptable number of errors
Insufficient use of photos/graphics; consistent use of small or dense text; multiple errors
Some use of photos/graphics; some text too small or too dense; several errors
Good use of photos/graphics on most pages; colors do not detract; text readable with minimal errors
Very attractive and engaging with quality photos/graphics on every page; good use of color; text very readable with no mistakes
No program information; no useful links
Minimum program information; useful links on a few pages
Some program information; useful links on most pages
Good program information; useful links on all pages
Abundant information on program opportunities, activities, and news; many useful links for use in the classroom and for studentsí independent work