Information Literacy and Creativity

Wow, what a lot to take in this week!  To say I was a bit overwhelmed would be an understatement.  Let’s look at one thing at a time.

At first I had little success with Technorati.  I searched for election news coverage but most of the hits were just not what I was looking for.  Then I looked for blogs relating to the U.S. Marine Corps.  As I have many friends all over the world with the Marine Corps, I thought it may be a way to stay better informed.  Again, I did not find what I was looking for.  I finally had some success while searching for information on foster parenting and teaching overseas, two things my husband and I have thought about tackling in the years down the road.  The foster parent blog was  www.fosterparentrescue.blogspot.com.  I found it interesting and it also had links to other useful sites.  The other site I enjoyed was www.mannahattamamma.com.  This is the blog of a woman who is living in the United Arab Emigrates with her family and how they have adjusted and thrived in a new country.  This was not exactly what I had in mind when I searched for teaching overseas, but it was very informative about the adjustments an American family has to make while living in a foreign country.

Scratch…well, Scratch had me scratching my head a lot!  I recently switched back to a mac after many years on a pc.  Sometimes just installing and launching a new programs is a challenge for me!  I watched every tutorial possible and still had a difficult time.  I spent some time experimenting and finally started to got the hang of it.  I decided to make an animal habitats exhibit.  I picked the desert background and five different sprites.  Three are animals found in a desert habitat, while two are not.  If students click on the correct animals, they move into their habitat.  If they click on the wrong animals, the gong sounds and the animal runs away.

My idea is to eventually create multiple backgrounds with different habitats.  I created it with kindergarten or first grade students in mind.  Both grades study animal habitats.  After my initial frustration, I really enjoyed using Scratch.  I think my students would really enjoy this too.

Cmap was also new to me.  I found this program to be less user-friendly than the bubbl.us program we used in Week 3.  Although I did not enjoy the program, the process of building the graphic organizer definitely helped me organize my thoughts and clarify my understanding of website evaluation.  The Cmap would be useful in planning how to guide students in website evaluation.  Teaching students this skill is essential as not all websites are legitimate sources of information.  One study in Colorado found that only 27% of the websites one group of middle and high school students utilized contained reliable information (Colhoun, 2000).  Evaluating websites will also help develop students’ critical thinking and reading skills.

 

References

Colhoun, A. (2000). But-I found it on the Internet.  The Christian Science Monitor.  Retrieved September 22, 2012 from: http://www.csmonitor.com/2000/0425/p16s1.html

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