Networked Learning Final Post: Free Fallin’

Reflection:

(sources listed in the video as I discuss them, not at the beginning, fyi)

(part of reflection @end of video)

This project was refreshing for me in so many ways. It not only reminded me of the struggles learners face when trying something new, but it also reminded me to use resources that are out there, such as help forums or videos on the web. Sometimes I forget what an abundant amount of information is out there for teachers. During this project, my kids were able to identify with me in new ways as they watched me struggle and slowly but surely make progress. So many of them wanted to reach out and help me… and often got frustrated watching me knowing they couldn’t tell me what to do. It was interesting to watch/experiences because I have sat by them so many times and have had to bite my tongue or shove my hand in my pocket so I wouldn’t grab their pencil or tell them the answer. If anything, the learners in my classroom felt more comfortable making mistakes or sharing an idea knowing it could be wrong. They watched me be okay with my mistakes and I think it truly helped them.  We laughed together at my inability to push down the chords and at my peeling fingers. We also had a small rock band in my classroom before school. It is nice to see that they were just as supportive of me as I learned something new as I try to be for them.

While I thoroughly enjoyed this project, I did face my fair share of issues. Learning to play the acoustic guitar was definitely more challenging that I anticipated. I discuss several of the challenges in my video…there were so many components to learning the guitar that I had not considered, like tuning the guitar or physical pain (sore fingers). Consequently, I had to readjust and modify my goals and plans. Looking back I would have paced my learning differently. Learning the chord placement and strumming patterns were very easy. I gave those skills far too much time in terms of my plan. I should’ve focused on transitioning between chords, which is something I still struggle with.

I think networked learning would work well with the flipped classroom. I wonder what my students would come up with if I told my students to go home and only use YouTube to learn about triangle congruence. I bet they would learn more on YouTube than I could teach them in 45 minutes. I bet they would find the task exciting. I may try to have my students use networked learning while completing the three dimensional lesson plan I posted previously. I will keep everyone posted on how that goes 🙂

Overall, even though I didn’t reach my goal (YET!), I did learn a ton…about the guitar, resources, and learning in general.

(information fairly used according to creative commons and fair use)

References

Free fallin’ chords. (2007). In Ultimate Guitar. [Website]. Retrieved October 15, 2013 from http://tabs.ultimate-guitar.com/t/tom_petty_and_the_heartbreakers/free_falling_crd.htm

Ovelin. (year). Guitar tuna (Version 1.4.2) [Mobile application software]. Retrieved from https://itunes.apple.com/ca/app/guitar-tuna-free-guitar-tuner/id527588389?mt=8

Schwartz, M. (2009). Green day – good riddance – time of your life – easy beginner acoustic guitar lesson [Video File]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mdlg_lbB5yE

Schwartz, M. (2009). Free guitar lessons – how to play acoustic guitar – easy chords and embellishments [Video File]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8sAXBXQdzjI

Ovelin. (year). Guitar tuna (Version 1.4.2) [Mobile application software]. Retrieved from https://itunes.apple.com/ca/app/guitar-tuna-free-guitar-tuner/id527588389?mt=8

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Differentiated Learning: Remix, Reuse, Recycle

This week we were asked to read about the “maker movement” and learn about the “remix culture.”  I enjoyed listening to Dale Dougherty’s TED talk on the “maker movement”. I agree with him that we are all naturally “makers, ” but we just don’t realize it or stick with it. I like the idea of having a convention or program like the one he discusses that supports students and encourages them to play and invent. However, I enjoyed watching Kirby Feguson’s “Remix is Everything” four part series much more. I love what he does with songs and how he shows how they change (or stay the same) through time. The first part was especially cool because I love Led Zeppelin…I didn’t realize that people considered them a “rip-off.”

For our activity this week we had to use Mozilla Popcorn Maker to create a short, 1-minute remix video to convey an EdTech buzzword. I chose differentiated learning as my buzzword & decided to use Hollywood classrooms to complete my remix. Instead of typing out exact words or scenarios regarding differentiated instruction, I carefully selected classroom scenes from the YouTube video I remixed that displayed differentiated learning without coming right out and saying it. I think this method is more meaningful and relatable to viewers. I could have specifically shown examples, such as incorporating technology or I could have discussed the constant informal assessments occurring, but I think the clips speak for themselves. I feel like there are enough videos on the web that are made up of technical definitions, I wanted to remix my buzzword in a unique way.

As far as I understand, I can legally use all of the movie clips and songs in my video because I meet the transformativeness standard according to Fair Use Law and Creative Commons. That is, my work serves a different purpose and it is geared toward a different audience. I believe the films and songs were created for entertainment. I am using each clip and song in an educational context to inform my audience and help them understand what differentiated learning is in a meaningful, relatable way.

Moreover, Mozilla Popcorn Maker caused so many issues for me. I created and verified my account yesterday and spent about an hour researching and an hour playing. Miriam Posner’s blog post really helped me, although her layering instructions are backwards. I kept trying to keep the video file as layer 0. Wiki also had helpful instructions. Despite my research, I still found Mozilla Popcorn Maker to be a difficult program to use; perhaps because I am use to using programs like iMovie. Anyways, the real trouble using the program occurred today when I tried to save my remix. I was almost done with my remix this afternoon when Mozilla Popcorn Maker had an unexpected error and closed. It gave me the option to report the error, but my work was not saved. So, I had to start over… On my second attempt when I was completely finished I realized I couldn’t save my video. I was logged into my account, but the save button and share button were not clickable. When I hovered my mouse over the save button it told me to log in, but it showed that I was logged in and only had the option to sign out. Unfortunately, while I was playing I never tried to save any of the video creations I made. I tried logging in on a different computer, but I still had the same issue. I wonder if Safari is causing the issue. I read that it was a compactable browser in my research, though.  Currently I have no solution so I left the unsaved video open in a tab and used QuickTIme to record my screen. I uploaded that video to YouTube, but the quality isn’t great and the ending got cut off. I feel like I could have produced a better quality clip using iMovie in much less time. As of now, I am not a fan of Mozilla Popcorn Maker.

For Now: Differentiated Learning: Remix, Reuse, Recycle (poor quality bc I recorded my screen due to the issues I discussed above)

References

Ferguson, K. Everything is Remix. [Blog Post]. Retrieved from http://everythingisaremix.info/watch-the-series/

Floyd, M. (2012, November 19). Pink floyd-another brick in the wall. [Video File]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xpxd3pZAVHI

Hansen, T. (2013, March 17). Inclusion and differentiated instruction: Teachers in the movies do it too [Video File]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i6rEy3Lqfio

Rich, F. (2010). They don’t care about us. [Music]. Retrieved from https://soundcloud.com/fifi-rich/they-dont-care-about-us-michael-jackson

Network Learning Project: Playing a Song on an Acoustic Guitar

I have decided that I am going to learn to play a song on an acoustic guitar. I decided I wanted to learn to play an instrument because music is such an important part of my life. It is mood altering and uplifting. I am hoping that learning the guitar will be  a relaxing, fun outlet from everyday stresses. Learning to play will be particularly challenging for me because I have never played an instrument, unless you count the recorder, which I can still play.

There were several factors I had to consider when seeking sources and setting goals:

  • I don’t own a guitar, so I had to ask around to borrow one. Fortunately, the band teacher at the school I work at had one he was willing to share with me.
  • I had to consider what sources to use. I am a visual learner so I decided on help forums with pictures and there are several YouTube channels I have selected.
  • I don’t know how to read music so I had to find video tutorials and pictures from help forums that showed finger placement instead of music notes. Most videos on YouTube say the name of the chord as well as the number string it is.
  • I had to find a song that was appropriate for learning to play guitar. The song I chose is “Good Riddance” by Green Day. The song has 4 chords and two fingers stay on the same two chords the entire song. It seemed realistic and manageable, plus I really like the song.
  • I had to consider the time frame and set goals:
  1. Week 1: learn the vocabulary for parts of the guitar, learn to play the G-Chord, and learn the strumming pattern (rhythm).
  2. Week 2: learn finger placement for all four chords while strumming.
  3. Week 3: learn how to change my fingers between chords while strumming
  4. Week 4: Perfect the chords, finger placement, and strumming.
  5. Week 5: Perfect the song and add lyrics.
  6. Week 6: reflect on project and compile documentation.

My learning goal for this project: To learn the four basic chords & strumming pattern to play the song “Good Riddance” by Green Day on an acoustic guitar.

I am looking forward to the challenge and am excited to document my practice. My students are also excited for me. They requested a concert at the end of this project, haha.