Saturday, October 8, 2016

EDUC 552: Curriculum Video

This curriculum project was a good learning experience and really helped to spark more ideas in the future. Having an opportunity to manipulate a movie editor will benefit me moving forward. When deciding what type of video would benefit my students I wanted to come up with something that I could also make entertaining. My students typically have a firm grasp on similes and metaphors, but struggle to comprehend other examples of literary devices. By embedding videos a pictures involving my students and family members I hope it will keep them entertained and will allow them to take away the visuals to serve as a reminder of the devices for years to come. Overall, my experience with the video editing went well. Becoming more familiar with the process will allow me to make more educational videos in the future as well teach my students the process for them to demonstrate their creativity.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Week 7: What was learned in EDUC 552?

A. Going into this course I hoped to be exposed to and learn about different educational tools that could be utilized in my classroom. In EDUC 552 I learned about becoming a connected educator. Through exploration on Twitter I was able to build a PLN that I would not have had if not given the time to explore. A lot of the programs that we were asked to try like Zaption, Mystery Skype, and NearPod I have had some exposure to. In this course we created original pieces of work that could be used in the classroom and I was suddenly able to see other ways in which the programs could become of use. Through discussion board posts, I was able to learn what other classmates had found and how they intended to use it which was motivating as well.

ISTE Goals met:
1. Facilitate and inspire student learning and creativity 1a 1b 1c 1d
2. Design and develop digital age learning experiences and assessments 2a 2b 2c 2d
3. Model digital age work and learning3a 3b 3c 3d
4. Promote and model digital citizenship and responsibility 4b 4c 4d
5. Engage in professional growth and leadership 5a 5d

B. The most useful tools I found were NearPod and the screen-casting tool Show Everything app. NearPod is useful because it allows the teacher to create teacher guided presentations that display on each individual tablet or computer. The presentations are great for formative assessments to monitor individual student needs. NearPod will be used moving forward in math instruction for students to demonstrate their work and also for reading vocabulary to preview and review vocabulary.

The second tool is Show Everything. This app allows you to create presentations and narrate over them. This tool will be perfect for my math instruction for my students to demonstrate their work and explain their thinking. For instance, in our current geometry unit, students could could draw and label parts of a triangle. Then explain how to find the area of the triangle.

C. I plan to continue to be active on Twitter as I found that this has been a great resource to finding more technology tools. Moving forward, I will integrate the tools that I have learned in to more of my instruction so that my students become familiar with them and more fluent. The biggest problem that I typically have when discovering new resources is that I never have the time to explore them so I will make a point of doing that with parts of my plan time. A lot of the resources at the beginning of the course were targeted towards flipping classrooms. If I can make time to create presentations using the tools like Show Everything, PowToon, and NearPod, I plan on trying an in-class flip.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Google Hangouts

Google Hangouts were a great experience during Peru State EDUC 552. I enjoyed learning about programs like NearPod. After using NearPod, I immediately implemented it into my math instruction the day after being introduced to it. NearPod allows my students to display their thinking and I can view results individually so that I am able to work with them 1 on 1 in the moment rather than in the middle of instruction. My students really enjoyed seeing their answers displayed.

The other resource that I liked exploring was the I have done a few Mystery Skype and Mystery Hangout sessions but have never interacted through a virtual field trip. I liked how you could view previous trips to see how the program worked. I would like to incorporate some of these sessions into my reading instruction or possibly design my instruction around the content presented in the field trip. When my students are exposed to something new, they are always engaged and I definitely learned a few new things during the Google Hangout sessions.

Sunday, September 18, 2016


MySimpleShow can be used in the classroom for teachers to present topics or skills to learn for the week. I used it to describe a focus skill my students will have for reading. It allowed me to present in a different way than the textbook while still using the same concepts. Students could utilize MySimpleShow to summarize books that they read. Accounts are needed for the program and it is fairly easy to use. All you do is type in your content to a storyboard and allow the program to select pictures based on buzz words that it sees. If you do not agree with the program you have the opportunity to change the pictures or highlight other buzz words. The selection was pretty limited for key words I searched like "boy," which was a bit of a drawback. This program would be best for upper elementary 5-6 and the middle-high school levels. It is important to have your text that you would like to include laid out before hand because there is a lot of available space to write in. I also feel like the more general the buzz words, the easier it is for the program to find available matches as more specific topics may not have pictures available. The narration also sounds a bit robotic so you may prefer to do your own narration.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Show Everything App (Screencast)

This video was created using the Show Everything app. This app is a powerful tool for teachers and students to demonstrate content and generate engaging presentations. I think that this app would be great to use for displaying math instruction and is very easy to use for teachers looking to flip their classrooms. I plan on asking my district to place this app on all iPads within our school and having my students explain their thinking by publishing videos over specific math concepts. I could have a "director of the month" award for the student who has presented the most creative and comprehensive video presentation.

Friday, September 16, 2016


PowToon is a presentation program that allows you to create cartoon-like presentations to make them more entertaining. The classroom teacher could use a program like this to add more "pop" to a presentation so that it is not as boring to the students like a typical PowerPoint or Google Slide. The program allows you to add animations and characters to your slides. There is a free version to sign up for as well as a Pro and Business upgrade for a monthly charge. From a teacher standpoint, this can be used in any subject and grade level to present to students. From a student standpoint, it is most appropriate for upper elementary, middle, and high school level students. The tutorials are definitely helpful and are actually entertaining to watch. The timing is also not as easy as it looks to master. I would recommend truly playing around with it before beginning a serious presentation.

Monday, September 12, 2016

NearPod in the Classroom

I was introduced to NearPod during a Google Hangout in EDUC 552 through Peru State. I have heard about NearPod but never got the opportunity to try it. Through the Hangout we were given the opportunity to try it and I was quickly hooked. NearPod allows you to guide a presentation to instruct your students. The program allows you to create slides, pose questions, and allow students to illustrate.

I created a NearPod slideshow for that very next day in the area of math. I typed questions related to the next lesson and assigned them to the draw slide type. I told the students that they must show work and displayed the best examples to every students iPad when I presented NearPod presentation. Students were immediately engaged and were motivated to show their work so that other students would see it. I also had slides that asked them to illustrate pictures for the problems. NearPod is an outstanding app that is worth trying, especially for math.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Week 4 Animoto

I plan to use this Animoto video that I created to introduce my students to Mystery Skype. I will play the video first and then begin clarifying the contents of the video after. There is a short slide on the video that highlights the jobs the students have. I will explain those parts in more detail with them. The main goal I have in mind by playing this video is to spark student interest in the process. Mystery Skype sessions can be difficult if students are not properly prepared and this video will serve as a great introduction to the process.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Week 3

Blog: #13 Free Technology for Teachers
Article: 5 Dice- An App to Help Students Learn the Order of Operations

Who doesn't like to hear "free"? When I ran through the list of the top 100 educational blogs, a blog involving both free and technology really caught my eye. When navigating to the blog "Free Technology for Teachers" I came across the post about the 5 Dice app. The post described the app as a way for students to practice order of operations in math. This is the perfect program for my students because this is a topic that we are discussing right now. Students are given a number, operations, and five dice that they use to write an equation that will total the number given. Looking further into the app in the app store, I noticed that the game also allows students to play competitively and cooperatively using two devices. It also allows them to work out the problems on a whiteboard and will send results to teachers and parents. While the app may lose its appeal quickly, it makes a great review for order of operations. The blog made an excellent resource for free tech to use in the classroom.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Week 2 Article Review

Web 2.0 in the Elementary Classroom: Portraits of Possibilities by William Kist

This article introduced some great Web 2.0 resources that can be utilized in across all grade levels in the elementary setting. The first teacher discussed how they utilize blogging in the first grade classroom for students to reflect on their weekend, restate learning, and pose questions. The students enjoyed writing their blogs and reading their peers. It is an opportunity for the students who may not be as vocal in the classroom to contribute.

Another teacher discussed the benefits of using Twitter in the classroom. The class would send out tweets throughout the day to keep parents up to date on their activities. If the parents are following, they do not have to ask the question “How was your day?” because they will be updated. The teacher even incorporated digital citizenship discussions into the experience.

The article also had piece from a teacher in New Zealand who utilizes web resources to stay up to date and to educate himself. The class uses Skype to feel more connected with the world and to help with research. The class used Photobooth to record video of 2D puppet shows they created after researching an animal habitat. 

I felt like some pieces of Web 2.0 resources mentioned in this article can be linked to my classroom. Blogging has a place in all classrooms but the technology access must be available because not all students can word-process at the same speed. I also enjoyed reading about how Twitter was used within an early elementary classroom. Creating a class twitter account or encouraging parents to follow me and then providing updates throughout the day is a great way to communicate. The only part of the article I disagreed with was that these types of classroom environments are only achievable for schools that have plenty of access to technology. With early childhood students, I feel like they would all need to be working on the blogging at the same time so that the teacher can monitor and help with questions. My biggest takeaway is a quote from the article. “The media used is not important; the attitude of the teacher is.” Teachers need to make an effort to try and go in with a positive attitude to have a truly successful experience.

Kist, William. (2010). Web 2.0 in the Elementary Classroom: Portraits of Possibilities. Retrieved from

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Week 2 Ted Talk: Wii Remote Hack for Educators

This Ted Talk presentation was about the many uses (hacks) that the first generation Wii remote can provide. By simply purchasing a Wii remote ($40) and an infrared sensor to place on a pen ($10 at Radio Shack), you can make was is projected on a screen or wall an interactive whiteboard for around $50. The sensor even allows you to make multiple touches at once so you can alter or spin the images on the screen. While this hack may not apply to most schools it will prove to be particularly useful for teachers in schools that do not have the budget for interactive whiteboards such as SMARTboards or Promethean boards. Wii's have been around awhile and if you were to ask around you could probably get your hands on a remote for free. I could see this hack used in staff meetings for presenters to make notes while presenting. We always use a projector for our meetings so the uses is pretty limited but with this device you would be capable of much more. Johnny Lee, the researcher behind this is truly brilliant and solved a big problem that a lot of school districts face for a fraction of the cost.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

EDUC 552 Multimedia Authoring Week 1

My name is Ryan Oetken. I teach fifth grade for Ralston Public Schools. This year will be my seventh year teaching. I have taught fourth, fifth, sixth, and seventh grades. I received my undergraduate degree in elementary and special education from the University of South Dakota. I am married to my wife, Angie, and we have a one-year-old daughter named Ella. We also have a dog named Lola. They both keep up busy and entertained. In addition to being a parent, husband, teacher, and dog owner, I also coach boys' basketball and girls' soccer at Ralston Middle School.

When it comes to technology I am definitely a Mac person. I always had a PC growing up and in my previous school but when I came to Ralston three years ago, I became familiar with Macs. I also have had iPhones in the past and purchased an iPad Mini last Christmas. In my classroom I use a SMARTboard for instruction. I also use the schools Macbook and Chromebook computers for student to access websites to supplement learning. I use a lot of different websites that my students are unfamiliar with before arriving in fifth grade. I also use Skype and Google Hangouts to to Mystery Skype sessions with classes around the world. When it comes to Microsoft Office, my district computer currently has Office 2011 loaded on it.

I decided to pursue a master's degree to further my education and develop new knowledge to utilize in my classroom. I plan use what I have learned in my coursework in my classroom as well as with my colleagues to educate them on new trends in education. Education is always evolving so it is important for me to evolve as well.