CC0 Public Domain via Pixabay

CC0 Public Domain via Pixabay

February 2, 2015

This week, we’ll focus on ways to organize your tasks to become more productive with your time and help you manage school work and other activities with more success. In searching for the best solutions for YOU, we’ll explore lots of web-based options and give you a chance to review some of your own choosing.

Monday – First, let’s find out everyone’s comfort level with and knowledge about technology. That will give us a good place to start. Use this Google Forms survey, which will provide your answers in the form of a spreadsheet for us to go over.

Tuesday – We’ll meet for a bit to go over the results of the survey and discuss similarities and differences in how we deal with schedules and planning and remembering.

Monday-Friday – There is lots of advice out there for managing time and tasks, and not all of it is suitable for every person. In this LifeHack article, dozens of apps, web sites and articles are listed, and from them, nearly anyone can find something to help him or her. Read the article, scan the different tools, sites, articles. Choose a few to take a look at. Select 2-5 to really take some time to explore. Try an organizer or to-do list and see if you can make it work for you. Check out a mind-mapping app to see if it would help you plan out an essay or a project. Look into some of the articles about research or improving your writing. Then write a blog post reviewing those 2-5 favorites, favorites for organizing YOUR schedule, YOUR workload, YOUR assignments.

When you think LifeHack has covered every possible way you could spend your time and energy making your hours work for you, Dallas student columnist Blaine Finstein, shares his own point of view. His post goes to show you how differently one can look at this topic, and his column is a good example of another student’s writing.

Tip: Right-click = control+click. For unfamiliar terms in an article, you can highlight the word, control+click, and select “definition”.

Remember: Draft in Google docs, beginning in the folder with your name that is shared with me. Copy your draft to the class editing folder for feedback from a classmate or three. After revisions, share with me in the Snider folder. Title your piece something like “Productivity”.

Remember: You are writing for an audience who does not know you, does not know your assignment, so you’ll have to put it all in context for them.




Week 8 – Continuing to expand your PLN

February 23, 2014

Developing your PLN on social networks isn’t a one-week deal, so we’ll continue to expand this week on what we started with Twitter last week and learn about a helpful app or two along the way.

Monday: First, we’ll finish what we started a few weeks ago by presenting manifestos. Use extra time today to catch up on any work you are behind on.

Tuesday: Starting with paper, we’ll brainstorm some key search terms for Twitter to help you find entities to follow that will help on your pre- and post-graduation plans. I’ll show you how to search and discover folks to follow that can provide you with informative resources, not only for this class, but for planning your future. You’ll want an easy way to save articles for reference later on, perhaps for the assignment due at the end of the week. I’ll demonstrate Delicious, but you have the option of trying out a similar app called Diigo. Either of these apps save articles to your account and are then searchable by tags that you choose.
If you’re still not feeling it – the whole PLN, Personal Learning Network idea – read this Q&A with high school student Courtney Gressman (an item I saved with Delicious a few weeks ago for this week’s purposes), about her own PLN experiences.

Wednesday: Using the search methods we discussed yesterday, continue to build your PLN. Set up an account with Delicious or Diigo in the Chrome browser while you are logged in your Google account. Save any articles of interest to your Delicious/Diigo account, tagging them so they are easily retrievable.

Thursday-Friday: Choose one article you have found and write a reflection on it. I still recommend writing in Gdocs, seeking peer edits and feedback from me before posting to your blog. What made the article interesting to you? What connections can you make to it or, possibly, to other articles? Work to come up with unique thoughts of your own prompted by what’s in the article. Post to your blog with link(s) to the article(s).
Don’t forget to find time to read your classmates’ blogs. One area in which everyone scored low on was commenting on others’ blogs and responding to comments on your own blogs. We need to get conversations going. Try ending your posts by posing questions that invite conversation. And if you visit other blogs and comment, those bloggers are more likely to visit yours and comment.

Friday: Who are your Follow Friday picks for the week? Choose at least four and write up a post about why you chose each. Try to get a personal post up by the end of the week as well.

*underlined items are graded assignments

Week 3: Getting into a blogging routine

Jan. 19, 2014

While some will be finishing up last week’s assignments, we will continue to add to our blogs and start posting to them as a routine. Whenever you have additional time in class, you are encouraged to read each others’ blogs (you should be following each other) and share comments that invite conversation. You may also read other blogs and in doing so, find others you’d like to follow and comment on. Reading these blogs may also give you ideas about new things you’d like to try with your own blog, either in your personal posting space or, perhaps, something you’d like to suggest we do as a class assignment. This is your class, and I’ll happily entertain ideas you have that you’d like to try.

Monday: No school, professional development day for yours truly

Tuesday: Complete any assignments from last week. You should have started a blog, chosen a theme, added a personal posting page, looked over widgets you’d like to add and posted your TED reflection with a link to the video.
Today you should also begin drafting a bio for your About page. In your bio, tell a bit about yourself, but please avoid using your last name or where you live. You might also include that this blog is part of a class assignment and what you plan to do with it. You could also include short-term and long-term goals and your particular interests. Draft in Gdocs, seek peer edits, then feedback from me before you post it on the blog. Consider a photo to post on the page as well. You may use one you already have or make use of our news lab cameras.

Wednesday: Read the following article, “How is Digital Writing Making Kids Smarter?” It is loaded with additional links to more information. Click on some of these and read further – your choice as to which you read. Write a summary/reflection on the “Digital Writing” article and include information from one or two of the other articles. Draft in Gdocs, seek peer edits, then feedback from me before you post on the blog. Use these guiding questions to help you write your reflection.

Thursday: Continue working on your “Digital Writing” reflection.
Write a personal post this week on a topic of your choice. I still advise drafting in Gdocs, seeking peer edits before posting. Try using an original photo, drawing or creation in PhotoShop.

Friday: To be completed by today:
Blog with TED reflection post, “Digital Writing” post on homepage
At least one personal post on personal public post page
About Me bio posted on About page