Digital Lit Posts

Innovative Learner/Thinker

After reading George Couros’s “The Mindset of an Innovator.” and Will Richardson’s “The Unlearning Curve.” it was a very interesting way to end the course. I never thought about being an innovative learner or thinker but I do see multiple ways that I was this semester.

Writing these blogs really made me very conscious of what I was writing and how I was getting my point across. As crazy as it sounds, I am not use to writing with such personal freedom! When I write for classes, I try to make my point while being very strict and informative. Writing these blogs, I am able to use my own words and not have to worry about sounding “smart”. I really loved doing this…I think it made me a better writer. This is something I want to teach my students. No one wants to read a boring essay with no personality in it but when you make the paper your own, it means so much more!

Image Credit: Divanni D Mares

One thing I “unlearned” was that not every assignment need to be the same to get a good grade. We all had our own different blogs and made different posts about different subjects. All of the posts are unique to the author and make for a great post. Even though they are not all the same, they are amazing posts!

This course taught me a lot as a person, student, and future teacher. There are so many new techniques I am able to use! Of course I will continue learning. I still have 3 years of college left and even after that, my students will continue to teach me different techniques and what works and what doesn’t! Another thing I will do is teach my students to be innovative learners and thinkers! “I question thinking, challenge ideas, and do not accept “this is the way we have always done it” as an acceptable answer for our students or myself.” is my favorite quote from The Mindset of an Innovator just because I have heard it so much. “This is the way we have always done it” is not a concluding answer for anyone. People ask why because they want to know WHY! If you say “This is the way we have always done it” this is avoiding the question by not giving a reasonable answer!

One thing I want to take from this semester is cutting back on social medias that have no use to me or my career. I also want to try to read more articles online and continue my blog even after the course is over!

In conclusion, this course was so interesting and unique! Definitely one of my favorites so far!

Until next time,


Digital Lit Posts

Attention Log

Image Credit: Kris Olin

For the attention log, I had to take notes about multiple things while I was online. The only condition was the time spent online has to be more than 15 minutes! Some of the notes we had to take were the following:

1. Date,
2. Description of Physical Space and Device
3. Duration of session,
4. What occurred,
5. What you did,
6. How you felt,
7. What worked,
8. What did not work,
9. Other comments.

We had to note at least 5 sessions for an entire week. I went way over five sessions but my sessions were very similar. I came to the conclusion that I had three general situations of me online.

Situation 1:

My first situation is school/ homework. These sessions could range from 30 minutes to 3 hours. This time online depended on how much homework I had to do or how much time I had to work. At my place of employment, I am able to take breaks and a majority of these breaks are me online doing homework. This makes me become very focused because I am under a certain amount of time! These sessions always had the same device (MacBook Air) and the physical setting would be in my housekeeping closet.

Situation 2:

My second situation is usually just a browse through social media. These sessions could last 15 minutes to 2 hours and could happen at anytime of the day! These sessions involves using my iPhone and three main social medias (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter). The physical space would vary so much! I could be on a break at work, laying in bed, or even standing in line at Wal-Mart. This situation had the most sessions in it as well.

Situation 3:

My third situation has two different types of sessions. I watch a lot of YouTube videos and I watch them for entertainment or use them as background noise. When watching for entertainment, I could watch videos for 2-3 hours. These sessions are usually when I am relaxing and going to bed. However, when I use it for background noise, videos could play for up to 8 hours! While I am working, we are allowed to have headphones and this is usually when I am using the videos as background noise. This also changes my mood for the videos. If I sit down and watch them, I laugh and is generally interested in the video. As background noise, I giggle a little but am not fully emerged in the video!

Overall, I think I have pretty normal sessions but I would agree that I need to cut down on browsing through social media!

Until next time,


Digital Lit Posts

Piktochart Review

For my visual, I used Piktochart. In the beginning, I was very intimidated by all the different options but once I got into it, it was very easy to use. I really liked using this website because it allows you to make things look neat and you can choose multiple things to create (Infographic, Presentations, Reports and much more).

In Piktochart, I did face a couple different challenges. The first being the prink box behind the title. I spent at least 10 minutes looking for a “SEND TO FRONT” button. The next problem I had was adding the different graphics throughout the visual. I finally found it on my own! The last thing I had a problem with was zooming in and out. While there is no actual buttons on the website, you have to use a button combination on your keyboard (on Mac, Zoom In: Command +, Zoom Out: Command -). I was able to figure this and the “SEND TO FRONT” button by a helpful help guide at the bottom of the page. This guide allows you to type any key word and it will bring up multiple FAQ and give an answer. It was super easy and fast to find a solution.

I believe there are pros and cons to every situation, so that is how I decided what to put on my visual. I will admit, I had a much easier time thinking about the positive rather than the negatives but there were some negatives. Overall, I loved doing this project because the positives will stay with me for a long time and help me immensely as a student and teacher.

I would definitely use Piktochart in the classroom. I think it would be a good visual for students on multiple topics. I got the idea of giving notes or cheat sheets on different subjects. Just something to help the students so they know what to study and what will be expected on the test. You could use are but these look nicer :). Also, I could make my own posters with this website and hang them in my room. Endless opportunities!

In the classroom, there is a high advantage of using visuals more than any other learning technique. This could be for multiple reasons but one main is that a pleasurable visual will make for a better learning experience. If you see something pretty, you associate it with being good. However, if you see something ugly, you associate it with being bad. It is the same with learning in the classroom.


Overall, I am really happy I was shown Piktochart and will be using it much more in the future! Piktochart is easy to learn and makes very effective visual pieces.

Until next time,


Digital Lit Posts

To Much Technology?

Could you quit technology for a year? A day? An hour?? Why do we use the Internet? Personally, I use the Internet for everything. I use it for school, work, entertainment, and communication. Is this a bad thing?

Image Credit: Flickr

In Paul Miller’s TED Talk: Quitting the Internet for One Year, Miller discusses the advantages of quitting the Internet completely. Miller says quitting the Internet was a great thing because it allowed him so much opportunity. It opened Paul’s schedule so he could spend more time with his loved ones and increase his creativity. However, Miller brings up BOREDOM. While Miller did have extra time, he had way to much and was completely bored. When this state hit, he would just play video games. One thing I really took from this TED Talk is getting rid of technology is almost inevitable. While Miller did get rid of social medias and computer Internet, he did play video games. Video games are technology. We are surrounded by technology. Can we use to much? Yes, but it is all about controlling yourself and not letting technology consume your life.

The next thing I viewed was an article by Leo Babauta. The article is called Simplify the Internet and is a great read. Babauta gives great advice on how simplify your Internet use. Unlike Miller, Babauta is not saying to give up the Internet but to reduce the amount of websites you use. My favorite tips were about how to simplify Email. My Email is crazy because of how much spam and useless mail I get. Most of these Emails come from stores that I gave my Email to. Unless you are a hardcore coupon person, DO NOT DO THIS! These people will not leave you alone with coupons! It wouldn’t be so bad if I was into coupons but I’m not. I wish I could get rid of them but I have so many now, I don’t have time.

Image Credit: Hamza Butt

The last thing I looked at was What Happens When Teens Try to Disconnect From Tech For Three Days by Katrina Schwartz. I really like this experiment and I think it is awesome that these teens can see how dependent some are on the Internet. The main thing I want to discuss is the conclusion of the experiment. One student said not using the Internet made them more creative with their time. However, another student felt very insecure without his phone. He describes that he would ride the bus home late and there was no one to talk to so he would just sit there.

In conclusion, I think the amount of technology you use is based on the kind of person you are. If you think it is a problem or it is interfering with your human interaction or health, lay off the technology! If you don’t think it is a problem, keep doing what you are doing!

Until next time,


Digital Lit Posts

Digital Activism

If you spend a day on the internet you are more than likely going to see some activism. There are so many different networks that allow activism, but is activism online a bad thing? There is negatives and positives of every situation so I will be discussing both.


Image Credit: Whitman Service Learning


The main negative I see with activating online is anything can be activated. Since there are so many different types of people there is going to be support coming from multiple sources. Even the worst possible campaign will get support.

Another negative is the protection you have against people opposing you. I think this is a negative because you need to be able to see both sides of the story in order to be successful. When you are online, it is so easy to delete a comment or block someone because they disagreed with you.


The first positive about activating online is you can have so many different supporters. In The New Face of Teen Activism, Melissa (an online activist) says “A lot of physical protests and movements are very localized, but online there are no limits to who can engage with you.” This is so true. When you are discussing an idea physically, you can only talk to so many people. On the internet, you can live in New York and talk to someone in China! The support is endless!

Another positive is the use of promotions. With so many different social medias, you can expand your message across so many different platforms. With this you get supporters and you can create a type of petition or fundraiser. These two things can be exposed to multiple people and get much more support than doing it physically.

The last positive is the impact activism can have on neutral readers. Activist can make such a big impact and talk about very touchy subjects. When reviewing the Shorty Awards, I found The Help Hotline. This was made by teenagers in order to help people with depression, suicidal thoughts, and much more. These teenagers made such an impact on others that they were nominated for the Shorty Awards, pretty impressive.

Overall, I believe if you want to be an online activist you need to be aware of the positives and negatives. I personally thing online activism is a great thing, mainly because of the amount of supporters you can get for a great cause.

Until next time,


Digital Lit Posts

Google Yourself

Image Credit: SEO

For this week, one assignment was to Google ourselves. This is so we can see who we are online and what things are public. If someone wants to be successful on the internet, a good thing to do is Googling themselves. When you Google someone you can see what this person posts, some of their most popular photos and possibly some dark secrets!

When I Googled myself, I chose to use two different searches, one with my middle name and one without. This is for the simple reason that I use my middle name on personal things and I don’t on things for college and other important things. With this said, I found exactly this.

When googling myself without my middle name I found some very interesting things. The first being my high school track and field records. I thought this was hilarious because it just shows how long something can stay online. One activity I did in high school is the first thing that shows up on my Google search. Some other things that showed up included my high school honor roll as well as the CSC Academic Honors list.

When I googled myself with my middle name, it included links to all my social medias, current and not current. It showed me that I need to go to some of these websites and delete these accounts because some are as old as 6 years! Something else that I found was multiple pictures of me and my family on Google images. While this is creepy, they are all linked to my profile and that is why they are online.

Thankfully, I found nothing bad on my Google search. I think a main reason for this is because all of my personal social media accounts are private and you can only be my friend or follower on this platform to see my posts. I would recommend doing this because of safety reasons. You never know who is out there and who can find you or your family.

This Google search was helpful because it really shows how much people can see that you do not know about. Anyone that wants to start a business on the internet should really considered doing a Google search. With any career, you want to make sure your Google search is not bad because bosses and anyone else has access to Google!

Until next time,


Digital Lit Posts

Digital Citizenship and Cyberbullying

When working online, digital citizenship is something you need to be successful at. Digital citizenship can be defined as who you are online…so who are you online? Depending on the reasons you are online, it depends what type of citizenship you need. Who Are You Online? Considering Issues of Web Identity by Kelly Schryver gives a lot of information about digital citizenship but I will only be talking about a few points.

Image Credit: Cesar Solorzano

One way Schryver talks about is Googling yourself. Will this search be positive or negative? This all depends on how you act on the internet. Now, Google is not going to tell you if you are a good or bad person online. It just allows people to see what you post online. My best advice for this is thinking about what you post before you post it. Once you post something, it is online forever even if you delete it. There will always be access to a post or photo that is on the internet. This brings me to a huge problem I want to talk about which is Cyberbullying.

Image Credit: juliannarose 

Cyberbullying has become so popular now because people are able to make profiles that are not them. It is important to be aware in the classroom of cyberbullying. Sometimes, cyberbullying can be worse than physical bullying because it is not face-to-face and you might not know who is behind the comment. Paula Green wrote an awesome article about 7 Ways to Prevent Cyberbullying. While there is seven different points, I will onlybe discussing a couple.

The first point is engaging parents and youth. Depending on the age, most parents are not every tech savvy. This is not a problem but it does not make them aware of what they need to be on the look out for. Cyberbullying can be so easy to hide but still gives the same impact on the victim. It is important to teach parents some signs to look for and form a community that is against cyberbullying. The parents also need to raise their kids to know cyberbullying is not acceptable and there can be major consequences whenbeing a cyberbully.

The second point is building a positive climate. It is important for teachers to creative an environment with parents in order to make a positive influence on the students. This is where forming a community is important. As I said before, the students need to know that this type of behavior is not tolerated.

These are just a few points I found interesting and could include in my future.

Until next time,


Digital Lit Posts

Digital Storytelling in the Classroom

On this blog, I always say that it is impossible to avoid using internet in the classroom now. I still believe this to be true! Digital storytelling can be used in a positive way in the classroom. To me, digital storytelling can be used as a creative activity as well as getting students familiar with the internet and computer resources. While reading the assigned articles about digital storytelling and podcasts in the classroom, I really got interested in a couple different points and wanted to share them with you.

The first article I read was Teacher’s Guide to Digital Storytelling. I loved reading this article because it brought up different lesson plans to use digital storytelling. I just want to share a couple of my favorites. Dream scenes are the first lesson they discuss. The lesson is to have students write an essay about what they would like to be when they grow up and then put in animations in order to make the scene a visual scene, like in a movie. This sounds like it would be so much fun and can personalize to every student you have. I would do this lesson with high schoolers because it would give them an idea on what they want to be before college or the work field. Also, they would be able to add more animations and effects than younger students. The second lesson plan I loved is book trailers! Holy cow, do I love watching book trailers! It would be so awesome for students to make trailers on a book because it allows them creative freedom as well as practicing their critical reading and analysis skills. This type of lesson I would use at the middle school and high school level.

If you want some example of digital storytelling be sure to check out

Image Credit: Henk van der Duim

The next article I read was What Teens are Learning From “Serial” and Other Podcasts. This article was interesting because it talked about podcasts being educational. While I am working, I listen to podcasts from my favorite Youtubers for two reasons, 1. They can be super long (1-2hrs) and 2. They are funny and silly! I never thought about using some podcasts in the classroom setting however, the serial podcasts are super fun to listen to. I’ve only listened to a couple and it is like Forensic Files (a TV show on CNN) is playing constantly in my ear. It turns out teens like to be read to! Crazy, I know. The article describes serial as a novel. It is something that is interesting to the students as well as the teacher! It would be very cool to have a peer-like conversation with student through podcasts you listened to as a class.

Overall, I think digital storytelling in the classroom is a good thing and it will be something I use as a teacher!

Until next time,



Digital Lit Posts

What is ds106?

Before taking Literacy in the Digital Age, I have never heard of ds106. My goal of this post is to teach you what ds106 is and some key points of this website. All of the information I will be sharing with you can be found of their website (ds106).

First off, what is ds106? Well on their website it says “Digital Storytelling or ds106 is an open, online course.” This online course if offered through the University of Mary Washington and can be taken at any time! Ds106 allows students to build and design their own online identity. This is cool because it allows you to be whoever you want. There are things you can control so not everyone can know about you.


Something a found really cool is the assignments that ds106 gives you. On the website, you go to components then assignment bank. (Picture for help) When you click assignment bank, you get so many different options for assignments. These include: visual, design, audio, video, web, mashup, writing, fanfic, animated gif and 3D printed. This just adds to the coolness of ds106! It gives you so many different ways to express yourself. This also can help you become super savvy with the internet. These ten different subjects can make you very skilled in the different parts of the internet. The assignment bank is by far my favorite part of this website.

As a future teacher, I could use ds106 with all ages but in different ways. For high school, you could allow your students to create their own digital storytelling project and they can personalize it to their own taste while still meeting the requirements of the assignment. With younger kids, I would use ds106 as a visual aid. I would more than likely create my own projects and share them with students to help them get a better understanding of the lesson.

Overall, I find ds106 very cool. Personally, I would use this course for more personal reasons than teaching reasons but it is a helpful website that provides options for both! I find the internet to be a very interesting thing because of how much freedom we have and ds106 only expands that freedom. If you love the internet and want to have some fun while expanding your knowledge about it, I would highly suggest checking out ds106. Once again, you can go to their website by clicking HERE.

Until next time,