Saturday, May 8, 2010

Full Sail University Program Reflection

I just finished my second masters degree. It is a Master of Science in Education Media Design and Technology. Below is my program reflection:

I totally enjoyed my experience with Full Sail University. And I recommend the Education Media Design and Technology Master of Science program for those willing to go beyond the token education technology class in traditional teacher preparation courses.

I have some observations and advice for those interested in the EMDTMS program. The program does not allow you to be a spectator. You will participate, interact, and collaborate in many projects. This program is hands on – never doubt that.

You will be challenged. The pace and time commitment is intense. The standard for performance is high. Expectations are high. But you can definitely do it.

Come to the program with an open mind. Be prepared to leave your comfort zone. I had to sing a Bob Dylan song for our Musical Theory and Education Applications class. It doesn’t get any more uncomfortable than that for me. Oh, yes it did. I had to video record myself doing dance exercises. I’m not posting that on my blog.

You will make friends in the program. There’s something about comrades in arms living through the same experience and having to rely on each other that creates a bond. I would gladly collaborate with any of my classmates and instructors again.

And one last word, you will get out of the program what you are willing to put into it. Instead of sweating the grade (we’re all competitive that way), push the envelope on what you are able to do. Meeting the rubric of a project – that’s expected, does not impress your classmates and instructors. They want to be wowed by your passion and creativity.

Ok, one more last word. Don’t forget who you are and why you chose this program. You are uniquely created and special. You have support systems within and outside of the program. Come out of the program with more than you came in with.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

The Night Before Testing

It was the night before testing, when all through the school,
The students were studying except for one fool.
The tests were all packaged for the teachers with care,
In hopes that all of the students soon would be there.

The students were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of perfect solid bubbles, danced in their heads.
The superintendent pacing in his office, the principals with her teams,
Had just said their prayers, to reach their high API dreams.

When out over the district, there arose such a hush,
The children were sleeping after all the last minute rush.
At last away to their homes, the teachers did dash
To get some much needed rest, for morning would arrive in a flash.

With love from their parents, the students moved quickly,
They knew it was testing week and they couldn’t be sickly.
Even more rapid than teachers the students they came.
They shouted and yelled out the supplies they would need.

Now pencils! Now paper! Now dividers and erasers!
Now sharpeners! Now rulers, for all the test takers.
They ran through the halls to the door of their class,
Let’s study! Yes study! Now we’ll study real fast!

As the high desert winds blew through the school,
The children were ready to hear all the test taking rules.
So after a potty break, the students they came,

And were given their tests books to check for their names.
And then on the loud speaker, there came quite a clatter,
It was the principal with all of her encouraging chatter.
As the principal’s pep talk ended, the teachers turned with a frown,
To make sure none of their students were clowning around.

A year’s worth of new knowledge, they held tight in their grasp,
And they knew it would help them complete this grand task.
They were dressed for success from their head to their shoes,
And their brains were stuffed full of all that they knew.

Their eyes how they twinkled, their confidence sky high,
They’re resolved to work hard, and give it their best try.
Their smart and well tested minds were ready to go,
They were determined and fierce to get on with the show.

The booklets of tests, the teachers held tight in their hands,
With high hopes their students would meet all of the state’s demands.
The teachers wore their sincere faces, and their voices were clear,
“Children you can do it, we’ve worked hard all year.”

The well prepared students were happy and ready to start,
After all, testing had become mastered, just like a fine art.
With a sparkle in their students’ eyes, and a confidant nod of their heads,
Soon showed the teachers, they had nothing to dread.

The students spoke not a word, but went straight to their chore,
Read the first question, and then read it once more.
With test taking strategies, ingrained in their brains,
It was sure to help each student make high API gains.

They completed the tests, gave each other high fives,
State testing was finally over … they all felt so alive.
Yes! State testing was over, so they all gave a cheer,
We’ve completed this challenge; well at least until the next school year!

By Mrs Laymon’s Third Graders 2009-2010
Morgan Kincaid Preparatory School of Integrated Studies
Debbie French - Principal