Semester Reflection

Over the past semester, our Wall of Excellence team has been working hard to bring our project to life. In early 2019 we were working to finalize crucial details in the application details. We consulted with staff, admin and provided opportunities for stakeholders within our school to provide their thoughts and input throughout a few lunches.

This year, we were able to bring forward the momentum set from early 2019 right into fall, along with new members in our group. We developed more of the physical component of our project, and again presented our ideas to staff and admin – ensuring the whole process is as open and representative of the Rapids community as possible.

Some of the challenges we faced were tied with scheduling, as many of the members of our team are engaged in a diverse range of other activities and projects – limiting our ability to meet. We made due, however, meeting through various lunches and scheduling before-school meetings.

Looking forward, COVID-19’s impact on our school year will determine the work we are able to get through. We have launched the nomination form for the 2020 Wall of Excellence Award – but we will see where it goes.

Social Media Can Be Evil. Here’s Why.

social media is evil. here’s why:

1. I wanted to target young people. This was made clear with attractive colours, apps that young people would have on their phones, as well as upbeat music to go along with the attention-grabbing title.

2. My message was to clearly show the disadvantages to social media in our world. By providing examples, as well as statistics to back myself up, I believe that the message would be comprehended by the viewer fairly easily.

3. I want the viewer to understand that social media is not all the glory they may perceive it as. I want them to understand that social media has its’ place in the world, but has many downfalls yet to be unconfronted.

4. The viewer can solve the problem by taking a hard look at their social media usage. It’s all about personal control in the digital world – and I want the viewer to understand that social media can be used as a tool – but far too many still use it against themselves.

5. This issue is important to the public because of the supporting statistics. Young people are following for misleading public influences, and social media is fueling anxiety, depression and addiction with people of all ages. The public needs to know how to effectively use social media, and the public perspective needs to change.

Sources:

These 8 Social Media Addiction Statistics Show Where We’re Spending Our Time

https://www.cnet.com/news/reddit-election-misinformation-2016-research/

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-018-07761-2

https://www.addictioncenter.com/drugs/social-media-addiction/

https://www.vox.com/technology/2018/4/9/17214720/pew-study-bots-generate-two-thirds-of-twitter-links

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/03/10/nearly-48-million-twitter-accounts-could-be-bots-says-study.html

 

Tech Team Microbits

Microbits: worth the hype?

While experimenting with Microbits, I used the Microbit itself, as well as a mini-fan as a part of the Microbit Kit.

While playing around with some of the code and seeing the other accessories available for the Microbit, it was apparent that the Microbit is truly a powerful device to experiment with coding, or to develop complex coding through a simple module.

I myself, wanted to experiment with some of the sensors on the microbit. I was pleased to discover that the Microbit had light and temperature sensors, Bluetooth connectivity, as well as an accelerometer and a compass.

I wanted to focus on these features of the Microbit as I believe that they will be the most powerful in the classroom – receiving data that will end up as a digital reaction. I myself focused on the accelerometer feature – testing what it could do.

I coded a die, with the Microbit displaying a number between 1-6 when shaken. Although the concept was easy, the versatility of the Microbit is what makes it great. Teachers can create interactive devices to use in the classroom when deciding to select random students, or create TGTs that are based on selecting a random number.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Overall, the Microbit is worth most of the hype it gets from teachers. The versatility of the device allows for unlimited creativity – and the device itself is a great introduction to coding for beginners or intermediate users.

I would certainly use the Microbit in projects for school. The ease of use makes it something that can be implemented in project: just like how I’ve implemented WordPress sites into many of my projects at Riverside.

Wall of Excellence

wall of excellence

Impact: How might this idea positively impact the social and emotional well being of students/our school? What can be done to increase the impact of this idea?

This project is an important step in the direction of building onto Rapids’ pride. As Riverside approaches its’ 25 years of education and innovation – it’s time we acknowledge the people and ideas that have built this school to what we know it as today.

Many of Riverside’s teachers are Rapids Alumni – increasing the importance of recognition of the legacy both students and staff bring forward every day.

Desirability: What could you change to make this idea more desirable to students, teachers, administrators, parents or the community?

Making this project interesting is what makes it or breaks it. We have taken the time to consult with a great number of stakeholders within our school, and designed a review panel that represents Riverside’s community with the goal to make sure that this we launch an engaging, interactive addition to our school.

Integrability:

What would you change to make this idea easier to integrate into a school setting? How can we keep it from being seen as an “add-on”?

We need to make sure it’s timeless. Riverside already has so many events that could easily be integrated with the Wall of Excellence, we just need to perfectly execute a plan to make sure it’s seamless.

Feasibility/Viability:

What would you change to make this idea more feasible or viable? Think: e.g lower the cost, make it more sustainable, make it easier to implement etc.

One thing I would change to lower the cost is to host fundraisers, bake sales, and more ways to raise some money to pay for the tv’s, rather than having the administration take over the whole cost. This way we can lower costs, and incorporate more student involvement in the fundraising.

a) Briefly describe your new and improved idea, by incorporating ideas and/or feedback.

We need to make sure that our new team understands the goal of our project – and the work we’ve already done.

With new students joining in, they’re the future of the project. They will be the ones building a brand for it and pushing the Wall of Excellence.

b) Answer the following questions:

What problems might we run into?

One problem could be that we do not complete everything in time for our timeline, as we do have a lot left to do in very little time, but I believe with lots of meetings and organization, we can reach our goal and complete the project.

What skills do we need to complete this project? How can we attain these skills?

We need communication and branding skills. This project will test our technological skills, communication skills, and consultation skills. We will attain these skills through the support of every team member of the Wall of Excellence.

c) Create a brief timeline of key things that need to happen to ensure successful completion of your project. What happens next?

Our plan is to have this completed in June. We need to stay on task – coordinate well and sort the details out. We will plan extensive meetings to record our progress – and to record what we still need to do to build such a project.

Tech Team DiVi Review

DiVi builder – a New way to edit

The DiVi builder was very simple to use and customize a page on your blog / WordPress site. There were so many widget options, it made it easy to customize any page the way you liked it – it wasn’t one of those programs where it had 2 widgets.

There were little weaknesses with the DiVi builder – although more options for page size would have been helpful.

I think this plug-in could be a game changer for Riverside’s digital learning. Some of the projects I’ve done for school included WordPress sites to organize and present my projects in an interactive way. Using the DiVi builder could have enhanced the quality and the outcome of the content at the time. I will be sure to use DiVi in the appropriate setting the next time I use WordPress / Edublogs as my project format.

Help Develop Riverside’s 4-Bin System!

Riverside’s 4-bin waste diversion program was implemented last Spring 2019, as a part of SD43’s 2018 Carbon Neutral Action Report. As we’re approaching 1 year since our bins have been introduced, your feedback and perspective is crucially important as a Riverside Rapid to build onto the momentum Riverside has brought forward.

Maintaining a successful waste-diversion program helps students transition into the real world where zero-waste stations exist, and develops awareness of ecological, economic and societal impacts of our waste production.

So, what are YOU waiting for? Click the link below and complete the quick 2-minute survey!