EDTC 300

Summary of Learning – A Semester Recap

Hi, I’m April and this is my EDTC 300 summary of learning. Other than the last few weeks of the winter semester, this is the first web-delivered class I have taken and I will honestly say that this class has challenged me and pushed me far beyond my comfort zone. However, within these six weeks of class, I have honestly experienced more growth in my learning and online presence than I have in some face-to-face classes.

Each week, I appreciated the two evenings we were able to meet through Zoom and guided through many aspects of using technology as a professional and within the classroom. It also gave me a place to connect with classmates through the use of breakout rooms where we could collaborate, share thoughts, and exchange ideas.

This type of learning and collaboration was extended throughout the rest of the week through Twitter. This is where I experienced growth in my Personal Learning Network, as I was able to dedicate my twitter account, @april_hild, to building my digital identity as an educator. It was also a great tool for finding and sharing articles and resources about different aspects of working in a classroom. What I appreciate most are the resources I have gained about incorporating technology into the classroom as well as ways to address the topic of race with students.

Twitter also gave me another platform to connects with my classmates as we were able to share articles, resources, blog posts, updates of our learning projects as well as ask questions, share thoughts and give each other feedback. It also allowed me to connect with other education professionals, further along into their career who offered great insight. I look forward to continuing to use twitter to develop my PLN, as well as to document my experiences as an educator.

Our blogs were used to document our learnings regarding educational technology and to continue sharing our ideas with others in the class. Each post and prompt gave me the opportunity to further explore resources and articles and connect them back to class learnings. I also enjoyed the opportunity to receive comments as well as comment on my classmate’s blogs. Knowing that I was sharing this experience with others gave me a purpose for writing and encouraged me to overcome challenges in expanding my knowledge.

Although I already had my e-portfolio to fulfill requirements for other education classes, I had never taken the time to fully learn all that was possible through WordPress. This class taught me all of the aspects that make blogging fun to write and engaging to others including adding links, photos, videos, and personal touches. It also helped me make changes to the layout of my blog and add my educational philosophy, lesson plans, and resources.

Throughout the semester we were introduced to and encouraged to explore a variety of tools that can be used to incorporate technology in the classroom. To do so effectively, it is important to understand the SAMR model which outlines the different purposes technology serves in the classroom. Throughout this pandemic, we have seen a need for technology more than ever as it has allowed teachers to fulfill their role despite many restrictions. A few examples of digital tools that can be used in the classroom are SeeSaw, Padlet, ScreenCastify, and Quizlet. However, my top two favourite new tools that I have discovered through EDTC 300 would have to be Canva and Hour of Code. Although the options with Canva seem endless, I was able to use this tool to aid in my baking learning project to create recipe cards. I loved how simple it was to make and that it was a creative way to save recipes by creating a digital and hard copy. I also really liked Hour of Code as a fun activity for students that helps them develop skills such as, critical thinking, problem-solving, and reading/writing skills through coding. These are definitely tools I hope to utilize and incorporate into the classroom.

As well as exploring digital tools, we also covered some important topics throughout the class. First of all, I learned the importance of modeling a positive digital identity as an educator as it is an aspect of how we are perceived by others. We also discussed digital citizenship, which is knowing how to safely and responsibly use technology. As the use of technology is inevitable, it is important to teach students the aspects and dangers surrounding technology rather than discouraging them from using it. As students develop digital citizenship, they will also experience digital literacy, which the ability to efficiently use technology in a variety of ways. Being able to operate technology is different than understanding the practices needed to do so safely. As we understand there is a large amount of fake news that can be found online, it is important to teach critical thinking along with safe internet practices.

Through my learning project, I discovered how a good recipe can lead to great success. This concept can be applied to a variety of topics including digital citizenship and literacy.To help students understand the steps needed to maintain a safe digital presence, a quick lesson could be implemented about following the recipe to be a digital citizen. this is how I would implement it as a quick lesson.

Recipe to Be a Digital Citizen:

  • Protect Private Information – use passwords and make accounts private.
  • Stay safe online – be a critical thinker and listen to your gut feeling about what is safe.
  • Stand up to cyberbullying – don’t let others be treated in ways you wouldn’t want to be treated.
  • Respect yourselves and others – in online communities.
  • Balance the time – do other activities other than being engaged in media all day.

Overall, this class furthered my understanding of the importance of always being willing to learn from new sources and others around me, to always be the best for my students. As a lifelong learner, I will continue to look for resources and new ways I can use what is happening in the world around me to engage my students. As so much of this class utilized current events in connection to the curriculum, I look forward to the opportunity to guide my students through all aspects of learning.

To all of EDTC 300, thanks for following along and being a part of my learning journey! I wish you all the best!

EDTC 300

Contributing to the Learning of Others

E-Portfolio – WordPress

I have had my WordPress account for the past two years as I have needed it for a variety of education classes. Although I have had it for a sufficient amount of time, I was never taught how to use it and I was often frustrated as I tried to meet the expectations my instructors had of me to use it proficiently. As a result of this, I used my blog for the minimum requirement of weekly posts, additional resources, and lesson plans without exploring the fun aspects of blogging such as adding links, photos, videos, and following my classmate’s learning journeys. EDTC 300 has helped me become more confident and comfortable posting content on my blog to develop my professional learning network. I also appreciate how it has allowed me to contribute to the learning of others.

Here is a sample of the comments I received. I appreciated the feedback my classmates gave me and made it a priority to reply.

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Blog posts:

These are the latest comments I left on my classmate’s blogs. I really enjoyed being a part of their learning experience as I was able to learn alongside them.

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Blog Posts:

Twitter

Throughout this semester I was surprised by all that was available through Twitter such as moderated chats, TweetDeck, resources, and the opportunity to be involved in a community of educators. I have also been enjoying having a social media page dedicated to my professional learning.

Here are a few examples of tweets I have shared and replies I have received. All can be found at @aprilhild.

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These are examples of when I have replied to my classmate’s tweets:

Twitter

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Slack

Slack is a community where I struggled to connect throughout this course. Although I appreciate its purpose, I found I was able to connect with the same people on Twitter, which is a platform I prefer to use. I liked it better because it was easier to use on my phone and the app gave me direct notifications without having to log into my email. I also found it served the same purpose of Twitter such as messaging and directly connecting with classmates. However, I am glad I was introduced to Slack as it is more of a private platform to connect with a group of people that I could possibly use throughout my career.

In Summary

I am thankful for the opportunity to have grown in developing my PLN and online presence in these ways. I have discovered an abundance of educational resources as well as support from others in similar situations as I am in. I have also gained an understanding of why it is important to develop a professional learning network and digital identity in relation to helping students do the same. I am excited to continue further my learning journey within these platforms.

Learning Project

The End of a New Beginning

This semester has flown by and my learning project has come to an end! My goal over the course of this semester was to bake one new recipe each week of something I had never tried before with support from online resources. I was really pleased with the recipes I was able to find, along with helpful tips, and demonstration videos, that allowed me to learn a variety of baking techniques and strategies. The only week I struggled to find a recipe I liked was when I made homemade doughnuts. Other than that, I felt very supported by online sources and rarely felt unsure of what to do before starting a recipe. Although new projects come with risks, and I definitely made a few mistakes, I am happy with my progress and ready to tackle new baking challenges as they come my way.

Learning Project Recap:

  1. Homemade Soft Pretzels: Rising to the Challenge

Recipe used: Tasty’s Homemade Soft Pretzels

Technique learned: Baking with yeast.

Making pretzels allowed me to practice baking with yeast, and the effect it has in baked products. I learned that when a recipe calls for 1 package of dry yeast, that is equivalent to 2 ¼ teaspoons if you have it in bulk. I also learned that yeast expands best in warm water mixed with sugar because the temperature reactivates the yeast which is an organism that feeds on sugar. Then I watched the yeast at work as overtime it doubled the amount of dough I had originally made.

  1. Lemon Blueberry Scones: Feeling Blue

Recipe used: Jo Cooks Lemon Blueberry Scones

Technique learned: Using a pastry cutter.

Making scones gave me the opportunity to learn about and use a pastry cutter, which is a handheld tool used to incorporate butter into flour. To use this tool, the butter is first cut into chunks and then mixed into the dry ingredients with the use of the pastry cutter. This technique works best when the butter is cold to help the scones rise and create air pockets for a flaky pastry. Although I didn’t have anything to compare them to, I think it worked fairly well and I’m hoping to try this technique again to make pie crust!

3. Copy Cat Starbucks Lemon Loaf: A Sweet & Sour Experience

Recipe used: Lemon Loaf

New learning: Canva

Although I didn’t learn a specific new baking technique this week, I took the time to incorporate Canva as a new source of technology. Finding recipes on the internet is great until you go to use it again and can’t quite remember which one it was in the sea of many options. I found that using Canva to create recipe cards was a great what to not only save the recipe but also create a digital and hard copy. I also loved the many designs on Canva that I could choose to match the recipe (for example I used a lemon pattern for the lemon loaf recipe). Overall I found it fairly simple to use and I loved the opportunity to be creative with a purpose. I look forward to the many ways I can continue to use Canva, in and out of the classroom.

4. Homemade Doughnuts: Deep Fried = So Good

Recipe used: Doughnuts

Technique learned: Deep frying.

With this recipe, I revisited my knowledge about baking with yeast and added on the task of using a deep fryer. At first, the thought of hot oil spatting all over the place as I attempted to make doughnuts intimidated me however, I learned that using a deep fryer contained the oil really well and that didn’t end up being an issue. When deep-frying, I learned that you really have to be on top of your game cause the cooking time is fast and the doughnuts only needed to fry for a minute on each side.  I found it helpful to set a timer on my Fitbit during the baking process, and to my surprise, I didn’t burn a single doughnut. I also found it helpful to place the doughnuts on a cooling rack after allowing excess oil to drip off before coating them in the glaze. In the end, I realized with proper research, deep frying was not intimidating and I look forward to trying it again.

5. Macarons: Mmmm Macarons

Recipe used: Macarons

Technique learned: Whipped egg whites

The technique needed to master macarons in all in whipping the egg whites and precisely following the recipe. A few things I learned about whipping egg whites first was to allow them to reach room temperature and to use glass or stainless steel bowl as plastic bowls can retain film or grease. Also adding a small amount of salt helps stabilize them, allowing the perfect peak to form. When that peak stands firm without flopping over, they have been whipped enough without overdoing it. I found that using the whisk attachment on a handheld mixer worked well to whip the eggs. It can also be done by hand, however, it would take much longer.

Here are my 5 finished products:

Three Overall Takeaways

  1. Mistakes produce new learnings.

Multiple times throughout my learning journey I made simple mistakes such as adding too much of a certain ingredient or failing to review the recipe and mixing up a couple of steps. However, I learned that the process of baking is forgiving and doesn’t always drastically change the end result. As teachers, we are likely to fail and make mistakes throughout the years. Although making mistakes can be discoursing, they also allow for growth and don’t always drastically affect the lives of students as they are learning right alongside us. Making mistakes is inevitable, however, you can choose to learn from them or let them discourage you.

  1. The resources available are endless.

There is an abundance of online resources and tools available to teach a variety of new skills. All you need is time and determination and you’re able to learn so many things.

  1. Support is available where you might not be expecting it.

Although online learning may seem like a solo project, I learned really quickly that it is not and support can be found online. When reading comments I often found great tips and tricks to follow to avoid making the same mistakes as others. This became something I relied on and always appreciated.

Wrapping it Up

I can honestly say this was one of the most fun and rewarding projects I have done over the course of university and part of me is sad to see it come to an end. In the end, I would say my favourite recipe to come out of this project is the homemade doughnuts, my least favourite recipe is the lemon blueberry scones, and the recipe I see myself using most often is the lemon loaf. In the end, I truly value the lessons I have learned and know I will benefit from them in the time to come. I am also thankful for the lessons I have learned from this part of my journey as a lifelong learner!

Learning Project

Mmmm Macarons

For my final learning project task, I wanted to challenge myself in learning how to make macarons as it is a challenging recipe to make. This is also something I have been wanting to attempt for a while but was too intimidated.

Research

When looking for a recipe, quite a few options came up and they all had similar ingredients and baking processes. However, some had hard to navigate websites, whereas others were simple and easy to follow. I ended up choosing the macaron recipe by Tasty as I had made another recipe from this site which turned out very well. I liked that the site was well organized and had many great reviews and tips in the comment section. I also found the video to be the most helpful out of all the videos I had watched as it was straight to the point but also explained the baking process including simple tricks and before/after images of what would happen if the correct steps weren’t followed. Other videos were either brief with no explanation at all or 20 minutes long, dragging the process out for too long.

Process

First, I cracked three eggs, separated the yokes from the whites, and left the whites out for an hour and a half to allow them to reach room temperature.

For the dry ingredients, using a food processor I combined the powdered sugar, almond flour, and half of the salt.  Then I pulsed it to allows the mixture to become extra fine. Next, I sifted the mixture into a separate bowl to remove and disregard any large chunks. This was my first time baking with almond flour and I was unfamiliar with the texture. As it was thick, it made the sifting process long.

For the wet ingredients, I beat the egg whites and the other half of the salt in a glass bowl with the whisk attachment on an electric hand mixer while gradually adding the sugar until it was all incorporated. I beat this mixture until it was able to form stiff peaks. Then I added the vanilla and a small amount of food colouring to make the batter pink.

Next, I added 1/3 of the sifted dry ingredients to the wet mixture. This is where a learned the macaronage, which is a technique used to fold the dry ingredients into the wet. When that was incorporated I added the remaining dry ingredients and continued to macaronage. When the texture of the batter reassembled wet sand, I used the figure eight method to ensure the batter wasn’t overmixed. This is when you draw figure eights as the batter falls from the spatula. When this could be done without the batter breaking apart, it was mixed enough.IMG_4978

Then I transferred the batter into a piping bag with a round tip, placed 4 dots of batter into each corner of my baking sheet, and a piece of parchment paper on top. This ensures that the parchment paper would stay in place. Next, I piped the macarons onto the baking sheet in 1 ½ inch circles, spaced 1 inch apart. To release any air bubbles, I tapped the baking sheet on the flat counter 5 times. Then I let the macarons sit at room temperature for an hour to allow the tops to become dry to the touch. During this step, I pre-heated the oven to 300 F. This is also when I mixed together the butter, icing sugar, vanilla and cream to make the buttercream filling. I then chose to flavour half of the icing with raspberry extract to create two flavours.

After an hour of letting the macaroons rest, I placed them in the oven for 17 minutes until feet were well risen and they didn’t stick to the parchment paper. During the baking process, it was important not to open the oven door as it could deflate the macarons.

When the baking process was complete, I transferred the macarons onto a wire rack to allow them to cool. When they were no longer warm, I filled another icing bag with the frosting, piped a dollop onto one macaron shell, and topped it off with a second macaron shell which was similar in size. I repeated this process with the remaining macaron shells and buttercream filling.

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Overall

Although it was a complex recipe to follow, I had great instructions filled with great tips that allowed me to be successful. The only adjustment I made was adding raspberry flavouring to some of the buttercream. Overall, I am really happy with the turnout of my first attempt at this recipe and I look forward to trying it again and experiment with other flavours.

EDTC 300

Coding in the Classroom

Previous Experience & Thoughts on Coding

Prior to EDTC 300, the only other time I was introduced to coding as an educational tool was using microbit in ESCI 310. During the small amount of time, I spent working with the technology I was able to use it to create single letters to code words and shapes. Although it was a fun activity I had a hard time seeing how I could integrate it into the classroom while connecting this new learning to the Saskatchewan Curriculum. It also seemed time consuming, complicated, above my skill level and I wasn’t overly interested in computer science as a subject. For these reasons, I was hesitant to learn to code and hadn’t given it much thought up until now as it seemed.

After reading, 8 reasons why every child should learn to code, I began to understand the valuable skills coding teaches kids such as problem solving, critical thinking, ways to be creative, and improvement in their reading/writing skills. Another big reason to teach coding as it allows students to learn resilience by failing and learning from mistakes. The article also reassures people who are hesitant like me, that you don’t need prior experience with coding in order to teach it as there are many resources that explain the process.

Hour of Code – My Progress

Hour of Code is a free resource that explains coding at a variety of levels with a mix of step by step videos and themed activities. I had fun learning how to code different snowflake patterns with the Frozen-themed activity. Throughout the process, I was given specific instructions making it easy to follow along.

First I was introduced to the subject with a short video that explained the basic first steps of coding such as what a computer program,  how to create a single line, and how to create turns within the program.

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After practicing the first couple of steps, I watched another short video that explained how to make a loop by using a repeat sequence that multiplied a programming action. Then I was given the opportunity to add this sequence to previous codes.

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This is where I got stuck for a moment when I was required to place one repeat sequence inside another. I ended up researching a tutorial on how to pass level 6, which allowed me to move on to the next steps.

The last video explained coding with functions. This allowed me to use simple shapes to make more complex patterns, in less time.

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Overall

I really enjoyed the Hour of Code program, and how well actions were explained making it easy to be successful. I would definitely consider using this in the classroom as it was an engaging lesson that taught valuable skills. I liked how instructions were clearly given but also certain aspects such as how many degrees to turn was left unanswered to create a challenge. It is also helpful to know that there are resources that can be further researched and used to explain how to complete certain levels. I look forward to finding ways to connect this resource to the curriculum and use it further learning in the classroom.

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EDTC 300

Using a Critical Lens

Teaching Digital Literacy in Elementary

Digital literacy, as defined by the American Library Association, is “the ability to use information and communication to find, evaluate, create, and communicate information, requiring both cognitive and technical skills.” Although that is the technical definition of the term, digital literacy in education encompasses much more, including all the ways to create, collaborate, and share content digitally all while maintaining safe practices.

Digital literacy can be taught to students in school as early as kindergarten as technology will inevitably be used throughout every student’s life. However, the question regarding digital literacy, is how do we teach about all aspects of the internet to aid students in developing a healthy digital literacy in hopes to combat fake news? As we are all lifelong learners, we need to educate ourselves as teachers in order to educate our students. To do this, we need a variety of resources. “How do we teach students to identify fake news?” provides a variety of strategies to help students become critical readers. Each strategy involves a different aspect surrounding the topic. The following strategies include:

  • Move beyond traditional checklists
  • Prioritize helping students develop investigative techniques
  • Teach students to identify bias
  • Bring real-world fake news examples into the classroom.

Starting with teaching the techniques and moving towards practicing these learning will help students develop a critical lens when looking at media.

Digital Literacy in the Curriculum

When I look through the English Language Art outcomes within the Saskatchewan Curriculum, I notice a variety of language arts goals that could be addressed through a variety of topics. As educators, it is our job to choose topics that will best support students as they grow in their education.  A topic that could easily be incorporated into the curriculum is digital literacy as it is something that is used on a daily basis. Technology can also be incorporated into almost every subject, making it necessary to know.

Some resources I find helpful are:

Books: News: Fake News: A Library Resource Round-Up provides a great list of resources that could be helpful to teach digital literacy to students at a variety of ages. When students are given the opportunity to study it in school

Videos: In teaching, using a variety of tools to explain topics can be beneficial for all types of learners. To explain digital literacy for elementary students, this video is a great tool.

Games: Using a game to solidify learning can create a fun and engaging learning experience. Factitious is a game about identifying fake news that can put student’s digital literacy knowledge to the test.

Incorporating the NCTE Framework

The National Council of Teachers of English outlines that it is important to incorporate aspects of digital literacy in all subject areas. This includes the use of e-portfolios, digital tools, and digital storytelling as a form of expression. All of these tools aid in developing digital literacy and becoming proficient in using digital content to grow in learning. Although the internet can be a great source of an abundance of information, it is important to be aware of the false information embedded within accurate sources. Teaching students to use a critical lens will eliminate some of the dangers of using inaccurate information.

EDTC 300

Discoveries in Digital Identity

 

Cyber-Sleuthing

This week as cyber-sleuth I had the opportunity to learn more about Jasmine Runge. I started exploring her blog where she shares a variety of her educational experiences including a unit plan and pictures of her in the field. I quite enjoyed reading about experiences she had in her internship and the variety of activities she did with her grade 1 and 2 students. Within her blog, Jasmine has quick links to her Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts. From  my understanding, she uses her Twitter account as a professional network to share educational resources, thoughts, new learnings, and as a community to connect with other educators. This is where I have had the privilege of connecting with Jasmine.

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Photo Credit: https://jasminerunge.wordpress.com

Jasmine’s Facebook  is where I was able to learn about her personal life and her involvement with the Rider Cheer Team, and baton twirling. It was cool to see how Jasmine uses her skill to get involved further at the University of Regina and in the community. As her Instagram account was private that lead me to assume she uses it as a personal network.

It was very evident which aspects of social media Jasmine used to portray her personal and professional life. Both sides of her digital identity were kept clean and gave the impression Jasmine is out-going and passionate about education and her hobbies.

 

Digital Identity

Cyber-sleuthing as an activity gave me a different perspective on digital identity as a whole. Maddison’s story is one out of many that give the impression that “everyone presents an edited version of life on social media. People share moments that reflect an ideal life, an ideal self.” This is one aspect of how limited aspects of your life give portrays a somewhat false identity. Another aspect is sharing opinions on controversial topics, giving others a platform to attack. This is reiterated in Jon Ronson’s TED Talk as he tells the story of how one careless tweet can change a life and how society can get so caught up in trolling one another that other insensitive comments made get overlooked in attacking one individual. Ronson sums up the situation well when he explains that “our desire to be seen as compassionate is what led us to commit this profoundly uncompassionate act.” Attacking others about being insensitive with insensitive comments is adding to the problem, not helping find a solution.

In the world of education, it is important to teach the different aspects of digital identity to students, to prepare them for the world of social media they are entering into. As I see it, the drive to post on social media is to gain approval from others instead of the joy of sharing with others. Using examples that we have looked at in class the demonstrate aspects of social media presence can be helpful in teaching the importance to think before you post.

think before you post | Parent@Help LIBRARY 1.1
Photo courtesy of Edutopia

Something I often think when it comes to my personal digital identity is how it only portrays a fraction of my life. I am not a regular poster and tend to refrain from sharing my thoughts publicly. Using social media in a professional way through my Twitter account has helped me build a positive online presence and become more comfortable connecting with others in this way.

Learning Project

Deep-Fried = So Good

Research

When I first started my learning project, my goal was to eventually feel comfortable to make deep-fried doughnuts. I decided that this was the week I was ready to tackle this project.

Up till now, I have been able to find great recipes with corresponding videos that made the research portion of this project really convenient. This week I struggled to find a recipe to make. The first few were labeled as “crispy doughnuts” whereas I preferred softer doughnuts. Another recipe I found ended up being quite complicated with a variety of adaptations on a difficult site to navigate, with a recipe that required a scale to measure ingredients to the specific ounce. It also didn’t have a recipe for a glaze with exact measurements.

Eventually, I found the New York Times Cooking doughnut recipe with ingredients I liked and a straightforward process. I liked that the recipe was laid out very nicely, did not have disruptive ads and the site was easy to navigate. What I did not like about this site, was that it made you log into with your Google or Facebook account in order to use the recipe. It also did not have pictures or a video to go along with the process, as well as no recipe for the glaze although it did say to cover in glaze. These are factors I have relied on for previous recipes. However, it was one good recipe in a sea of complicated ones so I ended up choosing to log in and find a glaze recipe separately.

As the recipe I was using did not have a video, I looked on Youtube for a separate video to watch as an example although there would be a few differences. However, I did not find any videos that were remotely similar and decided to forgo the process with the recipe alone.

Process 

Making the dough:

To make the dough, I heated the milk in the microwave to make it slightly warm. When reading through the comments, one person said the recipe failed twice and worked better when they added some of the sugar into the milk before adding the yeast. As I didn’t want to test my luck, I stirred about 1 teaspoon of sugar into the milk, then sprinkled the yeast on top, stirred it in, and let that sit for 5 minutes until the mixture was foamy. Then I mixed in the sugar, eggs, salt, and butter with a kitchen aid mixer. After that, I added half of the flour and mixed it until it was combined. Then I added the rest of the flour one cup at a time and mixed until the dough pulled away from the bowl. I ended up adding about 2 more tablespoons of flour, although that probably would not have been necessary. It mixed up really well with the kitchen aid and did not require further kneading, although the recipe said it might. A mistake I made, was not melting the butter before however it mixed in quite well and did not drastically change the final result of the dough.

Letting it Rise:

I greased a large bowl with oiled and transferred the dough into that bowl and covered it with a kitchen towel. The dough needed to rise for an hour to double in size.

 

Rolling and Cutting:

This dough was really soft and easy to work with. I lightly floured the counter and rolled it to about a 1/2 inch thickness. To cut the doughnuts I had to get creative. My search for a doughnut cutter was unsuccessful, so I ended up using a Tupperware cup and a piping tip to cut out the middle. This worked fairly well. After I cut as many out as I could I lightly re-kneaded the scraps, and repeated the process. I ended up with 14 doughnuts plus the doughnut holes.

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I placed each doughnut on a lightly floured baking sheet with plenty of space between, covered them with a tea towel and let them rise in a warm place for 45 minutes. After they rose, I ended up cutting out the middle again as some of them were almost closed up.

Deep Frying:

For the frying process, I used a deep fryer instead of a pot of oil. This worked well as I could heat the oil it to 375 degrees without using a thermometer. I placed three doughnuts in the deep fryer at a time and cooked each side for about 45-60 seconds, depending on how fast it cooked. Cooking the doughnut holes was more difficult as it wasn’t easy to flip them but they took around the same time to cook. After a placed them on a drying rack to allows the excess oil to drip off before covering them in the glaze.

Glazing:

I ended up using The Food Networks doughnut glaze. I really liked that it was a simple straight forward recipe. Although it says it makes enough for 20-25 doughnuts, I had to double the recipe for 14 doughnuts plus doughnut holes. However, this was most likely cause I coated the whole doughnut instead of just dipping.

For the glazing process, I put one doughnut in the pot of glaze at a time, used a fork to coat the whole doughnut, and put it on a rack for the excess to drip off.

Overall

Throughout the process I made slight adjustments such as adding sugar to the milk before adding the yeast and using a deep fryer instead of a pot, however, it didn’t make a big difference in the end. Next time using this recipe I would be sure to melt the butter so it is easier to incorporate into the dough. Overall, after a slightly difficult researching process, I was really happy with the final product and would be up more making them again.

Canva

As I really liked this recipe and it was more difficult to find then I expected, I decided to use Canva to create another recipe card. This way I can have a folder of recipes on my phone or computer and I can easily use it again. I also included the adaptations I made to the recipe in the card to remember for next time.

Homemade Doughnuts - Recipe Card

EDTC 300

Addressing Big Topics With Little People

Regarding the recent event surrounding racial justice, Twitter has become a helpful resource in finding articles to help educate myself within a community of educators.

Something that really caught my eye was this image shared by @TeacherGoals.

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As educators, we are looked up to by so many young minds looking for answers. In my opinion, teachers do have a responsibility to model active citizenship education in digital spaces. This can be a place with an abundance of resources that allows people such as myself to educate themselves on current topics. Becoming educated is the first step in being able to understand multiple aspects of the event, which enables us to be people that students can come to in search of their own understanding. Being supportive can be listening to students and finding the resources in search of their questions. An article I came across, Why #BlackLivesMatter In your classroom Too, had great information and really allowed me to see the importance of being systematically aware as an educator as it explains racism from multiple perspectives. It is explained in the article that,

Becoming more systemically aware means understanding the kinds of racism that shape our communities, schools, and classrooms, and where we stand in relation to those social forces.” – Heinemann Publishing

As I said, understanding issues ourselves gives us the knowledge to support students in their own understanding. Engaging with other educators through the sharing of resources on social media allowed me to discover this. Taking the time to reflect on how being active in a professional setting on Twitter has supported me in my education. As a life long learner, I am excited about the new ways I can engage with others and further my learning.

There has been a lot of discussion lately regarding the harmful effect of staying silent during tense times. It is said that the harmful effect of staying silent is that it allows problems with society to continue without any action being taken. Although I understand why that is problematic, I also understand how the high amount of pressure put on society to make a statement regarding the subject can be intimating as it is critiqued by so many who most likely have differing opinions. I have felt this pressure myself and have hesitated to post. As I am not a person who often shares my opinion on personal social media platforms, I have found it beneficial to take this time to better educate myself on the topic and have become more comfortable using my professional social media account, @april_hild, to share resources on the topic. I have found and continue to find great articles on different aspects of approaching the topic of race in the classroom as well as many great resources that can aid educating students and teachers.

One of the resources I found through Twitter is a Teacher’s Reading List of Antiracist Books for Kids.” Throughout my experiences in the classroom, I have seen the love students have for books as it allows them to connect to different topics with the impact of stories. I appreciate how this article lists multiple books and gives a breakdown of the story they tell. As I approach my internship in the fall, these are the types of resources I am saving as it can be very beneficial to have them previously set aside.

 

 

EDTC 300, Learning Project

A Sweet & Sour Experience

This week I had a request this week to make a lemon loaf that tastes just like Starbucks. As I am a borderline Starbucks addict I was up for the challenge!

Research

When browsing for recipes there were ones that claimed to be better than Starbucks, one that claimed to be “the best recipe ever” and a variety of other recipes with similar ingredients and directions. As I was aiming to make a lemon loaf that tastes just Starbucks I went with the Copy Cat Starbucks lemon loaf recipe.

I liked this website because it laid out all of the first and showed a picture of them all. It then explained the whole process to put the recipe together with multiple pictures. I also really appreciate that it has a side note explaining how long it will stay good kept at room temperature, in the freezer as well as to not store it in the fridge. At the bottom of the page once again there was a simple option to print it out or pin it on Pinterest. The recipe was also nicely laid out at the bottom and easy to follow.

As I  ensure to read the comments before making a recipe as a way to review it, another personal touch that I liked was the blog author replied to every comment left on the page whether it was a compliment or a question about the recipe. It is really helpful to know that you can seek help from real people across the world through the internet in learning scenarios such as my own.

What I did not like was how easy it was to get lost in the many ads that appeared throughout the website. Also, other videos from the site showed up and started playing often that had to be shut down. Aspects like this are very distracting making the site more difficult to navigate.

A new must for online learning for me is having a video to overview what is written in the recipe. Similar to last week, I liked the video for this recipe as it was concise, yet easy to follow along. I prefer this format for I am less likely to lose interest and move on.

Process

For this recipe, I figured it would be quick and easy to whip up with a kitchen aid mixer. To begin, first mixed all the wet ingredients (eggs, sugar, Greek yogurt, vegetable oil) in the mixing bowl. When that was blending, I zested 1.5 lemons and added that to the mixture as well as the lemon extract. Before the baking process, I found a helpful comment on the website regarding the amount of lemon extract the recipe called for. Although it said two tablespoons, she said you could use between 1-2. This was reassuring for me as I only ended up having about 1 tablespoon worth and two tablespoons also seemed like a lot to me. Next, I gradually added all of the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, salt) into the wet mixture and continued to mix.

When using a mixer, I learned to often be scraping the sides of the bowls throughout the mixing process to ensure that all ingredients are incorporated. I also learned that the lemon zest sticks to the mixing paddle, which needs to be scraped off and hand incorporated with a spatula.

Once the batter was complete, I generously sprayed my baking pan, filled it with the batter, and placed it into the oven that I previously preheated to 350 degrees. The recipe said to bake it for around 50-52 minutes however when I pulled It out after 50 minutes it was not done in the middle and needed about 5 more minutes.

To make the glaze I mixed 1 cup of icing sugar with two tables spoons worth of the fresh lemon juice I squeezed from the lemons. The recipe called for 2-3 tablespoons but I was happy with the consistency of the glaze after only using 2.  When the loaf was cooled I drizzled this on top.

Adaptations

For this recipe, the only adaption I made was the amount of lemon extract I used. I also chose to use Greek yogurt over sour cream because of personal preference. However, I don’t this drastically affected the final product.

In the end, my taste testers claimed it was even better than Starbucks. I also really enjoyed the recipe as it was easy to follow and had the perfect balance of sour and sweet.

Incorporating Further Technology: Canva

This week I decided to incorporate Canva as another technology source to aid in my learning project. This is something I was introduced to when I worked as an office assistant as a possibility to use for various tasks. However, as technology can be intimidating,  I never took the time to learn how it can be effectively used. When I was introduced to it again through Ed Tech 300, I became really curious about the ways it can be used. Although I debated learning how to use video technology to video the process of making a recipe, I wanted something that I would be more likely to use again. When I explored Canva further I realized it can be used to make recipe cards.  I loved this idea as a way to document new recipes. I also like how it is something I can make, print off and store in a recipe box for further use as well as share on my blog for others to use.

Using Canva

When I was first scrolling through the site it was slightly overwhelming as it seems the possibilities of things to create never end. However, I found that going into Canva with a purpose instead of browsing makes things less overwhelming. Every template is placed in separate categories making the site easy to navigate. The first step for me was finding the “recipe card” category and selecting the template I wanted to use. Here I debating using a generic template that I could use for every recipe after this, to make everything match. However, I ended up choosing one that went with the theme of the recipe (lemon) to add a fun element.

Next, all I had to do was put my recipe into the template. This part was slightly tedious as I had to use many text boxes for my specific template. This meant I had to enter each ingredient for the recipe into separate text boxes and when I had to change the font I had to do this again with each individual box. There is most likely a way around this, however, I am not super familiar with the program yet. Once I was able to get the full recipe on the template I decided to add the picture I took to add a personal touch as well as another visual aspect.

The last step was just to read over what I had written, adjust the placement of text boxes, and choose different fonts and text sizes. After, it was simple to download and I was able to save it as a photo, print it off and share it on my twitter account – @april_hild. What I am still trying to figure out is how to save it as a document, which is a problem for another day.

Overall, I was pleased with my final result. What I really liked was how easy the site was to navigate and how simple it was to edit the template. I also appreciated how templates opened and edits made were automatically saved so progress was never lost.

I think Canva is a great source to become familiar with as it can be very beneficial for many classroom aspects such as making posters, handouts, presentations, videos, brochures, newsletters, posts for classroom social media pages and so much more. I think it will be a great resource to have and I look forward to all the new things I’ll be able to do.

Final Product Using Canva:

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