Fitbit: My New Best Friend

auwwbvg6niggtvuwsnqf

I LOVE MY FITBIT! I check my fit bit more than I check my texts. The version I have is the Fitbit Charge HR, which is the one that also monitors my heart rate. There are so many reasons why I think my Fitbit helps me stay on track with exercising and eating right. I am going to try and make this blog post not sound like I am not advertising for them but, hey, maybe I am, because so far, I haven’t found anything that works better.

So, what is a Fitbit? When I first found out about them, I figured they were just a techy version of a pedometer. That you could probably just shake the wrist you were wearing it on, like I did in elementary school, and it would count your steps no matter what. I was wrong. Not only does it count my steps, but it also monitors my heart rate, tells me how many miles I’ve gone, counts my calories, the floors I’ve climbed, and even tells me if I am getting a phone call.

Fitbit has an app that is connected to your phone. This app tells me everything that the band tells me but also some extras such as the specific kind of exercise I’ve been doing. For example, if I go to the gym and walk on the treadmill, it can tell me how long I was on it for, whether or not I was walking or running, and how many calories I burned doing that exercise. The same goes for an aerobic workout or getting on the elliptical. It KNOWS!  Another thing that my Fitbit keeps track of is how I am sleeping. It can tell me how long I have slept for, how many times I woke up in the night, and at what times I was restless. It knows everything… it’s almost creepy.

One of the nicest things that Fitbit does is ask me what I want my weight loss goal to be. In doing this, it can tell me how many calories I can eat for the day based upon a pound and a half a week weight loss goal and how many calories I have burned for the day. It has a log in which I can add everything I have eaten into a database for it to keep track of. This lets me pay close attention to what I am eating and to be careful not to over eat.

The funnest part about Fitbit is that it can connect to your friend’s Fitbit as well. You can compete in competitions and see who can walk the most steps or who’s is in the lead for amount of steps taken for a week. There are so many different ways to get involved with everyone! In my opinion, Fitbit is definitely making an impact on the change I want to have on my life. 🙂

Liar Liar Pants on Fire

e0abd465f89c59c998d50740e2af2e024263e1a5_800x600

The TED talk video that I decided to write about this week is “How to Spot a Liar” By Pamela Meyer. I chose this topic because I thought it would be very interesting to learn about and I was right! It is crazy to think about how many times we get lied to and not just by the people we think are liars, but by everyone. After thinking about it you realize how much you lie to other people and why. Was it necessary? Was it worth it?

While watching this video I started to wonder which tells I have when I lie. Do I nod my head or shift my feet toward an exit? I thought about asking my friends to ask me some questions in which I would lie to just to see what I do. I found that because I already know what not to do and because my friends already knew I would be lying; it was pretty difficult to figure it out. I changed my way of thinking a little and decided that it would be more fun to interview my brothers, whom I know have no problem lying to me anytime! I asked one of them things that I knew he would lie about like “Did you do your homework?” or “Did you prank call me at 2:30 in the morning the other night?”. It was obvious that he was lying right away. He gets this smirk on his face like he thinks he’s funny but he is going to deny it anyway to make sure that he doesn’t get himself into trouble. Clearly my research was not going as well as I had hoped. Maybe someday I will be able to tell when someone is lying to me but when I plan it out it doesn’t seem to work. I will probably just have to wait for a time when I can use the knowledge that Pamela Meyer has given when I suspect that I am being lied to.

I thought this video was incredibly entertaining! I would love to learn more about how interrogators used their knowledge to trap criminals. I think there is a reason that only the trained in this subject know what they are doing. It seems very difficult to try to spot all the tells while also listening to what they are saying. It would definitely take some practice.

Starting Over

healthy-life

For my independent learning project, I am going to focus on health and fitness. I want to incorporate my life into what I learn and how I can use it in my future teaching career. There are many different aspects that go into trying to stay healthy in todays society such as, hectic schedules, fast food, or even the amount of money it costs. Throughout this semester I want to research how I can be healthier while maintaining the everyday lifestyle.

My roommates and I decided that we wanted to incorporate the healthy lifestyle into our lives. So far, we have made a few changes in our lives, including getting a membership to the 24-hour fitness gym in town. We started waking up earlier to work out in the morning instead of waiting until we have time at night. I really like this because I already feel productive before I am even normally awake. I have more energy in the morning and don’t have to worry about finding time to work out. Morning workouts have made it easy for my roommates and I to work out together before all of our schedules go in different directions.  I have found that it is a lot easier to get up in the morning if you know your roommates are holding you accountable. I have also found that working out with other people makes it more fun. As long as we can stay focused and not turn the time in the gym into our social hour, we actually find ourselves being fairly productive.

We are college students. I work two jobs and go to school full time. It is really easy to want to by cheaper food that we know is not healthy such as roman noodles or frozen pizza. I am usually in a hurry in the morning and grab a pop tart on my way out the door. I want to be able to eat healthier while trying to save my money, so I have decided that I want to spend more at the grocery story and cut fast food out completely.

My roommates and I each took our body measurements in hopes of seeing some progress. We limited ourselves to only stepping on the scale once a week because we all have this tendency to want to step on the scale eight times a day and expect the number to magically go down. Also, it helps avoiding disappointment when in the middle of the week our weight is fluctuating. Hopefully as the semester goes on we will get used to this new life style and learn the best ways to accomplish our goals. I already feel like this is something that I am really going to enjoy working towards.

Photo credit: http://damronchiropractic.com/health-your-greatest-asset/

Hackschooling

make-learning-fun

When viewing the Ted Talk with Logan LaPlante, I was initially very shocked to see how old he was. I definitely did not expect him to barley be a teenager. Logan had a very good way of making what he was saying interesting and relatable. Listening to him really made me wish I had gone to school in the same way he had. He talks about this thing called “hacking”. When I first hear the word “hack” I think about Penelope, the technical analyst, on Criminal Minds. I hadn’t ever given much thought as to what the word “hack” is generally supposed to mean.

I really liked that Logan explains hacking as a tool to make yourself happier. It is a word that means to improve something. I think that most people would say that there is something in their life that they wish they could improve, no matter how small. Making school a better place and having fun learning environment is how Logan chose to hack his life. I would love to take this little boy’s advice and try to hack some things in my life to see if I can improve them.

I think that the more we watch these types of videos and read articles, such as “Centering on Essential Lenses: Make/Hack/Play” by Bud Hunt, we are going to get all kinds of great ideas as future teachers. We can use the knowledge that we have been informed with to make our classroom environment a better place to learn. Making learning fun, in my opinion, is always the best strategy. When kids are having fun they don’t even realize they are learning or working at something. An example of that is when a P.E. teacher or a coach has their children run sprints or ladders, children will be far more likely to try harder when you make it a game. Having relay races or a prize for the winner will make kids more inclined to work harder and not even realize it.

I would love to get some other ideas about how we can make learning more fun for our students. We can incorporate “hackschooling” into the everyday classroom by finding things to learn that interest our students. It also would be great to find ways to make things that are less interesting, interesting, such as projects or games.

Digital Literacy

According to most definitions of digital literacy, it means knowing how to use a variety of digital devices while understanding the types of information they present. When it comes to education and digital literacy most younger students have the upper hand from growing up with our kind of technology. However, most of them only know how to run social media and google. When it comes to digital literacy, there are many other components that are necessary to know. When using digital devices in school, it is essential that you know how to use the search engines to go reliable websites. In high school that was something that they drilled into our heads. We were not allowed to use wikipedia at all. The most acceptable sources of information came from websites that ended in .org.  Other things that students should learn are the benefits and dangers of using the internet.

Something interesting that I want to point out is that there are new technology devices coming out all the time. Technology is so different even from when I was I was in grade school. It is hard to say how it will develop as the years go on. I think that the best thing to do is learning how to work the devices to the best of our ability. This is something that I would really like to learn how to do in this class. I feel a lot like an old lady sometimes because I know very little about technology. I don’t know if grandma is even a good description because I am pretty sure my grandma knows more than I do!

More information about education and digital literacy is here 🙂 http://www.edweek.org/tm/articles/2014/10/29/ctq_crowley_digitalliteracy.html

JUST ME :)

3674487304_01c4664c99_z

To me, reading is a huge part of learning. I had always hated reading. I would take the easy way out of reading a book ever since A.R. was introduced in the second grade. I found that I had a hard time becoming involved or interested in a book. However, around November of 2008 I became a hardcore reading advocate all thanks to the ever popular, Twilight Series by Stephanie Meyer. Yes, I was unfortunately one of those huge twilight groupies. I had gone to the movie with my family and was dying to know what would happen next so I begged my mom to buy me “New Moon”, the second book in the Twilight Series. I read it in under 24 hours; the fastest I had ever read a book in my whole life. The phase has passed but I still love reading. I had discovered that I was just more interesting in action or romance books.

15500678677_bcf8fb54de_m

Another huge part of my learning experience was when I was in fourth grade. I had thought of myself as an average student, one who didn’t really excel at anything in particular. My opinion about myself changed when my teacher gave me my report card for the 2nd quarter in our school year. It was filled out in A’s. I can remember walking up to her and thanking her for the A’s, which she replied with “Don’t thank me, you did that yourself.” I had never been so proud of a report card and ever since then I made it an expectation of myself to always get A’s. I became very competitive with myself during my upcoming years in school, and eventually graduated high school with around a 4.2 GPA, thanks to the A.P. classes I had taken. This state of mind not only helped me with my way of thinking but is a tactic I would like to use with my future students.

2107125973_42feb482d9_m

While here at Chadron State College, I decided that I wanted to get a coaching endorsement. One of the things that lead me to this decision was that I like to watch my sister play sports. I find myself always looking at the coaching. I watch how they interact with the athletes, which athletes they pay more attention to, which ones they favor, how they talk to their athletes, etc. Some coaches I am really impressed with and others I wonder how they even keep their job. I myself have had some coaches that were clearly there just to supervise rather than coach. There is always that saying that you learn from others mistakes, I want to be a coach that watches the good ones for advice and the bad ones for what not to do.

6958130375_cd3816162a_m

My first year in college my major was in science. I wanted to be a P.A. The idea was great, lots of money, making your own hours, and hey, I was going to be a doctor! After my first semester in, I hated my life. I wasn’t interested in my classes, I had no free time, and I found myself questioning why I was even in the major I was in. I had been so used to doing well in my classes that this type of thinking was really discouraging. After several talks with my family we decided that it would be best for me to switch my major to something I enjoyed more. I picked teaching. During my ruthless first year of college I found that I really enjoyed helping my friends with their homework in the classes I understood. I liked school before college and I love kids, it is where I belong. Learning this about myself has made a huge impact on my life.

17121923990_ba6b3b8fe6_m

I think that one of the most important learning experiences that I have gone through in my life is that of money management. When you’re a kid all your money is your own and you don’t have to worry about which bills are due and how much money you have for food. It was really easy to run out and buy something if you had the money for it. Ever since I moved away from home I have had all of my own responsibilities. I have had a difficult time learning that I can’t spend money like I used to be able to. I have had to learn how to pay rent, electricity, water, wifi, and go grocery shopping. Now I know what it is like to be an adult. This is a great lesson to learn when I eventually have a professional job and live on my own.

TOP TEN

For my list of top ten books I decided to do my personal favorites. I can’t believe how many books I was able to accomplish reading this semester. I feel so much more prepared to get into my own classroom and share me favorites with my students and hope that they love them too.

bad

The reason I picked this one is because I read it in elementary school when I hated reading! This book made me interested to see what happened next and when it was over I got to read the next one. I think that series are a great way to get students interested in reading.

twister

The Magic Tree house books are always a favorite with students and after reading them again I can remember why. They are full of adventure and are easy to learn from. They are great books to get students interested in certain times in history.

the one and only ivan

The One and Only Ivan was a great book! I just liked it in general and I think that sharing it in the future will be very beneficial to my students. It teaches a great lesson and is very interesting from start to finish.

untitled

I really enjoyed this book! I think it could be great for all ages! It teaches ethnicity and culture and would be great in some type of lesson based on that. Also the fact that is resembles The Old Lady that Swallowed the Fly also adds to its appeal.

matilda

Matilda was one of the very first books that I read this semester and I loved it. I thought it was very entertaining and it is a book I could see myself reading again!

untitled

I LOVED THIS BOOK! I don’t really even know what about it made it so appealing to me but after I was done reading it I was super excited about it. I think that it was very relatable to my own childhood and it was beyond cute.

this is not my hat

This book had a sense of humor to it that I loved. It taught a lesson and made sure that you were surprised at the end. After I read it I automatically put into the pile of books that I loved, which was very small at the time.

lww

I really enjoyed reading this book. It was exciting and had everything in it to make me not want to put it down. I liked that you felt like you were in this new and interesting world with them. I think that it is a book that students will love.

charl

I remember that this book was one that all the students had to read at some point. I can understand why. It was a great book that taught lessons of friendship and love. I was so into the book that I cried at the bittersweet ending.

icky

I’m putting this book in my top ten not because it taught a lesson, but because I sincerely enjoyed reading it. It is a book that I can see kids asking their parents to read to them over and over again. It was amazingly cute.