Wednesday, April 15, 2009

want to be a teacher at the u of r?

An email I received from the Education Faculty last week:

Here is what we want you to pass along to anyone you think may be
interested in becoming a teacher:

As of Thursday 2 April 2009, The Faculty of Education has openings
for admission for Fall 2009 in the following undergraduate Bachelor
of Education and After Degree program

Post Secondary Transfer & After Degree Applicants
* Arts Education
* Baccalauréate en éducation (français)
* Secondary Education with a major in:
o Business Education
o Core French
o Health Education
o Music Education
o Science Education

High School Applicants Deadline extension
* Arts Education
* Baccalauréat en éducation (français)
* Secondary Education:
o Business Education
o Core French
o Health Education
o Music Education

Separate quotas are in place for all programs. The above
programs have extended the annual application deadline until
quotas are filled; this includes applications from current high
school students, high school graduates with no applicable post-
secondary, and post-secondary transfer and after degree (BEAD)

The Teacher Education Application & Profile 2009 is available at

Monday, April 13, 2009

Daily Picture 12/04/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
A banana peel. Kind of gross, but I thought the yellow/brown was pretty cool.

Daily Picture 11/04/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
A bag with some cool designs on it.

Daily Picture 10/04/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
A container with some kind of hair gel I found in my mom's bathroom.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Daily Picture 09/04/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
Our newly repainted and redecorated basement, in honour of the two Japanese exchange students arriving on Saturday (we still need to put the new brown couch covers on).

Thursday, April 9, 2009

pecha kucha

When I first heard that this class was online, I was pumped at the opportunity to study at home in my pjs, drinking tea and being sat on by my cat. I was a little nervous that the program we communicated with would be too slow with all of us in the same online room at once, but Elluminate turned out to be a great host for our online sessions. The weekly tech tasks, though sometimes time consuming, were one of the best parts of the class. My favourites include:

  • Podcasting using Audacity – I did a podcast on easy, achieveable ways to prevent global warming. It was great hearing people’s personalities come out through podcasting as editing.
  • iGoogle was a tool I had already been using before this class, but the blog posts the class did taught me about some cool widgets that I have since added to my own iGoogle.
  • Delicious is also a tool that I have been using for the past year, but it wasn’t until our lesson online that I realized the importance of tagging. Once I realized I could also subscribe to a tag via RSS feed, I really began to understand the power of delicious bookmarking.
  • I haven’t quite become the addicts of Twitter that Dionne and Tessa have, but I have established a small Personal Learning Network that was a great help to me when I was looking for resources for my final project. If someone couldn’t help me, they knew who to direct me to.
  • Flickr has been a wonderful tool to upload my Daily Pictures to, but it’s the Creative Commons that really make Flickr stand out. I can use images in Creative Commons and not have to worry about copyright infringement.

Blogging has also been an eye-opening experience. It was through blogs that I communicated with all of my ECMP classmates and both my mentorship classrooms. Blogs are wonderful tools of communication and with the addition of RSS feeds to Google Reader, it was easy to keep track of everything going on, even if it wasn’t easy to keep up.

I made a world cloud using Wordle and added every single one of my blog posts to it. As you can see, the words that appear most prominently are class, student, blog, mentorship, students, new, learning, classroom and think. What amazing words.

I have Skyped.

I have Tweeted.

I’ve made Personal Learning Network.

I have learned.

I have taught.

I am connected.

Daily Picture 08/04/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
My mom feeding Joey an apple. What a strange cat.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

mentorship addition

Maria Knee just got back to me with the feedback I'd requested from my work with her Kindergarten class. Here's what she had to say:

"We appreciated all the effort you put into working with the class. I wish you could be in the room when we check our blogs so you could hear the children say with enthusiasm -"Oh - It's a comment from Robin!" They will miss having you be a part of the class. I think you did well reaching every student. You were always thoughtful and often gave them something to think about. Our pigeon drawing come from books we read and the children wish that you knew about the books. They were so funny - saying - "I don't think Robin knows about the Pigeon books." I had to explain that most University students wouldn't know about the Mo Willems books since he hasn't been writing books for very long.

Would you mind posting one "goodbye" message on the main page of our blog? If you can find the time, this would be easier than writing to each child. They each have a new drawing/story on their blog. It is hard for me to keep up with their individual blogs and post their work. It is as difficult to keep up with the main page. We have a video posted and by the end of the week, I hope to have another new post…

…Thank you so much for being involved with the KinderKids. You cannot know the impact it has made. They know that there is someone reading their blog and therefore they want to do good work so someone enjoys their work.

Please keep in touch. If there is anything i can do for you, please ask. I am still in touch with my first student from Dean. She just contacted me with a question for a project she is doing."

Thanks Maria for your feedback! I will definitely be posting a farewell message in the next few days, but it's not truly a farewell. I have really enjoyed following their class blogs and plan to continue following them until at least the end of the school year. Thanks for the great mentorship experience!

final project

Wow, my final project is finally finished. My goal was to gather a bunch of resources that I can use to incorporate technology in an elementary music classroom. Most of my time for this project was spent gathering said resources. As I say in my VoiceThread, I used Google Scholar, delicious tags, and my PLN on Twitter to find these websites and programs. @mhammons on Twitter was especially helpful, thanks Mark!

After several hours of gathering resources, I spent another few days registering, experimenting, and choosing the top six programs/websites. I tried to choose a variety as there are many aspects of music. Here's what I chose:

1) Audacity/Garageband - for composing, recording and editing sound
2) Skype in Schools - a wikispace where you can add your classroom to a directory and receive contacts to Skype with. Can be used to Skype with composers and musicians from around the world.
3) - an amazing interactive website for your students to use. Includes lessons on orchestra, instrumental sections, individual instruments and all the elements of music including notes, tempo, dynamics, and more.
4) - a list of 100 music educator's blog URLs
5) - a new way of teaching music with technology, complete with lessons plans, worksheets, and examples of student work
6) Mark Hammon's slideshow - on the importance of arts education in today's schools

My original plan was to make a video, but you can't really film your computer screen moving... unless you have Jing! I downloaded this program to get screenshots and screenvideos. Unfortunately, I couldn't figure out how to import those videos from Jing's weird file format; I think you have to pay for it to do that. Anyway, to compromise, I filmed my computer screen using my camera. It's not nearly as good of quality, but at least it's there.

After securing my screenshots from Jing, video clips from my camera, and a couple neat pictures from Flickr's Creative Commons (attributions here and here), I decided to use VoiceThread for the first time to record my presentation. It is very easy to use, but it takes a strong computer. Mine froze twice, and I lost my progress the first time. The second time caused a glitch in the slide about You will have to manually skip to the next slide because of this. I probably spent a good three or four hours on this step.

Overall, this project was very beneficial to me as an education student. I can use these resources as lesson plan ideas for future projects and lesson plans. Remember, this only highlights six of the thousands of music education sites I discovered were out there on the fabulous Web 2.o. Hope you learn something!

SMART tables

Hey all! Thumann Resources just made a post about the new SMART Tables! I thought I'd give you the link to her blog post about it and embed her YouTube video of her first experience with the SMART Table for you to check out if you'd like. They're about $8000 apiece right now, and only for K-6. Lisa Thumann's blog explains a lot more, so if you're interested, go here!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Daily Picture 07/04/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
My mom's housecoat, oddly enough, but the flash makes it look pretty neat.

Daily Picture 06/04/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
My new phone! It's not too spiffy, but definitely a step up from my clunky pink one. This one even has a camera :)

Speaking of which, that camera could be useful for Daily Pictures. Anyone know how to get a pic off a phone and onto the computer?

a reflection upon a reflection

This is a response to Dani's blog post, Reflection of ECMP, the ultimate social learning experience. I recommend that you read her post first, as mine might not make much sense otherwise.

Dani is absolutely right when she says "I knew I needed to work extra hard in this class if I wanted to gain anything from it" I think that the people who put the most effort into this class also got the most out of it. I also agree that the students in this class taught each other. Dean was kind of the guide, but we got to chose what topics we focused on. I also checked out some tech tasks before doing mine, like the two story-telling ones, as I'm sure others looked at mine before doing theirs. It's a learning circle!

I did spend hours on end in front of my computer for this class, but most of that was simply reading/commenting on blogs for this class and my mentorship - it does take time. I have become quite proficient and reading and commenting, and by some spur of luck, technology comes pretty easily to me so the tech tasks didn't take long. Hopefully this class helped to encourage your technological skills too.

I have enjoyed reading blogs like Dani's where tech tasks did not come as easily - honestly! I think it's great that you are okay saying that you aren't doing well in this class. That is teaching the rest of us a valuable skill; not everyone is going to 'get it' unless you teach for multiple learning styles. You are visual and face-to-face, while others are more independent, and that's totally fine!

This class taught me about technology, about social networking, and about different learning styles. I could see my classmates journey through ECMP as clearly as my own and observing all the success, failure, and half-ways stories was beneficial for all of us. Thanks to everyone in ECMP355 for their work during the semester! It was fun.

social learning

Social Learning. A new term I learned all about this semester. I think the easiest way to write my summary is in a list, so here we go (this is in no particular order)!

1. Blogging and 2. Commenting: I felt that these should be separate yet connected topics. Not only did I expand my learning throughout the semester by taking the time to post about various things happening in my school and social life, but I realized the power of commenting! It is extremely motivational to receive comments on your blog posts. There were a few periods where I did not receive any comments and wondered why I was posting at all, but there were other times when I did receive a few comments and that inspired me to write even more. I tried my best throughout the semester to comment on every blog post that I could. You can see this in my mentorship where I commented on over 250 blog posts, but I also tried to comment on my classmates' blogs to give them the motivation that they give me through their comments. I wish I had kept track of all the learning I've done through commenting, but here are a few:

3. Delicious is another form of social learning that I maximized during this class. I had a delicious account before ECMP355 started, but our lesson in Elluminate taught me about the importance of tagging, adding friends, and using RSS feeds in delicious to gather reliable URLs on any tag. I was able to pass on my knowledge of delicious through a Skype session with my mentorship, and talking to my friends about it.

4. Elluminate/Instant Messaging. Elluminate was a great tool to host our weekly online class. Yes, it had it's occasional faults in chipmunking sound and 'kicking people out', but overall each online class was very smooth. I am also glad that Dean recommended purchasing a microphone, as I have used it more than I ever thought I would through Elluminate, Skype, and podcasting. Nicole and I also spent a few minutes after class a couple weeks ago chatting and talking through the microphone about how to change the Look and Feel of her final project wikispace:
5. Google Reader. What an immense tool. There is no way that I would be able to keep up with all my classmates' blogs, teacher blogs, and mentorship blogs without my lurvely Google Reader. Subscribing to RSS feeds is super-easy and saves hours and hours of searching through blogs and websites. THANK YOU Dean, for introducing us to this tool. Other tools, such as spreadsheets and documents are things that I would like to explore more indepth in the future - I just chose to focus on other topics this semester.

6. Email might seem too obvious, but it is definitely a prominent form of social learning. Whenever an Elluminate link didn't work, what saved us? Email. Sure, a few people got the link from Twitter or Skype, but the majority of us went to our email accounts first. I also exchanged a couple emails with Dionne(? I think!) about using wikispaces.

7. Face to Face. Several Thursdays as we sat waiting for KHS to start, several of us ECMP355ers would talk about the Elluminate session we had attended the previous night. Some days the discussions were "That's so cool! I'm so going to use that in my classroom!", some days it was "I fell asleep and don't want to listen to the recording. What happened?", others consisted of ":S!!?!?! Help!" and me calming re-explaining some concepts to panicked faces. Other dicussions weren't directly related to Elluminate sessions, such as the convo I had with Marcy about saving her podcast:
8. Skype is also a new tool that I hadn't even heard about until this class. An online phone call seems pretty basic, but wait. You can call anywhere in the world, FREE? Whoa. As if that wasn't enough, there is an instant messaging feature, webcam options, and a program called Pamela that records Skype calls!

9. Twitter. Calm down Dionne, I mentioned it ;) The main reason I use Twitter is for resources. I twittered asking about ways to incorporate technology in a music classroom for my final project, and almost all of my ideas came from help on Twitter. Instead of writing a lengthy paragraph, I'll just direct you to Dionne's lengthy blog posts about other benefits of Twitter here, here, here, here and here!

I think that overall, I did a ton of teaching and learning in this class. I catch on to this technology deal pretty easily, but my learning was really maximized when I could teach others to use the tools or read neat things that other people discovered about tools that I did not.

Sunday, April 5, 2009


Inspired by other's wordle clouds, I decided to make my own. I copied and pasted every blog post I wrote all semester (excluding Daily Pictures) and here's what I got! There are some great words in there :)

Daily Picture 05/04/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
This picture is a little weird... but I like it at the same time. Hmm...

synopsis of mentorship experience

As my faithful followers know, I have been participating in a mentorship partnership with two classes in the US. This blog post is basically a synopsis of the work I have done with them.

In Jennifer Clark Evan's two junior English classes in Virgina, I read seven blogs posts from each of the 40ish students about the novel A Farewell To Arms by Ernest Hemingway. Here are links to some blog posts I've made about this mentorship in the past:

The Beginning: my initial thoughts and ideas about this mentorship
Teaching delicious Through Skype: complete with two audio files
Reading Through Student's Eyes: how I learned about the novel through blog posts
Student Values; blog posts about the student's top five values

Besides all this, I also had to provide feedback on the posts that the student's made at six checkpoints within the novel. Here are some examples of my feedback to Jennifer's students:

Spelling: Matt and Ian
Originality: Ian and Chelsea
Connecting with Hemingway: Derrik
Learning about a different time and culture: Emily
Working on personal reflection: Rachel
Passionate posts: Emma, Jessica and Matt
Last post - near perfection! Brian and Hillary

I also saw that Jennifer posted about the blogging experience in her blog. It was nice to hear her perspective. I emailed her because I wanted some feedback on the work I'd been doing with her class: comments, compliments and most importantly, criticism. Here's what she said:

"You really tried to jump in and do anything that you could learn for yourself. Some of the students even commented on this-your strong work ethic. You were diligent in your commenting and did a great Skype presentation. That was not easy talking to a room of strangers two time zones away. You were flexible and well organized. I enjoyed working with you and wish you luck in the rest of your studies."

I think I experienced the most in Jennifer's mentorship class and spent a TON of time keeping up with all the their blog posts, but I'm now proud to say that I commented on every single blog post: that's over 250 comments! *high-fives myself* That doesn't go to say that my second mentorship, with Maria Knee's kindergarten class in Deerfield, New Hampshire, wasn't a great experience as well. Maria's class only made two blog posts during my mentorship, but they were great! Here are some links to previous blog posts about Maria's class:

The Beginning / Spiders
Skyping with Maria Knee's Class
Pigeons Like to Drive and Stay Up Late

It didn't take long to read and post on their artistic blogs, but it was very fun and I actually did learn quite a bit about what kids can accomplish at that age. As I mention in my previous posts, Maria had the students operating the computer for the Skype call - wow! I will keep their blogs in my Google Reader and hope to continue commenting on their blogs posts in the future. I also asked Maria for some feedback on my work with her students, but she has yet to reply.

Overall, I am glad that I participated in these mentorship opportunities, despite the huge amount of time that they took to do well. I have learned more than I originally expected from these classrooms, and definitely see the benefits in using blogs in a classroom to hand-in assignments rather than written work: the other students can see and comment on your homework! This can be scary, but that probably makes the students work harder! Enough rambling; hope you enjoyed reading about my mentorship experiences.

Daily Picture 04/04/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
My speedometer :P I'm still amazed by the detail my camera captures when I look at the larger version of this pic.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Daily Picture 03/04/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
A bird's nest that has been sitting in our tree for at least a year. It must be pretty strong to survive the Sasktachewan winds.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Daily Picture 02/04/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
The feathery end of a pencil that I never use to write with but it always sitting in my container of pens.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Daily Picture 01/04/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
A picture of some music that was sitting on my passenger seat after I picked it up from my prof's house. An impromptu picture.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Daily Picture 31/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
Pepper's second day outdoors of the year. I took pity on her since 'her mom' wouldn't spend the time to take her outside. She's rubbing her face against the house, in case you weren't sure. She spent most of her time rolling around in the dust, sniffing, and attemping to eat the dead grass.

Monday, March 30, 2009

free hugs campaign

Chelsea posted this amazing Free Hugs Campaign video in her blog post on Google Maps, and I had to pass it along. I love it!

Daily Picture 30/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
The first ladybug of the year!

think green podcast

I finally was inspired to make my podcast by the occurence of Earth Hour. Here is a ???? long podcast on ways that YOU can make a difference in global warming.

I had quite the time uploading this darn thing to the web. It automatically saved as a .aup, but it didn't upload to I finally figured out how to dowload LAME to convert it to an .mp3, but then I had to 'find' the LAME file. I found it easily enough, but then had to figure out how to get there from the stupid window in Audacity. It's an hour after I finished recording my podcast, I finally have a way to embed it here. *sigh* You better enjoy it -evil glare-

Daily Picture 29/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
A list of all the homework I have to do by the end of next week. Obviously, I wrote in on some till tape while at work :P

student values

During my mentorship with Jennifer Clark Evan's junior English classes, they were required to make a of post of values that were most important to them. Man, I was impressed. Here are some of the posts that touched me the most. Enjoy!

Stephanie: being an Arts Education student, I was delighted when she mentioned Imagination and Creativity as two of her top five values.
Emmy: wait, a high school student recognizes that etiquette and manners are important? Whoa.
Chelsea: family, friends, freedom and faith.
Jessica: an outstanding job on explaining why some traditional values are so important.
Lucy: "I can't imag[in]e being any shade of a good person without [my family]".
Rachel: a true recognition of the importance of education, freedom and opportunity.
Samantha: honesty, truth, and respect.

Daily Picture 28/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
During Earth Hour, I took a photo of some candles lying next to an album of my parent's wedding.

car wash!

I went through the car wash today, and purposely brought my lovely camera so I could film the process. I know it's expensive and a waste of water, but it's so fun that I let myself indulge every so often. I suppose this is a silly post, but oh well. Here's a video of my somewhat pathetically aesthetic experience (I knew I should have written my EAES paper on this!).

I don't know if I've posted about this before, but my sister is participating in a Japanese Exchange Program. Two students will be living in our house for two weeks starting April 11, then my sister gets to go to their homes for a couple weeks in July.

I am considering kidnapping them one afternoon and taking them through the car wash. :D

Daily Picture 27/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
A pretty necklace I bought my mom on today from the kiosk in the Riddel Centre. You can also see where I get my freckles from :)

Saturday, March 28, 2009

earth hour

Just a reminder to everyone that today, March 28, is the day of EARTH HOUR! Earth Hour is from 8:30-9:30pm. Basically, turn off all the lights, electronics and appliances you own, unplug cell phone chargers that are not being used, etc. and be completely green for one hour. Pass the time a traditional way; catch up with family or roomates or play a board game. Or step it up a notch and catch up on your recycling of cans, bottles and soup containers; research ways to be green before Earth Hour and start implementing them during it!

Most importantly, PASS IT ON!

Friday, March 27, 2009

pigeons like to drive the bus and stay up late

I have been working with Mrs. Maria Knee's kindergarten class in Deerfield, New Hampshire, via their blogs. Their first assignment was to draw pictures of spiders, that I already have a blog post about. Their newest assignment was to draw pictures of a pigeon! I am guessing that that was their only instruction, because there were quite a variety of pigeons on their blogs.

Vivian had a blue pigeon with a detailed background. Patrick's pigeon wanted to stay up late. The pigeon that Matthew drew wanted a yppup (puppy)! Grace's pigeon was a bus driver. Plus, Katie drew a whole family of pigeons.

These are just a few of the student's blogs, but I wanted to show you some of the work that we have been doing. I found it interesting that Matthew spelled puppy correctly, just backwards. I showed my mom and she informed me that lots of kids do that when they learn to write - including me! Who knew?

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Daily Picture 26/02/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
My eye. Looking a little tired, but oh well :)

mentorship - reading through student eyes

For those of you who have been following my blog, you know that I have been mentoring Jennifer Clark Evans two junior English classes in Fredericksburg, Virginia. They have each made at least five posts at checkpoints in the novel they are studying, A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway.

*Warning: this post contains spoilers on the novel! Do not read if you want the end to be a surprise
**The links go to specific blog posts of some of Jennifer's students

I have never read this novel before, so I was afraid that I would not be able to help them with their blog posts. As I read them, I realized that I could get a pretty decent idea of the novel just by reading their posts. The novel follows an ambulance driver of World War I named Henry. He seems invincible and unemotional to the war until he injuries his knee and is pulled from the front for a few months where he meets a nurse named Catherine, who has just lost her fiance to the war. They begin a relationship, based not on love but on desperation, and eventually Catherine becomes pregnant. Henry has to leave to her get back to the war front. As he is there he continues thinking about Catherine as a distraction from the war. He realized that he has fallen in love with her after all, and escapes the war to be with her. They run to Switzerland, a country neutral in the war, to be together. Unfortunately, Catherine drank mercilessly during her pregnancy while Henry was away. The baby is strangled by the umbilical cord, and Catherine dies from hemorrages. Henry is left alone, wanted from his country, and back to his original emotional state of numbness.

I find it amazing that I know this story so well without ever reading it. I can quote lines of foreshadowing, write another paragraph just about Henry's character development, write about secondary characters and their place in the war, all from reading student blogs. I will write more about my comments and their progress another time. Great job students!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Daily Picture 25/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
My dad bought a 1993 Rover Mini last weekend. I have to admit it's pretty cute. Click here if you want to see more pictures. Just ignore my dad's username ;)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Daily Picture 24/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
Today, our kitten Joey was running through the house and stepped in a piece of my sister's peanut butter toast. Here is the evidence.

Daily Picture 23/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
A cardboard box that has been sitting in our storage room for ages... I thought it was very 'educational-student' of me to find this compelling :)

Monday, March 23, 2009

teaching delicious through skype

Last week, I Skyped with Jennifer Clark Evan's english classes. I have been commenting on their blog posts about Ernest Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms for the past month, but this is the first chance I got to see and speak with them. However, this was not just a 'meet and greet' Skype call. They have finished reading their novel and are now beginning research papers. Jennifer asked me if I could teach them how to use delicious!

I love delicious. Not quite as passionately as Dionne loves Twitter, but oh well. I used Pamela to record the two Skype calls, then uploaded the mp3 files to I also used the delicious page of my now-abandoned wikispace as a basis for my lesson. You don't have to listen to the whole file(s) as they are approximately fifteen minutes in length each. Enjoy!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

final project update

So, as you may remember my plan was to make a wikispace of all the resources being thrown at my as an education student. The last couple weeks I've been teaching my mentorship classroom in Virgina how to use delicious (blog post about that to come). As I've showed them the usefulness of delicious, I began to realize that even if I beat this wikispace project out for my final project, I would probably never use it again and just transfer all of my resouces to delicious anyway. With this happy notion of motivation stirring me on, it's no wonder I've made no progress on my wiki.

I stayed online after class on Wednesday to talk to Dean. I'd hoped he would be able to give me some ideas and help pull me out of the ditch I was hopelessly stuck in... and he did! The new plan is to pick a grade level and subject, then make a video (possibly Flowgram), on five or six ways to incorporate technology in that classroom. I'm planning to get started on this as soon as I finish my report for my Personal Arts Project for EAES201.

Daily Picture 22/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
Showing off my new lip gloss.

"They say my lip gloss is cool
My lip gloss be poppin'
I'm standin' at my locker
And all the boys keep stopping"
-Lil Mama ;)

Daily Picture 21/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
A painting my sister did on an old window (with my two favourite instruments!).

Friday, March 20, 2009

Daily Picture 20/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
A big shelf of CDs that my parents have collected over the years.

personal arts project

So, all semester I have been working on a Personal Arts Project for my EAES201 class. My goal was to do five art projects throughout the semester to improve my artistic ability. These projects included pointillism (with Sarah M.), sculpture (with Mickey), watercolour (with Marcy), calligraphy and charcoal. This may seem a little familiar as I've made posts about my sculpture, calligraphy and pointillism works, but this is your first glimpse at my watercolour and charcoal works.

Here are some additional pictures of my charcoal pieces. Since I learned this art form on my own, I would really appreciate some constructive criticism - that's actually part of my project - so if you could comment at least on the charcoal works that would be great. Enjoy the slideshow!

Click to play this Smilebox photobook: PersonalArtsProject
Create your own photobook - Powered by Smilebox
Make a Smilebox photobook

Daily Picture 19/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
My lovely keyboard/piano. *hugs*

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Daily Picture 18/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
The inner workings of... a sewing machine!?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Daily Picture 17/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
Joey, sitting in his throne.

Monday, March 16, 2009

google maps

My Google Map features the places in Regina that I've spent the most time in, excluding my current home just in case you all decide to stalk me (just jokes, but it's good to be safe). Enjoy!

It seems you need to zoom in a lot in this embedding file. If you click on the link above, it automatically focuses on Regina.

View Larger Map

podcast examples

One of this week's tech tasks was to find two podcasts using iTunes that we found interesting or beneficial. The first one I chose was In the Groove, Jazz and Beyond by Ken Laster. I took MU188, Jazz Techniques, last semester and I found that the jazz music we studied in that class and the jazz music heard in this podcast were very similar. If you're looking for some great jazz standards, try this podcast!

iTunes URL: file:///C:/DOCUME~1/Robin/LOCALS~1/Temp/In%20The%20Groove,%20Jazz%20and%20Beyond.url

Website URL:

My second pick is Learn French with Coffee Break French by Radio Lingua Network. They also have a Spanish version. The reason I chose this podcast is because I've always wanted to learn French or Spanish, and maybe these podcasts will give me a head start! It's a very convienient way to get started on learning a language.

iTunes URL: file:///C:/DOCUME~1/Robin/LOCALS~1/Temp/Learn%20French%20with%20Coffee%20Break%20French%203.url

Website URL:

Daily Picture 16/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
My family had two new windows installed today! They look pretty awesome and we're hoping they won't leak water in the wintertime haha

skyping with maria knee's class

Last Wednesday, I Skyped with Mrs. Maria Knee's kindergarten class in Deerfield, New Hampshire. They were all sitting on a carpeted section of the classroom, and they stood up one by one to introduce themselves. Next, Maria adjusted her webcam and gave me a tour of their classroom which was very colourful and had several secluded sections; perfect for a kindergarten class.

One of the students introduced me to their turtle, as Maria had read on my blog that I liked turtles. Another student showed me the projects they had been working on previous to my Skype call. They also asked me questions, like if I was in high school or college; I explained that university was like college for them. The only other province in Canada they had Skyped with was Quebec, so they wondered if I knew French, and Maria was also very eager to hear how Saskatchewan was pronounced. I was also impressed by the way that Maria had one student click the buttons required to call me, and another student end the call so that they were actually using Skype themelves.

Here are two files that I managed to save through Pamela (a program used to record Skype to mp3 files). Then I uploaded the mp3 filea to so I could post it here! It's just the very beginning and very end of our Skype call, we got cut off for some reason... I think my voice sounds weird, but oh well. At least John was very eager to meet me!

weekend update

So it seems that it is impossible for me to get homework done on the weekends; too much working and catching up with family. However, I managed to make some progress on my mentorship with Jennifer Clark Evans' Grade 10 English class by posting comments on their blogs every snippet of time I could manage. I usually have an extra fifteen minutes in the mornings before work, then on my break at work, then at home between work and supper, and I even managed to post a couple during the boring parts of a movie we watched as a family on Saturday night.

I feel like I'm constantly behind on their blogs, but I think it's just because they've been posting much more regularly the past couple weeks - which is good, but I'm struggling to keep up sometimes. I also feel like I'm spending way more time commenting on their blogs then doing the several final projects that need finishing. I am also feeling stuck on my final project for this class and am even looking into some new ideas... grr!

My cold also same back this weekend, though I thought it had disappeared. I barely had a voice on Saturday at Future Shop, so I got stuck at front cash rather than customer service. It has been better Sunday and today, but singing in the car is still out of the question for a few more days I think.

... so, as negative as this post is so far, I'm actually in a pretty good mood. Weird haha :) My family watched Australia with Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman on Saturday, and I found it quite revolutionary in the way the story was told and filmed - highly recommended. Then Sunday night my work friends got together for a Twlight movie night, and I went even though I'd already seen it. Several of my friends are obsessed with Twlight, so it was hilarious hearing their critics on the movies versus the books.

Well, I hope you didn't waste too much time reading my little rant that turned out a little less happy than I originally intended. I guess I needed to get my thoughts out of my head!

Daily Picture 15/02/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
A drawing my work friend made of some people from work. I'm Robin the Robin in the nest in the tree that is Ryan, our sales manager. My favourite is Jesse the Wasp, or possibly Thomas the Worm. ^_^

Daily Picture 14/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
A piece of my great-grandma's china.

Daily Picture 13/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
A container of little heart glitters that I've had and used for years, but always seems to remain full.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Daily Picture 12/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
Some random CDs that were sitting on my dresser. Can you guess them all?

Thursday, March 12, 2009

the adventures of superpresentationman

I recently subscribed to my mentorship teacher's blog, Jennifer Clark-Evans' 'My Continuing Education'. She must be working on producing powerful PowerPoint presentations (how's that for alliteration?) with one of her classes because she just posted this video on her blog: "The Adventures of Superpresentationman". This student video is really great in showing the good and the bad of PowerPoint presentations and I can definitely see myself showing this video to my classroom. Enjoy!

Find more videos like this on TeacherLibrarianNetwork

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Daily Picture 11/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
Spaghetti. Because it is my favourite food :)

the story of a sign

I also wanted to post this video that we watched in last week's class. It is an amazing short film that uses many shots and angles, plus has a great message. I can see myself using this video as an example within my future classroom.

tech task 12

I had a hard time finding an original YouTube clip for this tech task, so I picked a couple oldies. Enjoy!

The Godfather - a user made this 'trailer'

Gone With the Wind - another short recap of the film

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Daily Picture 10/03/09

Originally uploaded by metro_racer
My lovely clarinet, Clarissa. Not the most artistic shot, but oh well. Another time.