Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Wrapping up the semester!

Career Portfolio
Creating my career portfolio was a big project, but one that I know I will be happily using throughout the course of my professional career.  They really gives you the opportunity to show off your personality and show what your resume can't.  My career portfolio not only has my resume and projects on it, but it also contains my personal mission statement, a page about my experience in the Disney College Program, and information and articles that I find interesting about the Hospitality industry.

Personal Learning Network
Throughout this semester I have been developing my Personal Learning Network which has helped me find professionals around the world would are involved in the hospitality industry in some way.  I have also been sharing articles about the industry and re-tweeting certain tweets that I personally find interesting.  I have also been posting my blog on my Twitter to share what I have been doing in my class.

Hanging out
One interesting thing about this class was the guest speakers.  Instead of people coming in to talk to us, our professor had people like Austronaut Abby, Cameron Brenchly, and Robyn Hrivnatz speak to us over Google Hangouts.  This is truly the way to go with education now because it lets you connect with people that you normally wouldn't be able to .  If it wasn't for Google Hangouts we probably wouldn't have had the type of speakers that we did.

Zookazam- my favorite class day
Learning about Zookazam and other augmented reality apps was really exciting!  I had never heard about any of them before and I was instantly fascinated by how it worked.  I showed everyone the app and how it created animals right before your eyes.

What's next?
Graduation is 18 days away and I'm very excited!  So what's next for me? Well since you asked, the day after graduation I will leaving to join the American Cruise Lines for a summer long internship program aboard on of their luxury river cruise ships. I believe that this internship is going to be a great opportunity and amazing experience.  Not only will I be gaining valuable experience in an ever growing part of the hospitality industry, but I will also be gaining experience in an environment and market that I have personally never worked in before.  I'm am excited for my new adventure and my first journey into the world post-graduation.  WISH ME LUCK!

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Always Learning!

Robyn Hrivnatz
This past week my class was able to connect with Robyn Hrivnatz through Google Hangouts.  She works at Microsoft in their US Education division.  Her primary job is to work on curriculum development for professional learning for teachers and she also oversees their Microsoft Innovative Educator Teacher Program.  Robyn talked about how in her career she uses social media to keep up with what is going on in the world of education and also with the competition.  It is extremely important to keep up with what your competition is doing throughout any industry, and social media is an easy way to do that.  It is also a good way to find out what your customers want and an easy way to listen to them.

Robyn says that with her job, their customers are educators and students and social media makes it easy to connect with them due to it almost instantaneous results. She also talked about other ways that social media is incorporated into the Microsoft company, such as the twitter handles and other accounts that respond to customers via social media.  Below is the full video of Robyn talking to my class!

MakeyMakey Class Activity
In my class the other day we had fun with these electric circuit boards called Makey Makeys! All the groups used items such as PlayDoh, aluminum foil, and bananas to create electrical currents and control a computer game.  

My group chose to play Frogger! We used a banana to control the left movement, the foil to control the forward and backward movement, and PlayDoh to control the right movements.  We did this with the help of the MakeyMakey control boards which was attached to the objects via color coded wires and to the computer through a USB cord.  It was so amazing, how we could control the game using these random household objects!

Connected Educator - What the Future Holds
In chapter 9 of the Connected Educator, by Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach and Lani Ritter Hall, it talks about how the internet is so much more than what people are really utilizing it for.  It isn't just a place to find information, but a way to connect with people from all over the world who we can share our ideas, opinions, and imaginations with.  It is an amazing resource for learning!  People learn so much differently now than they did when technology wasn't so prominent in education and educators need to keep up to date on the newest ways to teach and learn because as technology evolves, so must educators and other people using it within their careers.  

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Can Social Media GET Any Easier?

Integrating websites with Social Media
Here are some websites that you can integrate into your social media to make your site as personal or as professional as you'd like.
The first is called About.me.  This can be as simple as a picture and a bio but can also add in your interests, a spotlight on maybe your blog or your personal website, and your career or education.  On my About.me page, I have a picture of myself, a bio, five interests, a link to my career portfolio, links to my twitter, blogger, and Linkedin, and my education.  This is something that can be easily added to your twitter, blog, or website that can give people more information about who you are.  Also, you aren't limited to 160 characters!
Paper.li is another easy way to spice up your social media feed.  All you have to do is type in what you are interested in and it will automatically generate a daily newspaper featuring articles that have to do with those topics.  My Paper.li is called The Hospitality Daily and focuses on articles that have to do with the hospitality industry.  It's a simple website to navigate but here's an article that gives you 5 easy steps to become a published on Paper.li. I also have my newspaper linked up to my twitter.  Everyday Paper.li generates a tweet for me than has a link to The Hospitality Daily and also names people on twitter that are mentioned in those articles. Here's an example of the tweet that the website generates!

 Another fun website to help you save time, similar to how Paper.li automatically generates a tweet, is IFTTT, which stands for If That Then This.  One the website you generate and publish recipes that can take a simple step out of your daily routine.  Some fun recipes are "If someone follows me on twitter, then send them a welcome tweet", "If I post a picture on Instagram, then post it on twitter as well", or my favorite "If the forecast is rain, then send me a text to wear rain boots".  This article by Trevor Dobrygoski talks about 35 Super Useful IFTTT Recipes that you can look at to help understand the concept.  Also, if you remember me mentioning Evernote, here's an article by Taylor Pipes that will help the avid Evernote user utilize all that their Evernote is capable of through IFTTT.
The recipe that I created on the website was "If I publish a blog post on blogger, then generate a tweet on my twitter page".  This is going to make things easier for me personally because every time I publish a blog post for my class I also have to post it on twitter.  Since this is part of my grade I now don't have to worry about forgetting to tweet about my new blog post!

Creating a Career Portfolio
Currently working on creating my own personal website on Weebly.  You can check out my Career Portfolio while it's under construction!

Untangling the Web ~ Social Networking Tools
Chapter 4 of Untangling the Web by Steve Dembo and Adam Bellow talks all amount social networking tools and ones that students and educators can use inside and outside of the classroom. 

TodaysMeet - A way to integrate social media outlets into a controlled environment.  TodaysMeet is a back channel that teachers can use to have real-time discussions with their students over videos, questions, "do nows", and more.  The rooms created also delete after a certain time as well which makes it even more private than a regular private discussion forum.

Skype (in the classroom) - Skype is a form of video chatting that helps you connect with people around the world.  Skype in the classroom however, makes it more classroom friendly.  This is because of the added features such as the ability to search for experts or have your classroom volunteer to share what they are studying as well.  The search engine also gives information about each individual you search to help you connect with the expert that will benefit your students the most.  Video chatting is a simple way to bring in professionals from all over the world.

Kidblog - This is a blog site set up specifically for students and teachers.  The authors say that students are less likely to use the technology inappropriately (cyber bullying for instance) because a teacher is monitoring the posts.  It is a great way for students to not only express their ideas, but also their creativity!

Edmodo - This is a social network designed specifically for schools.  Teachers and students can connects through notes, alert, quizzes, assignments, and polls and can also share hyperlinks for outside sources.  Parents also get a code that they can use to monitor their students progress.  This is a lot like the tool Blackboard that we use at Stockton University where our professors post our assignments, test, quizzes, and also discussion posts.

Twitter - As you know from my previous posts, my class is using twitter to create Personal Learning Networks.  Mine is a network of travel and hospitality professionals and pages because that is the field that I am hoping to get into.  Another way that twitter can be used in a classroom setting is by teachers helping students connect to professionals, just like Adam Taylor with #scistuchat.