Reflecting on Lesson Planning for CEP 800

As a final project for CEP 800, I was asked to reflect on the lesson plan I previously created (see my post here, and my lesson plan here). This was an interesting experience, and definitely got me “thinking about thinking” more!

Please visit the CEP 800 page to see my reflection!


TPACK Lesson Planning

Throughout my time in the MAET program, the TPACK concept has been emphasized. I have already discussed TPACK at length in other posts and projects on this site, so just as a reminder, I’m posting the great visual that demonstrates the concept, downloaded from


Using this concept, my next project for my summer class, CEP 800, was to develop a lesson plan using the TPACK framework. You can check out my creation under the “CEP 800” link above!


(Reproduced by permission of the publisher, © 2012 by


More in CEP 800!

Hello! I just completed an iMovie for my Masters class, please check it out under the CEP 800 link above! 🙂

Updates under CEP 800!

Hello again! I have begun my summer MAET semester, and things are flying by! My first major project is now posted under my CEP 800 page above, please take a listen!

What a year!

Whew! The school year is almost over, and it has been a blur! This has been by far my most challenging year as an educator thus far, particularly because I have had to learn how to “teach from a distance.” I had a long-term substitute teacher for my classes from December through February, as I recovered from injuries I sustained in a serious car accident. Figuring out how to get my voice and lessons across through another person was definitely a learning experience for me, but is one that I am extremely grateful for. And now I can’t believe that May is half over! Summer here we come!

In other news, I am in my final summer of the MAET program, and will be using this site again as a platform for the work I do, so stay tuned!

Where did I go?

Well, it has been a quite few months here! I have not fallen off the face of the planet–rather, I had fallen into the world of CEP 820, a MSU class for the Masters in Educational Technology (MAET) program. It consists primarily of designing an online course module, which I have finally (kind of) finished. The link is below. I say I have kind of finished it, because I really don’t think, after experiencing this course, that any online course is ever done. I already can think of several revisions and changes I will make when preparing to teach this unit of study in later months. For now, you can read my brief reflection below, as well as find links to my CMS and also to my “Developer’s Notebook,” a detailed trip into my experiences over the last few months…

My Haiku Page

My Haiku Page

The MSU MAET course CEP 820 has felt like one decision after another. From the beginning, I feel like I have been constantly asked to think about design, rethink about it, and consider how to incorporate pedagogy into every decision (hello, TPACK! 🙂 ).

The first big decisions were related to design–choosing a CMS around which to structure my online course. Deciding what features of a CMS were most important and then determining which CMS best fit my needs and desires turned out to be the defining decision of the course. I think the options offered by Haiku, the CMS I chose, determined the end result of my course because it determined how my course would look. While Haiku did not dictate the pedagogical decisions, it did create the initial skeleton that I had to work from.

The course I designed is to be the final unit in 11th grade World History. I built this site with the recognition that this is the last year in high school students will take a Social Studies course, and that and its end, they should ideally be well on their way to being prepared for college. This means they will need to practice skills crucial to success in college. Thus, I created my site with the hope and pedagogical goals that it would allow students the ability to work together and also practice learning in a self-paced environment. It is a mix of synchronous and asynchronous activities, in part because I wanted to test out aspects of the flipped classroom. there is a mix of activities and work that students must do on their own to be prepared in class for discussions, but I also wanted students the chance to be in groups and get the social aspect of learning as well.

Additionally, I wanted my design to be such that students of all learning styles and interests would find something for them in the unit. This takes a huge amount of time and effort, because it involves finding websites, readings, activities and programs that reach to multiple intelligences, and then meaningfully incorporating them.

A major pitfall I had was in discovering something I really valued in a site appears to be unavailable on my CMS platform. As I teach at a school that is largely ESL, I wanted to find a widget that would allow for easy translation within the site. I recommend, based on my experience, that when making the decision of what CMS to use, really focus in on the 1 or 2 most important things you care about, and make sure your choice supports it. CEP 820 did include an activity early on that asked me to evaluate the pros and cons of multiple sites while considering important aspects, but as I dug deeper, I did run into that pitfall with Haiku.

Another pitfall I am continuing to struggle with is how to make my site as easily accessible for all students as possible. I have solved some of these problems by working closely with the Special Education teacher at my school, but I know I have a lot more work to do. I think a teacher can never see their work as being “done” when it comes to building any course, be it online or in the traditional classroom. Revision is not only necessary, but is also the best way to make improvements and evolve for the sake of the student.

Link to Developer’s Notebook

Link to Haiku Page

And we’re back!

Summer is history, and a new school year has started! I can’t believe how quickly this summer went, but it does feel nice to be getting back into the swing of things (though it would be nice to not start out the school year with a sprained ankle and a limp!).
I’m teaching my same preps of Civics and Economics, World History, and United States History. One thing I pulled from my MAET classes this summer is the beneficial role the internet can play in communication with students, so I have been putting work into creating a class website for all my classes. A main reason I wanted to do this was to connect my different hours to each other–so both U.S. Histories can converse, both Civics can converse, etc. I think it is to bad that often classes covering the same material never connect, so my goal is to create some cross-class communication this year. I also just wanted to provide a space with as much helpful information as I could. You can check out the progress so far by clicking on the picture!

In the next few weeks I plan to put more of my tech experiments to work, so check back for that soon!