Hay Day

Hay Day Town So who was the bright spark who suggested wheating as a wonderful way to make money, collect tools and get the advantage in Hay Day? I have been on Hay Day for around 6 months and this week I’ll be on level 60. I have never used wheating as a ploy because a) it doesn’t help b) it is boring c) it doesn’t help other players d) it is not a superior strategy and I could go on and on. So over the wheaters. The brochure is full of wheat. The farm shops sell wheat and more wheat. You also get the egg farmers, the lavender (indigo) farmers and the corn farmers. You need so many other things to meet truck and riverboat orders. Variety! Then there is the one egg for sale , you click and it’s one tomato. Or the gold nuggets – Sorry, someone has already bought this. Clearly not . There was not a SOLD sign on them. What is that all about? Or the things which are already sold when the brochure has just published. Time lapse? Atomic clock issues? All part and parcel of a game which holds you on a leash. It’s their time and their decisions. You shall have gold nuggets when we permit you to. Not a lot of free thinking goes on this game but a lot of complex thinking does. You always have to be thinking about how you will manage resources, lack of resources, strategy and a positive path forward. You get no rewards for throwing your hands up in the air and having a hissy fit. You do learn the lesson that diamonds can get you anywhere. They are anyone’s best friend in this game. Diamonds will break through any barrier. You can earn quite a few but mostly you have to buy them. I focus on challenges with diamond rewards and then the game comes good sometimes and gives you diamonds in the red chests. I save them to hire Tom mainly. He really helps out and smooths things over but you have to have Tom working for you on a day where you can access his help every 2 hours. It works and is cheaper than spending diamonds on the offers of saws , axes and whatever. I never have enough axes. Saws and axes come in waves but if you are making honey you cannot keep up with the dreaded nectar bush expiration. You clog whole tracts of workable land with dead nectar bushes and come to hate the sight of them. Recently I have been extending the town and am well pleased with my beach cafe and the other decorating I have done. There is plenty to do in this game and a lot of variety. It still amazes me how international it is and how we can connect without needing to use language. It truly is a global village and quite an achievement in that respect.

Flip book revival

I have always had a soft spot for flip books. I had them as a child and  teenager and we used to sit and make them . They were always special. The revival is embracing and using  technology now. People are using the scroll function and Instagram, they are using digital image apps and photography and they are using printers. Now the revival is underway people will start finding other ways of adapting technology to the fun and exacting work of flip book making. The Flip Book Machine is an example of how involved people are becoming and how their artistic ideas are becoming more refined and complex.

Mobile phone detox

Samsung Galaxy ExpressLife offered me the opportunity of a mobile phone detox . I grabbed it with both hands. Why wouldn’t you if you were stupid enough to leave your phone at someone’s place.? Yes, I could have jumped back in the car and done a two hour round trip again. I didn’t.  Dare I go without my phone for a week? I took life’s challenge. As it turned out , it was no big deal to be in a mobile phone free zone for a week but when I got my phone back today I confess I was really pleased to see it. Took me until yesterday to work out I had my phone contacts backed up on my computer. Not having my mobile phone put holes in my thinking! When I left it behind I contacted people who were likely to use my mobile number by sending and email and letting them know. The rest of the week I used email or Facebook to keep in touch. I have a landline. I made calls that way. When I was out I couldn’t contact anyone and it also meant if I had a flat tyre or breakdown I’d be back to the olden days looking for a landline to make a call. We don’t have phone boxes anymore. On the train to town I couldn’t use my memo app, my calendar , my games or texting. I used a pen and paper to try and create my mock up for my blog post. The train was rocking and sliding. The couple across the way from me were laughing with me at the impossibility of writing or drawing on our nice new Adelaide trains. I could have taken my small tablet but it would have defeated the purpose of seeing what it was like without a phone for a week. I managed well without a phone but a mobile phone does make things easier and it does keep you safe. When I put it on today and connected to wifi it went mad updating apps and sending me all the message and notification updates. For 20 minutes it was crazy. Now all is silent. I especially like taking photos with it. I missed checking the weather. I missed making notes and I missed the Samsung notification whistle. Staying up to date is effortless that way. For me it is a handy device but I have to say after a week without one I could adjust easily to not having one. For me its prime functions are keeping me safe and to take photos. What would happen in your life if you didn’t have a phone for a week?

Effective ICT in the classroom

Sarah Hardie made this VideoScribe video in 2014 as part of her university degree to illustrate why ICT is so important to engage the 21st century learner. I wonder if she is teaching now and whether she is implementing her ideas? If she is, I wonder if she has changed any of these thoughts? There are some sound issues with the video but Sarah talks so much common sense and makes some good points and observations . As a young person with fresh eyes on ICT in the classroom and how to use it effectively she has done three things. She has demonstrated a real willingness to master visual communication with quality software. She has advocated for students and then she has looked at ICT from a professional viewpoint and created some sound arguments to support an ICT approach in a classroom not a mere use. The only thing I’d dispute is that students are expert in technology. They are experts in certain sites , apps and techniques but they do not generally have a broad range of ICT capabilities and skills. It is important to update skills , explore different devices and to constantly share what you know with others. People tend to become experts in particular ways of using technology. The constant conversation about the best app, best software, have you seen this, do you know about such and such has to be there . Teachers and students need to form learning partnerships because that is how it works…connecting and setting up a feedback loop so there are constant ICT conversations.

She is meeting aitsl professional learning standards:

1.6 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of strategies for differentiating teaching to meet the specific learning needs of students across the full range of abilities.

3.4 Demonstrate knowledge of a range of resources, including ICT, that engage students in their learning.

3.5 Demonstrate a range of verbal and non-verbal communication strategies to support student engagement.

3.6 Demonstrate broad knowledge of strategies that can be used to evaluate teaching programs to improve student learning.

4.1 Identify strategies to support inclusive student participation and engagement in classroom activities.

4.5 Demonstrate an understanding of the relevant issues and the strategies available to support the safe, responsible and ethical use of ICT in learning and teaching.

6.4 Demonstrate an understanding of the rationale for continued professional learning and the implications for improved student learning.

Not a bad effort for one video at undergraduate level. I wonder what grade she received for it? YouTube has given her 771 hits and that is a really sound feedback result.

Learning tiles

mon moi du futur With UX in mind I have just created a tiled approach to a topic which would run from an IWB. It’s a Powerpoint which you can download – mon moi du futur (my future me) – if you would like to. Phones, tablets and internet pages are currently often displayed as tiles so using that approach means students have a familiar interface and for me it means I have everything gathered in one place with hyperlinks and I can see quite clearly what I need to do and what I need to cover. I have videos, web site exercises, a blog, my key sentence to teach and an image to add interest and some extra practice. It is all authentic French. There is a song and grammar videos. Students could use the Powerpoint for flipped learning or going over the things they need to master. With technology it is a good idea to follow the layout patterns which are in use on devices and the internet. It does facilitate  learning  but having set a topic up this way I realise it makes teaching very easy too.

Josefine Grimm-Blenk

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