Amanda Todd a story of unnecessary tragedy

There is no doubt, the  media can mislead the public. When sharing stories only highlights and interesting news pieces are made public, but there is always more to the story. There is controversy over the subject of online crimes. When it comes to young girls online there is a struggle to decipher who the victim is,  and who is to blame. Amanda Todd unfortunately was a victim that fits into this category.

Amanda Todd is a name most commonly know for the girl with the youtube video holding flash cards telling her story of struggle. But there was much more to her story than the words on her flash cards…

view:              The Sextoration of Amanda Todd


After viewing this I would like to urge you to remember that It is hard for a child to know what is wrong or to self prevent themselves from making mistakes, if they are unaware of the risks they are taking.

Above all else, I find this story to be proof of the need for digital citizenship to be incorporated into the curriculum . If we have lessons and make it not only a part of everyday life, but also part of their education it will inevitably have an impact. I there should be no child left with ignorance regarding their online lives. Simply put we must enlighten young learners the risks and rewards of there online lives.  If we fail to teach this I feel that there is no one else to blame than education. That being said there is always chances of mistakes, and future tragedies that result from an online life, but there goal here is to prevent.

Join the discussion; comment below!


The Better The Tools The Better The Work?

Tonight, I decided to research more ways people create hand lettering pieces. An important thing and common theme I found when listening to each artist was the importance of their tools. It was stressed that specific pens and ink work better for hand lettering. More archive-able pens have an ink that can with stand more therefore giving a more clear, clean, and precise line.

I found a site online called: Blick Art Materials that sells good pens and pencils that I could find useful for hand-lettering. I think I might have to go buy some better pens as some of mine don’t seem to hold up well with the erasing step. investing in a nice comfortable mechanical pencil may be in my future as well!

In further research I wanted to find a tutorial that would walk me through the entire process of creating a hand- lettered piece, with step by step instructions. And I found just that!

I love this video tutorial! The artist basically walks the viewers through her general process, while giving clear instructions.


In my next post I will walk you through my process following the instructions given in the above video, stay tuned!


If anyone knows of great tools I should try to use and suggestions of where to buy such tools, please comment below!


To Incorporate Social Media Or Not To Incorporate, That Is The Question!

Social Media is all around us. We see it on our phones phones, hear it on the news, and participate in it multiple times a day, but what is social media? What power does it have?

What does this mean for teachers? With the growth on technology in the classroom, it has opened a door for social media. The controversy over social media in the classroom is on going…

For and Against Using Social Media in the Classroom


An Argument Against Using Technology in the Classroom

By:Paige Mitchell


While the use of technology in the classroom grows, and can be a very positive learning tool, I don’t believe that there is a place for social media in education. I believe that there is a time and a place for social media. That time and place is not in the classroom during class time.


First, more often than not, social media like twitter, facebook, and instagram (among others) become a distraction. Students will stop listening and engaging in the material if they are able to chat with their friends and scroll through non-educational material. Allowing social media into the classroom is like asking for classroom management issues. How do you know who is on task and who isn’t? How do you know if students are using social media platforms the way you are intending them to be used?

If including social media in the classroom is about getting students to collaborate, why do we notice people engaged with their cellphones, but unable to carry on a conversation? There are more effective ways of getting students to collaborate — in person.


Secondly, it can be an invasion of privacy and a risk to personal safety. Some students parents will not allow them to participate, because they do not agree with their child accessing social media. Students may post information that will come back to haunt them. The internet can be dangerous and young students can make poor choices about what they post on social media sites. Students can view and post inappropriate material that at their age they are not ready to handle. It would be better for students to limit what they share within the school building. This way the teacher can see exactly what information the student is sharing and the student is not risking their privacy or safety by being connected to people all over the world and making permanent decisions about what they share.


Thirdly, we all know that bullying is an issue. When bullying is happening in the school or class, the teacher is able to stop it from continuing and monitor student behaviour. When social media is used in the classroom, there is the opportunity for the bullying to become a cyber issue. In fact, cyber bullying can be a really troubling issue. The teacher is less able to notice, prevent, and stop bullying. Bullying is a serious issues that can be perpetuated in cyber spaces such as social media platforms.


Social media can become an issue for anybody. It distracts us from true communication as well as other priorities. The internet can be a dangerous place; social networking sites can lead to the sharing of inappropriate information. Additionally, cyber bullying is becoming a very common occurrence. Do we want to invite all of this into our schools. Children go to school to learn. Social media sites cause distraction, disengagement, and can even endanger them. Students should focus on their studies and not be subjected to these negative aspects of social media.


Join the discussion.

by:  check her out!



An Argument Promoting Social Media in the Classroom

By:Molly Basnicki


From homes to school hallways social media is booming. Although society has seemed to create an era of antisocial phone zombies, there are good uses of social media. Perhaps, if students were taught proper uses, considering digital citizenship and sparking meaningful conversations about topics relevant to the world, there would be less negativity attached to social media. I believe there should be a place for social media in education and in the classroom.

First, technology and social media is everywhere, it surrounds students. To remove such a relevant part of their lives out of their education should not make any sense at all. When a student is taught to use something such as social media, they are being gifted with knowledge that they will actually use outside of the school doors, and in their daily lives. Teachers from all over the world are incorporating not only technology in the classroom but also, social media. Students, parents and teachers are thriving with a new exciting way to connect and share their educational journeys,

Kathy Cassidy is a primary teacher in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan who incorporates social media into the classroom in the form of twitter and blogging. Check out what her students have done and what she has to say on her classroom blog.

Second, there are a lot of preventative actions that educators can take by teaching students about the platforms they use. There have been tragedies all over the world rooted in cyber bullying and misuse of social media. There is, without a doubt, a dangerous aspect to social media. This should be a driving force to educate our learners when it comes to their online lives. Our online lives unfortunately are no different from our offline lives. Providing knowledge and lessons on proper use and skills is crucial to today’s students. Consider the social learning theory, and the importance of teachers setting an online example. When live in a different world where social media cannot be escaped. Students need to learn how social media can benefit them instead of bringing harm onto them.

Its just like knives, we need knives to cut and while we cook things. If we didn’t have knives in our kitchens people would hate cooking even more than they already do. Without knives life would be a lot harder. However knives can be used in the wrong way and even when taught proper use, some people will still misuse them. When looking at an innocent child a knife can be dangerous, until they are taught how to properly use them, it is then that a knife becomes useful.

Thirdly, connecting to educators, and student from all over the world is something that can only broaden the minds of our young learners. When the world can collaborate, think, and create together there is a lot that can be accomplished. Educators can share ideas, bettering the lessons for their students. Students can learn new things, such as culture and ideas. Most importantly parents can easily access and see what their child is learning and accomplishing. I believe there is a lot a parent can learn about their child from a simple blog post or a tweet.

See how students have benefited from social media here:

Art student launches career

Studies on social media in the classroom


The S T A R T I N G point

Alright so, this is the initial starting point of my learning project. Being a student and having 2 jobs is not an easy task, And I have fallen behind on this project BUT no fear because I am finally here! And I am ready to get lettering!

So, I’ve bookmarked a few articles and blogs that I had researched to help me with this project. The first one I looked at was We Design Studios and honestly they made it look way easier than it actually is. I mean, sure someone who might have a slight clue what they are doing would maybe benefit from this piece, but me? not so much.  Although I did learn a bit from this blog post I found myself thirsty for a little more help and info.

So as I searched for more online resources I decided to just simply write out a few different styles of writing. Here is what I initially came up with and this is what I can call my STARTING POINT. Check it out:



As you can see I quickly sketched out some letters to see what kind where I am at in terms of lettering. Id say I am pretty amateur. As you can see not all my lines are smooth or equal. Smooth, equal, and crisp lines are what I am hoping to gain from tis project. I think it is easy to look at a picture and copy it, but it’s a lot harder to take it straight from your brain to the paper. When I look at a reference picture to create a hand-lettered word I came up with this. If you compare my Instagram post and the picture above, it is clear that it is much easier to copy a picture than to come up with it myself. Copying is something I think plays a role in art, but I feel that it should not become the crutch for the artist. With that being said I really want to stay away from using reference pictures within this project.


Next time in my learning project!:

I will be looking at this video. Check it out!


Do you have any tips for me? Please leave a comment!



Media Smarts promotes “Art smarts”

This week for ECMP 355 I looked at and browsed media smarts. As soon as I logged the first thing I hopped to was the what we dopage.  With all the new programs and technology out there, its easy to get overwhelmed and confused when considering incorporating media and technology in the classroom. By learning and researching each tool or program I use, it helps me to get a better idea of how and why to use it as become a teacher.

The second things I did as I was visiting this site is look at the teacher resources. This is where I found the media literacy 101. It seemed like a good overview and general idea of what media is and how it surrounds us in our everyday life. Here is a quick video I found on the media literacy 101 page:

Although I  am quite comfortable and somewhat knowledgeable in what media is, I think it nice to have a  quick overview and  recap some important definitions. Some may see this as a waste of time but I wanted to get a thorough  lesson of what Media Smarts is all about and how it could help me as a teacher.

Now that I gave myself a little background lesson, I decided to check out something that is most applicable to what I will actually be teaching one day. I browsed the digital and media literacy outcomes by province and territory. From there I was super excited to find Arts Education category under the Saskatchewan media in education . By surfing through sub categories I discovered a whole list / chart categorized by the curriculum that would be helpful in the classroom. Finding a  way to incorporate technology and media into art really excites me (if you can’t already tell)!

In that list I found everything from comic book character making to food styling. I thought that was really cool that all media can be used to teach how art an important (but often overlooked) part of almost everything we as society  take part in, especially media! These examples also show critical/ responsive art lessons that can be given incorporating media ( in the form of lesson kits). The kits and examples are definitely something I would use in the art classroom to teach how to think critically about the art that we see in media of day-to-day life.

Here are some parts of the curriculum that I found relate to some of the examples given in the chart/list mentioned above. The chart I found on Media Smarts already categorizes the list like this, but I thought I’d just show you specific aspects of the arts education curriculum that apply. (these are taken from, but not limited to the grade 9 curriculum)

Creative/ productive (CP)
Express perspectives and raise awareness about a topic of concern to youth in a collective creation.
Create visual art works to express perspectives and raise awareness about a topic of concern to youth.
Select and use appropriate forms, technologies, images, and art-making processes to convey ideas about a topic of concern to youth.
Critical/ responsive (CR)
Investigate and identify ways that today’s arts expressions can inspire change.
Investigate and identify how arts expressions can challenge thinking about values, ideas, and beliefs.
 consider these questions:
How would you use Media Smart in your classroom? How would you use it in art lessons? let me know!

The Happy Medium ; the wrong and right times to shut off your phone

From viral YouTube videos, to the ability to tweet ones thoughts in an instant the world has undoubtably reached a new way of living. This is now a place where people have measured self-worth from the amount of likes on an Instagram post  and where talking to someone over text is easier than talking to them in person. Everything we need or want is at the tip of  our fingers.

I am no stranger to the anger that comes from trying to talk to a friend in person who is staring at the screen of their phone. However, this does not mean I think technology is to blame or that I think it’s not useful, or that humanity as a whole doesn’t benefit from it because we do. Whether your phone is stuck to your hand or you would rather poke your eyes out than to create a twitter account there is something I believe everyone should consider. I believe there is a compromise, a happy medium. I do not think technology needs to take the place of face to face human interaction, but there is a lot that can be accomplished with technology and we would be stupid not to deny that! with that being said I have two videos for you to watch and I will share my opinions and comments about each video.




Here Are 5 things I’d like so say about this video:

1. I am loving the lyrical art of this video.
2. I strongly agree with about 99% of it.
3. I didn’t say 100% because I have personally experience the benefits of connecting and networking over social media, and I couldn’t imagine education without technology (I do not think this video is necessarily denying that), B U T  I do believe more often than not, texting, Facebooking, and Tweeting is done at the wrong times. People plan to hangout and say they miss each other, but as soon as they sit in the same room together there are more texts, tweets, and status updates than words exchanged by mouth. This is a problem.  Are we only capable of maintaining those relationships online?
4. Next time you make plans with friends or family I challenge you to put down your phone for a couple of minutes, look around, how many people of whom you’ve made plans with are staring at a screen? If you can say none that’s awesome and I envy you, but most will say almost everyone. I bet in that moment you almost feel ignored, and unimportant to those people who claimed they miss you and actually made plans to hang out with you. Is this what “hanging out” looks like?
5. Everyone including myself has something to consider from this video and hopefully you’ll adjust your habits in a way that utilizes technology for the bettering of your life and relationships and not to weaken or fabricate.


Here is the next video, I can’t say I agree with as much of this Video as I do the first one, but It does throw around a couple good points that I think are important to remember.



This video is a direct  response to the “moving” LOOK UP video that I am sure most have you have seen if you haven’t you can watch it here.

LOOK DOWN is quite clever…. although, I would like to point out that just because the internet in all its Twitter, Facebook, and Instagraming glory provides networking in very amazing ways, I still stand by the fact that it does not need to take the place of face to face relationships or networking. I mean lets face it technology is a part of life now a days, and it is here to stay so lets utilize it (especially for education)! However, I do think it is important to remember that there is still a time to put down the phone, close the laptop, or shut off the Ipad. other than that, this guy makes some excellent points with great humour.

Technology only controls as much of your life as you allow it to. Some people can find the happy medium with ease and others have a hard time and struggle with knowing when they need to put the phone down.  I think it is great to see pictures of your nephew or long-lost friend on Facebook, twitter or Insatgaram, but are those things at that very time a higher priority than your friend or loved one that is sitting right next to you? If you only pay attention to whats going on online you miss the “right heres” and ” right nows”of your life,  the little things that make up memories or that make us feel fulfilled in a healthy way.

I leave you with this; as someone who uses social media and technology and also someone who gets irritated by the friend with the phoned glued to their hand.  I live with a simple golden rule of technology. “If you are ignoring someone or closing off any possible interaction you need to put that stinkin’ phone down!” Of course, momentary breaks of checking a feed or replying to a text aren’t doing much harm, but when you find yourself staring at a screen for consecutive minutes while someone is trying to interact with you, I hate to say it, but you’ve got a problem my dear.  Use your technology wisely my friends, you wont regret it!


I love Pinterest! If you have never used Pinterest and or have no idea what it is, let me be your example Pinterest user…

I use Pinterest for multiple reasons, ranging from educational inspiration to the finding the latest style trends. The way Pinterest is organized is super easy to use and super easy for you to organize any articles or blogs you pin from. Basically pinterest is a huge virtual pin board, and just like twitter you can pick who you follow and this will affect what and who shows up on your home feed.

This is the first page you will get to when you search Pinterest…

This is the log in page. As you can see you can make an account or sign in with facebook.  I tend to shy away from using facebook to sign into things just because I don't want to bog my facebook feed down with all the pins I'm liking or posting on pinterest.
This is the log in page. As you can see you can make an account or sign in with facebook. I tend to shy away from using facebook to sign into things just because I don’t want to bog my facebook feed down with all the pins I’m liking or posting on pinterest.

This is what my home feed looks like after I sign in ….

This is my feed where I can view everything that the people I am following are pinning to their boards.
This is my feed where I can view everything that the people I am following are pinning to their boards.
This is where I organize and dectate where the things I am pinning go. I have a baking board where I pin recipes I want to try, and a DIY board where I pin crafts and projects that interest me. These boards are super easy to create and organize, and they are great to store ideas, recipes, and interests on.
This is where I organize and dictate where the things I am pinning go. I have a baking board where I pin recipes I want to try, and a DIY board where I pin crafts and projects that interest me. These boards are super easy to create and organize, and they are great to store ideas, recipes, and interests on. View my boards here. 

Now, you might be wondering how this is a good tool to use for education… well let me explain! Much like twitter and feedly you chose who you follow and this contributes to what shows up in your feed, and because Pinterest is basically just a huge database for articles, tutorials, recipes, and all other learning forms, it contains all possible categories that are on the internet. So, instead of wasting time searching and filtering through categories that you’ve searched on Google or any other search engine it filters quite finely through any category that you search, AND the best part is that you can store anything you find on your boards and keep it there forever! Having a Pinterest account is like having a hug unlimited digital inspiration board at the tip of your fingers, and I believe that to be a great tool for any teacher. Although I highly recommend Pinterest I do warn you…. it is highly addictive and you may find yourself pinning multiple recipes you’ll never have time for, or copious amount of dream engagement rings, but when you need it for a specific thing, and i mean actually need it, Pinterest has never failed yet.


Yes Pinterest is known more for its female following it is also useful for you men out there, don’t be intimidated!