Letter of appreciation

Dear class,

Time flies! Our course for this semester is already over. Recall the first time we met online, first time I had online course, first time I established my own blog, first time I wrote in my blog, first time I tweeted…..Many many first time, I gave them to this class. It seems that I begin to know what is connected learning and how it works, the class is over. I really really don’t want it be over, I feel comfortable with our class environment, I like our teacher Christina and classmates, I enjoy class discussions and activities, I appreciate dedication and sharing of all the people. I have to the fact that I didn’t participate a lot in our online discussions. I always stayed quietly and muted my voice in the class. Those moments I was listened carefully and trying to understand word by word, those moments I was thinking that I really needed to share something but there were nothing in my mind, even though sometimes I already organized words and ideas in my mind, when I spoke, I was hesitated and tongue-tied. Many tImes I saw people speaking fluently in English, I blamed myself that I couldn’t. When all the classmates were actively and initiatively sharing their experiences in teaching, I asked myself: “Did you have experiences in teaching? You never been to teach in school, what can you share?” Even though these difficulties were always hurting my feelings, I still survived many times from people’s supports, patience and encouragement. So, I appreciate everybody’s help in this class, you are my gifts that supporting me to go forward. I initially wanted to say these in yesterday’s class, but I was too shy and nervous that I missed the chance to say thank you. So I am writing this letter to say “Thank You” to all of you. Thanks for accompany, thanks for helps, thanks for teaching, thanks for sharing…I like the words that Christina said yesterday: “Our class ends, but connected learning doesn’t end.” Connected learning is still going on. Look forward to seeing your movements in connected learning, and I will continue to share and search in our community.

At last, hope everyone does very well in finals and have a fantastic summer! Fighting!

Best wishes!                                                                                                             Sincerely,                                                                                                                   Jingru Chen


As an English learner, I am experiencing a hardship of learning new language, and I also enjoy the process of gaining new skills and making progress. I used to learn English in English Language Institute. Most time I only used text books and studied the contents on the text books. I made little progress in the beginning since I was just satisfied with the textbooks in the class, and homework that teachers gave out. Until I found some informative English websites, I got more instructions of English study and got to know what else I could practice after classes. These websites provide a great deal of resources and information for English learners as well as English teachers.

LEO Network: Learn English Online. It is a comprehensive English learning website including vocabulary, grammar, listening, reading and writing practices. It also contains online lessons which offer to different level learners.


ESL Podcast: It is a podcast to practice listening skills, and it provides different themes for everyday’s podcast. Just like listen to stories.


The English Blog: Internet resources, reviews, news, tips and trivia for learners and teachers of English. It is interesting that after reading blogs you may have a quiz to test your understanding and vocabulary. http://www.englishblog.com/

BBC Learning English: It is offering free audio, video and text materials to learners around the world. Learners are provided activities after reading texts, watching videos and listening to audios.


English Babies: this website offers many resources such as toefl test preparation, English schools recommendation, English lessons… The most interesting is the chat rooms are available for learners to join and chat with people in English. It is a good way to practice speaking skills, and it helps learners to make friends with people all over the world.


About education: it is for studying idioms and vocabulary through reading articles, and it also gives learners strategies of using vocabulary.


Voice of American: It is a famous worldwide website. It could be used to practice listening and reading skills. It is also a good news websites.


Here is my curation for English learning. Welcome adding more resources for it.

Jingru Chen


Hello! Everyone. It is time to do my Search Seven Sunday. I had a cool weekend that I went to seed race with friends. It made me felt like I am a racer, so exciting, so fascinating….. Also, I hope you guys have a wonderful Easter’s Day.

1. I appreciated that Christina’s dedication in creating our presentation. We made a short presentation last Wednesday, and we talked about the connected learning in our minds. Also, we used words and pictures to depict the idea. I think this was a good activity to let us see different concepts of connected learning through everyone’s perspectives. Here is the link to our presentation:


2. I appreciated watching this video:

https://drive.google.com/a/arcadia.edu/file/d/0B4gIpNMoxleJWVVLemZleVp0ZmM/view which Christina shared with us. Kids are using technique tools to take pictures and learn math concepts. It is a more engaging way that kids use apps to learn ,compare to just learning through traditional ways.

3. I appreciated Mimi Ito’s video about ” “Friendship Participation”, “Messing Around”, and “Geeking out”  use of Social Media with our students and how adults can support engagement in the “Messing Around and Geeking Out” space “”proactively”.”  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HF5pxnXwMBY

4. I appreciated this nice video originally from:

The family activities help parents let kids put knowledge into practices, and connect learning with social life.

5. I appreciated +Kelly MacMath’s curation.https://kmacmath.wordpress.com/. She used pinterest to curate the resources of Shakespeare to teach students. Great curation!

6. Today’s technology is so advanced easily make people to believe something. Recently, a new technology activity is very popular in China which is called “Hong Bao” . People play games online and strive for “Hong Bao” . Also, during the Chinese new year, parents gave children ” Hong Bao ” through “we chat” app instead of giving cash. People like to show Hong Bao on the app let others know how much they won. I won 20 dollars HongBao from my friend.

7. I just noticed that I received a badge for blogging from Helga Porter. I feel surprised and motivated. Thank you!


Seek seven Sunday

1.I appreciated we discussed about portfolios with Paul Allison. It recalled that I made a portfolio last semester for my Curriculum Theory Class. I gathered all the paper I wrote, all the resources I searched in this portfolio. I enjoyed the process of making portfolio, it helped me make all the documents organized and categorized, and it also became a useful resource for my future study. When I review it , it recalls me every steps I experienced in this course. I like the suggestion of using online portfolio, it is an interesting way to use electronics to create students assessment portfolios.

2. I appreciated I create my first badge after getting the “badge” idea from Wednesday’s class. My badge was called show your love, and it was for person who showed the most love/kindness to people around us. I hope it would encourage people to actively and bravely show their loves as well.

3. I think it is great way to give out badges in the class. Creating badges for students who made the most progress, students who behaved very well , students who followed the instruction appropriately, and students who actively cleaned the classroom…Badges could be created for any appropriate reasons, and they are also rewards to help students build confidence and encourage students perform better.

4. I appreciated my classmates’ dedication and passion in creating badges. They are all creative and meaningful badges.

5. After watching Lauren Tan’s teaching, I got important instructions to be a good teacher: “Once you’re in my classroom, you become a part of my family” -Creating an inclusive classroom should be every teacher’s mentality. “Being able to be outside of box really makes difference”-Innovative and creative teaching should be advocated in today’s classrooms. Lauren Tan also works with Watts Youth Collective, and promotes the social change through the media. He supports his students to create Watts’s profile through using workshops, videos and media. I appreciated his words: Teaching is not a job to me, its something I live.

6. I appreciated that it seems I become more proficient in using social media after taking this course. I’d like to post something I thought. I read or I watched and share with others. Also, I  share something I learned here through Chinese social media apps, so my friends in China are able to see the environment in America and my experiences here.

7. I read the article “Be Proactive in Managing Classroom Behavior”.. This article provides teachers with simple ideas to proactively manage behavior and the classroom in general rather than having to react after a problem occurs. I think these strategies can be effective in students’ management.

Be Proactive in Classroom Management


Jingru Chen

My passion in connected learning

What am I passionated about connected learning? I will say I am not an individual learner any more, and it brings me a lot of accompanies and supports for my learning journey. It makes learning connected with friends, peers, classmates, teachers, coworkers, people have common interests, purposes, values, and even strangers. We get involved in communities to contribute, share and give feedbacks, so we all can get benefits in this kind of efficient learning.

Another part of connected learning I am greatly passionated about is the utilization of technology and social media. They are making a big difference in learning: Laptop is encouraged to take to class to take notes and search resources, and it brings we more choices and environments to take classes. Social media, such as facebook, twitter, google+ and blog which is largely used to communicate with people, record our lives, share purpose and collect information. We click button to post,  click button to share, click button to tweet, click button to make comments and click button to join different communities and find our interests. Through this process, we efficiently share our experiences or skills in specific areas, ask questions and get solutions and advices.

I love connected learning which makes people connected in such a big learning network, as well as it constantly produces engaging and powerful learning.

Jingru Chen


Search seven Sunday:

Graduates’ life! So stressful! Lots of assignments due last week. I made a big mass in study, and I almost forgot to post my seven appreciation for the week. I think I should have a reminder to remind me of posting. Here are my findings I want to share with you:

Last Wednesday, we discussed about “Pi Day” in the class. I learned that March 14th is Pi day,and people in the world celebrate mathematical “π” on that day. I heard American teachers will bring Pi to students and do a lot of activities around “π” in the classroom. And people in math major will hold a party for this special day. I never celebrated “Pi Day” in China, I ever competed with my classmate by memorizing the numbers of π, and students who are able to memory the completedπ are considered as talented children. I think the celebration of “Pi Day” is a meaningful way to develop math culture.

Another concept I got in Wednesday’s class in Meme. I didn’t totally understand what ” Meme” refers to. Then I googled it and now I know A meme is “an idea, behavior, or style that spreads from person to person within a culture” Meme is important for our connected learners to convey and exchange perspectives and performances within a community.

I joined a toefl community. It is an online community and established for Chinese students to prepare toefl test.  People in this community are who need to take toefl text and who already passed the test. Participants share experiences and skills for toefl, and we also share important knowledge and information about the texts. I am glad that I joined in this community which offers me a lot useful resources.

I like https://plus.google.com/u/0/explore/etmoochat from +Christina Cantrill. It showed me 37 definition of connected learning, and it helped me deeply understand connected learning is such a substantial and profound approach.

i am very grateful for that I have good directors who are helping my fieldwork. They show me a lot of strategies and direction to manage a classroom, communicate with children,  help them solve problems and facilitate their learning. I have written down most skills which I could use in my future classroom.

“Differentiation can feel daunting and challenging at times.  It is helpful to get feedback from others about your teaching approaches in an effort to ascertain how well you are differentiating to meet the needs of your students”. In this video which showed in my inclusive education class I feel very enjoyed, and it presents the ways that the teacher used in differentiating science class to facilitate children’s participation and understanding.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lhqEnExx2Ic

I love TED talks. Enjoy this video:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l0s_M6xKxNc

Jingru Chen


Seek Seven Sunday

Prezi. A new app I learned from my classmates. It is amazingly useful for making class journey, study plan, life story and presentation. Here are examples from my classmates Amy and Lizzy’s journey:



Kids are photographer. I am doing my field work in after-school program. The average age of those kids are four. It is so amazing that they are so good at taking picture. They used my phone to take pictures of classmates and teachers.They acted like professional photographer and taught me how to post, asked me to change gestures and chose where I stand or seat. I really like these kids and enjoy the time with them.

Blogs therapy. I like this article which is shared by +Tahira Jones. Connected learning is a way to connect young people with the same interests, cultures and values and contribute their inquiries in the real world, I like the saying in the article: Meet young people where they are in terms of their peer culture, their interest in popular culture, social media, rather than say you have to meet us where we are as adults.”

What am I thinking

This week was so hard, I got ill again due to the fickle weather. I feel sorry that I didn’t participate in Wednesday’s class, but I watched the videotape and listened to our classmates’ working. I feel everyone is successful teacher who have open mind and always make creativity and accommodation helping students to be succeed, Then I began to think about myself: what am I making? what my contributions did I make for my education career? What am I noticing about my making? What do I learn from equity and teaching and how would I use these knowledge in my future class.

Last week when I was in my uncle’s, I saw my cousins who are 6 years old using ipad to do their math homework, .Once they answered the question, the ipad showed whether the answer was correct, then  automatically gave them prompts if their answers were wrong and let them forward to text question if they were right. Teachers would check their assignment through computer by looking at their mistakes and progresses which are presented through students’ accounts. Comparing to traditional ways, which teachers give out assignments and  take back to correct students’ homework, using technology to teach and learn is more convenient, efficient and easily raising students’ learning interest. However, when I connect to Chinese education, the technology generally is not accepted in the classroom. We seldom use technology in teaching because children’s first reaction to ipad, computer or phone is games. Parents and teachers don’t believe that children can use a ipad to learn since the games and entertainments  in it really distract student’s attention. But, why can’t we make our learning interesting like games?  The role of game is to complete the first pass then go to following passes. as the same as learning, students accomplish levels by levels, grades by grades. We could use technology to make assignments with sounds, cartoons, acts and dialogues. These interesting assignments could bring children with sensual pleasures and brain storm, so easily arouse students’ passion and self-actualization in learning. I will teach my children how to use technology to do homework, how to blogging, how to make videos of their life, how to create their class journey…. Everything deserves to learn through a positive way of using technology.

Jingru Chen



1.I enjoyed everyone’s experience sharing on Wednesday night. Although I had problem to access the video chat, I still belonged in this class, and joined you by listening your sharing.I can feel that most of you are currently teaching and you have more specialized knowledge in teaching, I enjoy  all your perspectives and strategies of teaching which I think are so creative and useful.

2. Since I joined ED677 class, I learned how to use blog, twitter, and google plus, how to use these channels to post my thinking and interests, and how to take class through hangout. I never thought connected learning network was so interesting and meaningful that I could effectively find a lot of resources and materials by using my technique devices to look through other’s posts.

3.ContentServer (1) I read the article:Ensuring Equal Access to Technology: Providing Assistive Technology for Students With Disabilities. It is about using assistive technology services and devices in special education for students with disabilities.

4. I enjoy the maps of your ED677 journey, and I am also very engaged in designing my journey map.

5.When I saw my two little sisters were using their ipads to write their journals I was so amazing. They attached pictures and videos in the journal to make it more substantial. They feel that they are writers when they are writing, and they are so proud of themselves when they accomplish the journal. Technologies are powerful to make learning fun.

#s7s #clequity

After the illness recovery, I feel more motivated to do weekly research. Yesterday was a romantic day, I think everyone must have a wonderful valentine’s day. I want to share my search seven Sunday with you.

1. I appreciate Wednesday’s children drama show. I think it is a good skill to let children learn from making a drama by themselves. I very enjoy it. Not only children can find that learning is so interesting through the drama, but also can they develop their imagination and make learning more creative and meaningful.

2. I think it is an effective to let children learn new languages through making dramas, so they can choose their roles and they make dialogues to strengthen the knowledge they have learned. Here is a video is called kids English drama https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ATgcN0ngOk8

3.I did my first fiedwork last week with kindergarten children.It is an after school program, and when I saw them, they were playing family dramas. One girl Amy acted as mother, a boy called Michael acted as father.They used tools to make food for their three children and read books to the children. I found it was so interesting, and they could feel their parents’ kindness when they acted as parents.

4.I very enjoy Lizzy’s blog. She is so contributed that shared a lot information and her own perspectives about educating which I think are very helpful for us.

5. I downloaded google+ app in my phone, so I could receive everyone’s sharing at once. It is really convenient for me to read wherever and whenever.

6. When I read Eric’s blog post:Basketball: the good fused with an unexpected ugly. I like the words:Talent has never been the issue for this young man. His attitude has been. As teachers, talent is not the key factor to make students to be successful, but we should help students to put in efforts and guide them to be contributed during the growth.

7. All children are natural actors, and I’m still a kid. If you grow up completely, you can never be an actor-Kirk Douglas. I am so moved by this quote. Children are talented in acting.They are pure. They don’t pretend. They design the roles they want to be and make their own videos to present the most natural characteristics.

Jingru Chen