Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Monitoring Your Game Plan Progress

        Since last weeks Game Plan update, I have made some progress on finding engaging real world application projects.  I am still waiting on feedback about future advisory meeting and topics discussed.

Robotic arm powered by hydraulics:  Last week, I discovered a balsa wood robotic arm with hydraulics in storage. The hydraulics consist of a series of hosed and syringes.  I have taken multiple pictures for future visual aides for use during the project.  This will provide all students a chance to see the finish project.  I have since, deconstructed the robotic arm to create a list of parts and blueprints. For this project, I will create a working set of blueprints for students that need guidance or complete this activity.  Students that excel at designing and understand the drafting process, I will allow them to use the drawings as starting point while creating their own design.

Knee Replacement Joint:  I am thinking about placing this project on the shelf for time being.  These projects are time consuming. Every project that I assign my students, I always draft and build the project ahead of time. This allows me to answer most questions or issue that each student may encounter.  I am shifting my focus to completing a very accurate and detailed project that my students and complete. 

        Over the past week, I have also spent approximately four hours learning how to set up the 3D printer and various options.  This has been a very exciting and frustrating process. Fortunately, I believe that I have figured out majority of the issued that I have encountered. 

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Carrying Out Your Game Plan

     Since developing my Game Plan last week, I have taken a few steps that will help me in my educational journey.  As previously mentions, I wanted to focus on ISTE Standards:
  • Standard 1:  Facilitate and Inspire Student Learning and Creativity
    • Indicator A:  Promote, support, model creative and innovative thinking and inventiveness.
    • Indicator B:  Engaging students in exploring real-world issues and solving authentic problems using digital tools and resources.
I have contacted our county’s CTE coordinator and inquired about the next advisory meeting dates and potential topics discussed. These meetings allow me to talk with professionals in industry about current trends and skill-sets need from potential employees.
I have also started creating sketches for future real world scenario projects. All the projects will have students designing, printing out the components with the 3D printer and building the object. The ideas include:

  • Robotic arm powered by hydraulics.
  • Knee replacement joint 
     I would love to find physical examples of a knee replacement model so students can analyze how it work and create new designs. In the near future, I will be start searched in trying to obtain a knee replacement kit. I know students will think it’s creepy, but drafting is more than designing automobile parts or houses. Design the future, not the past.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Developing Your Personal GAME Plan

As a Career and Technical Education (CTE) drafting teacher, I am fortunate to work in a school district that provides the newest 21st Century Technology.  The ability to provide students a high quality education using software and tools used currently in industry is priceless.  Technology offers a powerful resource for engaging students in authentic experiences (Cennamo, Ross, & Ertmer.  2010). The advancements made in technology opens the doors for a variety of new engaging real world activities. Unfortunately, with those advances comes the burden of trying to become proficient and utilizing the technology to the fullest. Over the years, I have spent countless hours teaching myself how to use drafting software and other products that my students are exposed too.  On more occasions than I would like to admit, I became the student and learned from my students. It is amazing what some of these digital natives know.
Looking at the International Society for Technology (ISTE), formally know as NETS-S, I feel the most comfortable with the following: 

  • Standard 1:  Facilitate and Inspire Student Learning and Creativity
  • Standard 2:  Develop Digital Age Learning Experiences and Assessments
As a very hands on and creative person, I blend my personality into my classroom and assignments. Thinking outside of the box, designing and problem solving is cornerstone in my courses. Standard 1 allows me to continue to grow on a personal and professional level, which is later passed onto my students. I am constantly searching or developing new projects that excite me and the student’s interest. I believe if an individual enjoys the project, they will put in the extra effort to make it a great experience. 
My proficiency with Computer Aided Drafting (CAD) software, PhotoShop and other technologies has allowed me to be comfortable with Standard 2. In my drafting classes, students learn how to drafting using CAD software that ranges from simple line drawings to complex 3D models. Over the past four years, I have turned my drafting courses into a paperless classroom.  Assignments are turned in, shared and presented digitally.
As a professional and life long learner, my goal is to stay current and efficient in the technology that my students and I have access too.  Stand1 has two indicators that I need to continue to incorporate into my classroom.

  • Indicator A:  Promote, support, model creative and innovative thinking and inventiveness.
  • Indicator B:  Engaging students in exploring real-world issues and solving authentic problems using digital tools and resources.
The two indicators listed are part of a never ending finish line that I will never cross. I have to remain flexible in my lessons and current with the trends in industry. To keep up to date, I meet annually with industry professional and discuss current trends, skill-set needed and projects.  This information provides insight in the direction of my classroom and future lessons. I must continue to evaluate my lessons to determine if they are preparing my students for the 21st Century workforce.  Design the future, not the past. 


Cennamo, K., Ross, J., & Ertmer, P.  (2010). Technology Integration for Meaningful Classroom Use:  A Standards-based Approach. Belmont, CA; Wadsworth, Cengage Learning

International Soceity for Technolgoy in Education. (2008).  National Education Standards for Teachers (NETS-T).  Retrieved on January 15, 2014 from