Monday, February 4, 2013

Special Blog Post #1

After searching “Compare Populations of India, China and the United States” on WolframAlpha, I discovered the United States has a population of 309 million people, a population density of 87.3 people per square mile, and a population growth of 0.969% per year. India has a population of 1.21 billion people, a population density of 1,059 people per square mile, and a population growth of 1.44% per year. China has a population of 1.35 billion people, a population density of 376 people per square mile, and a population growth of 0.63% per year. Due to the large differences in population sizes, any facts comparing the United States to China or India can be taken wrong. It would be better if the “Did you know?” video used percentages and not “head-counts”. I proceeded to search, “Compare education in the United States, India, and China”. I discovered there are 24.39 million primary school students, 24.19 million secondary school students, and 3.553 million K-12 teachers in the United States. There are 143.3 million primary students, 107.7 million secondary students, and 5.974 million K-12 teachers in India. There are 101 million primary students, 29.3 million secondary students, and 12.41 million K-12 teachers in China. There is a student-teacher ratio of 13.59 primary students per teacher and 13.76 secondary students per teacher in the United States; a student-teacher ratio of 40.2 primary students per teacher and 25.33 secondary students per teacher in India; and a student-teacher ratio of 16.84 primary students per teacher and 15.46 secondary students per teacher in China.
In my second search, “Compare annual births in the United States, China, and India”, I learned there are 4.29 million births in the United States per year. There are 25.6 million births in India every year. There are 17.8 million births in China per year. WolframAlpha is a great search engine for common comparisons. WolframAlpha is useful to me because I can use it to make comparisons so my students will fully understand the topic. Stating the population of the United States to a classroom of students will not have the same effect as stating the population, while comparing it to the population of other countries. It will give my students perspective. Not only can you make comparisons, you can search simple questions or complex questions on a single topic or about a single place. WolframAlpha does not give straightforward answers such as yes or no, and a closed-ended answer. This search site gives multiple ends to the answer. When I searched “Compare education in the United States, India, and China”, it did not give me just statistics and facts; it allowed me to click on any section had had further questions on (such as- “vocational secondary education”) and extended a search into that particular section.
This will be great for my students who want to learn more about a certain topic. If they have any questions and I do not know the answer, this is the site we would visit directly after I said, “I don’t know, let’s find out.” This site gives them the opportunity to learn outside the classroom and gives them the ability to answer the own questions- to become self-learners.

Gary Hayes Social Media Count
Social Media Count
Gary Hayes Media Count shows the number of people buying a phone, watching youtube, liking and commenting on facebook, buying an iPad, uploading on Instagram, searching on Pinterest, using Skype, how much money is lost from piracy, and more every single second. This site allows you to virtually see how many people actually do certain things in a year, month, week, day, and at present time.
I knew people used the internet. I knew people played online games, bought things online, and used social sites; however, I would have never guessed how many people were doing all that each and every second of the day! This site makes me think twice about what I do and post online. There is no telling how many people would read or see what you put online in a single minute. The Media Count proves how much technology is being used every single day. As a future teacher, my career will be ever changing due to the rapid increase of technology. There are going to be moments when I feel like my classroom is being technologically savvy and in the next moment, it will be out-of-date. I believe toddlers are introduced to iPhones, TV, and computers before paper, pencils, and books. Some children can operate a computer and iPhone better than many adults can. This suggests we need to change our teaching styles. We need to teach via technology to produce successful adults. My job as a teacher will be not only to teach, but to constantly learn about new technology and update my curriculum around the new technology and advances. I must show my students how to adapt to change and how to apply what they have.

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