Where I’m From… Karina Ramirez Velazquez

Creating a Haiku Deck for my visual representation of Where I am From had brought multitude of emotions. Nostalgia, homesickness, anger, pride—just to name a few. But, what stood out the most during this activity was the power of a simple image and a few words can make a simple activity to be very meaningful. This is what I learned from this activity.

I felt that this activity was challenging and expanded my skills on how to use WordPress, Haiku Deck, and Youtube. Most importantly, this activity had meaning which made more memorable to me as students completing this project. This activity gives me a chance to also to get to know my classmates better. Thinking of how I might use technology in my teaching placement has been a challenge, because of the demographic of students I serve at Open School.

Last summer during my Dimension of Education I learned that students from disadvantaged backgrounds are less likely to have rigorous learning opportunities with technology (Boser, 2013). Also, students may not have accessibility to use technology at home. Many students at Open their only access to technology is their cellphone. I would have to be intentional when using technology in my classroom . It needs to be accessible in different mediums, or that there is enough time to finish activity at school. I don’t want students to worry about accomplishing their homework when they don’t have access to technology at home. I would also like to learn more on how to create video tutorials for activities or lessons to give students a verity of ways to learn. This will give me more time in the classroom to assist students, like Dr. Pappa’s demonstrated in class.


Where I'm From: - Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires;

Where I’m From – A Wanderer Who Likes Home

What I would like those who view my map to take away from the experience is the tension I feel between how much I love adventure and how much I love my home, the Pacific Northwest. I grew up just east of Portland, visited my grandma in Mt. Angel on the weekends, and vacationed with family in Lincoln City. For me, Oregon is the most important place because it contains the most important people and experiences to me, but I have been formed by other places, of course. Spokane, Washington treated me to my education, both in academics and relationships. Florence, Italy awakened my independence and gave me the confidence I need to negotiate all of the other places in my life. I hope my description of all of these places conveys a sense of fun, too, which can make any place in the world feel close to you. I view this map as a work in progress, as I become a part of more places and those places become a part of me.

The application of this project to our lives as educators and our practice in the classroom is clear. First, if computers are readily available for students (like in a 1-to-1 school), this could be a really powerful beginning of the year activity to introduce students to each other and the teacher. Allowing each student to make up their own map and show others around the place(s) that are most important to them would generate a sense of community and cultural responsiveness that would benefit the class dynamic. The opportunity for the individual student reflection that would be required to complete this project would also be invaluable. I can also see this having academic uses as well. For example, this could add a lot more depth to a lesson on the geographic concepts of location and place. Maybe a history lesson on WWII could benefit from a collaborative effort by groups of students to map the movements of different armies through Europe, Northern Africa, and the Pacific. In terms of educational technology, Google My Maps seems to be of very high value, most especially in its versatility.

Harrington- “Where I’m From” My Map

I decided to use Google My Maps to show where I’m from. I chose this option because my freshman World History class will be learning about relative and absolute location. My CT talked about using this program in class to complete a similar assignment. This is a great opportunity for me to learn how to use it, show them an example of a My Map I created, and have them learn a little bit more about me.

In the map I created, I wanted to highlight the journey I took to becoming an educator. It was not a straight forward path, but I eventually landed here. I initially wanted to have lines connecting each of the places in sequential order. I learned that it doesn’t work as well, if your locations are far apart from each other. Therefore, I added additional layers that were color coded to signify different stages in my educational and professional journey. I liked how there are various options to choose from when ordering the locations within a layer. I chose to have it in sequential order, but there were various other options available. The program allows for customization, which is great!

Overall, this program is very intuitive and easy to use. I didn’t need to refer to the videos when creating it. I am excited to potentially introduce my students to it.

Schiller- Where I’m From: Oregon

Learning new technology is both exciting and dreadful for me. While I catch on pretty quickly to more traditional reading, writing, speaking, and listening activities, some technology assignments take me twice as long as usual to complete. Exploring and getting to know my options is fun and helpful, but it is also a bit stressful if I cannot make the technology do what I want it to. Haiku Deck was no exception.

However, even before experimenting with the technology, I thought this particular assignment was going to be difficult. Picking just a single place to present? I have lived so many places. When Peter suggested the state of Oregon, I relaxed. The majority of where I’ve lived in my life has been the state of Oregon, a state I love dearly. So, I felt at ease and excited about completing the project. Not only could I express my love for Oregon but so could I share its often secret nature of diversity.

I originally wanted to demonstrate Oregon’s diversity in a single slide, juxtaposing multiple photos. Nope. Not happening. Haiku Deck limits a user to a single photo per slide. So, I compromised. Over the course of 18 slides, I hope you enjoy a brief history of my life and enjoy Oregon’s diverse, luxurious beauty throughout! If there’s one thing Haiku Deck gets right, it’s high-definition photos. To add a bit of personal flare, I added some of my own. Thanks, everyone!


Where I'm From: Oregon - Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires;