Monthly Archives: September, 2014

Discussion # 2: Practical PBL

  1. What is the feasibility of incorporating PBL into your content area of focus?

PBL in Health Education is highly feasible, although some topics might be more suitable than others. I would think emotional and personal topics such as mental health issues, drawing personal boundaries, and positive versus negative role models, might be more difficult as PBL than examining body structure, organs, and body functions, studying various diseases including STDs, and bullying.

  1. What are the challenges in implementing PBL in today’s classroom environment?

Some of the challenges with implementing PBL in today’s classroom environment would be the assessment process. The teachers needs to do continues assessments during class, however, I can imagine answering to parents regarding the assessments might be even more challenging when there are no test and quizzes to refer to.

  1. What technologies can facilitate PBL?

The two PBL units are focusing on Health Education and diabetes. I would like the students to document all work on their blogs. Presentations are up to the students to decide technology. The awareness campaign in Unit #1 can be made either as a video or radio pubic service announcement. The students can collaborate through any virtual workspace as they choose.

There is a link to two of my PBL units in Health Education focusing on Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes and the endocrine system here on my blog, Educational Technology & Type 1 Diabetes.


PBL Units -Health Education

  • Identify your grade level and content area:

Health Education, Middle School (6th-8th grade)

  • Identify your general topic (specific content topic or theme:

Topic- Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes, related body function, organs, and structure

(TEKS: §115.22. Health Education, Grade 6: a1, b1B-C, b2A, b3B-C, b4B, b6A-B, b8A. §115.23. Health Education, Grades 7-8: a1-2, b2B, b3A-C, b4A-C, b8A-B, b9A-B, b12A-C,G).

  • PBL unit #1

Guiding Question:

How can we best demonstrate the similarities and differences between Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes?

During this section the students are to:

  • Research and compare the genetic components, prevalence, treatment options, and long-term effects of Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.
  • Compare the similarities and differences between the two types of diabetes.
  • Body structure and functions related to Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes and the cause of both diseases.
  • Research and compare the level of prevention between the two types of diabetes.
  • Make a treatment plan for both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.
  • Access government websites for statistical information.
  • Choose your medium for presentation to best compare and contrast the two diseases.
  • Present your findings.


  • Make an awareness campaign for either Type 1 or Type 2 Diabetes.
  • PBL unit #2

Guiding Question:

I wonder how we get energy from the food we eat?

How can you make a model to demonstrate how the pancreas works? How can you display how the pancreas is related to Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes?

During this section the students are to:

  • Build a model demonstrating how the pancreas works and how it relates to either types of diabetes. Check in with teacher to let me know your choice. (This will also be my way of making sure everyone is on the right track before they start building)
  • Explain how the disease specifically affects the body in your choice of diabetes.
  • Display how the various treatments will affect the pancreas, body functions, and nearby organs.
  • Present your findings.


  • A working model of the pancreas and related organs demonstrating how it is affected by either Type 1 or Type 2 Diabetes.
  • You will be graded on an overall understanding of how the pancreas works and what happens in the body to a patient who develops either type of diabetes.
  • Briefly explain what Texas K-12 teaching standards (TEKS), your PBL units would be covering.

TEKS: §115.22. Health Education, Grade 6: a1, b1B-C, b2A, b3B-C, b4B, b6A-B, b8A. §115.23. Health Education, Grades 7-8: a1-2, b2B, b3A-C, b4A-C, b8A-B, b9A-B, b12A-C,G.

  • Briefly explain how you will leverage your own TPACK to facilitate instruction for the two PBL ideas.

We will have a class blog where I will post guidelines for each assignment, what TEAKS we are working on, and grading rubrics. I would like the groups to document all their work and findings through blogging. For the individual groups’ work, they can work and communicate with whatever media they prefer, be it email, blogging, wiki page, or similar workspace.

Discussion 1: Blogging

As blogging has become a standard method of communicating, this can be viewed as a vital learning tool. Young students are eager to utilize technology and are remarkably tech savvy. For most students, being able to utilize blogging as a form of learning –either submitting book reports, comparing notes, collaborating, class discussions, or group projects- will be viewed as more interesting, than pen and paper assignments.  As a teacher, seeing students enjoy doing the work assigned creates a pleasant atmosphere. Thus it is important to reach the students with various mediums they are interested in, which in turn keep the students focused.

By implementing blogging and using the result (the blogs themselves) as an example one can display for students, parents, and fellow educators the positive outcomes one can achieve with blogging. Incorporating thorough guidelines is vital to achieve the desired result and participation in the blogs. By having the students blog about what they find significant with the blogging, and maybe request the parents to comment, might display the valuable impact of blogging.

My blog, Technology Education and Type 1 Diabetes, focuses on educating the public about Type 1 Diabetes. I would like to focus on various ways to incorporate technology as a way of teaching various health topics in school.

My favorite part about creating the blog was to share it with my daughter who I think was kind of impressed.

I hope to be more fluent with my blogging. A lot of time was spent figuring things out, either by trial and error, or searching online how to do something. I would like it to be more effortless.


TPACK (or Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge) is a framework for understanding technology integration for education.

TPACK module has made me realize how important it is to stay on top of all the new apps and to focus on what students are interested in. It is somewhat of a new way of thinking for me. Especially, I would like to experiment with the Wiki page as I can see this being very valuable as a way for kids to collaborate and learn while having fun. By asking students to share a video they find online regarding a topic we are working on they will most likely spend time looking at various videos and tutorials before selecting one. They will think it is a fun homework assignment while they spend time watching educational videos.

MY Perspective on Educational Technology

Katrine Nordstrom Venn Diagram

Personal use of technology –I use technology in my private life mostly for communicating with friends and family, entertainment, and social media. I grew up in Norway and all my family and many of my good friends still live in there. I only get to see them about once a year, so communicating through email, skype, phone, face time, and social media is very important to stay in touch. Email is the go-to for lengthy in-depth communicating (due to the time change), although social media has taken over some of the more casual interaction with far away friends.

Professional use of technology –I use technology professionally when I go to schools teaching kids about Type 1 Diabetes with JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation). We use a PowerPoint presentation and a short video. The technology is mostly used as a teaching aid and to simplify what Type1 Diabetes is all about. I also use social media when advertising JDRF events and when communicating fundraising efforts.

Personal and Professional use of technology –I utilize technology for both personal and professional use as an aid to stay organized, planning purposes, communicating, researching, and for self education. I gain inspiration through training videos, YouTube videos, documentaries, and various apps. on my phone.

Future use of technology –My first step to integrate technology into teaching would be to employ what I already know best such as utilizing educational video tutorials and researching tools. The students can find and rearrange data to generate knowledge of various health concerns, i.e. submitting videos focusing on awareness of public health concerns the students find online, such as YouTube.   I would like to learn more about blogging to utilize that as a way of collaborating. I also would like to know how students can create their own short videos dedicated to various topics.

Misconceptions between Type 1 Diabetes and Type 2 Diabetes

Here is an educational video of what Type 1 Diabetes is:

Type 1 Diabetes

There are a lot of misconceptions regarding Type 1 Diabetes (T1D). It is often confused with Type 2 diabetes, which has gotten A LOT of attention through media and public awareness campaigns. Understandably so, as there has been somewhat of an epidemic of Type 2 Diabetes, more importantly Type 2 Diabetes is related to lifestyle and is thus preventable AND reversible. Type 1 is neither of those things.

The main differences between Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes:

Source: TelePathology Consultants P.C., PANCREAS PATHOLOGY AND DIABETES MELLITUS Francisco G. La Rosa, M.D.

Source: TelePathology Consultants P.C., PANCREAS PATHOLOGY AND DIABETES MELLITUS Francisco G. La Rosa, M.D.

In summary:

  • Type 1 Diabetes usually affects young patients, while Type 2 mostly affects the older population.
  • Type 1 Diabetes is an autoimmune disease where the immune system attacks its own body’s insulin-producing cells in the pancreas, while Type 2 is often due to obesity.
  • Type 1 is permanent, while Type 2 can be reversible with exercise and a healthy diet.
  • Patients with Type 1 are insulin dependent for the rest of their life, without insulin they will die, while Type 2 is merely insulin resistant.
  • There is no cure for Type 1!


I wish media would make an effort of differentiating these two diseases when creating their materials to reduce the confusion amongst the public.

September 16th, 2013

Our lives changed forever….

This is the date our daughter Sol-Marie was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.  She was 11 years old.

She is such a brave girl!  After just two weeks, she wanted to give the insulin shots herself.

  • She pricks her finger to check her blood glucose 5-10 times a day.
  • She needs insulin shots 4-7 times a day to survive (for every time she eat carbohydrates or has high blood sugar for other reasons, such as being sick, stress, excitements, hormones, exercise, the list goes on….).
  • She had gadgets attached to her 24-7 to help her somewhat with the diabetes management.  We all actually consider ourselves lucky for these gadgets, but is she really?

We watch over her… We have not slept a whole night through yet. We are up every 2am doing blood checks…. But sleep is overrated, right?  I think one day in the future I will stay in a hotel and just sleep ALL DAY while she is in school!

She can still do everything she wants to do.

I guess we are lucky after all….

Princess Sassy Pants & Co.™

Just breathe...And trust that you are right where you need to be.

Very Light, No Sugar

Because I talk diabetes the same way I take my coffee.

I Am A Type 1 Diabetic

Balancing Life While Living with Type One Diabetes


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"One book, one pen, one child, and one teacher can change the world." -Malala Yousafzai

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Utilizing Educational Technology to Educate about Type 1 Diabetes.

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