Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Sorting Hat

Hey everyone,
I have decided to study This is a fascinating site for those who wish that the world of Harry Potter were real. There is a wide range of people who participate in this online world. Harry Potter was one of those rare phenomenons that engaged all ages. This site is similar in that respect. There are more than a million people playing in the Gryffindor house alone and for those of you who are deprived of Harry Potter knowledge there are four do the math.

The site is set up as a game. There are sections to read about the books and to read clips of the series. In those sections there is a number of tasks to accomplish. There are items to discover for missions later as well as there is exclusive content from the Harry Potter author, J.K. Rowling. There is an overall goal in the game to work with other members of your house to earn "house points" and win the "house cup." I plan to play the game (in fact I have gotten rather sucked into it already) to get into the real world that this site offers to Harry Potter fans. There is also the ability to directly chat with other members of your house to help each other complete different tasks and to collaborate in earning house points. There is also a super fun section on wizard dueling (you duel other "students").

This site is interesting to me because I was heart broken when I finished the last Harry Potter book. This site is awesome for Harry Potter nerds (yes, I am somewhat of a nerd). This site offers the world of digital literacy an interesting insight into how people of all ages and backgrounds communicate and work together to complete the common mission of winning the House Cup. How people interact in an online environment is central to digital literacy studies and (I think) would be an interesting site to explore this concept.

'Til next time...

Thursday, September 12, 2013

The Pen

My name is Elizabeth Waetjen and I am a first year (feel like I am in Harry Potter) graduate student at the University of Alaska Anchorage. I graduated in May 2013 with my bachelor's degree in English Education with a minor in History. I received Honors from the English department as well as I finished my degree in three years.

My future career goals include many things. First I would like to get my master's degree in English and pursue my dream of teaching. I am also working on getting a Certificate in English Education with endorsements for teaching 7-12th grade. Perhaps in the future (but not too far off) I would like to get a doctorate degree as well. In short, I will probably end up being a professional student for awhile.

My interests in English include Fantasy and Mystery as far as genres go (Sci-Fi is growing on me though). I love the topic of education and how teachers present information to students. I have a special interest in teaching children with special needs, such as autism, how to read and write. I am currently working on a program that I am designing myself on how to work with special needs children in learning how to identify letters/numbers and how to correctly write those letters/numbers. Dyslexia is a particular interest in this program as well. Aside from that, I like to learn more about digital literacies. I find the language of the technological world fascinating and in fact worked with that topic in my undergraduate thesis. How teachers have to approach the technology question and how the language associated with it fits into the classroom is another key topic of interest to me.

I don't have much spare time but when I do find some, I like to paint and do art projects. My husband and I own an art business named Fifteen Birds Art. I also love to bake. I can bake just about anything and if I haven't tried to make it yet just give me the recipe! I can decorate cakes, bake traditional Italian desserts, and I can even make my own homemade puff pastry. I hear that my carrot cake is pretty good. My husband and I would like to open a bakery in the future. I have also recently taken up yoga. Pretty good stuff!

So that is just about everything to know about me...Oh! And I am working on writing my first fantasy novel.