EDET 678 Wk. 5 Essential Question: Design an object that could be classified as belonging to “The Internet of Things” and describe how it could contribute to your classroom.

Aleta May
EDET 678 Emerging Technologies
Week 5 Initial Blog

Inventions for Waylon (the best Golden Retriever in the Universe)

To begin this conversation on the Internet of Things (IOT), I have invention ideas. Here at my home in Oregon, we have a small 5 acre farm, complete with farm dogs. Our newest is our one-year old Golden Retriever—Waylon. We need to keep a farm gate across our driveway to make sure he does not wander across the highway. And what if one of those pigs or a goat gets lose. As a kid growing up in Anchorage, I remember the simplicity of using garage door opener to park our car in a warm garage. I believe what we need is an automatic gate opener for those rainy, busy days, that can be activated by an application on the smart phone.

I also want to check my app to find out if Waylon’s water dish is low. Ideally, this would be connected to a water supply that I could activate with my app.

Further, Waylon needs a sensor on his collar that lets me know if the flea count is building up or if there was a new hatching of fleas.

This contributes to my classroom by teaching myself how to create an app and having students be inspired to create their own app as well.

Here is a short (January 2016) YouTube Video:

Here is a 15 minute YouTube Tutorial for “How to make MIT app for controlling servo Motor using arduino and Bluetooth module (slower pace video):

Here is a 9 minute YouTube Tutorial for “How to Build Custom Android App for your Arduino Project using MIT App Inventor” (can use the smart phone or computer) (faster pace video):

Smart Babies

After reading the article “The Internet of Things is Coming for Your Baby,” I have an experience to share about the use of infant monitors for bio-tracking. First, I am fascinated with the idea of a Mimo Smart Baby Monitor which snaps to a baby’s onesy monitoring breathing, and body position. When I was a new mom, I woke up periodically to check my baby’s breathing by putting my finger under her nose, lightly touching her; but there were times where I inadvertently woke her up—and I definitely wanted to go back to sleep after checking on her. So I can see how nice it would be to use a Wi-Fi-enabled base station that communicates with my cell phone; like the Sproutling; so I could easily just check my baby from afar—without waking her!

Smart Babies Who Need Health Monitors

As a grandmother of a newborn though, I can verify that what the pediatrician, Dimitri Christakis, stated is true: “. . . the current manner in which they’re doing so raises concerns over how accurate that data really is. . . this is true also for existing in-hospital infant monitors, which he says track similar biometrics—and emit false alarms far more frequently than fair warnings” (p.3). My personal experience was that our granddaughter was born with a heart problem and had had a microscopic surgery within a couple of days of her birth. Later, when she came home, she came with a heart monitor. My husband and I slept right next to her crib (to give her parents the much needed break they needed) and that alarm went off frequently—each time a false alarm!! This was about 9 ½ years ago, so hopefully the equipment is improved by now. The home visiting nurse, however, seemed to not be aware of how many false alarms could occur, and our daughter was ‘scolded’ by the nurse. In this case—I would say that the Internet of Things (IOT) was both our friend—monitoring is good—and our enemy—false alarms and false information communicated outside the home is, well I’ll just say—stressful!

The Internet of Everything Blend of The Human Touch and Devices for Parents and Educators

Another quote from a doctor in this article puts the IoT into perspective further—“I worry that if parents become fixated on the information they get from their gadgets, they won’t learn the rhythms of their babies, how to read cues, which noises mean something, which can be ignored or how to recognize the subtle signs of both illness and wellness” (p. 6). I can liken this (as an analogy) to my profession as a teacher who uses a variety of academic computer programs to teach, as well as a variety of computer assessment programs that are used to guide instruction. These devices and tools are extremely helpful. Of course I would want to use monitors for my newborn baby and check from a room nearby so I could sleep, but this does not replace the human touch and ability to discern the needs of my own baby. Likewise, as a teacher, the computer programs (commercially pre-designed) or Web 2.0 are instruments in the masters’ hands. We decide when, where and how to use these.

The computer programs that teach lessons seemingly at the speed of light to my English Language Learners (ELLs), can be used, but as a tool by the teacher to attach to their own prior knowledge; further, they can relate better to the vocabulary it is assumed students will already have learned. Otherwise, students tend to get stuck into a vortex with the computer program that just repeats a video clip. To use the tool as a portal to the world outside of our own, I can support the student by using the pause feature to slow the lesson down to the speed of the life of the child, so the student can clarify meaning to me. Over time, they can use pause and find answers to their own questions by going to sites like YouTube that explains an unfamiliar concept, or even to thesaurus.com to get different shades of meaning to a word they had not hear of. In this way, they can utilize multiple devices—as the computer program tends to usurp the computer for other uses.

How can we prepare our students to make sense of the Internet of Everything (IoE) for the workforce? In the article by Cisco, “The IOE: Fueling Educational Innovation,” there is a chart of critical skills that are in the knowledge economy. As I read under the 21st Century Skills heading, I understand how important communication, problem solving, collaboration and creativity will be for our students. An important point is made about how people who are currently employed across many careers need ways to build their skills pertinent to the job changes they are already in. For example, Udacity is an organization that can help companies like AT&T to teach employees who need to research specifically how to build their first webcrawler.

To apply this to my position as a teacher who uses a blended learning environment to individualize, the quote above helps me to see that by monitoring my students in programs and sharing the information with them will help them in their future careers: “The data scientist will see, for example, that students are spending a lot of time at ‘node 60’ of a course and not progressing forward” (Cisco, p. 3). The next step then is to create a new module (in my case, a mini-lesson in person or within a Web 2.0 environment, such as in Google docs). Or, the module may need to be remade with more details or from a different angle. Another approach may be as Parker states, “70-20-10 principle . . . where 70 percent of learning that truly sticks with you is the informal learning that takes place when . . . you go out in search of your answer” (Cisco, p. 4).


From all of this reading, I am realizing how big the IoT really is and the rate of how it is growing is phenomenal. From baby monitors, to the world of collecting data from wind turbines (wind speed, direction, air pressure and blade pitch) for the GE company (Tamburini, p. 2). By expanding the use of sensors to analyze our own environment by connecting that information to the internet, we can teach students to think about what they are studying and create examples so that they are no longer just consumers of education. People can create “new forms of collective intelligence” (slide 10) by following “digital breadcrumbs” (slide 10) and analyzing how people and things interact (Slideshare from Deloitte University Press).


Hennick, C. (2014, 25 June): What will the internet of things mean for K-12? http://www.edtechmagazine.com/k12/article/2014/06/what-will-internet-things-mean-k-12

Learning@Cisco (2014). The internet of everything: Fueling educational innovation.

Slideshare: 5 Key Questions to ask about the internet of things. Deloitte University Press. Retrieved 6-15-16 at http://www.slideshare.net/DeloitteUS/5-questions-the-iot-internet-of-things: http://www.forbes.com/forbes/welcome/

The internet of things 101. Video
Video: http://www.forbes.com/video/4066055740001/

The internet of things is coming for your baby.

Tamburini, D. (2014). What is the internet of things & what does it mean for design? http://www.wirelessdesignmag.com/blog/2014/10/what-internet-things-what-does-it-mean-design

What is the internet of things?
Kobie, N. (2015, 6 May).

Can the internet of things make education more student-focused?

One thought on “EDET 678 Wk. 5 Essential Question: Design an object that could be classified as belonging to “The Internet of Things” and describe how it could contribute to your classroom.

  1. josies678blog

    Great way to introduce the weekly topic into needed inventions at your place. I am sure you can find comparable inventions on Amazon or even Shark Tank lol.

    I have heard of the wearable technology last year at an oracle conference and I thought how awesome. I think that technology can do wonderful things to make our life easier. The breathing machines for heart patients are a great idea. However, I do wonder how the wifi or blue tooth signal might give off. I have read articles about the radiation that could harm us. We have heard this many times with Xrays and microwaves as well.



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