Portfolio of Brenda Arsenault EDUC 537

Biography Comment this biography

Image representing Brenda Arsenault

I’m Brenda Arsenault. I’ve been a speech-language pathologist since I graduated from Dalhousie University with a Master of Science Degree in 1988. Prior to that, I completed a B.Sc. in Biology from U.P.E.I. I grew up in P.E.I. and went to school in a little village called Morell.

I worked for the Nova Scotia Hearing and Speech Centres for about 17 years before taking the leap to the schools. I’m going into my 5th year in the CCRSB and have worked in almost all of the elementary schools in this family in that time.

I’ve been married to my husband for 24 years. He is an Engineer at Michelin Tire. We have two children, Alex, 17 and Madeline, 14. We have 2 cats, Shadow and Martini. We recently adopted a little dog named Ruby. She's a great addition to the family.

I started working on my diploma in Educational Technology last spring. I am now enrolled in my 5th course. I have found it somewhat challenging taking these courses as I have been away from university for some time now. As well, I do not have an educational background so much of this is quite new to me. So far pretty much all the students are teachers or at least have been at one time. I do feel like the odd man out, but I’ve managed.



Reflections on starting EDUC 537 Comment this section

It's June 30, 2002 and here I am starting a new course. I'm not sure I'm ready for this; I just finished my last course a few days ago! I always approach the course outline and expectations with some trepidation.

Multiple intelligences Comment this section

The reading material for multiple intelligences is not new, but these readings are pretty interesting.

Based on a theory of Howard Gardner we present with 9 intelligences.

The Thomas Hatch article,  (1997, March). Getting specific about multiple intelligences. Educational Leadership, (55), 26-29.  was interesting. I liked the way he described the way intelligence is displayed; as strengths. We need to be sensitive to the kinds of activities and roles in which a child show strengths. We want to help the child develop these specific strengths but also develop other skills that may not be particularly strong so that the student can develop all the skills needed to succeed in school.

 In this he noted that to determine what ways a child demonstrates intelligence, we have to take a number of factors into account. These include what intelligences he possess, interest and knowledge of particular fields and the contexts in which he lives and learns.

So for example, language was a strength as well as an interest for me.... sports was not. Now I’m thinking if I could have had some help learning some of those games (e.g., basketball) in a less threatening environment early on, then maybe I would have enjoyed PE more in high school.

Hatch did note that the intelligences, and how successful they are shift,grow and vary over time.

I was thinking as I read this article that the author was a very keen observer of child learning and behaviour. I am not sure in most educators are as aware or have the time to give all of these points so much attention.

My MI profile Comment this document

MI Lesson PLan Comment this section

My MI Lesson Plan.docx Comment this document

Learning Styles Comment this section

Learning Styles.docx Comment this document

Concept Mapping using Inspiration Comment this section

My group, Mary-Claire MacMillan and Trisha Munroe decided to plan our lesson around Oak Island. The next thing to do was to learn about it and to construct a concept map. We all had some experience with Inspiration, so we decided to use that software. This really is a great tool for brainstorming information in a group an I think it would be exciting to use with a class. It is a little tricky to use online, but we turned out a pretty good result.  

First Draft of Concept Map Comment this document

Final Draft of Concept Map Comment this document

Project Based Learning, I-Search and WebQuests Comment this section

Unit 2 (part 1) Project Based Learning, I-Search and Web Quests.

I have started the readings for this unit. I don’t think I am familiar with any of these! As I read the articles and look at the video about project based learning, I can’t help but think that these look like private schools and exemplary students. That doesn’t mean that any teacher couldn’t use project based learning. I remember my own children getting pretty excited about the Science Fair Project in grades 4-6. The last one that my daughter did in grade 6 was an experiment where she did something with owl pellets and putting together the little skeleton. She and her partner LOVED it and what she learned, she will remember because she was interested and engaged. This is what I take away from the comments that the students made.

The I-Search “you will choose a topic that has immediate relevance to your life—a topic about which you have a genuine need or a real desire to know more."This next article was very helpful.



I can’t say I have ever had the opportunity to do this type of research. I don’t think my children have either. As I read over this material; I had the opportunity to review several examples. One that I found particularly interesting was from this site:


This gave the outline and samples. What I want to know, What I want to find out, The search book, interview, article), What I found out and works cited. The final I-search paper titled “Women in Islam” was also provided. I found this format a very good learning experience.

The final, a WebQuest was the format that we as a group decided to use for a project. We decide that we wanted to have the project follow a quest for certain information re Oak Island. We felt that this fromat would be mos appropriate for the topic and age group.


Web Quest The Mystery of Oak Island Comment this section

So we decided to use a WebQuest to plan a web based lesson to cover select outcomes from grade 4 social studies and english languae arts. Trisha found a great site guided us through the process. http://questgarden.com/

 It was designed by Bernie Dodge the creator of the Webquest

Assignment_3oak island.doc Comment this document

http://questgarden.com/107/77/3/100802122630/ Comment this document

Discussion Activities Comment this section

Responses.docx Comment this document

Responses.docx (22.7 ko)

Reflections on finishing EDUC 537 Comment this section

I write this with relief! Another couse finished. I have enjoyed this course. I was lucky to be a part of a great group. The two ladies in my group were hard working, intelligent educators. They were so easy to work with and the experience was very positive. I was very pleased with the WebQuest that we created and feel that I was able to learn and reflect on web based learning.