Imagination is more important than knowledge – Einstein
After listening to Alan November as part of the Guide To Innovation series on the Thursday for an hour session which just flew, I was really looking forward to spending a day immersing myself in his views on leading learning in the 21st Century. I love that the focus is on the learning and pedagogy, rather than the technology, which is a cool tool…. but just the tool.
Question…it has never been easier to be a teacher
We used Promethean clickers to provide immediate feedback – the results –
Q. It has never been easier to learn something – Response… Agree
How to design a curriculum which involves the whole family in learning…. Those of us considered early adopters have seen many of the benefits and pitfalls of using new technologies, and have developed ways to minimise harm…. many parents often “don’t know what they don’t know”…we need to design curriculum for the whole family in order to have a whole community approach to ethical and responsible use. One way which was suggested was to create parent and family learning videos, to engage families. @HamishCurry mentioned this had been an approach used by the Libraries association and maternal child health practioners to assist in developing parent skills in reading with their children. This was working really well, until funding was lost.
Being able to think critically and validate information on the web was seen as a vital skill for all users of technology, and the old adage “don’t trust wikipedia” is no longer true, as we looked at ways of searching for information on “the earmouse” and realising that wikipedia actually had the correct information, where the more reputable news site (BBC) had information which was not correct.
“Actions of the mob, leads to accuracy” – in the case of wikipedia
3rd source should be a primary source…and by looking at your sources carefully and putting detailed search strings in (back to the Boolean search) such as the “:site” command in Google – site:MIT.edu limits the search to that extension, so you know you will probably be getting researchers data, primary source material, rather than reporters interpretation of the information.
The real revolution is not tech but info…do the kids know how to critical think, getting good quality info more important than being able to present it.
We must teach global empathy, as global citizen. I believe we do this better in Australia than they do in the US, mainly because we have so many more influences in our culture, having said that, showing students how to use country codes in searches to explore geographic and cultural differences in news reports is a great critical thinking skill… being able to view an opinion from both sides of the fence. Alan used the example of the Iranian hostage crisis, which of course was only called this in the Western media, and as the search continued the results in the Iranian news offered a totally different viewpoint.
Using Twitter to expand the conversation: Alan showed how following a hashtag (#) on Twitter could give you a wealth of information, and used the example of #Egypt which was nealy as fast moving as the #sbseurovision was over the weekend. A professor in the US posted a question on Twitter with the hashtag #Egypt, and ended up tweeting with someone on the streets of Cairo, about “What is freedom” This person agreed to then Skype with his class, and there in provide real primary source material. Needless to say the kids were enthralled.
The Flipped Classroom
The way you teach is more powerful than what you know, it’s all about asking the questions, developing inquiring minds
In her book: The Age of the Smart Machine, 1988 Shoshanna Zuboff explored the use of technology and how adding it to the classroom could add value. She generated the terms Automate and Informate
Automate…no change to structure, just adding technology does not lead to improvement on the whole
Informate …changes the balance of control, can lead to huge improvement, empowers and changes relationships. Process change
Flip model…changing the processes. Adding technology without process change adds no value. You can have as many 1:1 devices, but it does not mean there will be value added to the learning if the process is not changed.
All about the flip
Eric Mazur developed a flipped classroom approach in his Harvard Physics classes, to develop deeper understanding of the knowledge the students were covering
In fact Facebook was developed so his students could ask him questions (Mark Zuckerburg was in his class)
Game based learning is going to be one of the next big “things” according to the Horizon Report
Of course kids prefer games to school, you don’t fail if you get it wrong in a game, at school there is punishment/failure if you get it wrong
Kids love learning, and getting to next level…they chose the level, in class teacher sets the level
They know the objective in a game, where often in school they don’t….”why do we have to learn this?”
Mazur’s model is Socratic, an exchange of ideas. Our brains are wired to be social, Socrates meets Facebook. The role of a good teacher is to ask the questions to generate debate
Quality of feedback is important- Hattie
If the brain records a misconception when young, the misconception trumps good teaching. It is harder to unlearn misconceptions.
Flipping saves time
1:1 should be about the teacher talking to each student everyday, not devices
Khan academy shows the whole game – students can choose their sttarting point and path with immediate feedback
Khan academy based on game theory, not punishment model
Beautiful chaos is kids working towards their goals, linear teachers have trouble with this
Coach feature gives teachers a wealth of information
Dan Pink – Drive
Purpose – autonomy – mastery
Our schools and way of teaching often moves on before some students are at mastery level. If you give them the chance of mastery, the kids will flourish. Flipping the classroom gives back time to teachers to develop the creative questioning
WrAP … Www.erblearn.org
The writing assessment program, ai to mark papers….gives data to free teachers from the hours of reading assessment
Kids use a pseudonym to avoid criticism of self, only the work is criticised in reviews
Go figure…posting work to the world for feedback is more motivating than posting to your teacher
Publishing student work for a global audience
Get kids to produce tutorials for other kids
- Look at critical thinking
- Flip model…process change
- Global relationships, world wide audience
Some great reference sites were shared to help harness the information
Www.dipity.com – timeline creator, keep timelines, and build on each year
History pin works well with dipity and google maps
Mathtrain.tv kids making tutorials for kids
Hattie – peer tutoring
Ask a friend is always the first option
The teacher knows too much – explains at a level higher than the child can understand, math train has a rewind.
All in all a wonderful day. I have already started using Socrative Teacher as a feedback tool for my classes….with positive results from students.
Blogging and bloggers are a vibrant part of the online communities many of us belong to. Technorati investigates what is going on in the blogging world with their “State of the Blogosphere” report. As well as you and I and our blogs, there is much blogging going on in the corporate world. Every company seems to have a blog link on their website, where media news and reviews are often posted. There are even people who get paid to write blog posts…for a writer, what a wonderful opportunity…
What better way to get your class going with their own blogging adventure, than to be a part of a global student blogging challenge. It’s not to late to join in. Simply pop along to the Edublogs Student Challenge information page, and look around to get some ideas if you have not blogged before.
Totally confused about what a blog is and where to start, check out the Redback Project blog for some info on what a blog is, and what it is used for.
So you just want to jump straight in and set up your blog? Go along to http://global2.vic.edu.au this is an Edublogs campus site set up by the DEECD, so you get all the safety and functionality of an edublogs subscriber, with none of the cost (if you are a Victorian Government or Catholic school).
Kathleen Morris has put together a brilliant “Getting started with blogging” post on her Integrating Technology blog, so for the nitty gritty on setting up your blog take a look.
Blogging is a great way to let parents see the good stuff that happens in your classroom. It is also a valuable reflection tool for your own ongoing learning. Developing a professional blog where you can reflect on your reading and learning is another weay you can record your professional learning hours for VIT registration.
Feel free to post questions here… the comments, feedback and dialogue is just part of what makes blogging so very powerful, and a fun way to learn, regardless of your age.
What do you enjoy about blogging? What is stopping you from blogging? What is stopping you from getting your class into blogging?
I have spent these holidays catching up with reading and getting my head around the new Google Plus… which I had an invite to a while ago, but had few people I knew using it… so it was left on the backburner as the end of term chaos consumed life.
So Google + wow… I have been using Twitter since the early days, and have loved how I can expand my professional learning network by following people whose tweets I find interesting and relevant. I have eLearning connections all over the world now as a result. The only thing is that most comments are limited to 140 characters – which can be good, a bit like a haiku, you really have to think about how you say what you want to say, to get the full meaning and context.
Facebook I have mainly kept as a friend space… not wanting to bore my non techy friends with tech stuff… and vice versa with my other pastimes. I did create a “school” facebook account this year, because with a range of other tech issues and unreliability I at least knew all of my students would be able to log in and see my reminder posts etc.
The benefits so far with what I have played with and seen on Google+ is all the great things about twitter…lots of sharing of ideas with people you allocate to circles… you can also share publicly with the world. You can share your thoughts or ideas with as many or few people as you like by simply selecting the relevant circles.
Google+ is still in testing… but so far it’s looking very good for educators wanting to develop their skills and knowledge with educators worldwide.
One of the features is a “Hangout” where you can get together with others and have a face to face chat over the internet. At the moment I believe up to 9 people can be involve, but this can present a great range of sharing opportunities not only locally but globally.
I was luck enough to participate in viewing a hangout session about Digital storytelling. There were educators from all over the US who shared with us how they have used Digital Storytelling to get students to develop not only their literacy, but a wide range of skills including digital citizenship.
VoiceThread allows you to collaborate via text voice or image as you and your class discusses images, either as a starting point, or analysis of an artwork. There are education versions, which allow students to post with more security http://ed.voicethread.com/
Youth Voices Youth Voices is a school-based social network that was started in 2003 by a group of National Writing Project teachers. They have found that there are many advantages to bringing students together in one site that lives beyond any particular class. It’s easier for individual students to read and write about their own passions, to connect with other students, comment on each others work, and create multimedia posts for each other.It’s also an opportunity for educators to develop their knowledge about curriculum and digital literacies.
Storybird is a lovely site which has artists who collaborate by providing artworks which can be used to stimulate and illustrate story creation.
Teachers Teaching Teachers check out here for the next talk
GoogleLabs is being phased out… but has an amazing set of resources… imagine 3D Google earth for the body…or the Google Art Project, giving you tours of the worlds greatest galleries…Get in quick!!
Sketchfu is an online drawing and sharing program… very easy to use, and some great artworks to stimulate ideas.
Handling the enormous amounts of information is something we have to try to help our students resolve… Where do you find reliable sources? How do you know what is reliable? Where do you store the information. The easiest way is using a social bookmarking platform such as Diigo, Delicious or Google, where you can save your bookmarks on the cloud, and always have access to them, using keywords and tags to search for them.
With Scoop.it you can have a tool which sits within your web browser, and allows you to scoop any relevant topics for your area of interest. You then add new links each day or week, or when ever. Others can follow your topic, and add further relevant “scoops” to your page. You can in turn follow others who are “curating” topics which interest you. The topics are wide and varied.
Storify uses a range of social media such as Twitter, facebook, Google+, YouTube etc to draw information together to form a “story” on a specific topic. This could be a unit of work you have created with your students, or it could be the information you want your students to explore.
Both of these would be great ways for students to collaborate and sift though information to create a really useful knowledgebank of information.
Whatever way you want to delve into the digital classroom of the 21st Century, don’t imagine it can just happen… it needs a lot of pre-planning and organising by the teacher to ensure students don’t get lost in the information, or the technology.
Well… some correction to get done…..
What a busy week it has been since my last ramble… I have not had much time to scratch myself… since doing my podcast… and giving myself a cheer I have had a few other staff come along to ask how hard it is…. I need to sit down and do a few more, specifically to entice staff to use it. Coming up to exam time with our Year 12s, and it will be a great resource… I think I have hooked a few with the potential 🙂
So I think on that front the peer coaching, although at times informal, is working fairly positively. Hmmmmm rethinking the new name of the blog…. but will work on that.
I do love it when things come together… I have been a member of me.edu.au since it basically started, as I have been a member of a few edna groups, tonight (after finally getting home after 9.30) still brain racing I sat down to check some emails… wandered over to follow some links, got back to my me profile page and saw a link to add my feeds…. well I thought I would try… connect stuff together… and voila all of my feeds for my blog here, and my wiki have been added….I am starting to come to grips with RSS and I do like it…. I have even added some feeds on my phone internet 🙂
Well now I have some stuff being added to my me profile page, when I add stuff to my other online spaces…. how very cool….
time to start winding down..