Monthly Archives: February 2016

EDTC 6433: Digital Storytelling Project

I chose to tell a personal narrative of my experience as a chaperone for a high school national youth gathering where I learned a lot about what it means to be a servant.  Those interested in community service, youth leaders, volunteers, high school students, and anyone else who has a caring heart and passion for working in the community would be interested in viewing it.  This could be used in a formal educational setting when teaching about work in the community, how people affect one another in community, or teaching about the diversity we have in our large cities in the country.  I demonstrated competency on ISTE NETS Standard 1 for Teachers by modeling creative and innovative thinking, engaging students in exploring real world issues, and by promoting the use of a digital tool to tell an important story.

The process of digital storytelling began slowly.  I came up with the content pretty easily because this event took place just last summer.  The bulk of the work came from searching for a program that could meet the requirements of the assignment.  At first I tried Microsoft Sway, uploading photos into the order that worked for my story.  Unfortunately after doing this I could not find a way to add narration, music, or record it, so I had to move to Windows Live Movie Maker and start again.  It took me a lot longer than I anticipated mostly because I was unfamiliar with the software.  Most of the time I was experimenting around and searching for the right tools.  Having experience or training with the program definitely would have helped complete the assignment.

The most significant things I learned while completing this project was having an open ended, student choice topic allowed me to have full creativity of the assignment.  I could choose a topic that was important to my life and creatively present it in a format of my choice.  Having so many options allows a student to truly create a project that they are passionate about and that is meaningful to their lives.  Having some practice ahead of time with Windows Live Movie Maker would have been helpful, but experimenting with something new is a great learning method as well.  Creating this digital story was a great experience to look back at my trip to Detroit and a project I can come back to when reflecting about my service in the Motor City.

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EDTC 6433 Module 4: Digital Citizenship and Safe Technology Practices

Triggering Question

As a teacher, how can I stay current with local and global societal issues and exhibit legal and ethical behavior in the classroom?

The technology world is continuing to develop and change at a rapid rate that directly influences the classrooms we teach in.  Students engage with technology on a daily basis at home and at school.  It is our job as educators to teach children safe and healthy practices regarding the use of technology and online identities.  Teachers need to exhibit legal and ethical behavior in their practice and model this for students.  Staying up to date with how technology is changing will help educators provide the most accurate information to students.  Miller & Ribble describe the importance of collaboration to meet the issues technology can bring.  “Educational leaders, faculty members, students, parents, and community members must work together to create workable solutions for the rapidly increasing problems related to appropriate use and digital citizenship.” (Miller & Ribble, 2012, p 144)  Leaders will promote and model digital etiquette by relating online interactions to real life interactions and that the two are the same.  Treating each other politely with kindness and respect in both venues is important to emphasize so students know the two are not so different and separate.

One of the members of my learning circle also addressed the importance of teacher modeling to students.  Technology can be a distraction tool from learning if used improperly in the classroom.  By teacher modeling, students can see how to use digital resources in class and any assignments related to technology.  Students in this digital age have a lot of screen time both at home and school.  Showing students the positive, educational uses for technology will allow them to effectively use their devices in the classroom helping them learn.

 

Reference

Northern Miller, T. & Ribble, M. (2012). Educational leadership in an online world: Connecting students to technology responsibly, safely, and ethically. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 17: 1, 137-145.

file:///C:/Users/Scott%20Chrisman/Downloads/C631F5EC-A504-431F-8386-E36EEDFB9978.pdf

EDU 6526 Session 7: Role Models and Affective Education

Students learn more than academics when they enter a classroom.  They learn lifelong skills such as how to function in a group and work productively with others.  The role of the teacher is to facilitate this process and act as a role model that students learn from.  Teaching with integrity is key when working with students for them to learn by example.  One of the Six Priorities of Affective Education is “Establishing a climate of trust.” Session 7- Learner Centered In order to do this, the teacher must act honestly and thoughtfully with students so they feel emotionally safe and comfortable.  Only then will they truly open up, voice their full opinions, and feel accepted as a learner in the classroom.  Students pick up how teachers act, even when they see them outside of the classroom, so living an honest, moral life is important for students to learn.

Children and youth are socially intelligent and understand when they are being truly listened to and heard.  A teacher cannot fake these interactions and their relationships with students highly depend on their honesty and kindness.  “Students know when their teachers are committed to their psychomotor, cognitive, and affective learning, and they can tell when their teachers genuinely care about them and are trustworthy, honest, and respectful.” (Lumpkin, 2008, p. 47)  These are morals and virtues all teachers want to instill in their classrooms, creating life-long learners that contribute to a prosperous society.  The teacher-student relationship is so important in shaping attitudes towards education and observing teacher values is how students make sense of the learning world.

 

Reference

Lumpkin, A., (2008). Teachers as Role Models, Teaching Character and Moral Virtues. JOPERD 79: 2, 45-49.

EDU 6526 Session 6: Problem Solving and Class Meetings

Students come to school with sets of values they may not be able to identify themselves but will show when they work with their peers.  Problem solving, cooperation, and collaboration are all developed in the classroom.  As they interact with one another, they discover the roles they will play with one another.  Utilizing role playing activities gives students a chance to practice social skills as well as discover what is important to their lives.  “It explores how values drive behavior and raises student consciousness about the role of values in their lives and those of others.  A direct effect is greater understanding about and empathy with differences in values as people interact.” (Calhoun, Weil, & Joyce, 2015, p. 258).   Students figure out how to cooperate with one another and overcome obstacles.  They begin to learn how to operate in a group and how best they can use their strengths.

In the kindergarten class I work in, we have a weekly “class meeting” where we sit down and discuss any issues that need to be addressed.  The teacher writes down student problems or concerns on a paper flip chart and discusses each one by one (see image below).  Students practice listening to one another and find ways to peacefully solve problems.  They are held accountable to the solutions and are referenced back to them if needed.  As the solutions come directly from the students, they carry more weight and have greater impact then the teacher simply telling them what they need to do.  Students work with one another in class meetings, examine what’s important to them, and learn lifelong social skills they will use in future grades.

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Reference

Calhoun, E., Weil, M., & Joyce, B. (2015). Models of Teaching. (9th ed.) Boston: Pearson.

EDTC 6433 Module 3: Emerging Literacy Practices

Triggering Question: What training, resources, and programs are available as an innovative 3rd grade educator in a global and digital society?

Subject matters change throughout the years in school and as teachers, we need to be able to adapt and change our practices.  In terms of literacy, methods of teaching has shifted from memorization and repetition, to social interactions and construction from their peers.  “ . . . literacy is now shared and socially situated, and students must know how to cooperate and collaborate as they author, design, and customize their literacy efforts to the demand of the situation.” (Wake & Wittingham, 2013, p 178)  As subject matters transform, new technology systems emerge and educators must demonstrate fluency with these programs.  Wake and Wittingham (2013) describe this change in literacy and conduct an experiment with teacher candidates to find out how much they already know about certain programs, time to use the programs, and level of comfortability of using it in with students.  Results found that teachers were willing to use the technology in classrooms if they had adequate professional training beforehand.   Starting training and familiarity during internship will lead to application of these programs effectively in the future which will meet literacy requirements in the digital society.

As literacy changes, so does the emphasis on other subjects such as Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM).  Schools are pushing towards high achievement in these areas to get students prepared for the global and digital world.  One of the members in my learning circle posted a link to a series of STEM simulation activities that wouldn’t necessarily be possible with school resources.  http://blog.discoveryeducation.com/blog/2011/10/08/great-games-and-simulation-tools-for-teaching-stem-content-p2/

Having this source as an alternative will help students understand concepts and get some practice using materials they would otherwise not have access too.  This is another way educators can transfer current knowledge to new technologies and situations.

 

Reference

Discovery Education (2011). Great Games and Simulation Tools for teaching STEM Content! (P2) Retrieved February 13, 2016 from http://blog.discoveryeducation.com/blog/2011/10/08/great-games-and-simulation-tools-for-teaching-stem-content-p2/

Wake, D., & Whittingham, J. (2013) Teacher candidates’ perceptions of technology supported literacy practices. Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, 13(3), 175-206.

EDU 6526 Session 5: Socially Constructed Knowledge

Classrooms are environments that model the larger world.  Learning how to work together, solve problems, and negotiate points of view are vital skills needed to be taught.  Students learn how to interact in a class setting and take with them skills to use in future professional and social relationships. These important skills are constructed socially as they learn through one another viewpoints and interactions.  Students figure out how to negotiate with each other which in turn helps each person negotiate their own world, making sense of their values within the larger society. “The abilities to continually reconstruct one’s value stance and to create compatible value systems are both essential to mature development.” (Calhoun, Weil, & Joyce, 2015, p. 249)  When they are finished in our classrooms, they will need to know how to problem solve with their peers.  Working with others effectively is a crucial life-long skill.

Mortimer Adler’s “Paidea Principles” outline what schools should focus on as their objectives.  http://www.paideia.org/about-paideia/philosophy/  “That the three callings for which schooling should prepare all Americans are, (a) to earn a decent livelihood, (b) to be a good citizen of the nation and the world, and (c) to make a good life for one’s self.”  (National Paideia Center, 2015).  In order to be good citizens and make a good life for one’s self, students need to know how to negotiate in the world.  They will face difficult obstacles and interactions that need social skills to solve.  Instilling positive, productive, and healthy democratic processes in classrooms will prepare students to be good citizens in the world.

Reference

Calhoun, E., Weil, M., & Joyce, B. (2015). Models of Teaching. (9th ed.) Boston: Pearson.

National Paideia Center. (2015) Paideia: Active Learning. Retrieved February 6, 2016, from http://www.paideia.org/about-paideia/philosophy/

EDU 6526: Session 4, Advance Organizers

Advance organizers are useful tools and a strategy teachers can use in their classrooms to prepare students for instruction.  The method allows teachers to figure out what students know about a particular topic and provide a preview of what the lesson will be.  “ . . . the purpose of graphic organizers is to make clear to students what they will be learning with regard to a particular topic.” (Dean, Hubbell, Pitler, & Stone, 2012, p. 62)  Students get a sense of the information which will prepare their minds to better learn the material.  Organizers are also equally important as a screening tool to gage what they already know.

There are a variety of approaches when it comes to advance organizers and certain formats are better than others depending on the type of lesson.  Dean, Hubbell, Pitler & Stone (2012) describe four formats: expository, narrative, skimming, and graphic.  Expository advance organizers explain in written or verbal form the content students are about to learn and specifically the critical pieces the teacher wants the students to remember.  Exp Organizer In this example, the teacher, Ms. Hollman uses an expository organizer to activate prior knowledge of students and get them ready for new information in the upcoming video.  Students can then see their responses before and after the film to witness their own learning.   This format works well for this activity but might not in another.   Understanding the correct use of all the formats would be beneficial to teachers to get quality data and information from their students.  The more a teacher practices the use of these organizers, the better they will become at successfully implementing them into their practice.

Reference

Dean, C.,  Hubbell, E.R., Pitler, H., & Stone, B. (2012) Classroom Instruction that Works: Research-Based Strategies for Increasing Student Achievement 2nd Ed. United States of America: McREL International.