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Pedagogical beliefs and ICT Integration

Many schools are trying to integrate ICT in the classroom environment to equip students for the world outside school. Ertmer (2005) suggests, some teachers don’t seem to want to change their ways of teaching in order to be able to integrate new technology into their classroom. Reasons could be because teachers may feel that having to learn these skills and integrating them into the classroom would complicate things – for example constant use of Microsoft word instead of moving on to using things such as webquests.
Ertmer (2005, p. 33) has found 3 strategies which help change a teachers beliefs about teaching, learning and technology and help them promote positive integration of technology in the learning classroom. These include: beliefs formed through personal experiences, observing other teachers using new technologies and having an environment around them that supports risk taking, and provides opportunities to discuss new materials, methods and strategies.

In my own experience of observing a year 5 classroom, interactive whiteboards were only used to overview maths techniques which were taught before, such as timetables and addition and/or used to show images on particular topic. Every time they were used, students felt excited to have a go. It didn’t matter if anyone had the wrong answer or didn’t know how solve a problem, but just having the ability to go up to the front of the classroom to use the pen.

Integrating ICT’s into a classroom supports many styles of learning. This is ranging from linguistic learners (read words, writing, typing), visual learners (video clips, pictures, games, graphs), interpersonal learners (working in groups) and musical learners (creating own version, sound files).

All ICT’s can be implemented as a good cognitive tool within the learning environment when they are purposeful – e.g. connect to the learner’s age group.

All ICT’s enable creativity if they are implemented in a way that get the learner’s thinking and designing.

Below is an example of a Learning object that could be used in the classroom:

Body parts – vision

Reference:
Ertmer, P.A. (2005). Teacher Pedagogical Beliefs: The final frontier in our Quest for Technology Integration? Educational Technology Research and Development, p25-39

Videos and Images:
The learning Federation. (2010). L731 Body parts: vision. Retrieved April 13, 2011 from
http://econtent.thelearningfederation.edu.au/ec/viewMetadata.action?id=L731&q=L731&topic=&start=0&sort=relevance&contentsource=&v=text&field=title&field=keyword.text&field=description&field=id&field=topics.all.text&contenttype=all&contenttype=%22Interactive resource%22&contenttype=%22Collection%22&contenttype=%22Image%22&contenttype=%22Moving image%22&contenttype=%22Sound%22&contenttype=%22Assessment resource%22&contenttype=%22Teacher guide%22&userlevel=all&userlevel=(0 OR 1 OR 2)&userlevel=(3 OR 4)&userlevel=(5 OR 6)&userlevel=(7 OR 8)&userlevel=(9 OR 10)&userlevel=(11 OR 12)&kc=any&lom=true&scot=true&follow=true&topiccounts=true&rows=20&fromSearch=true

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Learning Design – Mobile learning

In todays world, there Is no doubt that most families own a or many computers, mobile phones, ipods etc. Computers have evolved from desktops, to laptops, to mobile phones, to smart phones to tablet pc. These devices have been used to connect to the internet and connect to the people around the world.
When I attended my lecture, I was surprised about the idea of using a smart phone in the classrooms.
A smart phone in dictionary.com is defined as a mobile phone with advanced capabilities that is similar to a Personal Computer.

Even today when I attend university, mobile phones are not to be used in the classroom. Questions are always asked whether they are been used for classroom purposes or own personal use. When practicing a trivia activity during my lecture using our phones to find the answers, I discovered how quickly answers were retrieved straight away via connecting to the internet. I would have to say its amazing being able to connect anywhere at any time!!!

There also seems to be an issue surrounding the use of mobiles in a learning environment.
These concerns are graphed below which were in my lecture notes:

I personally would not necessarily agree with using mobile learning in a classroom environment. Even in a controlled learning environment, it causes learners to lose concentration and get distracted and its hard to keep up with what students are doing on their phones. There is also an issue of memory left on the phone to save work.
Another cool feature of smart phones is the ability to download applications or programs which help the user to perform one or many tasks. E.g. Google Earth for iphone, ipad and ipod touch – which lets you view high resolution imagery and maps from all parts of the world; Star Walk App which is used to see stars in real time at a specific location.

The use of mobile learning in the classroom can assist a variety of learning styles if used effectively.
Teachers can provide activities such as quizzes in order for learners to think on their feet quickly. By providing fun and exploration activities, students can become creative.

Reference:
Lecture 5 notes

Video and Images:
Mobile learning (iPhone). (2008). Retrieved April 13, 2011 from http://www.youtube.com/embed/w7bsOdbhZWI?rel=0

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Dee’s Poll

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Social constructivism

Constructivism approach is when the learner constructs and
creates ideas from tools given to them.

This theory has come from Vygotsky in the early 20th
century.

This gives learners the opportunity to draw onto and build
on their previous knowledge and experiences they already have. In a
constructive environment learners would be seeing learning interactively and
working together in a group using manipulative materials. The opposite would be
a classroom environment that continually relies on textbooks, students working
alone and teacher’s passively feeding information.

Tasks should be meaningful (based in the real world, different cultures, different environments and different
interests), hands-on, full of discussions, full of visual aids, have opportunities
to explore and experiment.

I think having a constructivist approach to teaching is the
way I would go in my classroom. From my own experience as a student, I learn
more by discovering things for myself. This approach focuses a lot on having
social interactions with people around us – “social constructivism”. We’ve said
this in class a few times, that 2 brains is better than 1. Sharing ideas, discussing
and getting other peoples opinion broadens our mind to higher possibilities and
deepens our own knowledge about things around us.

I also think though that learners should be guided a little,
in case they are not sure about what they are supposed to be doing/achieving.
This may cause them to get side tracked and lose confidence. `

Working in a constructive environment supports a variety of
learning styles of learners. Teachers should make sure that they provide enough
meaningful activities for learners to
have opportunities to complete tasks effectively. Both the teacher and the
learners need to be creative because that’s what a constructive environment is.
Having opportunities to be in a collaborative environment, further pushes everyone
to bring ideas together to create new ones.

References:
Atherton, J. S. (2011). Learning and Teaching. Retrieved April 12, 2011, from http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:KsvcsJVv2zEJ:www.learningandteaching.info/learning/constructivism.htm+social+constructivism&cd=7&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=au&source=www.google.com.au

Videos and Images:
Constructivism. (2010). Retrieved April 13, 2011, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J1Evd_Ufowg

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ICT as a cognitive tool – Webquests

What’s a webquest?

As defined in my lecture notes today, a webquest is a form of a structured research project which is completed online. As Dodge (1995) mentions, webquests are a set of activities deliberately designed to make the best use of a learner’s time by having clear tasks to complete to reach the final goal. Most of the time the student would use the internet and may use other computer devices to complete tasks such as Microsoft word template and paint. They can be designed for all ages and all school years.

An example of a webquest is below:

When we designed our own webquests, the basic titles were:
– Introduction
– Task
– Process
– Resources
– Assessment
– Conclusion
– Teacher notes

Dodge (1995) suggests and what some of my teachers would say is that webquests should be motivational. A way of doing this is to give the students a role such as pretending to be a scientist, detective, nutritionist, news reporter etc. this should also come in hand with having a scenario.

I found the webquests to be quite entertaining but at the same time quite challenging to build a meaningful experience for the students. Been simple is the best policy.

Webquests cater for a variety of learning styles by providing a variety of links to access images and web links to cater for completing the activities.

The key is to create a webquest which is suitable for the right age group and needs of the learners.
Webquests can be used to cover a variety of KLA’s and provide links to explore their way through the tasks.
Whether completing webquests as a group or individually, the links and tasks provided to learners is what gives them opportunities to how creative they can be. So because of this, it is important to provide them with these opportunities such as getting them to use the Prezi program to develop and present what they have learnt in their own way.

Reference:

Dodge, B. (1995). Some thoughts about Webquests. Retrieved April 11, 2011, from http://webquest.sdsu.edu/about_webquests.html

Webquest Direct. (n.d.). What is a Webquest? Retrieved April 12, 2011, from http://www.webquestdirect.com.au/whatis_awq.asp

Images and videos:
Jen. (2009). Wash your hands webquest. Retrieved April 13, 2011 from http://farroutlinks.net/blog/healthy-habits/wash-your-hands-webquest/

Kopcha, T. (2008). Webquest 101 Part 1 – What is a Webquest? Retrieved April 13, 2011 from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o4rel5qOPvU

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ICT current trends – Interactive Whiteboards

Today we discussed how students need to actively be involved in producing their own knowledge. Learning is not about memorising, but constructing new knowledge and building on it.

In todays world, there’s a lot of multimedia used to teach the students. One of the newest technologies used in the classroom is the interactive whiteboard (IWB). This to me is quite amazing, since my experience at school involved a lot of photocopying, a lot of paper work and constant use of projectors. As Kent (n.d.) describes “An interactive whiteboard is a technology that is designed to facilitate group interaction”. Students become involved with each other, whilst interacting, to use the board. As Kent (n.d.) also describes, IWB’s should be used in combination with a variety of educational programs, learning objects and things such as video clips, sound files and moving images to motivate the learners.

Kent (2008) implies, “It is not the technology, it is the teacher” – a school environment needs to have certain characteristics to make sure IWBs are used to enhance teaching and learning.

There are 4 main categories that activities on the IWB can be categorised into:
1) Labelling: labels need to be dragged to correct location
2) Sorting: different objects need to be sorted
3) Ordering activities: jumbled objects need to be placed in correct order
4) Puzzle activities: learners need to use problem solving skills

The use of IWB’s can support many learning styles if used correctly and purposefully in a classroom setting. It has hands on access, audio instructions, video clips and a wide range of different activities which students can complete according to their needs.

The use of IWB’s motivates students to use their thinking skills to problem solve and bring forth their prior knowledge to complete activities. Learners can take what they learn from the IWB’s and be as creative as they like to develop their own ideas into a whiteboard or other programs such as flowcharts.

The clip below is an example of what type of activities students can engage in:

Reference:

Kent, P. & Holdway, M. (n.d.).Interactive Whiteboards, Productive Pedagogies and
Literacy Teaching in a Primary Context.
Retrieved April 9, 2011, from
http://www.englishliteracyconference.com.au/files/documents/Papers/Non-Refereed%20Papers/Kent%20and%20Holdway%20.pdf

Kent, P. (2008). Interactive whiteboards: a practical guide for primary teachers. Melbourne: Macmillan Teacher Resources.

Images and videos:
Mobile and Ubiquitous. (n.d.). Students interacting with a smart board. Retrieved 13 of April, 2011 from
http://flatclassroom09-3.flatclassroomproject.org/Mobile+and+Ubiquitous

Promethean World. (2008). Multi Input Interactive Whiteboard. Retrieved April 10, 2011, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M6U5l6Vb64w

Smart Classrooms. (2009). SMART Boards Why are they so easy to use? Retrieved April 13, 2011, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0U05WeXPGlk

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Digital natives debate

This was a very interesting lecture – the concept of digital natives and digital immigrants. According to Presky (2001), a digital immigrant is someone who was born before 1980 and a digital native is someone who was born between 1980 and 1994. It looks as though the benefits for digital natives is that they grew up using technology and understand how it works. The funny thing is at my age of 26, I’m still struggling with having to keep up with technology. I can’t seem to get my head a round certain technological devices and constantly have to get help from my 15 year old brother, whom is on the computer all the time, would rather interact with friend via skype and constantly use video games. According to Presky (2001) these students can now “think and process information fundamentally differently”.

He further implies that we need to adjust the way we teach student’s in order to adapt to their way of thinking via the use of technology in which some are dependent on. I think it is important that these digital immigrants have a go at using the new ways of doing things and technologies.

Bennet, Maton and Kervin (2008) suggest that digital native learners are actively experimenting, are great at multitasking and dependent on technologies to get information and interact with others.

(Click picture for more detailed information – only opens with inspiration program)

The above flowchart created by using Inspiration software, is an example of a technique digital immigrants can efficiently learn how to use and digital natives can easily adapt to. It can accommodate a variety of learning styles because the learner can integrate different digital media types such as sounds, images and sites.

This tool can be implemented as a good cognitive tool within the learning environment by completing tasks such as brain storming ideas they may already have about a particular topic. They might like to share their ideas with other students which gets them thinking even more.

Students can be as creative as they like with this program – adding further ideas on to their page – add own music, video clips, favourite colours etc.

Reference:

Bennett, S., Maton, K., Kervin, L. (2008). The “digital natives” debate: A critical review of the evidence. Retrieved from 10 April, 2011 from
http://blackboard.nd.edu.au/@@94E172EAAF8EA672B559F11D092CD713/courses/1/S-ED4134/content/_1016972_1/Bennettetal2008.pdf

Prensky, M. (2001). Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants. Retrived 10 April, 2011 from http://www.twitchspeed.com/site/Prensky%20-%20Digital%20Natives,%20Digital%20Immigrants%20-%20Part1.htm

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