Archive for » January, 2013 «

Friday, January 25th, 2013 | Author:

This week’s material raised many questions for me, beginning with the Digital Native vs Digital Immigrant section. I found this rather interesting because there is no firm definition of who a digital native or immigrant is. The definitions are loose at best and give concrete ages rather than a year to define who digital natives or immigrants are. That’s all fine and dandy but when it comes to time, it doesn’t stand still, so how is a specific age relevant in a definition? The urban dictionary specifies that digital immigrants are “anyone over the age of 28” (2004), but without looking at when this definition was published, that information may be taken at face value. Something many of today’s digital natives probably wouldn’t take note of because, as Jamie McKenzie states in his article “From Now On”, “they are guilty of “arcade scholarship” (which is) analysis that is superficial and cartoonish” (2007). With that in mind it is hard to believe that today’s digital natives will read all the fine print and make an accurate assessment of the definitions they are reading.

An alternative definition in the urban dictionary suggests a digital immigrant is “someone who was born before the existance of digital technologies and adopted it to some extent later in life” (2011). This definition is a bit vague as well, but it forces the reader to possibly do a bit of research to find out when digital technologies came into existance. Of course the digital native will more than likely scroll down the page in the urban dictionary and find the previouse definition mentioned (with the specified age) and call it a day. Of course the best option would be for the reader/researcher to verify this information by using multiple sources but this would take more work, time and effort.

This brings me to the article we read this week by Greg Toppo “What to learn: ‘core knowledge’ or ’21st century skills’?”. I agree that students today must master these 21st century skills in order to be successful in the future, and secure jobs that will be relevant in the next 10-20 years. The world wide web has opened vast opportunities to communicate with people from all around the world, so it is extremely important today’s students understand how to use these technologies properly and also how to communicate and collaborate effectively.  However, I also agree that we cannot leave behind what the initial goal of education was, the three R’s (reading, writing, and arithmetic), as they are the building blocks that aid in understanding the technological world that surrounds us today. 

I believe the best way to accomplish both of these goals is to find ways to marry them together and not choose one over the other.  This is something teachers are beginning to do with the introduction of SMART boards/Interactive white boards in many of today’s classrooms.  Teacher’s should be responsible for teaching the core curriculm and allowing students to build on it using additional resources and technologies.  This way the students are given the choice to retain the core knowledge and build on it when working independetnly or in groups, or forget the information and continue to research and learn informaiton on a superficial or shallow level.  

After looking at the Partnership for 21st-Century skills website, I believe this group is on the right track to incorporate the 3Rs and 4Cs into a working curriculum.  While this is still a fairly new idea (2002) their diagram (below) shows great potential and a vision that knows where it wants to go.  Obviously the plan needs some adjustments but that can only happen through a series of trials and errors. There is always room for improvement and in this fast changing world of technology this particular way of teaching and learning will constantly be evolving. The biggest challenge is fitting it all into a 9 month time period but I have high hopes that the integration of technology will make this possible.

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Resources:

Framework for 21st century learning: 21st century student outcomes and support systems. Partnership for 21st-Century Skills. Retrieved from http://www.p21.org/about-us/our-history

McKenzie, Jamie. (2007). From now on. The Educational Technology Journal, vol 17 (2). Retrieved from http://fno.org/nov07/nativism.html

Oingodeboingo. (2004, November 11). Digital immigrant. Urban Dictionary. Retrieved from http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=digital+immigrant

Snippllewitz, Millard. (2011, September 6). Digital immigrant. Urban Dictionary. Retrieved from http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=digital+immigrant

Toppo, Greg. (2009, May 5). What to learn: ‘core knowledge’ or 21st-century skills’?. USA Today. Retrieved from http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/education/2009-03-04-core-knowledge_N.htm

Category: indt501  | Tags:  | 2 Comments
Wednesday, January 16th, 2013 | Author:

So, before I reflect on the content of this website I have to first point out how incredibly dullit is.   I found it to be almost contradictory as an example for utilizing technology as a tool to teach.  I guess I expected it to have a more interactive and compelling interface. I felt as though I went “back in time” when I first entered this site, hopefully in the future the Florida Center for Instructional Technology will put into practice what it is trying to promote. On that note…

1. Describe one example that you found especially compelling and one that made you raise an eyebrow skeptically.

I found two of the examples on the Technology Integration Website to be compelling. The first was the video Visualization and Characterization Videos under Constructive Learning/Adaptation Level/Language Arts (http://fcit.usf.edu/matrix/lessons/constructive_adaptation_languagearts.php). I found this lesson interesting because it combined many different aspects of the students learning. These students came up with the idea themselves to combine their technologies and Language Arts classes by making a video interpretation of the book Tom Sawyer. I immediately connected it to the video “Commitment to High Tech Education”, also posted in this weeks module. Much like the students at Harrison Central High School, the students in this TIM video have been given the opportunity to combine tools from two separate classes and make their learning personal by creating a collaborative video interpretation of Tom Sawyer.

The second example I found to be quite useful was the video Multimedia Study Guide under Constructive Learning/Infusion Level/Language Arts (http://fcit.usf.edu/matrix/lessons/constructive_infusion_languagearts.php).  The reason I found this video interesting was because it introduced me to evernote.com, which I had never heard of but was immediately interested in it. Once the video ended I opened a new tab and went straight to the evernote website to see what it was all about.  It is an interesting tool, and I can see how it would be quite useful in a classroom setting.  My favorite feature is that pictures can be taken and loaded into the notes section, in real time. I think this would be especially useful when it comes to copying diagrams or taking pictures of examples that are given by a teacher. Notes can then be typed in below the images to further explain what the diagrams and examples mean, allowing teachers to worry less about students copying down diagrams or examples incorrectly. However, it is slightly annoying that every hour or so the evernote login screen randomly pops up on my computer, but I’ll figure out how to stop that.

 At this point in time I was unable to “find” a Language Arts video example that made me raise a skeptical eyebrow. Teaching is still very new to me so all of these ideas seemed great. Maybe when I become more involved in the teaching process and environment some of these examples may seem odd, but for now I can see myself incorporating the majority of these lesson plans/ideas into my own classroom.

 2. Describe one example of technology use in teaching that you have seen first hand. Which cell in the matrix would it fall in?

I was lucky enough to participate as a practicum teacher in a Photo Journalism Class (Yearbook) this past fall semester. The students in this class used different types of computer software programs, digital cameras, and voice recorders to eventually put together a final product, the yearbook. The class ranged from beginner to advanced knowledge of the process the yearbook had to go through because some students were starting their first semester in this class and others had already been in it for 3 years. The two cell matrices that this class mostly fell into were Active-Infusion and Goal Directed-Adaptation because of the different levels of learns in this class. Although, if I had this matrix with me and spent the entire school year in this classroom, I’m sure I could have ticked off all of the cells in the matrix.

I choose active-infusion because the students already knew how to use the many tools of technology provided to them in the classroom. At the same time though the teacher was there to guide them and provide them with goals that had to be met each week in order for the yearbook to stay on the path to completion. I choose goal directed-adaptation because the more experienced students still had access to all of the tools of technology but were able to work more independently on the projects. These more experienced students were also given some responsibility to help the newer students in the class understand the different software programs they were utilizing. At the same time these students were still responsible to meet the deadlines given by the teacher.

Resources:

College of Education, University of South Florida. (2011). Technology integration matrix. Retrieved from http://fcit.usf.edu/matrix/matrix.php

Ellis, K. (Producer). (2003, April 1). A commitment to high tech education. The George Lucas Educational Foundation. Retrieved from http://www.edutopia.org/harrison-highschool-technology-integration-video

Evernote Corporation. (2013). Retrieved from http://evernote.com/

Category: indt501  | Tags:  | 3 Comments