Reflection of Integrating Technology Across the Content Areas

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game planThis week marks the completion of the course I am taking at Walden University: Integrating Technology Across the Content Areas. It is time to reflect on this course and talk about where the rubber meets the road, its impact on my instructional practices.

    I would say one of the biggest takeaways for me was the “Game Plan” technique as presented in our course text; Technology Integration for Meaningful Classroom Use:  A Standards-Based Approach, by Cennamo, Ertmer, and Ross (2009) when integrating technology into the classroom. This technique breaks down the process of integrating technology into instruction into four steps using the  GAME plan method:

  • Goals-Create goals, for a plan & take action to achieve the goals.

  • Assessing-Assess student’s growth

  • Monitor-Monitor their results

  • Evaluation-Evaluate progress, reflect and adjust

The GAME plan method is a definite takeaway from this course. When teachers are planning to integrate technology, Cennamo, Ross, & Ertmer (2009) pointed out how the GAME plan causes teachers to become self-directed learners and this is one of the reasons why I like working with the GAME plan method. I have been using the GAME since it was introduced, I have shared it with my colleagues and I will continue to use it with my lesson planning and instructional design.

    Another thing I learned in this course was that digital storytelling is a powerful tool that I have not been utilizing. Arnie Abrams (Laureate Education, 2009c) talked about how having students create digital stories helps to improve their reading skills. I have already changed some lessons and added a digital story telling component into the learning process. As I move forward, I would like to continue to identify technology tools that can be used for digital storytelling and utilize them.

~Nicole Britton

References:
Cennamo, K., Ross, J. & Ertmer, P. (2009). Technology integration for meaningful classroom use: A standards-based approach. (Laureate Education, Inc., Custom ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.
Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2009a). Integrating technology across the content areas: Enriching content area learning experiences with technology, part 1. Baltimore, MD: Author.
Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2009b). Integrating technology across the content areas: Promoting self-directed learning with technology. Baltimore, MD: Author.
Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2009c). Integrating technology across the content areas: Spotlight on technology: Digital storytelling, part 2. Baltimore, MD: Author.
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Monitoring My GAME Plan Progress

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A few weeks ago I select two ISTE (International Society for Technology in Education) standards to use with my game plan. Those standards are:

  • Facilitate and inspire student learning and creativity. a-Promote, support, and model creative and innovative thinking and inventiveness (ISTE, 2008).
  • a- Design or adapt relevant learning experiences that incorporate digital tools and resources to promote learning and creativity (ISTE, 2008). Design and develop digital age learning experiences and assessments.

It is time to reflect on my progress toward that goal. As I reflect there are a few key questions that I asking myself.

  1.  Are you finding the information and resources you need?

donors chooseLast week, I identified the need for enough chromebooks in my room for cooperative learning groups. I began to explore and look into funding options. I identified Go Fund Me as a resource.  I set up a go fund me request  which was authorized 3 days ago. In the last 3 days, my Go Fund Me request has earned $391.00.  Look on my prior post to view my Go Fund Me Request or click here.

I have spent some time online looking for a variety of assessments to help spark ideas. I found a document on Edutopia’s website called, 53 Ways to Check for Understanding which can be viewed here.

  1. Do you need to modify your action plan?

At this point, I do not see that I need to modify my plan. I will continue to monitor and make adjustments as I move forward.

  1. What have you learned so far?

This week’s coursework  focused on assessments. Cennamo (2009) talked about Weaving assessments into instruction as an effective approach. Thompson (2009) talked about empowering students by allowing them to choose which technology to use(Laureate Education).  Cennamo (2009) pointed out that performance based assessments allow students to show mastery of a skill or concept.

This has helped me to realized that my planning focus will be on guided inquiry and the focus on the assessments that I select will be integrated into the the task. I will be using rubrics. I also identified the need to allow students to choose which technology tool they use. I will work on generating a menu of options such as, podcast, wiki sites, blogs, Google slides and digital storytelling for my plan.

  1. What new questions have arisen?

I am wondering about technology tools that I am unaware of. I signed up for a 2 day professional development Ed tech training, and am awaiting approval from my district.

I am also wondering about gamification and assessments. This is an area that I would like to learn more about. My students really enjoy using Kahoot (site: https://getkahoot.com/how-it-works) and I want to spend so time looking for more free resources that gamify assessments.

~Nicole Britton

 

References
Cennamo, K., Ross, J. & Ertmer, P. (2009). Technology integration for meaningful classroom use: A standards-based approach. (Laureate Education, Inc., Custom ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.
Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2009). Integrating technology across the content areas: Assessing student learning with technology. Baltimore, MD: Author.

Please Help! 1to1 chromebooks for my classroom

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21st Century Education ~ Taking Students Beyond the 4 Walled Classroom! Click HERE for our Donors Choose request.

My students need access to 8 Chromebooks daily in order to engage in inquiry based learning.

If you cannot give $$$ I would really appreciate you sharing this post to help get the word out. THANKS SO MUCH!! Also right now any donation qualifies for matching if you use the promo code SPARK during checkout to double their donations to your project (up to $100).

My Students

“The stone age didn’t end because we ran out of stones, it ended because better tools came along.” ~ Thornburg. Chrome books are the “better tool” I would like my students to be able to use daily.

This year I have am teaching a 4th and 5th grade classroom.

Having access to chrome books daily would help me address the diverse needs that come with a split grade classroom in an engaging way. Presently, I have access to a chrome book cart a few times a week. When I am able to use chrome books in my classroom, my students are engaged and excited about learning.

My Project

I have completed MS coursework in the area of effectively integrating technology in the classroom. These chrome books will help me apply what I have learned with my students on a daily basis. My students will be able to engage in guided inquiry based learning. They will develop 21st century skills. They will learn to not just be consumers but also producers of content on the web as they create websites, publish writing online, blog, podcast and e-collaborate.

This project will be an absolute game changer in my classroom! My students will have access to current information that can be found online.

It will open up learning beyond the four walls of my classroom.

Carrying Out My GAME Plan

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Last week I select two ISTE (International Society for Technology in Education) standards to use with my game plan. Those standards are:

  • Facilitate and inspire student learning and creativity. a-Promote, support, and model creative and innovative thinking and inventiveness (ISTE, 2008).
  • a- Design or adapt relevant learning experiences that incorporate digital tools and resources to promote learning and creativity (ISTE, 2008).Design and develop digital age learning experiences and assessments:

benjaminBenjamin Franklin said: “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!”

I want to achieve this goal, so here are the questions/issues I addressed as part of my plan:

  • What resources will you need to carry out your plan (media segments, reading, experts or colleagues, etc)?

In order for my students to be engaged in inquiry based learning, they will need access to the internet.

  • What additional information do you need?

I have decided to design a lesson that will integrate science lessons. I have spent some time reviewing the standards. I have discussed a few options with my building PLC team. Cennamo, Ross, & Ertmer (2009) talked about the importance of allowing students to access a variety of information when they are educating themselves. I need to locate a few more resources online for my students in order to give them a variety.

  • What steps have you been able to take so far?

I have booked chrome books to be used in my classroom for a few periods a day three days a week. In this week’s resources Vicki Davis (Laureate Education, 2009) talked about how technology can be used to meet the diverse needs of  learners.  I have realized having access to chrome books daily would be what is best for my students. I met with our district technology director and we discussed the technology budget and sadly an increase in technology will not be happening in my district for a few years. I created a donors choose account and set up a request for enough funding for 8 chrome books in my room. This the most that I can request as a new user to donors choose. I am waiting for Donors Choose to approve my “ad” and then I will be able to advertise my request for funds for my classroom.

Resources

Cennamo, K., Ross, J. & Ertmer, P. (2009). Technology integration for meaningful classroom use: A standards-based approach. (Laureate Education, Inc., Custom ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.
Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2009). Integrating technology across the content areas: Meeting students’ needs with technology, part 1. Baltimore, MD: Author.

Reflective Teachers & The GAME Plan…..

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This week I spent some time looking at the ISTE (International Society for Technology in Education) standards for teachers on this site: http://www.iste.org/standards/ISTE standards/standards-for-teachers

game plan

Effective educators must reflect, assess their own knowledge (Laureate Education, 2009). After looking at the standards, I reflected and identified two areas that I would like to improve. Cennamo, Ross, & Ertmer ( 2009) introduced me to the GAME Plan

G-oals- set goals, create

A-ction steps to achieve goals

M-onitor progress

E-valuate

which can be used developing a plan for student inquiry and for goal setting for myself.

 

The first ISTE-T standards for teachers that I selected to create a GAME plan for was:

Facilitate and inspire student learning and creativity.

a-Promote, support, and model creative and innovative thinking and inventiveness (ISTE, 2008).

My GAME Plan for this is:

Goal: I would like to design more learning opportunities for my students that Promote, support, and model creative and innovative thinking and inventiveness.

Action steps that I will take are: Design a unit for my students that uses technology and has my students engaged in creative and innovative thinking.

Monitor progress: I will monitor my progress by: creating a timeline for myself with a deadline to have a unit planned. I will set mini due dates to keep myself on track. I will ask for input from my PLC team as I plan.

Evaluate: I will evaluate my achieving this goal by: meeting the deadlines I set for myself and having student artifacts that demonstrate that they engaged in creative and innovative thinking while using technology.

 

The second standard that I selected to create a GAME plan for is:

Design and develop digital age learning experiences and assessments:

a- Design or adapt relevant learning experiences that incorporate digital tools and resources to promote learning and creativity (ISTE, 2008).

Goals: For my students to be using technology while engaged in authentic learning experiences.

Action steps that I will take are: create engaging and authentic lessons for my students using technology.

Monitor progress: I will monitor my progress by: Creating a planning timeline for myself with mini due dates to keep myself on task.

Evaluate: I will evaluate my achieving this goal by: creating a webquest that has my students engaged problem based learning.  I will evaluate my achieving this goal by: meeting the deadlines I set for myself and having student artifacts that demonstrate that they engaged in creative and innovative thinking while using technology.

By using the GAME Plan I am able to have system for setting goals, making action steps, monitoring my progress and evaluating my progress (Cennamo, Ross, & Ertmer, 2009).

I encourage my fellow educators to form a GAME Plan!

~Nicole Britton

Resources:

Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2009). Integrating technology across the content areas: Enriching content area learning experiences with technology, part 1. Baltimore, MD: Author.

Cennamo, K., Ross, J. & Ertmer, P. (2009). Technology integration for meaningful classroom use: A standards-based approach. (Laureate Education, Inc., Custom ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

Reflection- Bridging Learning Theory, Instruction, and Technology

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 bridge    This week marks the end of an 8 week study, Bridging Learning Theory, Instruction, and Technology  EDUC 6711. I learned a lot during this course. Upon completion of this course, I would say there is one very significant change in my personal learning theory. This course helped me to realize the positive impact cooperative learning can have in the classroom. In the past, I had my students engage in cooperative learning from time-to-time and now I will be using cooperative learning on a regular basis. Cooperative learning allows students to work on their collaboration skills while building other skills they will need as they enter the 21st century workforce such as problem solving, confidence and social skills (Orey, 2001).

     This course covered learning theories such as cognitivists, behaviorists, connectivism, constructivism, and social-constructivists. Lever-Duffy & McDonald  (2008) talked about the importance and uniqueness of each learning theory.  As I progressed through this course I began to shift my instructional design to a model that focused more on constructivists, connectivism and social-constructivists. As I began to shift my instructional approach my students responded positively, which affirmed my belief that today’s learner is very different than the students that were in my room in the late 1990’s.

     As I plan for next school year, there will be some adjustments to my pedagogical approach to teaching. The biggest shift will be that cooperative learning will occur in my classroom on a regular basis. There are a few technology tools that I will utilize next year because of this course. The first is voice thread. I had not heard of this tool that allows students and teachers to record and embed their voice with images and presentations. I purchased access for my class next year and I will have each student set up with a voice thread log in. I plan on having them use it with storytelling, fluency practice, presentation narration and book talks. Another tool that I will use next year is pod casting. While taking this class, I had my students engage in two podcasts and they were very engaged and learned a lot. Next year, I plan to have my students use podcasting on a regular basis.

     A goal that I have is to shift my instructional practice to be more student centered. Another goal I have is to have my student work in cooperative groups more often next year.  In order to achieve these goals I will be using my summer to design a number of lessons that have students using technology to research and answer essential questions. I will also put together a number of web-quest activities which is another way I can use technology to engage my students and have a student centered approach.Pitler, Hubbell, & Kuhn (2012) talked about how visual images can help to cue the memory. I will be working in more non-linguistic activities into my instruction.  This course work has truly help me shift my pedagogical approach to instruction in a way that will help my students be better prepared for the 21st century workforce.

References
Laureate Education (Producer). (n.d.a). Cognitive learning theories [Video file]. Retrieved from https://class.waldenu.edu
Laureate Education (Producer). (n.d.b.). Spotlight on technology: VoiceThread [Video file]. Retrieved from https://class.waldenu.edu
Laureate Education (Producer). (n.d.c.). Spotlight on technology: Virtual field trips [Video file]. Retrieved from https://class.waldenu.edu
Laureate Education (Producer). (n.d.d.). Social learning theories [Video file]. Retrieved from https://class.waldenu.edu
Lever-Duffy, J., & McDonald, J. (2008). Theoretical foundations. In Theoretical foundations (Laureate Education, Inc., custom ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson Education, Inc.
Orey, M. (Ed.). (2001). Emerging perspectives on learning, teaching, and technology. Retrieved from http://epltt.coe.uga.edu/index.php?title=Main_Page
Pitler, H., Hubbell, E. R., & Kuhn, M. (2012). Using technology with classroom instruction that works (2nd ed.). Alexandria, VA: ASCD.

Check Out this Problem Based Activity that weaves in technology &Social Learning Theories !!

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    0011 This week I designed a STEM  problem based instructional design activity for my students to work on collaboratively. In this activity, my students will be placed in groups, given a set of materials and asked to construct a windmill that will lift objects.  I tied this activity to a real world problem to give it a level of relevancy with the students.  I am using a tool called Voicethread to deliver the lesson to my students. Voicethread allows a person to record audio along with images. My voice thread activity is at this link:

https://voicethread.com/new/share/6854252/

     My students will work in cooperative groups for this project. They will be will access the internet to research when they are planning their design. They will also use technology to record their results. Later they will publish their findings on a their Google sites.

     One thing is very clear to any educator that has been in the classroom for a few decades, today’s learner is different than the student that stepped into the classroom in the mid 1990’s. The workforce that these students will enter into is also very different. They will be entering a workforce where technology has allowed and requires people to work together on projects. The workforce they enter will require that they are able to adapt as newly emerging technologies arrive. To prepare today’s learner for tomorrow’s work force, pedagogical approaches must include social learning instructional practices and utilize technology.

     Social learning theory was the topic of study this week. Social learning theorist hold the belief that learners construct their Social learning theory2learning almost completely based on their interactions with others (including networks of learning they have constructed) and their environment is held by social learning theorist. Orey (Producer,Laureate Education, n.d.) shared a few distinctive characteristics of the connectivism:

  • Information abundance requires that we offload our information onto a network of people and technology.
  • The recognition that because of technologically our networks are abundant.

In order to be an effective teacher, I must shift my instructional practices and integrate technology into my lesson design. Orey’s (Producer,Laureate Education, n.d.) talked about the importance of collaborative/cooperative learning.  When lessons are designed with a project/problem based focus which as students engaged in an activity that they are are creating something together students are learning 21st century skills. Cooperative learning is one strategy that I have been using more often in my classroom. Pitler (2012) talked about the importance of cooperative learning groups organized in a variety of ways. Social media, such as facebook, allows us to not only make connects with other people but it also allows us to see the web of networking that connects many people together.  Today’s learner has constructed and webbed together their own network of learning, including things such as social media, search engines, and peers to name a few. They are used to gaining and sharing information in a collaborative venue.

     By designing this lesson I know that my students will be engaged in a problem based learning experience that will help them develop 21st century skills.

References
Laureate Education (Producer). (n.d.). Social learning theories [Video file]. Retrieved from https://class.waldenu.edu
Laureate Education (Producer). (n.d.). Social learning theories [Video file]. Retrieved from https://class.waldenu.edu
Laureate Education (Producer). (n.d.). Connectivism as a learning theory [Video file]. Retrieved from https://class.waldenu.edu