I just finished facilitating a session that aimed to make explicit connections between technology activities and specific pedagogical theories of learning. It went okay — we struggled a bit with the challenge of speaking about pedagogy in sufficiently specific terms, in the context of technology activities. Two or three people invoked multiple pedagogical constructs for a single technology example. While this might authentically reflect the real complexity of actual classroom work, I also feel that we would benefit from at least narrowing the conversation to one pedagogical construct at a time in order to truly understand the reason for its effectiveness.
Participants expressed interest by posting stickies under the session description.
Here are our notes from today’s session:
- Behaviorism: rewards, grades, stars, stickers, reinforcements
- Cognitivism: intellectual complexity, Socratic method, programming, debating
- Constructivism: building meaning based on experience, building knowledge base, socially, based, Montessori, project-based learning, not one authority
- Connectivism: working in a highly connected environment, using your network, blogging, lurking on backchannel (sidebar convos, perhaps) chat
- Engagement, joyful participation
- Differentiated Instruction
- Inquiry model, studio
- Understanding by Design
- Universal Design for Learning: multiple representations
Internet Safety — 5th and 6th graders
- Lecture, poster or comic about one safety rule
- Build a web page and publish it, demonstrating that they can follow the rule
- Connectivism, Understanding By Design: project is available for any student to be successful with, every student completes the task; more than constructivist, because of group work, connected to all teachers, working with and supporting each other
Art/music collaboration: history of silent films, background in nonverbal communication, drama, what it takes to create a movie
- students created storyboard, ideas for how they would create a silent movie
- how can we make this more open to different kinds of students? break students into groups? not so product driven?
Podcast project with ninth grade
- vignettes, write about an experience in their lives, added music and sound effects
- extraordinary podcasts in terms of writing and expression, correcting themselves as they were speaking it aloud
- one kid in particular related his experience with parents getting divorced
- very personal, not shared outside of the class
- differentiated — being able to express themselves in a different way
- kids who had decided they were not good writers
- read vignettes written by other people
Digital Storytelling — fifth grade
- kids had a personal narrative, Macs, iMovie, Garageband
- music, sounds effects, parents made up the audience
- blogged and podcasted so that relatives far away and teachers could also enjoy it
- behaviorism: rewarded for their work
- constructivism, engagement, personal narrative
- can add to story by including random elements, discussing how that impacts the story
- using photos may not be easier, especially if gathering other peoples’ images
- visual literacy: how are images interpreted? How do you tell a story well with images?
Google Tools: teachers investigating tools themselves and thinking about how they could use them in their classrooms, present the tool to the rest of the class
- larger group response and feedback to the tool
- greater opportunity for creativity — more ideas about how tools could be used
VoiceThread: bridging podcasts and vodcasts
- focus on the up-front preparation before you get to the technical tool
- could also have value to throw kids directly into the tool to explore it (e.g., Scratch)
- teachers didn’t think that one would be allowed to submit a research paper as a VoiceThread
- when is the purpose of the lesson exploration? (especially when it is something new). No matter how teacher-directed an activity is, learners find the opportunity to explore.
- exploration is highly constructivist — building your own representation of the tool based on your toying around with it
- power of exploration when there is a direction to it: e.g., “build a house” “build a bicycle”. Need to have some kind of goal, allow the time to explore, fewer projects, more time per project.
- Able to accept as research once you set the bar high for product expectations
Simple repetition: elementary school students record own stories and then, on their own, decide to re-record over and over in order to improve them.