Friday, August 5, 2016

Ideas on how technology can improve or enhance learning at my school ...

The following is from ISTE
The authors of How People Learn (2000) believe technology enhances learning by:
  • Bringing exciting curricula based on real-world problems into the classroom
  • Providing scaffolds and tools.
  • Giving students and teachers more opportunities for feedback, reflection, and revision
  • Building local and global communities that include teachers, administrators, students, parents, practicing scientists and others. (Bransford, et al., 2000).

Technology enhances learning when it is used to:
  • Give students access to quality information, primary documents, or points of view not available otherwise.
  • Allow students to engage in learning activities that would otherwise be infeasible (examples: human/animal anatomy, or online scientific investigations).
  • Differentiate learning for students with different needs.
  • Help students understand abstract concepts.
  • Gather information, organize, synthesize, analyze information and draw conclusions.
  • Foster student discovery of a concept or construction of their own understanding of a concept.
  • Share ideas and collaborate with remote groups.
  • Help students receive feedback on their work from outside the classroom.
  • Enable students to participate in the democratic process.

This is the next part of the assignment. I am not sure in what direction I should take this question. Maybe it is tricky because I think it is such a fundamental question that everyone should know it is the right path to take.

Ideas on how technology can improve or enhance learning at my school ...

Assessments can become more authentic. I have seen assessments that contained straight "remembering" questions and teachers have to watch over students to make sure the students are not Googling the answer.

What if assessments were made to be Googlable?

I think it sounds exciting to have an assessment where knowledge needs to be synthesized into something new instead of a question that resides at DOK 1 [Depth of Knowledge]. (Alice Keeler writes a lot about this topic.)

I think that is the basic way in which technology can help student learning. Teachers have the ability to use technology to push student thinking forward as well as scaffold their progress.

And leaving myself with some unanswered questions from Silvia Tolisano:

Ask yourself what happens to student learning when: 

  • a teacher does not have a (teaching) plan that they are able/required to follow? 
  • the “plan” is outdated/has been used for the last 5 years? 
  • teachers (across grade levels and subject areas) teach in isolation of each other? 
  • teachers have forgotten, are not interested in, don’t have time for, or are not supported in their own learning? 
  • collaboration and communication among administrators and teachers in order to pursuit of the common goal called student learning is out of sync or non existent? 
  • teaching means covering lessons, units, objectives and standards and does not involve teaching for understanding?

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