Standard 10 Meta-Reflection: Technology

Standard 10 Technology: Integrates current technology into instruction and professional communication/collaboration activities where appropriate.

In the course, Teaching with Technology, I learned multiple ways to integrate technology into instruction and professional communication/collaborating activities that connect with the ISTE standards. There are many digital tools and resources available that help with this process.

ISTE Standard 1: Teachers use their knowledge of subject matter, teaching and learning, and technology to facilitate experiences that facilitate experiences that advance student learning, creativity, and innovation in both face-to-face and virtual environments. 

Providing students with opportunities to collaborate with students in a virtual environment allows students to receive feedback and promotes student reflection. Examples of resources and strategies below:

Penzu -is a free web-based journal tool that allows students to create online journals to publish writing assignments. Each student has his/her own account and each account is linked to the classroom journal. This allows the teacher to access students’ work in one place. The teacher is able to edit and leave comments for students. The student then has quick access to the comments and can continue to revise their work prior to publishing. It also serves as a portfolio of students’ writing because the student has their work compiled all in one place. Penzu allows the teacher to share individual student writing samples with the class. This creates an opportunity for students to see model work samples and peer review or assess other students’ writing. This connects to Standard 1 because this tool allows the teacher to model collaborative knowledge construction by providing feedback. Students can then develop their knowledge by viewing student work samples and giving and receiving feedback from their peers. Hopefully, this interaction will help students reflect and make changes that will enhance their own writing.

Digital storytelling– a technology tool that will support student learning in the area of writing.  Sadik (2008) states, “Storytelling is a simple but powerful method to help students to make sense of the complex and unordered world of experience by crafting storylines” (p. 489). Tikatok is an example of digital storytelling that promotes creative thinking in a virtual environment.  It also connects with Common Core Standards, which addresses the concern of having limited time to integrate technology due to the amount of grade level standards that must be met.  Teachers can use student created stories as an assessment of students’ understanding of the standard. Tikatok motivates students to write because they are creating and publishing their own storybook. It makes the writing activities much more authentic and provides a great format for students to present their work. Sadik (2008) explains that digital storytelling offers a way for students to not only be the listeners but also learners who can interact and shape the story (p.490). This connects to Standard 1 because students are a part of the planning and creative process.

Toontastic– a resource that can motivate students who struggle coming up with an idea to begin the writing process. This app would provide my students with choices to get them started while following a story structure. For students who have difficulty completing a writing task, this app would allow them to feel a sense of accomplishment when completing a story. Hopefully this would motivate them to create stories in different disciplines.

ISTE Standard 2: Teachers design, develop, and evaluate authentic learning experiences and assessment incorporating contemporary tools and resources to maximize content learning in context and to develop the knowledge, skills, and attitudes identified in the NETS.

I learned how to use technology as a tool to provide differentiation for my students. Smith & Throne (2007) describe the need for differentiated instruction to meet the needs of all students and to help students achieve academically. Differentiated instruction requires the teacher to personalize learning activities that address students’ diverse learning styles. Technology can serve as tool for providing differentiation for students throughout the learning cycle. Digital tools can help students organize and keep track of observations. Some include outlines, graphic organizers, tables, and spreadsheets. Technology can also be used to meet the needs of multiple learning styles including visual, auditory, and social learning. Students can use computers to form learning communities that may help them share information, solve problems, and provide feedback.  Finally, technology also allows for project-based learning as an authentic tool for assessment (Benjamin, 2005).

Smith & Throne (2007) provide a list of digital tools teachers can use to enhance Marzano, Pickering, and Pollock’s (2001) effective instructional strategies. These strategies support differentiation in the classroom and are most likely to improve academic achievement:

  • Recognizing similarities and differences- Inspiration and Kidspiration Software, Word Software
  • Summarizing information and taking notes- Notestar, Read-Write-Think Notetaker, Cornell Note-taking Forms
  • Reinforcing effort and providing recognition- Kids Are Authors (Scholastic), Microsoft Publisher Certificates, Word feedback notes
  • Homework and practice- Word processing planners and organizers
  • Nonlinguistic representations- Digital cameras, Graph Club software, Excel, Paint Software, Kid Pix, Kidspiration, Micro Worlds, TimeLiner
  • Cooperative and collaborative learning groups by ability and interest- ThinkQuests, WebQuests
  • Setting objectives and providing feedback-Word journaling, Word learning logs, rubistar
  • Generating and testing hypotheses-Graph Club, Kids’ mysteries, Kidspiration and Inspiration hypothesis Webs, PowerPoint, Science Court, Word or Publisher reports
  • Questions, cues, and advance organizers-Cubing and ThinkDots templates, Word KWL charts, Inspiration and Kidspiration advanced organizers, word agenda and advance organizers (p. 14-15)

Although there are various tools that support the application of these strategies in a differentiated classroom, it is also important to focus on tools that will enhance student learning beyond just reporting information in a digital format. Porter (2010) states, “Educators need to help students rehearse thinking, creativity, and communication skills that go beyond repackaging existing information” (p. 15). Instead of simply using technology to make a project more appealing, the technology should enhance students’ understanding of the content. Examples of resources and strategies below:

Kidspiration– allows students to use higher-order thinking skills. It allows students to create graphic organizers to identify similarities and differences, use non-linguistic representations with pictures, illustrations, and pictographs, and generate and test hypothesis with hypothesis webs (Smith & Throne, 2007).

Prezi– Instead of using PowerPoint to present facts, students can demonstrate conceptual understanding. According to Orlando (2011), “The theory behind Prezi is that ideas are not linear, but rather bundles of interconnected concepts that are better captured as a whole with many parts. Prezi allows the user to illustrate the relationship of concepts to another” (p.7).

ISTE Standard 3: Teachers exhibit knowledge, skills, and work processes representative of an innovative professional in a global and digital society.

Teachers can use technology to communicate information to students and parents that will support student learning. Examples of resources and strategies below:

Homeworknow.com– This resource allows teachers to post classroom information such as announcements, homework, learning activities and classroom events. It provides a way for parents to access information including links to additional educational resources and school websites. Parents can receive alerts when new information is posted. This site also supports the collaboration piece of ISTE Standard 3. It serves as a source for two-way communication because parents can send comments or questions to the teacher.

WordPress or blogger– Blogs allow teachers to post information and parents can leave comments that can be moderated by the teacher. One potential problem with class blogs as a tool for parent communication is that parents might not take time to read the information posted. According to Starkey (2011), “Learning in a digitally enhanced society is the ability to connect and collaborate with others beyond a constrained environment” (p. 21). In order to help students collaborate with their peers, students can use the class blog as a model for creating their own blog or can contribute to the class blog. Students can develop writing skills, share their learning in a creative way and receive feedback from their peers through the use of comments. Starkey states (2011), “Learners have to have connections with other learners or people with whom they interact, collaborate, critique, and gain authentication” (p. 21). Edublogs and Kidblogs are two resources available that allow students to engage in class discussion about a specific topic and reflect on their learning.

Twitter– a way to get information to parents in 140 characters or less. With just a quick note or reminder, parents are more likely to read it. They can quickly access the information on the go via their phone, while still using the blog as a resource for more information.

TeacherWeb– This resource includes several features for communicating with parents. It allows students to continue their study of a lesson at home with access to links that support their learning.

ISTE Standard 4: Teachers understand local and global societal issues and responsibilities in an evolving digital culture and exhibit legal and ethical behavior in their professional practices.

It is important that students are taught digital citizenship and safety so students are prepared to use the internet appropriately throughout their education. The resources and instructional strategies below provide teachers with tools to advocate, model, and teach safe, legal, and ethical use of digital information and technology. According to Ribble (2012), “Starting at a young age, educational leaders need to begin making parallels for students between being good to each other in the classroom and in the digital world” (p. 139). Students need to also follow online rules and protect themselves and their information (Ribble & Miller, 2013). Although my third grade students may have limited access to the internet or online programs, they will need the skills to navigate the digital world throughout their education. There will be multiple opportunities to use the internet for education and social media.  According to Lindsay & Davis (2010), we should begin educating students “as soon as they start using digital tools for communication, collaboration, and creation through connections offline or online” (p. 14). The resources available provide engaging ways to introduce students to digital citizenship so students are safe and use the internet appropriately. Examples of resources and strategies below:

Digital Passport-This resource is appropriate for grades 3-5 and provides online lessons, collaborative activities, games, and videos. Badges serve as incentives for students to meet learning goals and receive a digital passport. Students learn about topics related to digital citizenship, which include: communication, privacy, cyberbullying, searching online, copyright, and plagiarism.

Common Sense Media– The curriculum is “designed to empower students to think critically, behave safely, and participate responsibly in our digital world” (Stansbury, 2011, para. 1). You can search the curriculum by grade level so the topics are appropriate for each age level. The third grade lessons include: talking safely online, solving digital citizenship problems, privacy rules, cyberbullying, and stereotypes.

NetSmartzKids– Songs, interactive games, videos, and e-books teach kids about internet safety and digital etiquette.

ISTE Standard 5: Engage in Professional Growth and Leadership- Teachers continuously improve their professional practice, model lifelong learning, and exhibit leadership in their school and professional community by promoting and demonstrating the effective use of digital tools and resources.

I can also use technology as a tool to continue to grow as an educator, to model effective use of technology, and to learn new ways to integrate technology into the classroom. With so many digital tools available and professional learning networks, my goal is to continue to access these resources to grow as a professional. Hopefully, this type of professional development will improve my implementation of technology and enhance my instruction. In order to learn new ways to integrate technology and share information with others, ISTE Standard 5 recommends joining a local or global learning community. According to Koehler & Mishra (2009), “Teachers practice their craft in highly complex, dynamic classroom contexts that require them constantly to shift and evolve their understanding. Thus, effective teaching depends on flexible access to rich, well-organized and integrated knowledge from different domains” (p.61). With the amount of information available online, it’s important that teachers are seeking opportunities to connect with colleagues and create personal learning networks. This type of professional development is ongoing and can be accessed at any time. Utilizing digital tools allows teachers to be lifelong learners, take leadership in the use of technology, and enhance their instruction. Examples of resources and teaching strategies below:

Twitter– Twitter is one online resource teachers can use for professional development. Twitter allows teachers to share information in 140 characters or less and search for information related to their content area.

Social Bookmarking: Teachers need to learn how to organize the resources they learn about so they can be used efficiently. Social bookmarking sites such as Diigo, Evernote, or LiveBinder may be helpful in this process. Diigo allows teachers to search for information online about certain topics using tags. Teachers can join groups that focus on a specific topic, collaborate with educators, and learn new information that members have contributed. It also allows teachers to highlight and annotate any webpage they find online. They can send any webpage that has been bookmarked and highlighted to colleagues. Evernote allows teachers to annotate information from multiple web pages. LiveBinder allows teachers to organize multiple resources. Teachers can create different binders for different purposes such as professional development and teaching tools.

Artifacts:

Digital Poster: This artifact is a digital poster I created with Glogster. This is a resource that students can use to create their own posters on a topic. This poster also serves as a learning tool to teach kids about digital citizenship in the area of plagiarism.

Digital Story: This artifact is an example of how I can model creative and innovative thinking. My digital story is also a learning experience that incorporates a digital tool to promote student learning.

References

Benjamin, A. (2005). Differentiated Instruction Using Technology: A Guide for Middle and High School Students. Routledge. Retrieved from http://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=pNLH8anjrDkC&oi=fnd&pg=PR5&dq=using+technology+for+differentiated+instruction&ots=DmVLts7Dy4&sig=da9uQWP0sgOKyqLJ-2PKb19vgCg#v=onepage&q=using%20technology%20for%20differentiated%20instruction&f=fals

Common Sense Media. (2014). Reviews & Age Ratings – Best Movies, Books, Apps, Games for Kids. Scope and Sequence | Common Sense Media. Retrieved March 2, 2014, from http://www.commonsensemedia.org/educators/scope-and-sequence

Koehler, M. J., & Mishra, P. (2009). What is technological pedagogical content knowledge? Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, 9(1), 60-70.

Lindsay, J., & Davis, V. (2010). Navigate. Learning & Leading with Technology, . Retrieved , from https://bbweb-prod.spu.edu/bbcswebdav/pid-920426-dt-content-rid-1636491_1/courses/EDTC6433_28657201342/Navigate%20the%20Digital%20Rapids.pdf

Marzano, R. J., Pickering, D., & Pollock, J. E. (2001). Classroom instruction that works: Research-based strategies for increasing student achievement. Alexandria, Va: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

NetSmartzKids. (2001-2014). Retrieved March 2, 2014, from http://www.netsmartzkids.org/

Orlando, J. (2011). Teaching with Technology: Tools and Strategies to Improve Student Learning. Faculty Focus, , 7. Retrieved , from https://bbweb-prod.spu.edu/bbcswebdav/pid-920390-dt-content-rid-1636506_1/courses/EDTC6433_28657201342/Teaching%20with%20Technology%20Tools%20and%20Orlando.pdf 

Penzu. (2014). Write In Private: Free Online Diary And Personal Journal | Penzu. Penzu | Classroom. Retrieved January 17, 2014, from http://penzu.com/content/products/classroom

Porter, B. (2010). Where’s the Beef? Adding Rigor to Student Digital Projects. Learning & Leader with Technology, , 14-17. Retrieved , from https://bbweb-prod.spu.edu/bbcswebdav/pid-920387-dt-content-rid-1636523_1/courses/EDTC6433_28657201342/WHERE’S%20THE%20BEEF%20-%20Adding%20Rigor%20to%20Student%20Digital%20Products%281%29.pdf

Ribble, M. Educational Leadership in an Online World: Connecting Students to Technology, Responsibly, Safely, and Ethically. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks,17(1). Retrieved , from https://bbweb-prod.spu.edu/bbcswebdav/pid-920424-dt-content-rid-1637768_1/courses/EDTC6433_28657201342/C631F5EC-A504-431F-8386-E36EEDFB9978.pdf

Russell, A., Amarasiriwardena, T., Clarke, A., Kim, W., Thomason, C., Rotondo, M., Clemmons, H., & McLawhorn, M. Launchpad Toys. Toontastic. Retrieved January 17, 2014, from http://www.launchpadtoys.com/toontastic/

Sadik, A.(2008). Digital storytelling: A meaningful technology integrated approach for engaged student learning. Educational Technology Research and Development, 56, 487–506

Smith, G., & Throne, S. (2007). Differentiating Instruction with Technology K-5 Classrooms. ISTE. Retrieved from http://www.iste.org/images/excerpts/diffk5-excerpt.pdf

 Stansbury, M. (2011) 10 ways schools are teaching internet safety. ESchoolNews: Daily Tech News & Innovation. Retrieved March 2, 2014, from http://www.eschoolnews.com/2011/11/11/10-ways-schools-are-teaching-internet-safety/

Starkey, L. (2011). Evaluating learning in the 21st century, a digital age learning matrix. Technology, pedagogy, and education,20(1), 19-39. Retrieved , from https://bbweb-prod.spu.edu/bbcswebdav/pid-920397-dt-content-rid-1636485_1/courses/EDTC6433_28657201342/evaluating%20learning%20in%20the%2021st%20century.pdf

 Tikatok. (2013). Tikatok – Everyone has a story. What’s yours?. Retrieved January 17, 2014, from http://www.tikatok.com/

 

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