Digital Students

The current course of study incorporates a Professional Experience Placement and has led many of us scrambling for resources which focus on ICT use within the classroom.  However, this post today prompted me to consider the expectations of our students.  “What ICT’s should we use?  Are they challenging our students? Does the ICT engage students?” or even as teachers, “Are our skills of a high enough standard to be respected by our young digital natives?”

This tweet provides a great link to a series of posters which may be useful for downloading and reflecting on our application of ICTs in the classroom context. And, especially to consider if what we’re doing is ground-breaking to our students or just a new tool for our generation.  Worth taking a look 🙂

Disrupted or Designed? ICT in the Classroom

Computer_Access by vdowney, on Flickr
Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic License   by  vdowney 

A great tweet from UKEdChat  today discussing the use of ICT’s in the classroom. Diana G. Oblinger is President and CEO of EDUCAUSE and she reports her views on ICT as a classroom disrupter.  As future teachers, one of our professional goals is to integrate the use of ICT into the modern classroom to prepare learners for the 21st century and as a fundamental tool for higher education.   We are reminded yet again, that:-

“In spite of the power of technology, in spite of the growing belief that technology can provide answers, we must continue to look beyond the tool to the goal. Information technology has made possible many advances, contributing to the globalization, economic development, and democratization of society. Yet technology is neither good nor evil. It is the purposes for which it is used that make the difference.”  (Oblinger, 2013).

Whilst technology is often viewed as the driver of the changes, it is important to remember that technology simply opens new possibilities. Design, rather than disruption, will help us ensure technology lives up to its promise.

It’s off to prac we go ….

The last few weeks, and particularly the last few days my blog feed has been filled with comments from fellow students concerned about professional experience placements. For most of us the stress has released just a little by finding out which school to attend, what year level is allocated, even meeting with mentors and schools for inductions.  The next three weeks are likely to be busy, challenging and yet at the same times rewarding for all of us.  Wendy offers some good advice on remembering to take time out for ourselves this week, to relax and prepare before the onslaught.

The Dreaded Naplan

 

Today is the day feared by many students around Australia.  Year 3, 5, 7, and 9 students all begin to sit standardised testing to ascertain the education levels of our current students. As I am studying the integration of ICTs in education and the values offered by technology I must confess it does astound me that this testing is not completed through utilisation of technology.

This article  which was recently published in the Daily Telegraph suggests that integration of technology into NAPLAN may occur in the year 2017.  Students will be asked to input data;  and feedback and scoring will be generated electronically.  However, BEWARE… there is always a downside which is cleverly pointed out in Blog’sloitation’s post.  Well worth a read!!

Notes to Self …

April 2013 by Rick Payette, on Flickr
Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.0 Generic License   by  Rick Payette 

Today, I felt the sudden urge to start planning for Professional Experience.
As I don’t know where I’m headed, I decided that I could make a start by developing a resource folder of the required administrative items.  To help with this, I created a Trello account as an online record of tasks that I will need to cover. However, I found that a basic checklist  might still be useful. So I decided to share it here, in the hope that if I’ve forgotten something you might be able to remind me, or perhaps even help a fellow student prepare for our impending teaching experiences.
 In my prac bag ….. I will need???
  1. Printed copy of the Professional Experience Handbook
  2. ICT Statement Form
  3. Lesson Plan Template (and electronic access to the template)
  4. My laptop
  5. Weekly Feedback forms
  6. Professional Experience Interim Report form
  7. Professional Experience Final Report Form or Referees Statement

and last but not least …… A bag of courage 🙂

I hope you all have an enjoyable Professional Experience.

Digital Classrooms

Hi all, I don’t know about you but I’m starting to getting a little nervous about our impending prac placement.  The not knowing and not being able to prepare is a challenge.

To try and ready myself for this experience I have started to look for resources and suggestions on how best to integrate ICTs into the classroom.  Like most fellow students, I’m starting to feel confident with utilising technology to support student classroom  learning, however, the issue is still how best to use the available digital resources.I found the Education Queensland Smart Classroom website offers really useful information regarding Practical Ideas for Teaching and Learning with ICTs. Additionally, these strategies are linked to Bloom’s Taxonomy and Saranna makes valid suggestions regarding a students involvement and their understanding through use of the taxonomy

May be helpful if we get bogged down along.

Smart and Safe Digital Citizenship

Technology provides us with quick and easy access to unlimited resources and information via access to the internet and web 2.0. Students, parents, teachers and community members can instantly access people, places and opportunities in a 21st century technological world. Unfortunately, as previously quoted by Postman, “What Technology giveth, technology taketh away.” So whilst we have constant access to people and resources, the down side is that they also have access to us at times we don’t like or perhaps even without our consent. Sadly, this places not only ourselves at risk but also our children/ students in danger of becoming victims of cyberbullying, predators and exposure to inappropriate information.

Twenty-first educators, parents and community members have a duty of care to encourage safe networking practices. The Australian government offers an online training package supporting safe networking practices for young children, teens, parents, schools and Indigenous people through offering interactive software which engages and educates Australians in cyber smart practices. Additionally, the Cyber[smart] website offers virtual classroom experiences, lesson plans on digital citizenship, and supporting resources for teachers to facilitate authentic, informed learning.

Whilst, these resources are important, it is further significant that that teacher’s undertake Professional Development targeting in-depth understanding of the issues. Connect.ed offers four online training modules that offer teachers the knowledge, confidence and resources to help students stay safe online.

Connect.ed certificate

Offensive Language in Texts

Tourists Often Say The Cutest Things Ver by bill barber, on Flickr
Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 2.0 Generic License   by  bill barber 

Today, I read an interesting article reflecting on whether texts of either digital or hard copy should be subjected to conventional language expectations.  The article by the Sydney Morning Herald reported that Roald Dahl’s book “Revolting Rhymes” was recently pulled off supermarket shelves for use of offensive language.  Of more interest is the fact that this book was published in 1982 and has only recently been reported.  “Are we becoming more sensitive?” or “Should parents and readers have acted on this issue much sooner?”  Certainly, does lead to many further questions and discussions.

One thing is for sure! Netiquette rules have been in existence for some time now and I find this site both reputable and useful when reflecting on children’s’ texts.  Reflection of the recommended guidelines by CyberSmart clearly states that if you wouldn’t like to be treated in such manner then the terms/language shouldn’t be used.

Next Stop…. Assignment 3!!

matchbox 20:3 a.m. by visualpanic, on Flickr
Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic License   by  visualpanic 
Just finished Assignment 2, all barring a final edit and it was BIG!!!!  I have just had time to draw breath, regroup and peek at the Final Assignment #3.  It is HUGE!!!  And to make matters even more difficult I can’t even begin to get my head around the tasks required or even the context of this assignment.   So I’ve had to press the pause button, deal with my obsession of being ahead of task, and await new of my Professional Experience placement. As Assignment 3 relies heavily of Professional Experience and the context of the placement there is nowhere to  begin.
Hopefully, next week will provide the answers to this much awaited NEWS  from the Professional Experience OfficeIn the meantime, I’m going to enjoy the sunshine and take some sound advice from Rebecca and complete some admin. tasks ready for prac.

Tick, Tock, Tick, Tock!

Tick Tock Clock by bizzlenj, on Flickr
Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 2.0 Generic License   by  bizzlenj 
This week has been overwhelming to say the least.  I am trying to work full-time, complete assessment tasks and prepare for Professional Experience somewhere???  All in all, my self-confidence is taking quite a hit.  Whilst, I like to think of myself as an organised person who completes tasks ahead of time, this is starting to prove very difficult.
During the study break, I took the opportunity to spend time on assessment tasks and to finally feel that I was ahead of the game. However, it seems that my ability to stay ahead was to be short-lived after suffering a blow about the uncertainty of my Professional Experience and it’s linked planning and assessment tasks.  Assessment 2 is written and awaiting a final check before submission and the inability to move forward to the next unit of work is making me a little nervous.  I can certainly relate to Michaela’s post regarding the stress she too is encountering through course work.

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