Bring on the Learning Revolution!

While watching “Bring on the Learning Revolution” , I heard a lot of great point made by Sir Ken Robinson.  I completely agree with everything he said.  He was also pretty hilarious, so i got a few laughs (which i usually don’t get with education based videos).  His analogy of comparing schools to fast food restaurants is a scary truth.  He mentions that schools are conforming to a standardized way of learning.  As schools and teacher we need to get away from that idea.  Learning is not a “one size fits all” concept.  Education needs to be student lead and centered.

I think what this is says about the “standard” classroom, is that it doesn’t have the capability or allow for the highest form of learning. I think that if we as teachers wanted to have customized learning environments, it may be difficult with the essential tools.  If a teacher does have the tools, then there is no reason not to have some form of blended learning.

I think that all we can do to change the educational system is to do our best to integrate disruptive innovation and blended learning into the classroom.  We as teachers need to showcase the learning that is taking place.

I recently went to this training on a new math program, that our district wants to have us integrate into the classroom.  This program seems pretty awesome, but getting it a month into the school year makes it a bit challenging. Although I’d prefer to have learned about this in the summer, so I could plan, this program is pretty awesome and I know my students would really benefit.  This program, Get More Math, is completely custom based off of the students’ needs in math, in regards to concepts and skills.  The students are able to practice and take assessments on this program.  When students work on the practice and assessments, no practice or assessment is the same. The practice and assessments are based on needs and the new material. Wish me luck!

Disruptive Innovation

After watching the videos and reading, Blended: Using Disruptive Innovation to Improve Schools, it really made me realize the shift in classroom.  Disruptive innovation is important for a few reasons.  Students, being digital natives, gravitate towards and learn better when technology is involved.  Also, in order to cater student needs, in terms of courses need to be taken, this is the answer.  Another reason that stated in the “Technology as a Disruptive Force in Education”, was actually an example that made sense.  The example stated that in the classroom, if the student wants to discuss and ask for others’ perspectives, in the classroom that can’t really happen while the teacher is instructing.  In the disruptive classroom, or blended learning environment, a student would be able to pause the instruction and discuss the topic at hand.  The focus is on student center learning and shouldn’t it be?

 

In the videos, it was mentioned that some classrooms have Chromebooks or laptops and that districts believe they are partaking in blended learning and this is not the case.  They stated, “that it doesn’t have to do with the state of technology, it has to do with how the technology has been implemented.” I thought that was great, because a lot of schools and or classrooms think that everything is better if they just add technology, but it definitely isn’t.  I think that we emphasize technology, to show proof of us integrating and having a blending classroom.  If we really wanted to showcase this, it should be evidence of student work.

I feel that my district is doing a pretty good job at innovation.  Since I’ve been there we have always had an online learning system.  Just like blackboard at Lamar, teachers have been able to have assignment, assessments and discussions on our systems.  Students have Chromebooks and can now access this learning system inside and outside of the classroom.  My district also have the option to do online courses, through an outside program.  They also offer hybrid courses, where students are able to work online, from home for four days of the week and meet with the teacher one day a week.  My district is making a great effort and continuing to improve.

Reference:

Part 6 — Technology as a Disruptive Force in Education. (2014, June 05). Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k0ENX-GTUf4&feature=youtu.be

Another Chapter Closed – My Reflection of 5303

When I was told to start an ePortfolio, I wasn’t all that overwhelmed.  I didn’t feel the pressure for it do be “perfect” because we were just getting started.  Once starting 5303,  we were told to develop out pages little by little each week. To be honest I was dreading it because I was told that it was be in our best interest to switch to WordPress.  I was originally using Wix and had just gotten used to the format.  When I looked at WordPress, it honestly looked confusing to me.  So i put it off and continued using Wix, while blogging, and then realized I need dragging my feet.  I switched over to WordPress and it wasn’t as bad as expected.  I’ve actually learned to like WordPress and noted for the future that I can’t put things off just because it might not work out as easily and I would prefer.

I really did appreciate being able to speak with my group members.  It helped me with  questions,  useful suggestions and grammar checking.  I was also able find out how to link my blog posts, which were on the home page, to a separate page from a group member.  All around it was a great addition to the ePortfolio process.

Another thing that I appreciated was being able to look at ePortfolios .  The ones that were in Dr. Harapnuik’s blog were awesome and were great to see what mine can become.  They were finished, so to be honest they were a little intimidating.  I was noticing me comparing and thinking negatively about mine.  I think it was the “fixed mindset voice” coming out of me.  But I quickly put it in check, with the power of “yet”.  I really liked looking at my classmates’ ePortfolios. I didn’t notice myself comparing, but getting ideas.  I think it was an overall positive experience and really enjoyed looking at them.

I was also grateful for the feedback.  I think there is no way any ePortfolio in this class can be sub-par with all of the supports in place.  We were able to get feedback from Dr. Reed, our group members and classmates.  There were so many suggestions and positive feedback and I really enjoyed reading it all.  This suggestions helped me better my ePortfolio and it’s helped me continue to learn and grow.

This class has really helped me continue to grow and be a life-long learner.  I’m so thankful for everything I’ve learned and feel prepared to continue with improving my ePortfolio.

References:

Virginia Tech. Career and Profressional Development. Retrieve by https://career.vt.edu/experience/Internships/reflect.html

Shouldn’t all Learning be Authentic?

When reading chapter 8 of Choice, Ownership, and Voice through Authentic Learning Opportunities, there was one concept that really resonated with me. Dr. Harapnuik told the story about his sons and the sheet on plastic.  It really made me think back to the classroom and reflect.  Have I practiced this all of the time?  I realized the answer was no.  I think that learning needs to be relevant in order to have students want to take control and ownership.  I think it’s also important to keep students engaged.  If they are engaged the interest is not there.  I honestly believe that learning needs to have a purpose.  I have struggling learners in my classroom and to keep them involved, this needs to be a consistent question I ask myself.  I hope that I can improve and make a difference in the classroom.

References:

Bam Radio Network.  Retrieved by https://www.bamradionetwork.com/quoted/tag/8477-authentic-learning

Harapnuik, D. K., Thibodeaux, T. N., & Cummings, C. D. (2018). Choice, Ownership, and Voice through Authentic Learning Opportunitieshttp://www.harapnuik.org/?page_id=7291 – Chapters 7 – 9

 

Ownership…Can You Give up Control?

After reading Choice, Ownership, and Voice through Authentic Learning Opportunities Chapters 10-13, one thing really stuck out to me.  I realized the ownership is one of the easiest, yet hardest things for me to give students in the classroom.  I think that I want to give students ownership of assignments so they take pride in their work and in turn give their best effort.  They will take ownership of what they created.  On the other hand, relinquishing my control and having it in the hands of the students?  That is tough decision, but the right one.  I think that in the end students will see that I, as their teacher, trust them and believe they can work and take ownership for their work.  I’m really going to make an effort to work on this in my classroom this year.  Look forward to having an update at some point in the year!

References:

Harapnuik, D. K., Thibodeaux, T. N., & Cummings, C. D. (2018). Choice, Ownership, and Voice through Authentic Learning Opportunitieshttp://www.harapnuik.org/?page_id=7291 – Chapters 10 – 13

The Synapse.  Retrieved by https://medium.com/synapse/student-centered-vs-teacher-centered-learning-2184a7521720