Tuesday, June 29, 2010

ISTE 2010: November, "Digital Learning Farm: Students as Contributors"

Digital Learning Farm: Students as Contributors
Presented by Alan November

We need to trust children to teach teachers.

Tutorial Design Team:
Mathtrain.tv: Includes videos of math concepts. Some teachers allow their students to either do homework, or they can create screenshot tutorials. An important element is to NOT give students grades for their creative works; otherwise, motivation will decrease over time.

WolframAlpha: An online tool that will solve algebraic and other similar math problems. If you type "Solution" along with the problem, you can find the steps to the solution.

Dan Pink, Drive: In Pink's book, he states that if you do not have purpose, your motivation will decline. November, then, states that we need to focus on giving children purpose. One such purpose is to have them create products that can benefit others.

Screencasting is a critically important tool that teachers seldom use.

Production Designer:
A key to enhanced educational opportunities is to release control to the students. An example of this is Bob Sprankle's student vodcast. In his elementary-level classroom, they do a weekly podcast on what the class learned throughout the week. A student designs the production for the week. After creating these podcasts, students individually came to Mr. Sprankle and asked him if they could create their own shows. One student created a writing show and another created a math show.

Using Google Docs, have three different students keep notes during a single teaching period. Have each of the three students focus on a different aspect of the presentation. Also, inform each of these scribes that they should add additional information as they feel it would be helpful, and they can add information to their notes at any later time.

School culture has conditioned children to create a dependency on the teacher to answer their questions. They are not encouraged to explore on their own; they are rewarded when interacting with the teacher and asking questions of the teacher. A job students may have in the class is to to be the researcher. When a student asks a question, one student is required to find the answer online.

Global Communicator:
One student's job should be to find email addresses of people that could act as experts when the class has questions they are unable to answer.

Kiva: A website designed to facilitate loans to small businesses around the world. For $25, students can choose a business to support and follow the success of the business. When the money is returned, you can re-invest it.

"Don't forget the kids." In fact, perhaps we should spend more time empowering kids to improve learning and less time on professional development. Perhaps a school could put together a team of students who will identify a list of ways they can use cell phones for learning within the school environment.

No comments: