Sunday, February 17, 2013
Blog Post #5
If I Built A School
Wow, Krissy Venosdale's school would be an awesome experience for students. What she described in her blog post was pretty close to the way a lot of college campuses are now or becoming. Just think, if that were applied to elementary and secondary schools how much students would enjoy school. I have three sons that are in school and not one of them enjoy going to school. However, when summer break is nearly over I hear one or two of them make the comment about being ready for school to start. As a parent sending my child to school of the magnitude, that Ms. Venosdale described, would make parenting a little bit easier. Happily involved students produce much better results and outcomes in learning. I know as a college student myself when I enjoy the class and have fun with it I produce much better work.
The concept of a school I would build wouldn't be much different than the one Ms. Venosdale described. As a history educator I may encourage some dramatic presentations that would allow the students to rediscover historical events through living them out in a fun, exciting, and creative way. The concept of allowing the students to progress at a rate suitable to their interest and intellect would provide motivation and more involved students. I can say that fostering students' talents in a field of study that they excel in, would produce higher level students exiting secondary schools. As future educators and administrators developing these future schools is in our hands. If the schools fill up with classrooms developed through technology, it will eventually change the way schools are designed and the way education is administered, or should I say experienced.
Eric Whitacre’s Virtual Choir
The thoughts that ran through my head after seeing the virtual choir video sparked a conversation, with my wife, about how the technology we have in our hands today was just a creative thought of someone over forty years ago. This past week we joined the world of iPhone users and are excited about Facetime. As our kids were visiting with their grandmother this past weekend we were able to say goodnight face to face. Technology allows me as a dad to say goodnight to my babies while I am doing homework at the library. I know most of you in EDM310 are not yet parents but you will be an educator soon and you will have a classroom full of students that you will build relationships with, and can expand those relationships to their parents by use of technology. A new era of building kids up and tearing down walls of exclusion. That dream school idea starts becoming a reality through your fingertips, LCD screens, and mics. In schools right now educators already have the base set of tools needed to build the schools of the future. What are we doing with those tools?
Teaching In The 21st Century
You have to love Prezi! I used it for the first time for Valentine's Day. Being a frugal student I went cheap for the holiday with a free Prezi since tuition is not free. On to the feature presentation. I think Mr. Roberts, love the name, has nailed down the thoughts for future education. Coupled with the music the presentation was emotionally powerful. I was ready to start building that "Dream School" that Ms. Venosdale talked about. Engaging students through technology is the only way to hold on to them. In a few earlier blog posts I mentioned this same topic, of engaged students, that Mr. Roberts discusses in his presentation. The more I learn through EDM310 the harder it is to imagine how many classrooms are still like the ones in the video Mr. Winkle Wakes.
The ideas we have right now of future education will already be expanded upon or changed radically by the time we graduate. The next big thing (Facebook, Google, Apple) is already in the mind of a student somewhere that is waiting to be unlocked by that creative classroom and teacher. The future is clay in our hands as educators. We are the ones that will be held responsible for providing the environment for the students to proactive not reactive. As a future educator it is a bit scary to think of a society that could be motivated enough to learn on their own. Maybe I won't reach retirement in the school system. Maybe I will have to come back to college in five to ten years to develop my degree into another field to retain my job. Reflecting on the section of Mr. Roberts presentation that talked about where we find information and how we learn. I have Google searched how to change brake pads, how to cook chicken spaghetti, and tips on potty training my two year old daughter. I also have been teaching myself to play the guitar via the internet for the last thirteen years. Technology is endless.
Flipping the Classroom
I like the approach and explanation by Ms. Gimbar in her video about flipping the classroom. Also her FAQ section was very helpful in figuring out how it really works in all situations. As a history teacher I could surely use the flipped classroom. Short video lectures with the nuggets of information about the topics for the week would give the students that background knowledge before fine tuning the details of historical events. It would make test reviews so much easier for the students. What educator wouldn't want to use this idea? I know there are teachers that look at this and think to themselves that it would never work in their school, but teachers in training could put this to use from the beginning and would take some initial setup work, but oh the benefits that this idea will reveal. It will ultimately make the teacher more efficient and the students more receptive. I'm on board!