In a post by Linda Gutierrez on Teach Amazing, she fired off five ways educators can help their students in their flipped classrooms. The first tip was to let the students be the experts. Gutierrez would let her students have the opportunity to explore and research a topic, she often found that they ended up finding new information and she was always learning something new with the content they are able to find. The second tip was to offer choices. In her classroom, Linda would assign multiple different practice quizzes online, and she found her students were really responsive to having the option of what to work on.
Meet Amy Ahearn, a Graduate Student in the Learning, Design and Technology program at Standford School of Education. She’s in a one year masters program that is focused on designing tools for learning in formal and informal education settings. Amy is really passionate about designing tools for literacy and health education in the developing world. Before Amy started the graduate program at Stanford, she was in international development in Washington DC, and was also a teacher in Malaysia. Amy discovered Pathbrite from the Director of the Stanford Folio Thinking Initiative, Helen Chen. She needed to develop a portfolio that would showcase the designs, projects, and products she would develop and build over the course of the one year program.
With the influx of technology in our classrooms, it’s not always easy staying on top of communicating and finding the information we need. The maybe not so obvious opportunities that social media could provide for communication may resolve the issue of keeping students and parents in the loop and up to date with what is going on and what things are coming up. In a blog post by Edudemic, by Lucy Harper, four different suggestions of ways to take advantage of social media for communication in education were discussed.
In a post on GettingSmart, educator, Susan Oxnevad, blogged about her ideas that she’d implement in her own classroom. At her school every class was given an iPad and an Apple TV that would allow teachers to project the device to the entire classroom as part of the One iPad Classroom program. Her ideas she came up with for implementing practices are as follows:
- Keep the students’ attention during transitions in the classroom by projecting videos, current events, or even images that the students could then write or blog about.
- You could even take students on a virtual field trip on the ipad, check out the ability of seeing things up close and personal via The Google Wonders Project
- In a flipped classroom model, an ipad could record and then publish lessons for students to reflect back on.
- The iPad is also a great tool for students to try creating videos that refer and reflect back to learning outcomes or lecture topics.
- Use the endless amounts of tools in the form of downloadable apps on the iPad in combination with your lesson plans for a more efficient classroom.
Oxnevad’s embracing attitude towards change and using technology in her classroom will surely bring about a great iPad implementation, and her ideas will inspire other educators to continue to experiment and take advantage of technology in their own classrooms. To read the article yourself, check it out here.
The availability of technology for schools has become more and more popular in recent times and less expensive than it has been traditionally. The ed-tech industry is seeing a surge of new tools and entrepreneurs as schools and educators demand more resources, despite the education field only getting “1 percent of venture capital funding between 1995-2011.” New companies in the space are still dealing with shortages in resources even though there seems to be spikes of interest recently.
NewSchools Venture Fund was created to support implementation of technology into K-12 schools, and this week they talked about their plans to further expand their reach. Their partnerships with Rethink Education and Zynga.org will help pair “cutting-edge technology with forward thinking capital on behalf of kids’ learning,” NewSchools’ CEO Ted Mitchell explained. These new sectors in both public and private investors seek to truly impact the state of education and help fund more ed tech project development. Read more about what Zynga.org plans are in the original article by Venture Beat here.
In a post by EdTech Magazine, Inspired by Dr.Stephen Covey’s self-help book: 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, a list of the 7 habits of highly effective teachers who use technology was published. The habits that made the list are as follows:
- They always start with the why
- They are malleable and can easily adapt
- They embrace change
- They share, share, and then share some more
- They think win-win-win-win
- They are extremely thorough and think two steps ahead
- Tehy actively care
Read more detailed descriptions on each habit here. What are some other habits that are important that weren’t included?
We’ve all heard talk about gamification in the classroom, but I’m not sure that the real potential has been entirely understood in the education community. A blog post by Mind/Shift talked about a teacher, Quebec-based physics teacher Shawn Young, and how he has taken gaming and education into his own hands and created World of Classcraft. By assuming rules similar to the popular role playing students earn points for things like participation and finding a mistake in the classroom notes, and in turn can lose points by being late to class or not finishing homework. The game is not mandatory in Young’s class, however once a student joins they cannot quit in order to avoid any negative consequences they may encounter.
Young has found that the students have enjoyed engaging more in class and sees that the incentives in the game are strong enough to encourage more participation. Since the game divides students into teams, it forces them to collaborate and work together to achieve goals. Despite possibly being considered a technology integration into the classroom, the game actually doesn’t require consistent computer access, and it also does not “directly measure students’ content mastery.” Instead, the game is another “layer” on top of the class, more about the experience and practicing soft skills like team work, communication, and responsibility.
Young has since launched a funding campaign via KickStarter to create a “web-based version of the game that can be accessed by students and teachers worldwide.” Since Young’s game concentrates on the experience, do you think there is a way to incorporate gamification with academic content learning by making it an experiential process?
The EdTech Times published a post that talked about a new study that was conducted by Harris Interactive and released by Pearson. It was established that mobile devices will ultimately change the way students learn and also offer up more fun alternatives to learning. They study provided more knowledge around students’ access to mobile devices and how much they were really interacting with them. The findings will be a great tool for schools and districts to use while they construct their plans to integrate technology into their learning structures. As educators gain a better sense of how students are using their mobile devices to learn, they may better serve to their needs in and out of the classroom.
The study found that the way students wanted to interact with their mobile devices while learning actually depended on their grade level. Elementary and Middle school kids wanted more involvement with mobile devices in the classroom than the high-school and college students surveyed wanted. It is becoming more and more apparent that mobile devices are becoming part of the everyday lifestyle of students today, and educators have constantly experimented with successful ways of integrating them as tools to enhance the learning process. While it certain that mobile devices could potentially improve education, the question remains with how exactly teachers will go about that. How do you think mobile devices would work most efficiently in the classroom and different grade levels?
At the 2013 StartOut Awards on Friday, April 19th, Pathbrite CEO, Heather Hiles, was honored as the recipient of the Pillsbury Winthrop Innovator Award for her work towards revolutionizing education and education technology. The event was a great celebration and gathering of a community that showed great support for one another. Senator Mark Leno kicked off the night with an inspiring speech congratulating all of the award winners and recognized how the LGBT community and StartOut are impacting the tech sector and innovation around the world. Learn more about StartOut here.
Millennials are behind the wheel much less:
Between 2001 and 2009, the average yearly number of miles driven by 16- to 34-year-olds dropped a staggering 23 percent. The Frontier Group has the most comprehensive look yet of why younger Americans are opting out of driving. Public transportation use is up 40 percent per capita in this age group since 2001. Bicycling is up 24 percent overall in that time period. And this is true even for young Americans who are financially well off.
Derek Thompson finds that young people “have swapped student loans for mortgage and auto loans”:
They’ve traded cars for college and homes for homework. And that’s okay! Compared to cars and houses, higher education is a much safer investment. For all the media criticism about college losing its luster, you could make a good argument that it’s never been more important. While the returns to college have flattened recently, wage growth has been even weaker (or negative) among non-college grads. As a result, the “bonus” that young workers get from going to college, which economists call, the “college premium,” has tripled in the last 30 years. Today, the share of the 18-24-year-old population enrolled in school is at an all-time high 45 percent today.