Pedagogical beliefs and ICT Integration (ie. Ertmer and Brown)

•April 13, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Although foundations for technology have been successful, there are still barriers preventing complete success in integrating ICT in the education system Through looking at both Brown’s (2005) article and Ertmer’s (2005) article we can see that there are different opinions in the integration of ICT.

The incorporating of technology in schools has always led to debate surrounding the pros and cons with many of opinions being backed by little to no research (Brown, 2005).  Oppenhemier (1997, Brown, 2005) concluded “There is no good evidence that most uses of computers significantly improve teaching and learning” teachers generally agree that ICT wouldn’t fit into their pedagogical beliefs.  Brown (2005) however feels that the growth of ICT is problematic due to it being pushed to a political and economical spin as opposed to teaching.  Teachers have to introduce ICT effectively.

Beliefs about teachers Pedagogy are preventing the integration of ICT into the classroom according to Ertmer (2005). In order to change this we must alter teacher’s images about technology.  Ertmer (2005) believes that the effective way to change teachers’ minds and pedagogical beliefs is by catering to their most immediate needs which should then introduce them to more and more technology and as it advances students will gain more if they have open and effective teachers.

As teachers see the positive effects of ICT and how it can be effectively integrated into the schooling system the more attitudes will change, allowing students to have the optimal learning experience.

Example of an online game that can be used.

What is technology integration?

many teachers are using technology for low-level tasks such as word processing and internet searches, yet detracting from high-level uses. This may be because low-level technology is very teacher-centered while high-level uses are more associated with students or a constructivist approach. As stated by Ertmer, 2005, “98% of schools are now connected to the internet with 77% of these connected to the internet in the classroom. Teachers need to integrate into their classrooms are more constructivist approach so that students can to some degree control their learning and engage in high-level uses of technology in the classroom.

Discuss how technology integration can be improved in the classroom?

 Teachers need to  use their skills that research and statistics show they have to use high-level technology in the classroom, this will improve the integration of technology in the classroom.  . Ertmer states in the article that the U.S Department of Education, 2003 state that “technology is now considered to be an integral part of providing a high-quality education.

Brown Reading:

How can schools improve ICT being taught in NSW?

According to Brown (2005) and ICT in the classroom, the way the tool is used for example a computer is more important than the tool itself. Schools can improve ICT usage in NSW by acknowledging that the tool itself is not that important but the learning opportunities and the range of activities you can engage in using this tool is far more important. Brown also states that “teachers can use ICT to enhance the holistic goals of early year’s education.”

Apply this reading to what you have seen or might see occurring in schools currently

Armstrong and Casement (1998) state in Brown’s (2005) article that “so much money has been allocated for computers and Internet access with so little serious evaluation” In schools currently there is the Year 9 laptop scheme. In my opinion this process of giving every year 9 student a laptop to enhance their learning is a waste of time. Unless the laptops are left at school and only used in class to do activities which involve them the students are merely using them to play games and detract from the real reason they are at school. In the playground at recess and lunch, these students are not engaging with their friends but playing more video games online. I believe that Armstrong and Casement (1998) statement was true, that more evaluation needs to go into a process like that.

 Reference List

  • Brown, M., (2005). The Growth of Enterprise Pedagogy: How ICT Policy if infected by Neo-liberalism. Australian Educational Computing 20(2) 16-22.
  • Ertmer, P., (2005). Teacher Pedagogical Beliefs: The Final Frontier in our quest for technology integration? Teacher Beliefs 53(4) 25-39.

Mobile Learning

•April 13, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Photo from www.pbs.org/teachers/innovators/gallery/entries/159

Students these days have never known life without computers and the internet, so they are well socially networked and are classified as digital “natives” in the digital native’s debate. (Handal, 2011).  Students are well adapted to using technology in their everyday life; with technology always advancing it is important to a student’s successful future that they can easily adapt to future technologies so it is no wonder that schools are increasingly using mobile technology to further their students learning.  With the inclusion of mobile learning in the classroom students have a better chance of connecting their lives with their learning and gaining skills for the future.

Mobile learning can best be described as the use of hand held objects to make learning available at any given place or time.  Mobile learning lets students communicate, create and discover. Mobile learning supports many pedagogical theories including constructivism and socio-cultural by providing opportunities for students to problem solve, communicate and construct their own understanding.  There are many concerns for mobile learning, as most teachers view them as distractions however in order for the integration of mobile learning to be effective use of the mobile should be monitoring and consequences should be emplace in the classroom, in case of cyber-bullying.

Which learning style/s does this ICT support?

Mobile learning allows for diagrams, videos and pictures for the visual learner, podcasts and ways to listen for the auditory learner and a hands-on approach such as actually using a mobile device for learning for the kinesthetic learner. This ICT supports that of a visual, auditory and kinesthetic learner.

 How could this ICT be implemented as a good cognitive tool within the learning environment?

 Mobile’s are described as anywhere, anytime learning. Assignments and homework can be made available as an email that can be accessed anywhere. Feature such as Google can make information more available. This ICT device could be implemented in all schools as a good cognitive tool within the learning environment

 How is this ICT enabling the development of creativity?

 This ICT enables creativity by students being able to access their work at any time. Mobile learning makes learning more individual for the student to be as creative as they can and develop new ways of presenting information and using the technology available.

Reference List

Social constructivism

•April 13, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Social Constructivism is the belief that students learn through the facilitation of knowledge from the teacher to the student.  Children build their own knowledge through their own interactions with the environment and thinking processes (Brewer & Daane, 2002). Social constructivism involves a process of discovery, discussion, explanation, negotiation and evaluation.  A constructivist classroom needs to be a safe and caring environment where students can feel comfortable to speak their mind and discuss their thoughts (Brewer & Daane, 2002).

Brewer & Daane (2002) interviewed eight teachers who taught mathematics from kindergarten to year 3.  Brewer & Daane (2002) discovered that the teachers felt that the four main themes of constructivism included: “learning in an active, constructive process; new knowledge is built on prior knowledge; autonomy is promoted; and social interaction is necessary for knowledge construction and active learning.” 

Duey (Singer & Creator). (2009). Mr Duey Measurement Rap http://recording.

Sound files support musical and bodily-kinesthetic learning styles by creating connections between the sound and the person listening to it.  They are also ideal for linguistic learners who can absorb the words and rhythm from the sound file to improve learning.

Sound files can be used in a variety of ways in the learning environment. 

  • Reward or discipline sounds can be sounded if students are doing well or misbehaving. 
  • Create inspiration and motivation for students in creative writing. 
  • Help in exercise classes as a tool to keep the class quiet in between activities.
  • As a way to display a dry or unexciting topic more engaging.

Which learning style/s does this ICT support?

The auditory learners and the kinesthetic learner’s best suit a constructivist classroom. In a constructivist classroom social interaction is necessary.  Auditory learners learn through discussions where they talk things through and listen to other viewpoints and understandings of something. Kinesthetic learners work best with active learning and a hands-on approach where they can discover and explore a range of activities.

How could this ICT be implemented as a good cognitive tool within the learning environment?

As stated in the Brewer & Daane, 2002 article, mathematics was a good cognitive tool that implemented this ICT into the learning environment. They stated that “all the math activities focus on getting the students to think for themselves and to work with each other in a social situation so that they are talking and discussing things with each other,”

A constructivist approach to learning can be a good cognitive tool within the learning environment.

 How is this ICT enabling the development of creativity?

 In a constructivist classroom, students are urged to think for themselves while drawing on past experiences to shape their learning. Due to the fact that every student is different and all have a variety of previous knowledge and understandings allows students to be creative and learn in a way that is completely at home within them.

Reference List

  • Brewer, J., & Daane, C, J., (2002). Translating Constructivist Theory into Practice in Primary-Grade Mathematics. Education 123(2), 416-426.

ICT as a cognitive tool (ie. Webquests)

•April 13, 2011 • Leave a Comment

Information Computer Technology is increasingly becoming a more prominent cognitive tool, with videos, graphics and games all becoming the basis for lesson plans and students learning.  ICT is a broad umbrella that covers different types of computer based technology.  One of the most effective ICT cognitive tools in the classroom is the Web quest.

Web quests are a website that gives students tasks to complete; they are shared over the internet. They are an effective tool as they are self-paced and allow for the task to be completed independently or in a group. The students are given enough freedom to progress their own learning but are also given some boundaries to keep on track.  Students also learn the ability to deciphering the reliability of sources and sorting through information.

Another effective ICT cognitive tool is the graphic organizer.  A graphic organizer uses programs such as Inspiration to create mind maps of the students’ thoughts.   

ICT offers a number of effective cognitive tools that can be used in the classroom to create engagement with the learning and to help the students become more independent.  ICT allows students to use different tools which can increase their confident and make them more proficient learners.

Video clips can be used to support a number of different learning styles including spatial-visual and intrapersonal by interacting with the senses of sight and sound.  Video clips are engaging and have a direct focus that is displayed in an interesting way. Depending on the type of video clip used they can also support logical-mathematical and musical learners.

Which learning style/s does this ICT support?

 Web Quests support all styles of learning. Visual learners learn through the images and diagrams or videos that may be embedded in a Web Quest. Auditory learners learn best through listening to the information and talking it through. As a Web Quest encourages collaborative learning and sharing their work with one another, auditory learners can discuss their ideas with others and also take in other opinions. A kinesthetic learner can also engage in a Web Quest as it is a hands-on task where the students are following directions on the internet to gather information. They are engaged by exploring their learning at their own pace.

 How could this ICT be implemented as a good cognitive tool within the learning environment?

 Web Quests allow for a lot of the learning to be placed on the student. Web Quests produce interesting and challenging ways to learn new things. It also allows students to work together and share what they find in a collaborative learning environment. Videos could be implemented as a cognitive tool within the learning environment by creating enthusiasm or providing an overview of a new subject; giving key information on topics or events; creating self-paced learning through instruction; or providing in depth information from specialists and professors.  It is important to make sure that the video is suitable for the age group and that it interrelates with the topics being taught

 How is this ICT enabling the development of creativity?

 A Web Quest is generally interesting and challenging for students. It sparks their creative side where they are able to discover the information for themselves and discuss with their teacher and their peers. It allows for differentiation by students taking from the Web Quest different experiences and various ways in which they learnt the same thing. Video clips foster the development of creativity by being able to show breadths of information and spark interest in new and exciting things.  By being able to show students video clips they are able to see another way of visualizing and creating things.

Reference.

  • Ruffles, D. (n.d) WebQuests: Tools for Information Literacy, Hots and ICT
  • Kopcha, T. (narrator). (2008). Webquest 101 Part 1: What is Webquest? [Internet recording].  Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o4rel5qOPvU.

ICT current trends (ie. IWBs)

•April 11, 2011 • Leave a Comment

 

Technology is always changing; this has lead to a change in the education system. With the national and state governments providing funds to help further schools technologically, there has been an introduction of new computer technologies in the classroom. The government has provided secondary students with laptops in order to independent learning and to provide equal opportunity for students in the education system.  This has meant that teachers need to start integrating technology into their lessons for example getting students to work online through blogs, web quests and school intranets

The Interactive Whiteboard (IWB) is another ICT trend that is being introduced to both primary and high schools across Australia.  An IWB is a board that connects to a computer in the classroom and allows the whole board to become a giant touch screen computer.  Both students and teachers can interact with the board by creating flipcharts, video calling other parts of the world and surfing through the internet.  Websites such as The Learning Federation provide interactive games that can be used in the classroom as a learning object.

an example of a maths lesson that can be used.

Kent (2007) believes through this interaction that teachers can promote higher order thinking, create focus and lead into deep whole class conversations.  It actively engages students to participate actively in the classroom and with more and more add-ons being available it will be interesting to see what the future hold for the technological classroom.

Which learning style/s does this ICT support?

 This ICT devise supports that of every learner. The visual learner is engaged through videos, diagrams etc. The auditory learner is engaged through discussions about the learning on the interactive whiteboard for example and the kinesthetic learner is engaged through interacting with the whiteboard using the pens to do sorting, labeling, ordering or puzzle activities.

 How could this ICT be implemented as a good cognitive tool within the learning environment?

 Flipcharts are able to be displayed for the entire class giving a complete interactive lesson where the students can control their learning and make decisions when using the whiteboard.

 How is this ICT enabling the development of creativity?

It encourages creativity in presentations the students may give to the class as they may use a flipchart with a range of settings showcasing what they can do.

Reference.

  • Kent, P. (2007). Promoting Intellectual Quality with an IWB: Teacher Professional Development Course Notes.  Paper presented at Latrobe University

digital natives debate

•March 14, 2011 • 1 Comment

The Bennett and Prensky article both show the differences between the ‘digital natives’ and the ‘digital immigrants.’ The digital natives are those that were born roughly from 1980-1994. The digital immigrants are those that are born prior to 1980

Photo from http://www.ictgateshead.org/images/primary_350.jpg

The main idea in the debate is that newer generation show a different way of learning, thinking and adapting compared to previous generations.  This has lead to the belief that traditional teaching methods need to change and adapt to the increase in technology.

Prensky (2001) believes that changes in technology have changed the way children learn and therefore changes need to be made in the way teachers teach.  He believes that students prefer games compared to real work, that they prefer graphics before text and constantly need to be working at a fast pace.  He names this generation “digital natives”, as in the generation that has grown up immersed in technology.  He refers to adults who were not born with technology but who have instead learnt the skills at a later time “digital immigrants”.  Children now learn differently from the older generations and therefore a total absorption of technology in the classroom will be needed.

The differences between the generations are leaving digital immigrants struggling to teach an entirely “new language” (Prensky, 2001) Prensky states that digital immigrants need to accept what they don’t know and perhaps learn from students. They may also need to communicate faster using a variety of methods as students (digital natives) think and process information differently.

The issue that ‘education must fundamentally change to accommodate the digital natives interests, talents and preferences therefore requires exploration.’ (Bennett et al, 2008) This requires questioning as to whether education is currently equipped to meet the needs of this “new cohort of students”

Which learning style/s does this ICT support?

Digital natives may be very visual learners often needing to view diagrams and pictures to fully understand a topic to the best of their ability. They learn best through video displays and flipcharts where the learning is very visual. Digital immigrants such as teachers may not have an understanding of digital technologies such as these and must therefore learn this new approach to teaching in order to teach to visual learners.

How could this ICT be implemented as a good cognitive tool within the learning environment?

 Digital natives may have a better understanding of technology than that of the digital immigrants. According to Bennett et al, 2008 that the digital immigrants that lack the technological fluency are in the bracket that mostly includes teachers. If the teacher can learn some of the skills that the student possesses they could use this ICT as a good cognitive tool within the learning environment.

 How is this ICT enabling the development of creativity?

. Students may have different skills in technology and they can be more creative in their areas of expertise. This is the same for teachers; they can learn what they don’t know from their students and be creative enough to create meaningful learning experiences that relate to the students themselves and their different learning styles.

Reference.

  • Prensky, M. (2001). Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants. MCB University Press, 9(5), 1-6.
  • Bennett, S., Maton, K., & Kervin, L. (2008). A ‘Digital Natives’ Debate: A critical review of the evidence. British Journal of Education Technology 39(5), 775-786.