Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Journal 6

Kuhn, Matthew S. (2008, Aug.). Connecting Depth and Balance in Class. Learning and Leading with Technology, [18-21].

This article by Khun begins with the discussion of some positive and negative of new technologies in the educational setting. A negative being that new technologies are being spawned so fast that understanding often precedes their presence in the classroom. But the positive aspect is that technology can give new relevance and efficacy to pre-existing educational paradigms like Benjamin Bloom’s Taxonomy and Howard Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences. Both of which have been seen as challenging to apply in the classroom. While the organizational characteristics of Bloom’s Taxonomy can represent much of this challenge, the article suggests that organization is a characteristic of utilizing technology. The article also suggests that, along with this organization, technology in the classroom lends itself to accounting for multiple intelligences and individual student’s learning styles, and gives examples of implementation of strategies experimented with at different schools across the nation, and world. The article ends with a statement explaining that even inexperienced teachers can use new technologies in the classroom to aid with the success of students.

1. Is technology necessary in order to develop and maintain learning taxonomies in the
No. But as the article suggests, it easily lends itself with its organizational characteristics.

2. Are multiple intelligences something that a teacher is going to run into in every
classroom, and give an example of one type of technology that can reach at least two different types of intelligences.
Yes. And a PowerPoint presentation would be suitable for visual/spatial learners, who could read along with the presenter, and verbal/linguistic learners, who could concentrate on listening to the presentation.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Journal 5

Soule, Helen (2008).Transforming School Communities Creating Dialog Using Web 2.0 Tools. Learning and Leading with Technology. [12-15].

In this article, Helen Soule discusses the role of technology in the school setting and its importance to everyone, who is involved in the process of education. The usage of technology that is the most emphasized in the article is that of communication. Soule mentions some components of communication that are becoming more and more important: “advocacy of the vision, networking to build formal and informal support, and collaboration with diverse external and internal constituencies.” Web 2.0 is given as an avenue for addressing these components.
Soule continues by talking about different strategies and modes of execution of efficient, appropriate, and wide-reaching communication. The first strategy talked about is the importance of knowing the tools available for communication, and gives several examples. Second, Soule notes the need to be clear in these communications. Blogs are mentioned as an excellent strategy in that it allows the use of multiple mediums, and reactions to these, instantaneously. Other strategies include: knowing your audience, choosing the best form of communication to fit the situation, choosing multiple forms of communication, etc. Soule finishes with further discussion of the important components of communication, mentioned earlier (advocacy, networking, collaboration).

While the use of new forms of communication are becoming more and more easy to use and efficient, should they totally replace hardcopies of handouts and other more traditional forms of communication?

Not at all, these new forms of communication are excellent and efficient, when utilized correctly, but only serve to compliment traditional forms.

Can a teacher use too many forms of communication when contacting parents or colleagues?

Probably not, I know that for myself I like to have information presented to my in different forms. It could become redundant, but I would think that someone would have to bombarded with a message before it becomes irksome.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Journal 4: Video Conferencing

Videoconferencing is a form of communication between two or more parties via the medium of video and/or audio. Video conferencing is a mode of communication that is meant to connect groups of individuals rather than individuals themselves.

The first post discusses an activity that the teacher was trying to put together, with the aid of anyone who would reply and assist. The teacher stated that the class was going to begin studying one of the states (in the United States) and wanted to be able to have the students have a videoconference with another class of students in the state of study. The teacher wanted the students to interview the students, in the state of study, to determine what is best about living in that particular state and what it’s like to live there.
I believe that video conferencing is a wonderful way to communicate. It is the next best thing to being in front of someone while you talk to him or her. You are able to take in all of the body language and facial expressions absent in telephone communication. A videoconference like one described above would serve to make the assignment more real to the student, and therefore more interesting. And stimulating interest is a very important strategy for involving students in what they are learning.


Journal 3

Journal 3

“Restructuring for caring and effective education: The possible futures of education”

This presentation was a moving and encouraging one. The theme of the presentation was centered on the question: What is the goal of education? The speaker asked the question and took several answers from the audience. It was an intimidating question in that it asked one to defend the whole idea of education. I answered the question for myself. I though, and still think, that the goal of education is to enable a child to be successful at whatever they endeavor to do in life. The presentation continued with the discussion of whether education should emphasize excellence of equity. Again the question was asked of the audience. The speaker delved into the possible outcomes of catering to one, and then the other. There were positive and negative aspects of both, but the final assessment showed that to emphasize to only one or the other ends up with dire consequences. It was decided that the only logical, efficient, and ethical course of action was to include both in the act of teaching. One of the latter and more important points made in the presentation addressed the best possible method of interacting with children with special needs. Evidence shows that the best way to see kids with special needs is to just see them as normal. It has been the case that, too long have special needs kids have been seen as different, and therefore should be treated differently (with such strategies as separation of these students from the “mainstream” kids). The best way to teach special needs kids is the same way to teach mainstream kids; look at them as being completely normal and include them in every aspect of the educational system that everyone else is.

Power Point