Reflecting Out Loud

Well, this will be my final post, my journey through EDC3100 is coming to an end.

I have been finalising my Assignment 3, ready to submit and in reflecting on the processes of this unit I could easily apply this process to any unit of work in my future career.

I have come to the realisation that you really are only limited by your imagination and willingness to change or seek out something new.

I know now that new ICT should not be feared or avoided and I will strive to challenge myself to update my skills continuously. Just the process of building a website was exciting and challenging to consider what 21st century learners would find interesting and they way in which they learn.

The networking throughout the unit has been a valuable aspect, which I will continue to work on. It’s reassuring to know that there are other mature aged studying parents out there, battling through the same issues – I am not alone after all!

I wish you all the best for the remainder of your studies and prac placements and hope you take on the challenge as I will – to transform the learning of your future students with implementation of ICT in the classroom.

Thanks for following

Mrs Aberle out

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Website Building

So for Assignment 3 we have had to develop a website, which can be used in the classroom to transform learning. My initial reaction to this was somewhat an overwhelming sense of doom and failure, by the complex nature of such a task. The process though has been fairly easy, the biggest issue is deciding what to base it on and how to assess it.

I must admit I have had some experience in developing a website, for my small business; and so the decision to choose Wix was simple. Once I had a rough idea of how it might look and how the content would be delivered the process flowed fairly easily. Wix comes with a whole array of apps that you can build into your website and so the choice for my digital artefact was to make a quiz using Fyrebox Games and quizzes that could easily be integrated into the page.

All in all I am happy with my website’s functionality and the look was achieved with the use of hundreds of available images and backgrounds. The process didn’t end up being that daunting and it is definitely something that I will be taking into my future practice. I’m glad we had the opportunity to do this as an assignment and look forward to hearing the feedback.

You can check out my website for Year 10 Health at:

https://jenaberle.wixsite.com/mrsaberle

 

Prac!

As it is well known, we are somewhat delayed or behind in WA (not only the 2 hour delay, but some say about a decade or so…) but I have just completed my second day of Prac – as the school holidays were still going last week. I have been following everyone’s first week adventures and trying feverishly to catch up on Assignments, with a 15 hour drive to get to my Prac location thrown in!

With big ambitions and plans to transform learning with the implementation of ICT in my classrooms, I was somewhat put back by the options available at my new school (which is in a low SES area). Although I have been given some creative freedom to change and include “some videos or something” into the classes, the content, assessments and delivery are already pre-planned and set. I will endeavour to move beyond the traditional ‘death by powerpoint’ which they expect, but think this will be a bigger challenge than initially thought.

The biggest Challenge I foresee is that the Health classes that I want to try to implement ICT into, they only have 1 class a week (so 3 classes total for the Prac), and so it is a bit hard to deviate from the teachers plans, let alone build rapport or even learn their names! The PE classes I will be teaching tee ball and soccer, so will have to see if there is anything interesting in the ICT world that could help.

But I do look forward to having the freedom to plan and develop my own units, lessons and resources in my future practice.

ICT in Early Childhood

Though my major teaching area is Secondary HPE, my minor is Early Childhood studies and I have often considered the increasing role of ICT in the EC sector. This lovely link popped up on my Facebook page, which highlights the importance of planning appropriate ICT in the classroom that go beyond simple time filling or babysitting, to transforming teaching and learning.

Curriculum

information-and-communication-technology-ict-capability-So the use of ICT is embedded in the Curriculum; for most subjects anyway. Reflecting on the processes of Assignment 1, I had quite a broad scope for anything that implied the use of ICT within the year 9 & 10 content descriptions. For Secondary Health & Physical Education though, you have to delve a little deeper, luckily I have a good sense of imagination and can link just about anything back to the curriculum as there were no clearly labelled ICT descriptions or elaborations.

The Learning area I proceeded to focus on was in: Personal, Social and Community Health: Contributing to healthy and active communities. As there was an opportunity to: Create and evaluate visual and multi-modal health campaigns in print-based and digital environments to promote health and well-being in their community.

Though when planning for Assignment 2 and focussing in on a specific content descriptor for an assessment piece within my unit plan, I came across a more interesting one which had better links to criteria for an assessment piece.  Thinking forward to Assignment 3, in which we need to create a website and artefact, I’m still not certain what I will choose.

I believe Health and Physical Education is a difficult subject to try to implement ICT into, beyond the standard investigating and applying social and ethical practices.

 

ICT Skills

ICT skills in schools are no longer explicitly taught for the purpose of being able to word process. I guess I have taken for granted the fact that today’s students are computer literate and able to make a presentation, excel spreadsheet or basic word document.

In preparing the unit plan for Assignment 2, I have come to the realisation that unlike my high school education 20 years ago, where we had computer classes in word processing, students these days are missing out on some vital skills and must collect these along the way in all subjects. Fortunately, there are uTube videos and wikihow’s to learn to do anything these days and I find myself saying how about we “google it”.

Mind Map

Mind Map ICT & ME

I’ve just had some fun creating a mind map/ concept map about ICT & ME using the free app mind mup from https://app.mindmup.com/

Through the process of actually thinking about what ICT’s I already use, and how they interconnect between the various parts of my life, I have discovered there are many options out there and that I probably favour Facebook as my main way to connect and communicate today.

Looking forward I would love to be able integrate other options; including the ones I have discovered through this unit (WordPress, Diigo, Feedly and Twitter), into my everyday life and future career in teaching. I must say I am still trying to get my head around Twitter and the point of hashtags… something to aspire to. Mind Map ICT & ME

The RAT model

Now you may be envisioning a glorious bikini clad wet, hairy, repulsive creature lying oh so glamorously on a beach somewhere, but let’s come back to integrating ICT into teaching pedagogy, to enhance and transform student learning. The RAT Model, as explained by Hughes et al. (2006) is a way to reflect on the way ICT is implemented in the classroom.

Replacement – Is when ICT serves as a different (digital) means to the same instructional practices

Amplification – Is when ICT increases efficiency, effectiveness and productivity of some instructional practices, and

Transformation – Is when ICT invents new instruction and learning of curricula.

I think this is a great way to really question why you may use ICT in the classroom and also to challenge you to look for new, exciting, better ways to enhance learning. I feel there could be many hours wasted on incorporating ICT that doesn’t actually contribute to learning, and there is a constant upgrade of resources, apps and devices that students could benefit from. So reflecting with the RAT model will help my future teaching practice to be on top of the game.

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wild river otters” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by marneejill

Reference

Hughes, J., Thomas, R., & Scharber, C. (2006). Assessing Technology Integration: The RAT – Replacement, Amplification, and Transformation – Framework. In C. Crawford, R. Carlsen, K. McFerrin, J. Price, R. Weber, & D. A. Willis (Eds.), Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference 2006 (pp. 1616-1620). Orlando, Florida: AACE. Retrieved from http://www.editlib.org/p/22293/

 

What I think I know about ICTs already

So what is an ICT?, is it simply the digital devices we access to communicate and locate information, or do they encompass a whole lot more these days? I feel our current way of life depends too much on the little devices we hold so dearly. Whatever happened to the free conversations around the dinner table – without having to constantly check for updates or fill in the boring moments with games or entertainment. With this impact visible at home, how does ICT affect the classroom?

From my professional experience so far, at two very different schools, I have seen big differences in the way ICT are utilised (or not) and whether the students devices are even allowed at school or not.  I hope I can learn to accept the changes in technologies as they continue to develop and respond with engaging ways to utilise such advances, enhancing and transforming student learning in my future classrooms.

Here it goes – my first blogging experience

To say I am a little apprehensive about the blogging process would be an understatement; I am feeling both intrigued and overwhelmed about embarking on this new journey into the world of Twitter, Diigo and Feedly, for my studying adventures in EDC 3100.

Although I wouldn’t classify myself as being a complete ‘digital immigrant’, the fact that I can remember first learning about the exciting world that is the internet, while I was in year 7 (1995), does make me feel somewhat disadvantaged against the younger ‘digital natives’. I watch as my own children (aged 3 and 6) pick up the skills to use any device to their advantage; long ago are the days in which we used to turn to books to find all the answers. You may call me old fashioned but I still prefer to purchase books, CD’s, calendars and diaries, and still refer to my Oxford dictionary when required.

As I reflect now on my preconceptions of the use of ICTs in teaching and learning, I feel that my experiences will have much to offer my future students, but I can also see a large gap in where I want to be; challenging the everyday use of ICT (death by powerpoint and basic research) to be able to enhance and transform student learning. I am looking forward to developing these skills and gaining the experience and confidence to implement ICT into my pedagogical approach.