Friday, July 11, 2008

Global Learning Communities

Global Learning Community
Lester Holt and two teacher who created an outstanding global learning community with their students spoke about the wonderful possibilities in your classroom. One of the teachers said if you wait until you are an expert with the technology or the techology resources, you will never use it in your classroom. You need to dive in with your students and learn with them. Here are some links provided during this session. Social studies, current events, history and language arts teachers will love icue.
NBC News has provided a great global learning environment free of charge. Check them out.
As one teacher stated:
Its not about the technology, its about the relationships, the connections globally.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Transforming Technology Projects from Good to Great

Gary Stager
Projects need to be student directed and student led.
Books to improve project based learning -
Elements of a Project:
  • Purpose
  • Time
  • Personally meaningful
  • Complex, including serendipity
  • Connected
  • Shareable
  • Access and Constructive Materials

Questions Worth Asking:

  • Is the problem solvable?
  • Is the project monumental or substantial? - a pile of worksheets is not a project
  • Who does the project satisfy?
  • What can they do with that? - the project needs to lead to bigger questions or theory

Visual Literacy: Equipping Students for the Visual World

Lynell Burmark

See to Learn - Visual Literacy Book on CD in full color

Visual Literacy - Reading and writing about pictures or producing images intentionally and purposefully.

What can you observe?
What can you infer?

We want to believe what we see.
Text can be visual - the image of certain text has great visual value such as FedEx.
Most people's eyes are drawn to color and image before black and white
Using ads - put together an new ad on the side effects
Ask your students: Why do you think the ad didn't show the facts of the side effects?
Have the students name the Simpson family from a picture
Now have them name the first 5 freedoms in the Declaration of Independence
What we see we remember. If only the Declaration of Independence had a hit TV show!
What is visual goes to the long term memory.
Eye to Brain - 1,000,000 fibers
Ear to Brain - 30,000 fibers
Humans process visuals 60,000 times faster than text - use images
Keyborard - sequential - text
Camera - simultaneous - image
Words can only recall images we have already seen.
Start a lesson with images!!
A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words - Lesson in Thinkfinity - Divide the room into groups - have students talk as one of the images in the picture as the horse, the dog, the grandma, the mother, the children in the images. What are they thinking?
Use images to set a timeline in history. A way of testing prior knowledge.
Progressive Story- Use a series of images and have a group of three students create a story. As each image appears, each student continues the story based on the image on the screen. This is a great way to review, have students provide the images for the story, or great for speaking assignment.
Multi-Media Learning - Richard E. Mayer - check out this book
Image with a Voiceover is what makes the learning most beneficial
Recall and retention are boosted 42%
Transer, application is boosted 89%
The voice over could be words, music, text boxes, video
Sullivan Ballou Lettter on YouTube - excellent example
Resources for Images:
  • go to Lynell's site - - contact Marcia for Login and Password
  • Also for her handouts
  • Pics4Learning - another great website for images
  • morguefile is a great place for hi-res images
  • flickr - can build a community for gathering images -Social Networking

Don't do stacked in time, do adjacent in space!

Using Second Life with Distant Learners: Virtual Office Hours

Wednesday, July 1
Presenter: Abbie Brown, East Carolina University

Office Hours: establish regular office hours for your online students - a great way for teacher and students to communicate - he has audio and voice

This is a report of the results of a multi-year participant-observation study using virutal reality (second life)

Second Life- Developed by Linden Lab in 2003

Access Abbie Brown's powerpoint in NECC's resources online.

What is Second Life:
  • People can meet and converse using ext chant or voice
  • Special events are held
  • Wild West of networked computing technology
  • High bandwidth
  • High end video card required
  • Constant software updates Limited media throughput

Meaning of Second Life:

"Educational technology is the study an ethical practice of facilitating learning and improving performance by creating, using and managing appropriate technologyical proceses and resoruces." Januszewski and Molenda, 2008

"Bleeding on the cutting edge so othrs don't have to." - Brown, 2008

Gartner Hype Cycle - Gartner is an information technology research and advisory firm headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut

What can this do for students:

  • cutting edge experience
  • opportunity for informal networking
  • increased feeling of social presence
  • emotional experience
  • I was looking at someone and someone was looking at me

Need to purchase Second Life land - premium membership to second life - to have your own office - he pays $72 a year.

Research: Participant Observation

  • Experiment with building and scripting - allow for play time

His Experiences:

  • Good - adding new dimension to online communication, group interacdtions
  • Bad - learning curve is steep, his students may not appreciate the preponderance of exposed virtual skin
  • Ugly - He was accosted by a big, naked man on Orientation Island - this is a public space so there are inherant dangers

Further Research Needed