"Blended learning can create new career opportunities and improve conditions for teachers. As student roles evolve within a more personalized, tech-rich learning environment, teacher roles should evolve accordingly."
"To be clear–learning can happen in the absence of technology. Integrated poorly, technology can subdue, distract, stifle, and obscure the kind of personal interactions between learner, content, peer, and performance that lead to learning results.
But increasingly we live in a world where technology is deeply embedded into everything we do. Thinking about it simply in terms of “digital literacy” puts you about 5 years behind the curve. It’s really much more than that–less about being connected, and more about being mobile.
There will be growing pains, and I’m sure educators that have brought in BYOD programs into their school can come up with 50 reasons it won’t work. But most of those 50 are a product of the continued poor fit that exists between schools and communities–the system and the humans it serves."
The culmination of my quest for more powerful learning grounded in theory and research came when recently I conducted an experiment in pushing constructionism into the digital age.
Constructionism is based on two types of construction. First, it asserts that learning is an active process, in which people actively construct knowledge from their experience in the world. People don’t get ideas; they make them. This aspect of construction comes from the constructivist theory of knowledge development by Jean Piaget. To Piaget’s concept, Papert added another type of construction, arguing that people construct new knowledge with particular effectiveness when they are engaged in constructing personally meaningful products.
Imagine my surprise and joy when I realized that I had arrived at constructionism prior to knowing that such a theory even existed. I believe that thousands of other educators are unknowingly working within the constructionist paradigm as well. Although many within the Maker movement are aware that it has it’s roots in constructionism, the movement is gaining impressive momentum without the majority of Makers realizing that there is a strong theoretical foundation behind their work.
After I came to understand this connection between my practices and the supporting theoretical framework I was better able to focus and refine my practice. Even more importantly, I felt more confident and powerful in forging ahead with further experiments in the learning situations I design for my learners.
"Google Drive provides a streamlined, collaborative solution to writing papers, organizing presentations and putting together spreadsheets and reports. But besides the basic features, there are lots of little tricks and hacks you can use to make your Google Docs experience even more productive. Here are 100 great tips for using the documents, presentations and spreadsheets in Google Docs."
"Designed with the educator in mind this website looks at the array of digital tools and cross references them to the new Bloom action verbs. The tools were selected based on several criteria. First, they had to be free or at least offer a free version as a minimum package. Second, they had to work within our district’s filtering system. Third, they had to be educationally sound and not littered with inappropriate ads.
"Easily navigated, this website provides the experiences associated with each Bloom’s level. Once an educator selects a tool he or she is directed to subsequent page which offers the user a more detailed description of the tool along with additional tools that match the same criteria. In some cases, pdf documents are included that provide directions, additional ideas, student/teacher examples, and additional navigational links. A toolbar on the left allows the user to select a tag such as blogging, podcasting, cartoons, etc. This tag instantly takes the user to the Bloom’s category under which the link is housed."
Jim Lerman's insight:
An outstanding piece of work, curating a tremendous amount of resources and information is a most effect manner. Kudos to creators Kathy Beck and Karen Van Vliet.
Just a reminder that we often forget Bloom said their are 3 domains for learning. What's illustrated and described here, and most often referenced by educators, is the Cognitive Domain. The other two, Affective and Psychomotor, are too often forgetten or overlooked.
Bloom said there needs to be a balance among the three. My observation does not minimize the excellence of Beck and Van Vliet's work.
St. Francis of Assisi said that we should “Seek first to understand then to be understood,” It is impossible to find out what someone is thinking or feeling unless we listen to what they are trying to tell us. In valuing others, what others are trying to tell us, we establish value for what we are trying to communicate to them. By valuing others we add value to ourselves.