Technology is an immense tool that can transform the way students learn. One of my favourite quotes which demonstrates this comes from Steve Jobs: “What a computer is to me is it’s the most remarkable tool that we’ve ever come up with, and it’s the equivalent of a bicycle for our minds.“
If done right, blended learning can be used to support more equitable access to learning resources and discipline-specific expertise. It may also engage students (and teachers) in a variety of online and offline learning activities that differentiate instruction and bring greater diversity to the learning context.
Wikipedia is often vilified in educational circles. The site’s loudest critics think that it offers biased, non-credible information. Many teachers specifically ban students from using the site from as a reference in research papers.
How to facilitate such discussions is confusing to many teachers, and online discussion threads and chatrooms may be seen as a poor substitute for the “real” thing, an evil necessity of the online class. However, although there are some barriers such as its more decontextualized nature, in comparison to face-to-face discussion, there are advantages that are unique to the online discussion that can be built on by the instructor while the drawbacks are minimized.
I'm not really sure how surprising these are to you. Number 5 would be a nice one though if that really happens over the next couple of years. I also think that number 1 may be wrong as I've seen a lot of adoption of gamification and a it can work really well.
Over the last 100 years in teaching, how much has changed? Could you take a teacher from 1915 and drop them into a modern classroom? Apart from the strange haircuts and unfamiliar clothes they’d barely notice the difference, because the majority of school is still lecture driven. The teacher stands at the front, disseminating knowledge to the students. Now undertake the same scenario but with a surgeon. Bring a surgeon forward 100 years and it’s a different story. In a modern operating room our time traveller would be overwhelmed with sights and sounds. This is because technology has revolutionised surgery.
Five years ago I was trying every new tech tool to come out. I was glogging with glogster. I was threading with voice thread. And I sure was writing and editing in real-time with Google Docs! But the technology was not transforming me. It was not transforming my classroom, because it was just technology.
The activities will help teachers to explore the role of creativity in the classroom both in the sense of helping students to express their unique creative identity and also by helping them to think about and use language in a creative way. The activities are suitable for a broad range of students from young to old and from low to higher levels and can be used alongside your existing syllabus and course materials to enhance your students’ experience of learning English.
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