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Built to win: Deep inside Obama's campaign tech

Built to win: Deep inside Obama's campaign tech | Teaching on the Cutting Edge | Scoop.it
How Obama's tech team built a "force multiplier" with Amazon and a narwhal.
Lisa Purvin Oliner's insight:

Nonfiction Article Teaches Students to be 'Force Multipliers': Information Management 'Gamifies' Political Campaigns and Alters the Workplace Landscape

 

This is a terrific nonfiction article for high school and undergraduate classrooms because the subject matter is real-world relevant and provides students insight into skills needed for the workplace they will be entering in the not-too-distant-future. Although the vocabulary is a bit esoteric and challenging, the story of how an election campaign tech team, led by Senior Engineer Clint Ecker, was able to use an application called 'Dashboard' to rally support for their candidate using a social network venue that might be comparable to Facebook for supporters.

 

"The true power behind these applications won't be in the devices themselves, but in the analytic systems that back them" writes

Ars Technica's IT Editor Sean Gallagher. When we think about integrating technology into our lessons, some focus on the equipment or computing devices as carrying some import; however, Gallagher makes it abundantly clear in his article "Forget 'post–PC'– pervasive computing and cloud will change the nature of IT" that the devices themselves will matter very little to our students in the workplace. He says that application programming or interface–based architectures are where the focus is now. 

 

The shift from platform dependent to platform independent systems design is not only an important discussion to have with students interested in IT management, it is important for developing critical thinking skills and vocabulary on subject matter that appears challenging at first, but relates to the applications they and you access daily. How 'Dashboard' and 'Call Tool' (and other 'volunteer-facing' applications) were used to multiply the campaign force by automating the recruitment and outreach work originally done by field offices and volunteers is interesting when all of the logistics and coordination issues are considered. A single application called 'Identity' tracked volunteer activity "and allowed for all sorts of campaign metrics, such as tracking the number of calls made with Call Tool and displaying them in Dashboard as part of group 'leaderboards'". The leaderboards were developed to "gamify" activities like calling, allowing for what Ecker called "friendly competition" within groups or regions. On top of that, their man won.j

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CI484-Learning-Technologies - Behaviorism, Cognitivism, Constructivism & Connectivism

CI484-Learning-Technologies - Behaviorism, Cognitivism, Constructivism & Connectivism | Teaching on the Cutting Edge | Scoop.it
Lisa Purvin Oliner's insight:

Graduate Students Prepared to Know and Track More


Within Behaviorism, Cognitivism, Constructivism & Connectivism, a Wikispaces Classroom, four variations in instructional design are described in some detail with a well-referenced chart, definitions, videos, and hyperlinks. The facilitator presents in some depth a) how learning occurs using each theory as a lens, b) what factors influence learning, c) what the role of memory is, d) how the transfer of knowledge occurs, and finally, e) what types of learning are best explained by each theory. 


Of particular interest is the description of Connectivism that is a skill students are not acquiring to a sufficient degree before they graduate from secondary school. This is because most curricula designers and pedagogy planners view research papers and projects as sufficient guidance to keep up with new knowledge in the multiple fields they will need to follow to stay current. Like no other time in history has keeping abreast of new information been so complicated, changeable, and quality-source reliant. 


For these reasons, students should have strategies in place to sort the truth from myth, the obsolete from invention, and status quo from worthwhile endeavor. Critical Media Literacy is not enough to ensure students can distinguish the meaningful from the manipulative. They must also be able to see what they need to know and then make connections (i.e. “connecting specialized nodes”) that may change as ideas morph with discovery and innovation. Then they will need to cull that information in manageable and rational ways. It will be their “capacity to know more” that will make their paths ahead tenable.

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Multimodal Media Productions in High School English Classrooms 06172012.mov - YouTube

A Rationale for Integrity in American Literature: A Multimodal Media Production for the Liberation of Voices in the High School English Classroom
Lisa Purvin Oliner's insight:

MMLA is the outcome of a decade of professional development, collaboration, data collection, reflection, and ‘wonderings’ turned imperative preoccupation in my English Language Arts classroom. When a passing grade on high-stakes state testing across-disciplines became the ultimate endgame for all work in high schools, reading and writing in specified ways was fused to a deadline regardless of individualized education plans and learning challenges. What is not always clear is that our approach and intent may be more important than drills and practice. Once we give students hope that they have value in the world, their academic work will significantly improve. An open, positive mind should be the 'ultimate endgame'; then and only then will test scores improve.

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The future of education in an online world - Vision - ANU

The future of education in an online world - Vision - ANU | Teaching on the Cutting Edge | Scoop.it

Is it time to reimagine how we learn? Should we be moving from lecture halls to e-spaces -- from books to tablets?

Australian universities are increasingly rethinking the delivery of their educational programs by making the foray into Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs).

Lisa Purvin Oliner's insight:

Preparing Students for an Online College World: Are We Easily Distracted or Simply Learning Differently? 


How do educators provide an authentic democratic education while simultaneously addressing the challenges that, if scrutinized sufficiently, can ultimately improve the world around us? Professor Anant Agarwal, the President of edX (and social entrepreneur) and Professor Brian Schmidt AC, Astrophysicist, Nobel Laureate and co-leader of the first Australian National University (ANU) edX courses address these issues as well as provide plenty of evidence from experience to give us hope for the future. For clarity, edX is the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Harvard University’s Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) platform founded in 2012 that grew to be the center of numerous university-quality courses as well as a bountiful resource for further research and learning. 


For those of us with a vested interest in where education is going, seeing it for what it is now is critical because our vision can easily be clouded by instructional techniques and classroom management fads that help us perceive success with students scattered across lecture halls or distracted by their virtual, and often myopic, social worlds. The takeaway from The Future of Education in an Online World discussion is that we should not be focused on whether someone completes an online course or not, but on the value that course has for even the briefest of contact. [See my previous post: http://sco.lt/7e6m25 ] This is so because the Internet has trained our students to gather information in an entirely new way, and MOOCs provide a platform that may be revisited repeatedly and absorbed when and if the information is helpful to their individual goals and interests. In this context, students ‘getting it’ is emphasized less than the enduring qualities. 


This should ultimately transfer to how we prepare students for college and the working world in general. While there are critical skills needed to pass tests, a study released by The McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT lends data to the notion that we are failing to teach “fluid intelligence”. Much of what secondary-level students are expected to know now may be self-taught if only schools inspired deep thinking, self-determination and purpose. Unfortunately, because deeper learning skills cannot be measured, tracking our progress uniformly across the country is close to impossible, so students ‘getting it’ becomes the endgame. This is very different from how Agarwal and Schmidt envision learning in the future. These issues do not have to be in opposition to one another; instead, a balance may be sought between quantifiable schooling and inquiry/project-based schooling, especially as classroom profiles grow increasingly multicultural and learning styles grow progressively heterogeneous. 


For more on edX:

Will edX Put Harvard and MIT Out of Business? 

http://onforb.es/Jf0RFA


For a stimulating visual:

Appropriate pedagogies (two-way content development, etc.) can make participants actually finish

pic.twitter.com/aQQQHBHx9G

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Writing Your Own Policy

Writing Your Own Policy | Teaching on the Cutting Edge | Scoop.it
A Bring Your Own Device strategy for increasing the amount of technology used in schools will be unique to your school community, therefore schools will need to have their own BYOD policy and...
Lisa Purvin Oliner's insight:

BYOD: When Students Own Wearable Devices and Agendas are Unmanageable 

 

The chart from the website Bring Your Own Devices (BYOD) is helpful in that it provides a big-picture view of the technology-savvy classroom trend, a means for dialogue and a framework for implementing school-based policies. However, the best education leadership comes from those who are not shortsighted and easily swayed by bandwagon politics and social media trends.

 

BYOD presents technical, security, managerial and teaching challenges, but the most important of all is learning value especially in an age when measurable skills for workplace readiness is (or should be) the endgame. Furthermore, there is a great deal of energy directed at the devices themselves when soon laptops will be eyetops or eartops and no longer located where teachers can keep on-task behavior mediated. 

 

The point is that soon the device itself will no longer matter as much as which corporation manages the school’s cloud (see http://sco.lt/9CW4GX for more on the five biggest companies), which school-wide applications will be implemented and how technology is used to maximize those aspects of teaching that matter most. Whatever educators invest time, funds and energy in must afford on-the-spot measurable learning, curriculum-rich content, authentic collaborative/reciprocal group learning, engaging lessons aligned with the standards-du-jour. 

 

With so much money being lost when teachers leave the profession within five years (Darling-Hammond & Ducommun, 2013) and more in low-income areas, schools cannot afford to add more to instructor’s already burgeoning agendas. While making the classroom attractive to retain students after their 16th-year is both necessary and laudable, school leaders must guarantee the learning value is warranted and that the basics are implemented effectively in all classrooms. With every new idea and every trend must come an expert who knows how to balance use and operation within a very slim American school year.

 

Also see: 

The full BYOD site Bring Your Own Device Support - Bring Your Own Device Support

 

The Next Revolution In School Tech: Bring Your Own Device  http://onforb.es/LC5puK

 

Recruiting and Retaining Teachers: What Matters Most and What Can Government Do?

www.help.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/Darling-Hammond.pdf


Google Glass to Be Covered by Vision Care Insurer VSP http://nyti.ms/19YiFEy  

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A Motley Fool Special Report

A Motley Fool Special Report | Teaching on the Cutting Edge | Scoop.it
Who Will Win the War Between the 5 Biggest Tech Stocks?
Lisa Purvin Oliner's insight:

Fully Informed or Head in a Cloud?: Integrating Technology into Methods Courses

 

This special report from Motley Fool pairs well with my previous scoop.it comments on force multiplication and gamification used by Democrats to garner (and ultimately win) support for their candidate in 2012. The chart provided by Evan Niu in the report shows just how large the services and content parts of these five companies are. Particularly useful if a correlation is made with the Gallagher article "Forget 'post–PC'– pervasive computing and cloud will change the nature of IT" is how 'cloud storage' appears in all five companies as either a primary or secondary layer platform although they are all identified by different names. Integrating technology into the classroom and into methods courses for teacher education must be firmly planted in the facts with regard to how technology companies function on this scale, not simply how certain applications offer microlevel affordances. Students should know well who these companies are and how they function because much of our digital and technological lives are influenced in some way by them.

 

 

Nonfiction Article Teaches Students to be 'Force Multipliers': Information Management 'Gamifies' Political Campaigns and Alters the Workplace Landscape

http://sco.lt/4n3oY5

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Infographic | plagtracker on Xanga

Infographic | plagtracker on Xanga | Teaching on the Cutting Edge | Scoop.it

Copy-Paste future of internet: Expert estimate that by 2014 level of plagiarism on the internet will exceed 63%


Via PlagTracker
Lisa Purvin Oliner's insight:

An Alternative Plagiarism Platform & Approach


It's the beginning of a new school year, and many of you are looking for plagiarism detection tools that are less costly than turnitin.com. You may find this program helpful though turnitin's peer review platform is worthwhile.


Just keep in mind that for high school and college students, rapport is critical to forming a cohesive learning community and an environment where a culture of metacognition and reciprocal teaching and learning may flourish (Palincsar & Brown, 1986; Brown and Campione, 1997; Darling-Hammond et al., 2008). Instead, tell students that these programs are not being used to catch them plagiarizing but to demonstrate when something is paraphrased properly so they are never accused of the act. This approach also lessens the chances that thievery will occur in the first place.

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Content Curation Tools: The Newsmaster Toolkit by...

Content Curation Tools: The Newsmaster Toolkit by... | Teaching on the Cutting Edge | Scoop.it
This is a mindmap listing and organizing all types of content curation tools, as well as basic tools for aggregating, mixing, filtering and publishing RSS-based content.
Lisa Purvin Oliner's insight:

Content Curation: 'Multiliteracies' and 'Project-Based Learning' Contribute to the 'Global Brain'

 

Through collaboration-friendly venues like Scoop.it!, students may employ their 'multiliteracies' (Cope & Kalantzis, 2006) by exploring print-based text richly supplemented with semiotic materials and additional pertinent links in their favorite medium. For instance, a search on the web may supply 'images' on a particular topic, but they are often cut off from the source or understated, whereas 'Content Curation' sites use a format that simultaneously integrate a robust framework of infographics [see my site "Teaching Techniques for Inclusivity" for a clear definition from a Graphics Editor for National Geographic] that satisfies the need some learners have for visual communication. Not only does argument (or opinion) curation augment the reciprocal exchange of ideas between facilitators and their students, it extends the field of play, by not only providing more opportunities for the translation of ideas into different terms, but to elicit responses from an educated audience of responders.

 

With regard to comprehensive project-based learning, curation enhances inquiry based learning by allowing more choice in content focus as well as providing a public venue for students to independently locate and publish their own work. Learning in this environment is predicated on granting greater access to the roles experts play (Markham, 2011) which contributes notably to motivation. Ross Dawson looks at the intent of curation and says that it may be a) to contribute to the knowledge of others, b) to develop an expertise, and/or c) to become famous, or at least, be seen (which is equally valid). Dawson says that curation may be perceived as "contributing to the 'global brain'". Of course, educators want to facilitate opportunities for their students to develop an expertise in the content area at hand, but to do so while contributing to the knowledge of others, gives students a taste for learning with real purpose and application in the world.

 

Link: http://www.masternewmedia.org/curation-a-view-from-the-future/#ixzz2bUjT8RuD

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TED-Ed | Lessons Worth Sharing

TED-Ed | Lessons Worth Sharing | Teaching on the Cutting Edge | Scoop.it

Ted-Ed offers lessons in the form of YouTube videos. There are 62 videos and 312 Flipped Lessons. You can watch, adapt or use them with your classroom, homework, or just to learn. 


Via Barbara Bray
Lisa Purvin Oliner's insight:

Seeking Mind-Set Themes and Real World Relevancy through TED


This is the least likely source to be scooped, unless you have time on your hands; nevertheless, TED-Ed is an endless source of ideas, facts, and classroom mind-set materials. So, fit in amid classroom setup, listened to during long commutes, or used as a 'bedtime story', you are sure to find a metaphor or exemplar for your lesson-objectives, essential questions, and other enduring learning you've planned for students. 


For instance, Jackson’s “An economic reality check” is helpful to illustrate why “ownership is driven by a sense of anxiety”, Heffernan’s “Dare to Disagree” makes acceptable counterintuitive thinking within rigid communities of practice and shows how disagreement often illuminates truths that allows for growth, and Talhouk’s “Don't kill your language” demonstrates that primary discourse should be used to leverage the secondary. In the latter example, Suzanne Talhouk uses Khalil Gibran’s creative voice as an example of how our senses are inextricably tied to our mother-tongue.


Of course, as with any media used in the early tertiary or late secondary classroom, only the most vibrant excerpt(s) should be cued and viewed. Otherwise, a close-listening worksheet, active 'Twitterfall', and/or reflection journal should be used to engender engagement. Anyway, when you are trying to make a point with students who are largely trained through social media to be fluid thinkers, you do not want to clutter your agenda with unnecessary information.  


Please, feel free to add additional TED discussions and their thematic relevancy to your lessons to this post via comments. After all, we can then use this as an example of how a community of learners can form at any age and from any corner of the world.

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Lisa Purvin Oliner's comment, June 14, 12:43 PM
Former Gore speechwriter Dan Pink began 5 years ago to instigate a “right-brain revolution” in the carer marketplace by proving why extrinsic motivators have the potential to do more harm than good in sharpening thinking and accelerating creativity.
Dan Pink: The puzzle of motivation | Talk Video | TED.com
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A Great Resource Sheet on How to Grow Your PLN on Twitter ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning

A Great Resource Sheet on How to Grow Your PLN on Twitter ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning | Teaching on the Cutting Edge | Scoop.it
Lisa Purvin Oliner's insight:


Extend Your Personal Learning Network (PLN) with a Twitter Node: Teach Technology from a Place of Knowing


Twitter is worthwhile for educators in particular because it shrinks the world, or as Google Research Scientist Ed Chi puts it, brings the world together. This is so not simply because you can virtually attend a conference a continent away. It is so because the language barrier is growing permeable. For instance, only 50% of Tweeters write in English and this language is currently followed by Japanese at (a rounded) 19%. For more on this and the idea of trying to bridge language barriers on Google+ view Ed Chi’s talk on The Science of Social Interactions on the Web, at the 3rd Stanford Conference for Computational Social Science.


Common sense should be used on Twitter (and on any social media site). First, be certain that your password is sufficiently complex to avoid being hacked. Second, create a coded version of that password on your desktop for easy access if you forget it (of course, this may be a problem for which only I must prepare). Third, if the Tweeter (i.e. The person sending the tweet) misspells words, it can signify laziness and incompetence on their part. After all, Tweeters only use 140 words, and there are numerous reliable offline and online dictionary, thesaurus, and translation sites available for reference; in fact, virtually anyone can proofread their work quickly and effortlessly, both within and across languages. If they do not, it may be a clue that they or their Twitter site is not going to be a helpful resource for you, your colleagues, or your affiliates. In the same vein, not everyone that ‘follows’ you should be followed by you. In this way, some protocols are intuitive and function exactly as they do in real life. Just because someone is drawn to you, does not mean they are worth knowing.


In terms of creating your online persona, think about yourself as a character in a good novel. Do you want to be perceived as flat and static, or do you want to represent yourself as someone focused on a cause and dynamic? Don’t fear opening two Twitter accounts; one may be for your real or imagined future job, and the other may be for socializing or sharing information of personal interest with friends (and feel free to misspell things on that one). 


At times, following a dead sociologist, philosopher, and/or historian can provide resources for research projects, literature reviews, and more. When the site holds value (in terms of your personal interests and endeavors), looking at the ‘following’ list can be helpful in building your own. For instance, Nietzsche Quotes @NietzscheQuotes has a respectable following (e.g. OxfordClassics @OWC_Oxford), and the quotations are recognizably existential: Hope in reality is the worst of all evils because it prolongs the torments of man.  #Nietzsche


For more, check out:

101 Twitter Accounts Every #PhD Should Follow: OnlinePhDProgram.org


For Ed Chi’s talk at the 3rd Stanford Conference for Computational Social Science:

http://goo.gl/v2sNTI 

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King Richard III's genome to be sequenced

King Richard III's genome to be sequenced | Teaching on the Cutting Edge | Scoop.it
The genetic code of King Richard III, the medieval monarch whose body was found buried under a parking lot in Leicester, England, is set to be sequenced.
Lisa Purvin Oliner's insight:

Literature meets Science in Real-Life Mystery


Teaching Shakespeare's Richard III? This article is a good example of an interdisciplinary nonfiction article for secondary classrooms or content courses in teacher education. 


King Richard III's genome to be sequenced | Fox News

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Idea Map or Mind Map Used to Rebuild Downtown Manhattan After 9/11. | Idea Mapping

Idea Map or Mind Map Used to Rebuild Downtown Manhattan After 9/11. | Idea Mapping | Teaching on the Cutting Edge | Scoop.it
This is one of my absolute favorite Idea Maps or Mind Maps I've ever seen ... a needed tool at an incredibly critical moment in time. An avid user of
Lisa Purvin Oliner's insight:

Idea or Mind Map Modeling While Commemorating 9/11

 

Idea or mind mapping is nothing new, but here is one that helps us commemorate 9/11 while modeling the technique for our students. It appears too small here, but follow the links to its source on Idea Mapping: An Idea Mapping Success Blogs Weblog. From there, it's easy to magnify it well enough to peruse the massive coordination effort necessary to revive this section of New York City. 

 

This map was designed by MindManager David Hill to assist Con Edison's Economic Development department track all involved in rebuilding downtown Manhattan after the worst terrorist attack on American soil. Interestingly, earlier this month The Museum of Modern Art, New York (MoMA) acquired David’s map. The museum said, “We all felt that the work was of such important historical interest that we should include it in the MoMA Study Collection."

 

The Idea Mapping Weblog itself has other interesting links including an Idea Mapping Bookstore and links to certified Idea Mapping instructors and their certification workshops around the world. There is even a mind map example (#433) designed by a 10-year old on William Shakespeare.


For more on the subject, I currently like this site for modeling mapping in the classroom.


http://akshaymindmap.blogspot.com/

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Built to win: Deep inside Obama's campaign tech

Built to win: Deep inside Obama's campaign tech | Teaching on the Cutting Edge | Scoop.it
How Obama's tech team built a "force multiplier" with Amazon and a narwhal.
Lisa Purvin Oliner's insight:

Nonfiction Article Teaches Students to be 'Force Multipliers': Information Management 'Gamifies' Political Campaigns and Alters the Workplace Landscape

 

This is a terrific nonfiction article for high school and undergraduate classrooms because the subject matter is real-world relevant and provides students insight into skills needed for the workplace they will be entering in the not-too-distant-future. Although the vocabulary is a bit esoteric and challenging, the story of how an election campaign tech team, led by Senior Engineer Clint Ecker, was able to use an application called 'Dashboard' to rally support for their candidate using a social network venue that might be comparable to Facebook for supporters.

 

"The true power behind these applications won't be in the devices themselves, but in the analytic systems that back them" writes

Ars Technica's IT Editor Sean Gallagher. When we think about integrating technology into our lessons, some focus on the equipment or computing devices as carrying some import; however, Gallagher makes it abundantly clear in his article "Forget 'post–PC'– pervasive computing and cloud will change the nature of IT" that the devices themselves will matter very little to our students in the workplace. He says that application programming or interface–based architectures are where the focus is now. 

 

The shift from platform dependent to platform independent systems design is not only an important discussion to have with students interested in IT management, it is important for developing critical thinking skills and vocabulary on subject matter that appears challenging at first, but relates to the applications they and you access daily. How 'Dashboard' and 'Call Tool' (and other 'volunteer-facing' applications) were used to multiply the campaign force by automating the recruitment and outreach work originally done by field offices and volunteers is interesting when all of the logistics and coordination issues are considered. A single application called 'Identity' tracked volunteer activity "and allowed for all sorts of campaign metrics, such as tracking the number of calls made with Call Tool and displaying them in Dashboard as part of group 'leaderboards'". The leaderboards were developed to "gamify" activities like calling, allowing for what Ecker called "friendly competition" within groups or regions. On top of that, their man won.j

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Nik's QuickShout: Downloading Online video - iDesktop.tv

Nik's QuickShout: Downloading Online video - iDesktop.tv | Teaching on the Cutting Edge | Scoop.it

iDesktop.tv provides a really useful and user friendly service for anyone who wants to use video clips from sources like YouTube, but doesn't want their students looking around at anything unsuitable, or for anyone who has ever found a really useful clip, only to go back later and find it has moved or been removed.

 

You can use the site to search through a huge collection of videos from various video sharing sites and when you find something you like the site will download and convert it to a file type of your choosing.


Via Anthony Beal, Dennis T OConnor
Lisa Purvin Oliner's insight:

Speed is an Invaluable Commodity in Classrooms and Lecture Halls: Students' Need for Readiness and Efficiency


To convey knowledge to the students we currently teach, over preparation is still better than too little. iDesk.tv is one way to appear totally prepared and knowledgeable about the world outside of classrooms and lecture halls. Because most students engage social media at hyper-speed, and this disposition is ingrained and forecasts how they will 'work' in the future, facilitators need to prove that their desktops are organized to meet that relatively new inclination and perception.


iDesk allows facilitators to take advantage of teachable moments (Havighurst, 1952) or switch media quickly to prevent digression or loss of direction toward a thematic objective. Furthermore, allowing students to see their Symbaloo homepage (for instance) prepared for a lesson unit or entire course with tiles that are subject specific and linked to pertinent lesson materials, theories, and videos (as on iDesk) models how they too can harness the semiotic power of their multimodality (Hull & Nelson, 2005) worlds. Also, don't be too quick to judge this attitude unfriendly to speakers of other languages because visual online preparedness allows instructors to return to subject matter seamlessly if informal assessment proves the need.


http://www.symbaloo.com/

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Dennis T OConnor's curator insight, August 10, 2013 10:17 AM

A very useful tool for k-12 virtual, flipped, or blended classrooms.

Scott Langston's curator insight, August 10, 2013 11:37 PM

Invaluable for grabbing video you want to use repeatedly...