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Monthly Archives: November 2010

Last week session turned up to be very positive and valuable experience. I would like to thank our fellow students for great performance.

Display of themes and brevity of presentations made it easy to talk about numerous topics in a short time. This type of presentations has its advantages:
• Fits attention span “time brackets”
“Most healthy teenagers and adults are unable to sustain attention on one thing for more than   about 20 minutes at a time, although they can choose repeatedly to re-focus on the same thing”.(Wikipedia)
TED Talks is probably the best example. Jamie Forrest wrote about it in My Own TED Experience

• Evaluation of newly obtained knowledge is highly rated by educators; Bloom’s Taxonomy places it at the top level.
Recommended article ‘The Objective of Education Is Learning, Not Teaching’ presents interesting points when examines learning through teaching.

I might test this concept myself soon enough; I was asked to plan for a presentation, introducing teachers to new technologies in the classroom.
(I am only teacher with a Smart Board in a class, and two new ones are in their boxes since beginning of the school year, seems like its instructional value is not recognized. It took couple of reminders to bring this issue to a discussion.)
I am planning on including WEB 2.0 tools into my presentation. Hopefully development of presentation material will help me to complete my own puzzle.

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I have found this short TED Talk and it sparked my interest. I think it is examining one of the fundamental dilemmas that educators are facing in increasingly reactive world.

Question of delayed gratification was brought to my attention by our vice-principle. It didn’t catch my attention then. Interest appeared during this course, I have tried to use nay and every string of technology in my classes. One of latest changes I’ve made was creation of spreadsheet-based application for organizing, calculating and visualizing students’ marks. It created a situation, when student can instantly see result of his work, as well as her current mark.

It appeared to be a successful way to encourage students. Anyone who worked in northern schools (not exclusively) knows how difficult it is to promote education among student. Many students do not see any value in education.

There are many reasons for it:

overall low education, clash of cultures, etc.

One of the reasons is more pronounced here: lack of role models created by low graduation rate and high dropout in universities, as well as reluctance to return after completing higher education.

So no regrets, it works. Although some “side effects” are visible already:

marks becoming an ultimate goal,

more “pragmatic” approach to knowledge (is it on the test?).

How will it affect my students in the future?

Any Ideas?

During this course I had to sacrifice confidence in my ability to adopt to new technologies .

Thanks to my experience and education (I am certified Microsoft professional, MCP, Servers and Cisco Certified Network Associate, CCNA) any new gadget: computer, Smart Board, application or service, quickly became simple and easy to use. So, since September, I’ve been waiting for the feeling of familiarity, and waiting, and waiting…

Instead, I’d realized that technology or mathematical logic (I am a high school math teacher) has nothing to do with social networking proficiency. On the contrary, they kept me away from understanding it.

I often see:

users as IP addresses;

communities as active directory domains;

posts, and messages as well as tweets as groups of pockets with certain number of ones and zeros.

I do exaggerate a bit, but overall picture is accurate.

“The PLN thing has gotten out of hand” by Lisa M Lane has helped to understand idea of PLN, although I wasn’t turned off by technicality, perhaps wasn’t stimulated enough by technical aspect of it. Great post, I hope to be able to get Lisa’s skills’ level one day…

So far, I am trapped  in Web 1.99999… (good name for a post)

According to Sir Ken Robinson we (teachers) are killing creativity and feeding students with useless junk. Sometimes, usually by 4:00PM I begin to agree with his views…

I don’t know how new education system will work but I see that educational system that I’m part of barely does what it’s supposed to do.

School must give students necessary skills for the real world, although, following current tendencies, our students will live in a rapidly changing world, everything that is important now might not make any sense in the future. Latin and Greek, Bible Studies and other “whales” of yesterday’s education lost its significance. New subjects appeared and evolved and will probably vanish in future.

What is the role of school in our society?

Academic institution, extension of government or religious institutions, adopted family, babysitting service …