Some great ideas and important points of discussion brought up in this document, including the right to access, privacy, financial transparency, civility, and play.
Author Archives: Tina Barseghian
Esteemed education advocate Sir Ken Robinson explains in this short video why creativity is crucial in education, and why it will require a transformation in the way schools work.
In his words, “Creativity is not an option, it’s an absolute necessity.”
Latest report summarized by Annie Murphy Paul on best ways to study:
“Spread out your study sessions, rather than engaging in one marathon. Cramming information at the last minute may allow you to get through that test or meeting, but the material will quickly disappear from memory. It’s much more effective to dip into the material at intervals over time. And the longer you want to remember the information, whether it’s two weeks or two years, the longer the intervals should be.”
Watch How Free Online Courses Are Changing Traditional Education on PBS. See more from PBS NewsHour.
For those still trying to piece together all the different definitions and scenarios of a MOOC (massive open online courses), this PBS Newshour segment presents a comprehensive overview of the evolution of this phenomenon.
From the financial angle, MOOC startups are still trying to figure out how to make money. Udacity is getting revenue from several companies like Google to provide specialized courses. Coursera is charging potential employers for providing names of high-scoring students.
Sebastian Thrun of Udacity, Daphne Koller and Andrew Ng of Coursera, students, and other professors who question the wisdom of these classes weigh in.
Student Tracy Lippincott’s perspective on teacher-student connection:
“The thing that I really miss is actually personal contact with the professor. I like to be able to get personalized advice from the person who’s in charge, and maybe just a little of like a thumbs-up, you know, just a little bit of positive reinforcement.”
Sebastian Thrun on his view of lecturing:
“It’s not my lecturing that changes the student, but it’s the student exercise. So our courses feel very much like video games, where you’re being bombarded with exercise after exercise after Continue reading
Starting the year off with ideas on the best ways to use technology to support learning, Larry Ferlazzo collected an invaluable list of criteria last year from educators, to which he added more resources in his recent blog post for EdWeek.Other posts in the series include Using Ed Tech to Create Deep and Meaningful Experiences and Effective Ways of Using Tech in the Classroom. Here is MindShift’s contribution to the collection of ideas.
1. GAMES AND GROUP WORK.
For those wondering what a game-based classroom looks like in a traditional school, take a peek into Ananth Pai’s third-grade class in Parkview/Center Point Elementary school in Maplewood, Minnesota. Using his own money and grants that he applied for, Pai has managed to round up seven laptops, two desktops 11 Nintendo DS’s, 18 games for math, reading, vocabulary, geography, and 21 digital voice recorders. Students’ reading and math scores went from below average for third grade to mid-fourth-grade level. Students compete in games with other kids across the world, learn about fractions and decimals by riding a virtual ghost train, for instance, work on their reading skills on sites like Razkids, figure out whether they can make a living by growing flowers, learn about their constitutional rights with the Go to Court Game, and so on.
2. LEARNING LATIN.
Teacher Kevin Ballestrini turned his introductory Latin class at Connecticut’s Norwich Free Academy into an alternate reality with an online video game. The students’ job: to save the world by joining a shadowy organization on a quest to find the Lapis Saeculōrum that was part of an Ancient Roman society. “It’s a mix of a role-playing game and an alternate reality game,” Ballestrini says. Students play the role of Romans in a reconstruction of ancient Pompeii (or ancient Rome) and have to learn to think, act, create and write like a Roman in order to win the game. And those are the same goals of any introductory Latin course.
3. REACHING STUDENTS.
In Ramsey Musallam’s A.P. Chemistry class at Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory in San Francisco, cell phones are a natural extension of the way he communicates with his students. As soon as kids walk in, Musallam sends out a text blast through Remind101, asking them a challenge question that’s related to the day’s lesson. “First person to tell me the units on K for a second order reaction gets chocolate,” he types and sends off. His students know he does this regularly, Continue reading
Rocketship Schools in the Bay Area have been one of the trailblazers in the ever-changing landscape of blended learning. Located in low-income neighborhoods, the schools’ Learning Labs — where students spend up to 90 minutes a day on computers working on math and literacy software — has been one of its defining characteristics.
But this model isn’t working, some Rocketship teachers say, and because it’s a charter school network with evolving systems, it may soon be changing, according to this PBS Newshour story.
“There’s definitely an aspect of us kind of not knowing enough about what’s going on in learning lab to be able to use that in our classrooms,” said teacher Judy Lavi.
“We don’t yet get data that says, OK, teach this differently tomorrow because of what happened here. And that is — that is a frustration point,” said teacher Andrew Elliott-Chandler.
Adam Nadeau, principal of Rocketship Mosaic Elementary, says he doesn’t think the Learning Lab model will continue next year. And Elliott-Chandler sees a different function for the computers.
“Next year, we’re thinking of bringing the computers back to the classrooms and the kids back to Continue reading