Sunday, September 4, 2011

Blog Post #2

1. This presentation on our every growing technical industry was really astounding to me. I knew that text messages, the internet, Google, and social networks were growing at record speeds, but to see the actual numbers has once again sent me into a mode of panic. I am panicked because I want to be totally immersed in all this technology, yet I have a very minute idea of where to begin. I am a perfect example of why the United States is ranked #19 on Broadband Internet Penetration. Statistics such as the ones shown in “Did You Know?” are remarkably eye opening and I hope will push everyone to become more familiar with their technical surroundings. For example, I was astonished to read that India has more honors kids that America has kids. Isn’t America supposed to be the “model country?”
It seems to me that for many years educators, students, and other professionals have simply pushed aside the idea of learning new ways to communicate, teach, and learn because technology is frightening. What should be more frightening is that the top ten high demand jobs were not even thought of six years beforehand. Technology is not a slow progressing field either. Over just a four year period, there were 28.3 billion search titles added to just Google. While it seems that I am stressing my feelings of panic after I watched this video, I decided to watch it after having made myself a little more familiar with some of the social networks and programs that were new to me online. Once I browsed through Twitter, searched for some K-12teacher resources on youtube, and various teacher blogs, I have come to the conclusion that the internet really isn’t so scary after all. Educators of all kinds should be held accountable for introducing our young minds to the wonders of technology. This video taught me how ever changing our world is and as future teachers it is our job to properly prepare our students for it!
2.After watching this video by Sir Ken Robinson, I called my mother who is a fourth grade teacher in Spartanburg, SC. She has been a teacher for almost forty years, so I thought these innovative ways of educating would ruffle her feathers a little. As I was telling her about this wonderful video I had just watched, she e-mailed me another link to a video by Sir Robinson which she had just showed in her grade level meeting. "Sir Ken Robinson on creativity."It brought me such tremendous joy to know that his message on rethinking intelligence can have an infulence on even the most old school teachers.
"Importance of Creativity" is one of the most eye opening videos on education I have seen. I love his take on educating our whole being. Every student learns differently, thus it seems we should put an equal amount of focus on every subject instead of putting the most emphasis on math, sciences, and languages. I love to see young children dancing around in different costumes, making houses out of sheets and sticks, and pretending a golf club is their pet horse. Who is to say this kind of creativity shouldn't be taught in schools? It is simply teaching the child to open his mind and make situations possible with what is at hand. I especially enjoy Sir Ken Robinson's idea that without being willing to make mistakes, we will never be creative. When children take a chance, whether it be on a math problem or when dancing in a recital, it should show us they are not afraid of their outcome. We should view these types of mistakes as creativity and foster the type of learning environment where mistakes are not frowned upon but rather used as learning resources. In conclusion, I believe Sir Ken Robinson is a wonderful man to follow, and I look forward to using many of his concepts as I teach in the future.
This is picture taken in a dance class at Pine Street Elementary School in Spartanburg, SC.
Pine Street 3rd graders using swim noodles as props in dance class

2.After watching the inspiring video by Sir Ken Robinson, this video on Mr. Winkle is a little depressing. Instead of embracing or researching any of the technical changes that have taken place around him, Mr. Winkle just tries to run from it. I feel for him and wish that he could take Dr. Strange's EDM 310 class to learn a little about HTML, blogging, and the like to realize that all this technology is fascinating and would make him want to be better, instead of frightening him into sickness.
The lack of change in the classrooms is what should frighten Mr. Winkle the most. Students have become bored with simply listening to their teachers talk and drill information into their minds. How do we know how the information they are expecting us to burp back will be useful if we can't see it being applied in our everyday life? Reading, writing, and arithmetic could be made interesting for the students in Mr. Winkle's school if it were made more hands on and interactive. Students who love math and science would greatly enjoy going outside to measure the amount of rain in ml and judge what types of clouds are overhead. This video by Mr. Needleman has shown me what it will be like if I don't embrace this technical revolution and be ready to teach it to my students.
4.When first reading the blog post by Ms. Gault on her interview with Sir Ken Robinson, one would not be able to tell she is a just a child. Her blog was worded in a very mature fashion and she has a vast vocabulary. I'm sure this is in part to the blogging, making videos, and hands on activities she does at her arts school in Finland. I was amazed to learn that Finland has a 1% drop out rate, which is 24% lower than that of the U.S.
Cecilia Gault is a poised, well educated young lady. I would be very proud if she had come out of my classroom. She got straight to the point when interviewing Sir Robinson and wanted to know exactly what his three myths of creativity were. She relayed the information she was given in a very clear format and with a bit of personal interest as well by saying that she believes creativity is so important since she attends a Performing Arts School. I like the idea of sending students to interview professors, speakers, and other professionals because it makes them comfortable around intellectuals. I also enjoyed that it was apparent Cecilia had done her research on Sir Ken Robinson and other educators who shared his point of view. I believe it is crucial for my students to learn about reading, math, and science as well as the importance of creatively obtaining that education as well. Sir Ken Robinson said it best, "Creativity is as important as literacy."
5.Vicki Davis is such an interesting lady! I love that she calls herself a "teacherprenuer," and it seems that she really is! She believes first and foremost that when you can empower a student, then the classroom will flourish. I have never seen education in exactly that light but I love that idea and it makes perfect sense to me. I have a 15 month old son and the same thing holds true with him. I recently could not get him to eat anything for breakfast, lunch, or dinner which was so strange because he used to eat everything off anyone's plate around him. He began wanting to only hold the spoon and try to do it himself, but when he did the grits or macaroni would launch across the room. One night my husband and I decided to just let him go at it with some eggs and see if he could figure out how to use his fork. We watched from the bar window in the kitchen and to our surprise he began trying to stab his eggs with the fork and before long he had pretty much figured out how to eat with utensils! He was so proud of himself and began clapping over and over again. If something as simple as eating eggs for a toddler can bring that much joy, just imagine how excited a 15 YEAR old would be to teach his own teacher something new.
Ms. Davis also says that when teachers use only pens and papers only certain students learn. She is aiming to make every student learn, including herself. I really admire the way she learns from her students and tries to focus her cirriculum on the way they take in information. In the video, we saw a student teaching the class a new game and how to "terraform." All of the students were completely involved. Perhaps they were so involved because it was one of their own peers, or perhaps it was because it was something they could all relate to. Whatever the reason, these children were really into learning different technology, as well as new words like terraform. This video taught me not to just take ideas from these videos in EDM 310 but to constantly be thinking of new ones and possibly be a "teacherpreneur" myself.

1 comment:

  1. It is so great that you are sharing your discoveries with your mother. She is going to be a great asset to you in this class. I enjoy reading your posts, they are thorough, yet personal. Keep up the good work!