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Classroom Course 4 Learning Landscape

Learn for real!

learn
Photo Credit: Mark Brannan via Compfight cc

Project-Based-Learning, Problem-Based-Learning, Inquiry-Based-Learning, Challenged-Based-learning are all pedagogical theories which all have something in common. Their approach is the real-world approach.

One of my goals for daily life teaching and learning is that it has to be authentic and meaningful for the students. As a PYP teacher, as a technology teacher, as a language teacher and as a person I don’t want to separate school from life outside of school anymore like our teachers did 20 -30 years ago. Difficult enough because often old structures and fixed mindsets are still there.

Authentic and meaningful problems, projects, inquiries, challenges motivate me as a learner and I strongly believe that this is also the case for students. Secondly I (often together with the students) always try to find a way to share our learning. Students present their learning, take some actions, give tips for our language learner (in my case), make aware of something, reflect on their learning – I don’t just want to collect the learning in the classroom or even worse just in the notebooks of the students.

Technology / the Internet as well as our local environment provide us a way to make the learning authentic and meaningful, to find projects or real problems to solve, and to challenge ourselves.

Some examples:

Grade 1 German Advanced
Unit: Fairy Tales
Learning Intention: All countries in the world have fairy tales or stories.

The students asked a non-german speaker to tell a fairy tell or story from their culture. The recorded it with vocaroo.com (fantastic tool) and then retold the story in German. Again those stories were recorded and finally shared on a world map, so everybody can listen to it. Here is the link to Märchen aus aller Welt.

Grade 1 German mother tongue level
Unit: Material Matters
Learning Intention: Materials have certain attributes for certain purposes

As a scientist the students inquired into a chosen item and looked at it with the following questions:

  1. What materials are used to produce this item?
  2. How does the item look and feel like?
  3. Why were those material chosen to produce the item?

After the research the students published the results for their results by using thinglink. Due to privacy policies I can’t publish them here. Following they were asked to show their deeper understanding by choosing a certain material for a certain purpose. Even more it would have been authentic if we had the chance to actually build something. Next year …

Grade 3 GAL 1 (German as a additional language – beginners)

At the end of the unit the students reflected on how they are learning new words. The fact that the students are beginner language learner it was definitely a meaningful and authentic reflection for them. But we wanted to go a step further and share our reflections. Students came up with the idea to create something for the blog. Finally they asked me to create a little video. They created the tips for other language learner.

Grade 4 German Advanced
Unit: Inventions continue to impact our world
Learning Intention: Deeper understanding that inventions can have a positive as well as a negative impact on our world.

The students inquired into a chosen German inventor with the following prompts:

What is the invention?
How did it improve our daily lives?
What negative impact the invention might have on our life and environment?

To share their learning outcome the students chose to film themselves with the iPads and share it by using voicethread. Following a short part of it (and I learnt how to blur the faces 😉

Grade 4 German mother tongue level
Unit: Video killed the radio star (focus in German: written communication)
Learning intention: Different kinds of written communication are used in different situations and for different purpose.

The students are surrounded by technology and they communicate in a way different way than we did at the same age. They see their parents or older siblings using devices to communicate. Inquire into written communication (using Todaysmeet for the TuningIn; using the learning Links on the Intranet to find more information about different type of written communication), attending a contest writing a letter to a hero of a children book (found on the internet), using Skype to communication with somebody who still writes a lot of letter, touches the reality of the children. They will become experts and can share their knowledge.

Sometimes I get the question: And what is the language focus of the unit? Yes, there has to be a language focus. But especially the German classes learn through using the language. On top of it, even though it is the mother tongue class the learning needs of the children are very, very diverse. Project-based, Problem-based, Inquiry-based, challenged-based learning gives me the possibility to differentiate and support individually so the learning of the language will be as meaningful and authentic as possible. Maybe it is not problem-based, project-based enough … I would love to go out of the classroom walls even more.

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Connectivism Course 4 Learning Landscape

How do my pipes look like?

The quote I read in Connectivism: A Learning Theory for the Digital Age

The pipe is more important than the content within in the pipe.

sticks to my mind since I started to read about Connectivism.

How do my pipes look like?

I’m still amazed by the fact that we decide what to learn, where to learn, when to learn, how to learn, and from who to learn. Recently I attended several sessions and listened to keynotes at the Global Education Conference. It was totally my decision what information and knowledge I want to get. It took place all over the world and definitely enhanced my learning through the diversity of people who presented and shared something. It was also my decision how I want to learn. Depending on the topic I sometimes was just a listener but if possible I tried to contribute to the learning experience within that specific setting.
But the pipe always has two directions, right? While attending one session called Students as Creators or Makers: Tools to foster Higher-order Thinking Skills I thought, next year I could give it a try as well. I’m getting there …

19th Century emails
Photo Credit: cicciodylan via Compfight cc

The more familiar pipes for me are of course blogs, Twitter, Facebook and Google+. To many people I try to explain it and compare it to an old fashioned post box. You are interested in something; you subscribe it and the mailman brings the mail to you.

But: Too often it goes only one direction, right?

 

A great experience on Twitter was for me when I first time had a question and I got answers. Or there was a question and I could contribute to it. There is the flow in the other direction. Vivian (@chezVivian) describes on her blog a professional conversation about assessment on Twitter. The knowledge is flowing back and forth through the pipe therefore it’s a really good learning experience. #pypchat – I’ll join you very soon.

Flowing in both directions
Photo Credit: m4r00n3d via Compfight cc

Facebook more than Google+ but they are both platforms for me to get inspiring input and to share worth reading articles, blog posts or ideas.  Collaboration and creating together with other educators and experts doesn’t happen yet to the extent that I imagine it to happen. One idea would be to connect with other German teachers at international schools in Germany. Let’s get together.

The wish to collaborate and connect more with other teachers led me to the question: Did a job description change? How? What kind of teacher I would like to work with if I had the chance to hire somebody?

Inspired by Ceci’s blog post Ceci 2.0 as well as by the table in What Is Web 3.0 And How Will It Change Education I wondered how a job description for a teacher could look like. I haven’t seen any since my mind shift regarding education has started. I’m not in the position of hiring people but I asked myself what kind of teacher I would like to be and what kind of teacher I would like to work with. Experiences and knowledge are important but not the most important anymore. In my opinion, one very important part is how much somebody is connected to get the flow of knowledge and information in both directions and within the whole community of learners.

The following pictures (on thinglink.com) shows my first thinking about it. A colleague brought up the ISTE standards to add. Sure. What would you add?

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Classroom iPads

Let’s climb up the next level

The SAMR model oder here is one very efficient way to evaluate technology integration independent from the device (smartphone, tablet, laptop) and scenario (f.e. 1:1 program).

One of my COETAIL cohort members (Brett MacRury) created a short video and showed which direction we want to go and what steps as well as thinking processes are needed. We don’t want just substitution only anymore. Feel free and watch it for further explanation.
Since the beginning of this school year I observed an essential change of my approach of using the iPads for teaching and learning. I started to evaluate the app I want to use before I use it in the classroom. Usually inspiration came from somewhere (colleagues, twitter, Google+, etc.) and I thought: “Oh, there is a new app, that’s cool, let’s try”. But wait:
Does it really transform and enhance the learning of my students?
Let’s check. That happened with Thinglink and my Grade 1 German class this year. The current unit is about Materials Matters and it took us a couple of lessons to get the vocabulary (nouns/describing words). Afterwards I asked the students to be scientists. The goal was to understand that different materials are used for different purposes. Their task was:

  1. Find a random item you find in the classroom.
  2. What materials are used to produce this item?
  3. How does the item look and feel like?
  4. Why were those material chosen to produce the item?

But what does the a real scientist do with his or her results? It didn’t take long until the students had ideas how they are publishing the results: in a newspaper, on the internet, during a conference, etc. How do we publish now our results? – That’s where the app called Thinglink came into play. Thinglink allows us to take a picture and add text or short videos (Youtube, etc. or selfmade) for further explanation.

Their task was:

      5. Publish your results and your understanding to share it with the world (meaning BIS community in our case).

If I look at the SAMR model – that is beyond Substitution. The app gave the students the possibility to express and explain their results using the right vocabulary and sentence structures. The results will be published on the community intranet. They couldn’t  have done this in a f.e. written form, because writing is not the focus yet. Their results would have been stayed in the classroom.
Did I redesign the task? I’m still a little bit confused about this part. Would be great to get some feedback on this. 😉 Older students could have find some explaining videos on the internet. That was too early for 1st grader.

I have to admit there are still some open questions. It’s never a linear process. Would be great to have that discussion about it. Could we even create a interactive picture of the SAMR model with examples of our practice?

Probably it’s like Jeff Utecht described here:

“I talk about the SAMR model a lot in my talks and presentations because I think it helps frame for teachers the kind of transformation that is possible with technology in the classroom. The one thing I don’t like about all the diagrams I find is that they make SAMR look like a hierarchy of levels rather than what I think they really are which are stages that we all go through when we are presented with new tools technological or not.Based on my own thinking I created the above diagram because what happens is once we redefine something it becomes common place and we start over dabbling with the next great thing.I like to use e-mail as an example. As some point around 1995 some IT person somewhere thought it would be a great idea if all teachers had an e-mail address. So what did we do…we used email to substitute what we use to do, then it augmented the way we communicated, next it modified how we expect to communicate in schools until it redefined everything from in school communication, to communicating with students, parents, and the wider community. Today….email isn’t seen as a disruptor…but it was.As we head into the final weeks I want you to step back and think about how you use technology or how it’s used in your classroom. Hopefully you are a scatter plot on that circle above. A little here and a little there….Redefinition is difficult as stated in the above linkRedefinition: The Technology allows the creating of new tasks, previously inconceivable. Think about that for a second…..that’s tough. That is using technology in a way that there is no back up plan. If the electricity goes out, if the computer doesn’t work that day there is no back up plan. The task you were going to do can not be replicated with paper and pencil or other materials. This is tough! It is not easy to redefine learning at this level…”

Unfortunately there is a downside:

I would love to present the results of the scientist here on the blog (Pls contact me personally if you want an example). Due to the privacy policy of our school I’m not allowed because you can see the faces of the children. My immediate thought was: Is there a way around? Maybe I can blur the faces of the children in the pictures as well as the videos. No idea but I’m was willing to spend a couple of hours. Back to thinklink.com. It is possible to download the videos (within the JW Player 6)? When I read that I have to add something to the JavaScript API to get a download button I thought: Ok, that isn’t done in a couple of hours, that is something for 6 weeks vacation. Unfortunately I’m not familiar with APIs.
The whole experience brings me to other question:

How can I enhance the learning experience of my students, let them create, collaborate and share their learning, if I’m restricted by such a strict privacy policy? How does other schools deal with this? How will my students feel when I have to tell them that I can’t publish their results?

 

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Uncategorized

When are students ready for a flipped classroom?

Startblock
Photo Credit: Startblock by Schneewittchen via Flickr

Do I like the concept of the Flipped Classroom (The Flipped Class: Myths vs. Reality)? I’m not sure yet.

The idea that students know already the content by mainly watching a video, but also reading a text, listening to a podcast, asking an expert, reading a website, etc. when they come to the lesson
          and
during class the students get the possibility to go further, to ask question, to make connections, to share their thinking, to show their deeper understanding, to get into a concepts, to inquire in different directions, to make conclusions, to think about action, etc. makes me curious.

I wonder what is more challenging for a teacher: to provide appropriate content in advance OR to find the right activities to support above written goals? Both are important and probably must not underestimated. Appropriate content – what does it really mean? Especially with an inquiry approach in mind and all the differentiation which is need in a classroom?!

Amongst others I’m teaching Grade 4 advanced German. The current unit is about discoveries and explorations and how it continues to change our world. Through a Visible Thinking routine called Generate, Sort, Connect and Elaborate the students developed great questions about space. Most of the questions were content related. I provided them a preselected websites with texts, videos, games, and visualizations to find answers which most of them did successfully. It was during the lesson in school. Now I’m questioning: Could they have done this at home (and I have to admit that I’m not a huge fan of homework)? Would we have had more time to go further, f.e. to answer the question why astronauts and astronomers explorer the space? And how did it change our world or will change our world?

Would this have been a first step in the direction of flipped classroom? My students answered their questions during the lesson and developed even new questions. My role was to support them with searching, reading, understanding, note taking, formulating the answer as a sentence and with their own words – learning the language through using the language. The students got the support they needed individually. I wouldn’t have gotten that chance if they had watched something at home. I was interacting with the students instead of lecturing. It was student centered and the students were able to inquire into topics they are interested in.

In secondary school and even more at universities (Umgedrehter Unterricht and Umgedreht lernen und lehren: „Inverted Classroom Model“) I rather imagine the flipped classroom like this infographik describes. In primary school the students still need too many pre-skills to know how to get most out of it by this method themselves, f.e. how to take notes, how to read a non-fiction text, searching skills, etc. There is probably way more the students have to be ready for before they can go for it.

In addition I’m wondering now how it looks like to teach and learn a language in terms of “teaching the language” (German in my case)? My next step to inquire into …

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Uncategorized

Gamification everywhere?

This week was an eye opener for me again. I love this. I thought I have an idea of gamification but that was not even half of the game. Google gives us the following definition:

Gamification Def.

Here a 100 second explanation (in German): Gamification. Basically the idea of gamification is to use elements of the game in a non-game-context.

Being a teacher I thought games are used in school to motivate and educate children. Students always want to play, to compete, to win. Already at university I learnt that playing is learning and a game has certain criteria to be a real game: Goals, rules, challenges, feedback, feeling of success or sense of achievement.

But I didn’t imagine at all and I was very surprised that it becomes more and more a tool for companies, websites, and even scientific institutes … actually with the similar goals: To motivate (Zombies, run! or Superbetter), to increase engagement (practicallygreen.com), to educate, to let employees collaborate, to inform (Gamification im Gaza-Konflikt: Social-Media-Spiel der israelischen Armee – or manipulate?), to build a relationship, to let participate, to let find solutions (Fold.it & Foldit – Gamification pusht HIV Forschung), to give an additional appeal to something, to increase the company revenue, to get more traffic on their website or to solve real-world problems, which is Jane Mc Gonigal’s goal who coined the word for the first time. Listen to her very interesting TED talk, where she explains how she wants to solve the problems of the world through gaming.

Obviously playing games gives us something with many of us don’t experience in real life like confirmation, recognition, status, awards, fun, exchange with others, self-fulfillment, competition, … people are gaming several hours a week I read somewhere. Are you a gamer? I don’t have any people around me who are crazy for games. I’m definitely not a gamer. It does not appeal to me or motivates me at all to run away from zombies (see above). Are you a gamer and even more interesting for me: What is it what makes you play a lot?

As a teacher on the other hand I’m very interested and curious to use digital games for teaching and learning. Last year I realized how popular Minecraft amongst my 4th and 5th grader is that I questioned my students over and over again. Over the summer I tried to get into it. I played two days and lost interest (or time or just different priorities). The benefit for the students is definitely there – it’s motivating, engaging, learning, it’s fun, it is rewarding, it gives a different approach to deal with failure, etc. – I would love to give it a try this school year. As long it is a choice for them because not every student is a gamer. And in addition for me as a teacher it still very important for me to give the students the possibility to find and live their passions, to experience the joy of learning so they are doing what they are interested in, so they are motivated and engaged, so they experience confirmation and success to build a healthy self-confidence.

My next question will be: How could gamification look like in education? How could it look like in my classroom as a language teacher? I’m also curious now whether any colleague at our school is going in the direction of gamification?

Like this?

– very interesting to hear his learning!

I’m excited to see more examples …

PS: Did you opened several links and they were all in German? Two reason why: First I just was too tired this week to inquire into the topic gamification in English. I started in German and I mostly sticked to it. Second I was very curious to read what is going on in the German spoken educational landscape.

 

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Classroom Collaboration Course 4 Learning Landscape New Media literacies

Let’s reflect …

What does integration of technology actually mean in the context of education? Already a while ago educators (Technology Integration in Education) and also companies (Google in Education) started thinking about it.

The SAMR model explains the single steps very well. Here a video: SAMR in 120 Seconds.

How would I evaluate my own practice of technology integration? How did the use of technology change my teaching and learning and the learning of the students?

My teaching career in primary school started a little bit than 7 years ago. Before I had worked for a software company as a trainer and I guess because of that particular experience and acquired knowledge I started to use technology from the beginning of my teaching. Reflecting on my students and my own use of technology based on the SAMR Model, which I first heard of maybe 1 1/2 years ago, I can see three phases:

1. Phase:

Situation:
1 desktop computer in the classroom &  very few desktop computers for the whole staff to share

Students, f.e.

  • write articles for a news paper of the field trip
  • create posters for announcements
  • use a dictionary
  • use certain programs for learning
  • create a photo story

Me as a teacher

  • organize files
Substitution
https://www.hippasus.com/rrpweblog/

At that time my students definitely mainly used technology just instead of a paper, a paper dictionary, colored pencil, traditional printed photos, and so on. I remember that it was important for me that the students get familiar and independent using the PC because their life is more and more driven by technology. If they don’t know a word, I want them to check it independently. The aspect of creating also played an important role, although I just substituted other tools. As a teacher I just used the computer to save files. That’s it.

2. Phase:

Situation:
Laptop cart with bookable laptops for each child & my own laptop as a working tool

Students, f.e.

  • search for information
  • search for pictures
  • use feedback tools like VoiceThread
  • write / reflect on a blog
  • recording a story
  • creating a movie

I’m as a teacher, f.e.

–       Use assessing tools like Evernote

SubAug
https://www.hippasus.com/rrpweblog/

The second phase was already a huge change and opened doors for using the technology. Probably I still substituted but new features created new learning possibilities. Information we probably would have found in a non-fiction book but are they updated? Pictures we might have found in magazines but would have there be a possibility to change and edit them? Feedback can be also given orally or in written from but would it have the same audience, would it have left the classroom then?

As a language teacher the way of assessing changed. To assess oral skills I usually just listened to the students. How helpful is it now that I can record them, listening to it again to get a deeper understanding of the needs? Aren’t there way more possibilities to personalize the learning of the children? The tasks for the students were still very similar compared to the use of technology at the beginning with only on PC in the classroom.

3. Phase:

Situation:
Laptop cart with bookable laptops for each child.
Six iPads for the use in the classroom. My own laptop as a working tool. My own iPad.

Students, f.e.

  • talk in Skype with experts
  • create with coding apps on the iPad
  • develop an own Wikipedia about a certain topic
  • search for / use information / pictures with the knowledge about copyright
  • create a book trailer to promote a book they like
  • create a world map to share fairy tails from a different culture on Google maps
  • show their deeper understanding by using apps like ExplainEverything
  • use GarageBand to compose music to a ballade
  • produce QR codes to provide more information
AugModificationRedifinition
https://www.hippasus.com/rrpweblog/

The change of the task for the children started here. Suddenly the students collaborated way more often or how would they have been able to create an own Wiki if not together? The students get the chance to meet and ask real experts or how could they all Skype to a real passionated writer of letters?

Above I wrote that the life of the children is driven by technology. Sure, they need to know HOW to use technology but they even more need to understand WHY to use one or the other tool. What is the advantage of using a particular tool? Is it easier to collaborate? Can I get meaningful feedback of others? Am I able to create something which will be a benefit for myself or others?

As a teacher I wish to personalize their learning and support the student’s needs; I wish to encourage meaningful collaboration locally and globally in the context of real-world situations and to get feedback of their actions; I wish them to be knowledgeable about how to search effectively to get the information they look for; I wish them to be able to visualize their deeper understanding and create something new. (History of Integration of Technology).

Redifinition
https://www.hippasus.com/rrpweblog/

REDEFINITION like in the SAMR model described is for sure our goal. It requires a mind shift and an exciting way of learning. For my own learning I wish to reach that level. Coetail is again a great way to get support and to head to new dimensions.

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Course 3

Are your ideas ever your ideas?

ideas
Photo Credit: Pictures by Pascal Lemaître in Wissen – Was ist das?

Reading about remix creativity and remix culture over the past two weeks opened my eyes in regards to the endless possibilities to create these days. The possibilities have always been there and people have always been influenced by others like Brain Lamb writes in Dr. Mashup; or, Why Educators Should Learn to stop Worrying and Love the Remix.

Elements of reuse have always been present in creative work, even though the borrowing may have been framed in terms of “tradition,” or “influence.” Artistic and scholarly works build on the work of others.

But over the past years creation got another dimension due to the immense development of technology. Following few definitions of remix:

“Remix”, in the sense the competition intended, means a creative work that builds upon the creative work of others. … It means using the work of others in a way that it is transformative, or critical. (The “Imbecile” and “Moron” Responds: On the freedom of Remix Creators)

Remix Defined points out three different levels of remixing and creating in the context of music but I think it is transferable to other areas as well.

  1. The first remix is extended, that is a longer version of the original song.

  2. The second remix is selective; it consists of adding or subtracting material from the original song.

  3. The third remix is reflexive; it allegorizes and extends the aesthetic of sampling, where the remixed version challenges the aura of the original and claims autonomy even when it carries the name of the original; material is added or deleted, …

The author describes even a step further and calls it regenerative remix. Remixes are remixed again; it’s a second and anew mix of something existing already as well as constantly updated and changed by the community; “meaning there are designed to change according to data flow.” The article mentions Wikipedia and YouTube as examples of that regenerative remixing.

The article “Everything is a Remix” got me to the thinking that everything is about ideas.

Copy, transform and combine. It’s who we are, it’s how we live, and of course, it’s how we create. Our new ideas evolve from the old ones.

At this point I see a connection to speak with my grade 1/2 students about remixing and creating something new. Often a student comes to me and complains: “Student x copied me.” In that case I try to get the students together and try to explain to them that get copied also means that somebody liked the idea. Of course I also try to point out that it would have been better and fairer if student x asked to use the idea. My experience is that students are fine with this way of thinking.
Next time I could go a little bit further. The following book inspires me to philosophize and to ask children about ideas and where they are coming from.

Was ist WissenOscar Brenifier: Wissen – Was ist das?  (in English: Knowlege – What is it?)

One part is about ideas and it asks fantastic questions which could be a great opportunity to develop a different awareness.  Here are some questions:

  •  Are your ideas yours?
  • Do you have to search for the ideas in your mind or do they come by themselves?
  • Do you decide by yourself what ideas you keep?
  • Did you change the ideas you have?
  • Where do the ideas come from which you read in a book?
  • Is there a world of ideas?
  • Did the ideas always exist?
  • Do you people have to think so the ideas can exist?
  • What would be a world without ideas?
  • Why do you have ideas if you can’t share them?
  • Did you understand your ideas if you can’t make them understandable for others?
  • Do we all use the same words to express our ideas?
  • Can we have an idea without having words for it?
Categories
Course 3 visual literacy

Infographics and the Explanation Game (Grade 4)

For the next unit the central idea for Grade 4 is Discoveries and explorations continue to impact our world. In German we are going to integrate through the line of inquiry Past and present discoveries and explorations and to inquire into space and space travel. The language focus will be story writing from a certain perspective using digital tools like Storybird or Book Creator on the iPad to present the story.

At the beginning the students will get (unfortunately only short) time to inquire into the planet system because the focus then will be on the astronaut and his motivation as an explorer. At a certain point I’m going to use the following infographic to introduce the infographic itself as well as the suit of an astronaut.

infografik space

I found the infographic on Printerest and unfortunately nowhere else. Therefor I have to admit that the source is not 100% clear for me. Of course I checked www.space.com and also the creator Karl Tate who seems to be an infographic artist.

Following the criteria of Daniel Zeevis What Makes a Good Infographic? I tried to evalute this above infographic. The content is reliably (www.space.com) and timely. It describes and explains the way astronauts can work outside of a spacecraft for up to 7 hours. The colors (mainly light blue, white and black font) chosen by the designer fit into the topic, the layout supports the understanding of the complexity of the suit for space travel. The way the information are presented inspires the interest of my students in space travel.

While searching for an infographic for my Grade 4 German class I had to realize that there are not many infographics written in German for Primary School. I decided to take the one in English and integrate the vocabulary work into the lessons. After understanding the vocabulary and the content I want to give the students the chance to ask questions about what they read, to explain and to think further why an astronaut needs such a complex suit or certain parts of it.

Very useful tools to guide and to tease out student’s thinking are visible thinking routines. One in particular is called Explanation Game. It’s very important to model this routine first to make sure that the students know how to ask the questions of explanation and to give clarification to the others. The documentation of each step is important to let the students follow and comprehend the whole process of their thinking. The following are the steps:

  1. Observation -> I noticed that …
  2. Question -> Why is it that way?
  3. Explanation -> It …, because …
  4. Reason -> What makes you think so? What makes you say this?

Let’s see how it will go …

Categories
Course 3 Random Thoughts

Some thoughts about shareability

There are already millions of infographics these days (f.e. Infographic World, Daily Infographic or even on Pinterest).

Some are very good, some are less good depending on data, purpose and intention what to inform about or what message to tell as well as the design. I am following actually Daniel Zeevi how to judge a good infographic.

His overview gives a good idea and standards for the creation of infographics:

What makes a good infographic?

Photo Credit: What makes a good Infographic by Daniel Zeevi via flickr.com

In addition to the above-mentioned three criteria, which I totally agree with, he lists shareability. Zeevi asks:

How relevant is the infographic? How much does it interest the audience? Is it optimized for the web and the search engines? Can it be shared through social media?

The two questions and also the thoughts Jeff Utecht expresses on Time Creating vs Time Learning made me think. He wrote:

Here’s the thing….creating something worth sharing takes time. It’s not easy. It’s not easy to create a really good presentation, it’s not easy to create a really good video and it’s not easy to create a good infographic…basically….it’s not easy to create something worth sharing.

He is kind of right – it takes time, which is good, but what does it really mean – to be worth sharing, to be interesting, to be relevant? To who will it be interesting, relevant and worth? Isn’t is very subjective? There is a great infographic about the life of Steve Jobs but I know a lot of people who are absolutely not interested in him. The same is valid for a presentation or any digital story. My story was about living your dreams. For some people it hopefully is something inspiring, for others nothing new and boring. In my opinion shareability in terms of relevance and interest is very subjective and depends on each single person. Or is there something like a common shared relevance?

Soon then some ideas how to use infographics in class …

Categories
Course 3 New Media literacies Presentation visual literacy

My story finally ….

This is your life.

It’s done. I felt the flow but even more I am feeling the relief at the moment. Somebody said: 1 hour per minute. Forget about it. It felt like ages. BUT: It was a great learning experience and I’m pretty sure I’ll will tell a story digitally again.

 

 

 

Photo Credit:
This is your life. by  Aaron Fulkerson

Here it is:

 

Let me tell you a little bit about the process:

Ideas
It took me a while to decide what story I want to tell. Should it be something personal, something related to school or about my passion regarding technology, f.e. Evernote (next time …)? For the first digital story ever I decided to tell a personal story. I thought that is the easiest for the beginning.

Google Drive
Google Drive was again a very useful tool to start with the outline, to save the pictures and the document for the credits. Not to forget, the document for the credits has to be published to the web. Very useful.

iMovie
Luckily I know iMovie already a little bit from work in school but I have never used it to that extend. It was the first time that I recorded my own voice, that I underlined the whole thing with a song, that I used pictured I found on the Internet.

Pictures
The pictures I found mainly on Flickr or Compfight. Part of the pictures I took during my time in South Korea. I’m very thankful that so many photographers already licensed their work so everybody can share, use and even modify them. For the near future it is my plan to license my pictures on Flickr as well.
I was never really sure and I’m still not 100% how to cite in a proper way. I create a google doc, published it to the web and put the link at the end of the movie. Is this the best way? I’m excited to hear and see how other COETAIL members found a solution for giving credit.

Audio
Luckily YouTube launched a free audio library just recently. What I worried about most at the start the audio was the easiest job to do. It’s not to easy to find on YouTube but you will find it within the Video Manager and then Creation Tools.

I would love to use Digital Storytelling in school more often. Especially for language learner I see the benefit because they can express themselves through pictures and the spoken language. A little concern arises regarding time. I’m curious know and I will definitely inquirer more into it in future.