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Adam Babcock

Adam Babcock's Public Library

  • Right now, school leaders, policy makers, and companies are all jumping into the fray, investing their time and resources in tools such as software-based curricula to adaptive assessment tools. To ensure we invest wisely, we must revisit the core principles of personalized learning, its implications, and it’s intentions.
  • “begin with the learner.” This means that the learner is integral to creating the goals, tasks, and methods by which learning actually happens.
  • The magic ingredient for personalized learning isn’t prescriptive content; it’s empowerment.

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  • curating SAMR resources
    • I decided to create my own acronym, S.A.S.S.Y. based on an adaptation of Dr. Ruben’s app classification… the Ed Tech Quintet:

      • S: STUDENTS and Storytelling
      • A: Awesome ASSESSMENT (Teacher-Driven and Student-Driven)
      • S: SOCIAL (Voice and Collaboration)
      • S: SEEK: Research and Visualization (Finding it, Citing it, and Displaying it)
      • Y: YOU: Think about Your Own Thinking…
  • Many times teachers see different apps placed at different levels of the SAMR spectrum and assume that an app can only work at one level or just because they use an app that their instruction is automatically at the augmentation or redefinition level.

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  • The issue to tackle first is the teaching conventions and mindsets amongst the staff, and for this you need some pretty simple and effective arguments.
  • 1. Question the effectiveness of “Teaching/lecturing”
  • All teachers, secretly or not, know this has never been true but you are guaranteed to have to repeat information to the “bad listeners” and simultaneously waste the time of the “top” students who already know the material. Students listen at different levels and understand at different levels, something quietly ignored by many teachers.

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  • Davis, the wiki stores a record of every change made and who made it, so students know she can see exactly what they did, constructive or otherwise. Note to student slackers: That means she can see what you didn't do, too.

  • Here’s what I think:  first, technology cannot be integrated into an existing curriculum…that’s like putting a maple branch on an oak tree.  The curriculum must be generated with the technology inherent to the learning. Next, the technology must extend the learning of a fundamental literacy.  If it doesn’t, you are better off using paper and pencil…or, a better idea, devise a lesson that DOES extend the learning.

  • When teachers first embraced wikis in the classroom, they met less-than-ideal outcomes. Usually students were disinterested in the topics or were not familiar with the technology, or were not adept with collaborative writing. The results usually consisted of disproportionate work distribution and copy-and-pasting: in other words, very little learning. Even if the work was evenly distributed, it resembled a “quilt,” with each student stitching in their own panel with little regard for what their partners wrote.
  • First, a teacher must establish a collaborative environment from the beginning of class. A wiki-based project should not be the first time students work together. Collaborative projects work well, but only if an environment of cooperation already exists.

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  • The app’s new file format is unique in that it doubles as both a traditional word processing and page-layout document. All new blank files behave like traditional word processing documents with standard body text, paragraph styles, embedded graphics, tables, and other objects. But, when you uncheck the Document Body checkbox in the Document Setup tab, you can use the document canvas in the same way you would use a normal page-layout canvas. You can then easily add and rearrange images, text boxes, and other document elements.
  • The app has dispensed with the multiple inspectors that Pages ‘09 used to format virtually every aspect of your document, and it instead uses a new intelligent inspector that changes dynamically depending on what you’re doing.

  • “Most schools and most of our learning stops at knowing and we need to move that and broaden it to the doing and the reflecting,”
  • know, do, reflect
  • Most projects at Envision schools culminate in an exhibition of work at which students reflect on how they could have done things differently or improved on their work.

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  • Any use of technology should improve the process or outcome. We must ask ourselves whether using technology is contributing to improved teaching and learning, be it a pencil, textbook, laptop, or tablet. Another point to keep in mind is that integration generally begins at the lower levels of enhancement and progresses upward, moving toward transformation, and this happens all along the SAMR continuum. Just as in Blooms Taxonomy, there is nothing inherently wrong with teaching at the basic levels, nor is it necessarily better to working at the upper levels. It all depends on what the teacher’s intent is.
  • Similarly, having students research online, watch videos, and take notes on the Civil War, planetary motion, or some other topic represents substitution. They are good uses of technology for learning and not unlike addressing Bloom’s lower levels of remembering and understanding.
  • Educators can now collaborate with other educators from the next town, the next state, or another continent. Students can interview authors, researchers, policymakers, and other experts no matter where they are. In addition, teachers and students can create their own multimedia productions to share what they know and are able to do. Moreover, they can create these productions in collaboration with any number of people anywhere in the world. These can be easily shared with anyone for feedback and commentary. Suddenly, the world is the audience and schools truly are without walls!
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