Sunday, October 28, 2012

C4T #3

Technology, How Did I Get Started? Paula White

Paula White is a teacher, and she wrote a blog that explains how she starts using technology. White was born in the 50s and attended the University of Virginia (UVA) in 1970. When White was growing up a computer was large enough fill up an entire room, but in 1980, White bought her first computer that she only used word processing on to send letters home with students. White was a part of the UVA pilot program where she was given a modem for her classroom, and she learned how to be able to receive calls and surf the web simultaneously. Then in the 90's, White introduced her kindergartners and first graders to Hyperstudios and Kid Pix, where they were able to do assignments using the internet. White and her students opened a global connection and White was recognized the Apple Distinguished Educator in 1992. White attribute her technology success to her childhood by being able to ask questions and take things apart to see how they work. As a child, White also played outside with others where she learned to use logic, become a thinker, and ask questions.

White's post shows how far technology has come. White's post also shows that children minds need to be stimulated instead of sitting in front of a TV all day. Even in the 80's children were able to use technology; therefore, they should understand the importance of expanding technology in the classrooms. I am impressed how far technology has come, but I will be even more impressed when every teacher sees the importance of technology in the classroom. If technology can be incorporated in classrooms as early as kindergarten then students will be able to think on their own and become logic thinkers, instead of thinking in the box all the time. It is time to understand the importance of technology and allow students to use technology in the classroom.

hyperstudio technology with sound digital, microphone, clip art. Shows the old computer in the 80s

Getting Smart All Of Us

Ms. White works with other teachers in her school to make learning fun for the students. Ms. White has an after-school wiki club where students as young as first through fourth grade learn how to create wikis, embed videos, coding with html, and working with widgets. Ms. White had a student that like wikis so much that she worked at home and taught herself almost everything she needed know. If the student ran into a problem where she could not talk herself through or figure something out on her own, she would ask Ms. White. One day the girl asked a question, and as Ms. White was talking through the process and the student wanted to take over, but instead Ms. White told the student to let her figure the process on her own. Ms. White wanted the student to learn to respect the fact that she was learning and not to intervene. According to Ms. White students often, think they have to prove how smart they are because teachers do not allow them to give their input in the lesson. Ms. White's school wants to focus on teaching students to be thinkers and allow more hands on and experience lessons known as a "STEAM school". In order to start the "STEAM school" Ms. White thinks the following questions should be answered:
1.) What is it that we want all kids to know, understand and be able to do?
2.) What will we accept as evidence that learning has occurred?
3.) How do we respond when kids come to us already knowing how to do those things?
4.) How do we respond when we’ve done our teaching, but learning has not happened?
5.) What does our teaching look like to support important and effective teaching and learning? Ms. White also thinks we should look at what students can do instead of what they cannot do.

Ms. White's post could be better said, I agree that education as we know today needs to be changed. A typical classroom consist of the teacher standing in front of class teaching the same lesson the student learned last year. If teachers took the time to see what the student does know instead of what they do not know the learning process be easier. Teachers should break students in groups and teach those students that did not grasp the concept the first time; meanwhile, challenging those who grasp the concept the first time around. I feel more confident in working with blogs from reading this article because the students mentioned in the article are elementary students and they can successful create wikis and blogs. The article also shows me how beneficial technology is because it allow students to think for themselves or see how something works by figuring things out on their own. I also learned how important it is to have a great support system when bringing technology in the classroom.

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