Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Constructivist Teaching with Technology

Karl Fisch, Anne Smith, Brian Hatack, Brad Meyer, Barbara Stalhut

The session started with a powerpoint of quotes form students and teachers. Very good. The one I especially liked from a student was something like this, "I like being graded on what I've learned instead of just for showing up for class. It's awful to get graded for just memorizing the seating chart." :-)

- You MUST take a look at the resources and samples they've got in here!


Heart of the change in his school is staff development. They meet for three hours regularly. One third is on learning theory. One third on pedagogy. They also use blogs for teachers to use to discuss issues. A final third on tools like del.icio.us, blogger, etc. VERY successful professional development program.

First change - change the way the class looks. They want to create a professinal learning environment. Change from deaks to tables and chairs on wheels. Changed the posters from fun to inspirational. And, they posted classroom expectations.

The first thing they noticed was engagement - especially in the faculty rooms! They had 6 purposes in blogging, 1) thefischbowl, 2) in depth discussion about government topics, etc. 3) discussions amog kids - and other kids blogging on the outside. And, of course, I can't keep up. :-(

Start with a core group of teachers. Those who areinvolved are talking at lunch time and those who are NOT involved hear the positive discussion and WANT to join. Teachers need to TALK about this process. Kids are saying (in effect), "I don't want to be in so-and-so's classroom since they don't use the technologies." So, the teachers who aren't using it are being pressured to get started.

Also, the kids see the teachers as learners, as well. Important vision for students.

Collaboration - http://burrel9english.wikispaces.com/

"Being a reflective teacher is a very important part of the process." Brian has noticed that kids are doing an amazing job of being reflective on their own positions and writings.


The kids wrote the first four chapters of an astronomy book on a wiki!

Online peer editing - reviewing toolbar in word. Using a wiki. Editing each other's work. Chifting chairs - musical shifting seats - then sit down at a computer and edit.

What matters. "Build a multimendia presentation about what matters about what you've learned this year." WOW!!! LOVE this idea!!!

Check out the Mockumentaries on the top link.

Scribe posts - great idea!

What a (seemingly) wonderful atmosphere they have. Staff development was very well received - even those who didn't participate talk about it.

Some discussion about differentce between cooperative learning vs collaboration. Not sure I yet understand the difference.

A quote I like. The tech committee said that they weren't going to give Arapahoe any more equipment since they've got so much already. Anne's reply, "Oh really? You're going to put the ceiling above the spotlights? Why not give us more to see where we can go with it?" Liked that mental image - ceiling above the spotlight.

Very nice discussions! I LOVE this conference!!


1 comment:

Karl Fisch said...

Thanks for coming and it was great to meet you. My teachers all raved about your session.

You can download that powerpoint without the music) if you wish.