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Hi,

I’m Alexandria, I am enrolled at Charles Sturt University, currently studying a Masters of Teaching (Secondary). I’ve created this blog to reflect on the weekly modules of subject ESC407 – Classroom Technologies.

I started my Masters at the beginning of 2017 and I’m studying on a part-time basis as I’m balance study, work and parenthood. This is my first time studying online via correspondence and I’ve loving it. No two weeks (or days) are the same, and the flexibility of the online study environment makes it all possible.

I have no teaching experience to date, and my undergraduate was a Bachelor Law/Bachelor Communication (Journalism). After completing my undergrad I continued to complete a Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice from the College of Law and was admitted in New South Wales. This all seems like lifetime ago, since starting a family.  I’ve found study this time round, much harder (baby brain has been scientifically proven).

I’m looking forwards to learning more about classroom technologies, and applying such technologies in the classroom. I’m particularly interested in utilising tools to engage students, to explore alternatives to outdated text based resources and assessments which focus on ready and writing.

Please feel free to comment, I’d love to share ideas as we progress on this learning journey together.

Thanks,

A

Planning lessons with technology

At this stage I have no experience teaching, nor have I completed any work placement. My very limited exposure to lesson planning is in the form of assessment tasks which form part of this Masters degree. This lack of teaching experience poses difficulties when trying to self-assess my positioning on the TPACK chart. I lack experience, confident and knowledge to some degree, and all I can say with confidence is that as a pre-service teacher I will activity work towards the centre of the TPACK Venn Diagram reflecting; Technology, Pedagogy, and Content Knowledge.

Entering the HISE faculty as a pre-service teacher, I will focused on students critically analyse and appreciate the people, forces, events and ideas that have shaped the modern world (BOSTES, 2017, p. 12). The Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) states that learning is enhanced through the use of multimodal resources, digital environments and technologies within a classroom setting. This is achieved through access to live target language environments and texts via digital media, which extends the boundaries of the classroom (ACARA). Extending the boundaries of the classroom promotes student centred learning, as they are not restricted by the texts or content delivered by the teacher. Students are able to construct their own ideas and knowledge through a variety of informative sources. Therefore, it creates critical and creative thinkers, which is an essential component of being a successful 21st century learner.

Reference

NSW Board of Studies Teaching and Education Standards [BOSTES]. (2017). Modern History Stage 6 syllabus: NSW syllabus for the Australian curriculum. Sydney: NSW Board of Studies.

Classroom technologies and ethical issues

Roblyer & Doering (2014, p.25) identify issues that are shaping the teaching environment, and the responses and responsibilities of Teachers. In a digitally saturated environment one fundamental issue is new plagiarism and digital dishonesty.

Gabriel (2010) refers to the findings of Donald L. McCabe, who surveyed 14,000 undergraduates from 2006 to 2010 and found 40 percent had “admitted to copying a few sentences in written assignments” (Gabriel, 2010). More alarming was a shift in students perception of plagiarism, with results illustrating only 29 percent of students believed copy information for internet constitutes “serious cheating which was a 5 percent reduction since the last decade.

As teachers we need to educate students about how appropriately use information and how to avoid unintentional plagiarism (Roblyer & Doering, 2012, p. 25).

Reference:

Gabriel, T. (Aug 01, 2010). Plagiarism Lines Blue for Students in Digital Age.New York Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/02/education/02cheat.html

Roblyer, M., & Doering, A. (2014). Pearson New International Edition. Integrating Educational Technology into Teaching. Harlow, England: Pearson.

Web-based learning

Below is an example of how web-based resources can be incorporated into teaching Stage 5 History Syllabus. The focus, Depth Study 4: Rights and freedoms (1945–present), where students study the experiences of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples since European “settlement” of Australia.

YouTube EDU can be utilised as a ICT research task, as students investigated the forcible removal of Aboriginal children.

When investigating the struggle of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples for rights and freedoms before 1965, and introducing the 1938 Day of Mourning and the Stolen Generations, students can utilised Google Cultural Institute, which has a plethora of relevant information, one I particularly like is; Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Activists – Stories of Extraordinary First Australians, which can be accessed via; https://www.google.com/culturalinstitute/beta/exhibit/cQLS3Nb4pscFLQ

The integration of ICT, can lead to enhanced outcomes for students, by promoting and supporting the interactive process (NSW Education Standards Authority, n.d.).

Reference

NSW Education Standards Authority. (n.d.). Integrating ICT Capability. Retrieved from http://syllabus.nesa.nsw.edu.au/support-materials/integrating-ict/

 

Web 2.0 resources and issues

Three ways Web 2.0 tools can be incorporated teaching;

Study ladder

https://www.studyladder.com.au/teacher/resources/activity?activity_id=27154

This resource covers various aspects of the ICT capability areas. It can be utilised as an interactive educational tool for students, as it provides information and quizzes about ICT protocols.

Study Ladder relates to ICT capability one, ” Applying social and ethical protocols and practices when using ICT element, recognising intellectual property.” It can act as a summative assessment tool for students to test their knowledge on ethical dilemmas when utilising intellectual property (ACARA, n.d.).

 YouTube – Technology and Society search

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=technology+and+society

This provides students and teachers with many resources and discussion points for the impact of ICT on society. Students are able to explore and form their own opinion based on the various videos attached to the above link.

 The YouTube clips relate to ICT capability one, ” Applying social and ethical protocols and practices when using ICT element, identifying the impacts of ICT on society.” It provides a stimulus for improving an individual’s knowledge about explain the main uses of ICT and potential on their lives (ACARA, n.d.).

Google

https://www.google.com.au/

This an internet based search engine. Meaning it allows the user to type into a search field to access information. It can also be altered into a more specific search engine such as Google Books (https://books.google.com.au/), Google Images (https://images.google.com/) and Google Scholar (https://scholar.google.com.au/)

 Google relates to ICT capability two, “Investigating with ICT element, locating, generating and accessing data and information.” This is a user friendly search engine that allows for the retrieval and location of information (ACARA, n.d.). As the user becomes more advanced, they could start to filter the information generated by using variations of this search engine as mentioned above.

 Cyberbullying

Cyberbullying and online harassment is a growing concern as 21st century learners spend increasing amounts of time online is a social context. It is estimated that 72% of adolescents aged between 12 and 17 years have reported having been cyberbullied (Roblyer & Doering, 2014, p. 26).

The Victorian Department of Education and Training (2017), has identified types of cyberbullying as; pranking, image sharing, sexually explicit images, text and email, personal online information, identity theft, and hate sites. There are other forms of cyberbullying.

Reference

Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority [ACARA]. (n.d). General capabilities. Retrieved from https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/f-10-curriculum/languages/general-capabilities/

Roblyer, M., & Doering, A. (2014). Pearson New International Edition. Integrating Educational Technology into Teaching. Harlow, England: Pearson.

Victoria State Government, Education and Training. (2017). Cyberbullying. Retrieved from http://www.education.vic.gov.au/about/programs/bullystoppers/Pages/cyberbullying.aspx

Technology in HSIE

The Key Learning Area (KLA) for Human Society and Its Environment (HSIE) includes the History K–10 Syllabus, Geography K–10 Syllabus and new Stage 6 syllabuses. The importance of what is loosely grouped as ‘social’ and ‘environmental’ subjects are fundamental in the education of young Australians (Marsh, 2008).

The rationale for including social and environmental subjects as part of the curriculum is highlighted by the Goals of The Adelaide Declaration on National Goals for Schooling in the Twenty-First Century; which aim to equip school leavers with the capacity to make informed decisions in regard to ethical, social justice and matters of morality, to ensure they active and informed members of society (Marsh, 2008).

It is only the HSIE curriculum that helps young people understand such social issues, and take any appropriate action at a personal level, having a much broader role and impact in the lives of students then mere subjects for academic study. Further it is the one major discipline, which provides context on how we have reached our current state as groups, societies, nations and individuals. (Taylor, Fahey, Kriewaldt & Boon, 2012).

Whilst the Australian Curriculum outlines what is to be learning outcomes in the HSIE curriculum, it is the process of translating the curriculum into sequential, engaging and relevant learning experiences that will determine its success (Gilbert & Hoepper, 2017 p. 75). Worthwhile learning experiences are believed to reveal new understandings, be appropriate to students’ backgrounds, support high expectations, the respect of and inclusion of all students, encourage critical analysis, promote deep authentic learning through higher order thinking and ensure connectedness to the world beyond the classroom (Gilbert & Hoepper, 2017 p. 75).

The development of pedagogical approaches in achieving outcomes must consider all students backgrounds, experiences and learning styles. The ‘technology’ component of TPACK (Technological Pedagogical and Content. Knowledge) is fundamental to curriculum implementation and the incorporation of ICTs (Roblyer, & Doering, 2014 p. 366).

Samples of  learning ICTs which will be incorporated into HSIE include; Muzzy Lane’s Making History (http://www.muzzylane.com/products/making-history/) and The Oregon Trail (http://www.learningcompany.com) , addressing themes of continuity and change, power authority and governance.  The International Communication and Negotiation Simulations (ICONS) (http://www.icons.umd.edu) addressing themes of Global connections.

Gilbert, R. & Hoepper, B. (Eds.) (2017). Teaching Humanities and Social Sciences: History, Geography, Economics and Citizenship in the Australian curriculum. (6th ed.). South Melbourne: Cengage Learning.

Marsh, C. J. (2008). Studies of society and environment: exploring the teaching possibilities. (5th ed). Pearson Education Australia: Frenchs Forest, NSW.

Roblyer, M., & Doering, A. (2014). Pearson New International Edition. Integrating Educational Technology into Teaching. Harlow, England: Pearson.

Taylor, T., Fahey, C., Kriewaldt, J., & Boon, D. (2012). Place and Time: Explorations in Teaching Geography and History. Frenchs Forest: Pearson

Learning Management Systems

An advantage of introducing a LMS into classroom practices is its ability to create innovative learning environments through the use of ICT. The Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) states that learning is enhanced through the use of multimodal resources, digital environments and technologies within a classroom setting. This is achieved through access to live target language environments and texts via digital media, which extends the boundaries of the classroom (ACARA). Extending the boundaries of the classroom promotes student centred learning, as they are not restricted by the texts or content delivered by the teacher. Students are able to construct their own ideas and knowledge through a variety of informative sources. Therefore, it creates critical and creative thinkers, which is an essential component of being a successful 21st century learner.

Another advantage of a LMS in the classroom is increasing the efficiency of teaching and learning programs, through the delivery of large-scale learning resources (Coates, James & Baldwin, 2005, p. 23). This enables teachers to provide a wider variety of resources, as well as setting various levels of work to suit the learning needs of all students. Ullman (2016, p. 34) mentions that LMS’s provide a learning platform where students can all start with the same material and then grow individually through a particular unit of work. This is a direct link to the DEAG “Principle 3, all learning should be student centred” as using technology within the classroom meets the challenges of establishing effective learning environments through adaptive teaching (DEAG, 2013, p27). This is supported by Wang (2010) as the use of a LMS allows teachers to integrate multimedia tools, creating engaging activities that target student interests and interaction with the content via learner-driven navigation (Lochner, Conrad & Graham, 2015, p. 65).

LMS’s are continually evolving, along with technology. This is an important aspect of teaching as there is an overarching challenge to ensure that digital technologies are used more systematically to improve the quality of education and learning outcomes for all students (DEAG, 2013, p. 23). Wang (2010) suggests that the function of LMS’s are systemic in nature and offer the necessary functionality to support and manage the online learning process (Lochner, Conrad & Graham, 2015, p. 64). This directly links to the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers, in particular Standard 2. Know the content and how to teach it and Standard 3. Plan for and implement effective teaching and learning (Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership [AITSL], 2017). Utilising LMS’s provides teachers with the opportunity to integrate various ICT tools to deliver content within a classroom environment. It also allows for the creation of sequential learning spaces, that are productive, engaging and continually monitored.

Reference

Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority [ACARA]. (n.d). General capabilities. Retrieved from https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/f-10-curriculum/languages/general-capabilities/

Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership [AITSL]. (2017). Australian Professional Standards for Teachers. Retrieved from https://www.aitsl.edu.au/teach/standards

Coates, H., James, R. & Baldwin, G. (2005). A Critical Examination of the Effects of Learning Management Systems on University Teaching and Learning. Tertiary Education and Management, 11, 19–36. Retrieved from  http://uait.pbworks.com/w/file/fetch/53312706/A%2520critical%2520examination%2520of%2520the%2520effects%2520of%2520learning%2520management%2520systems.pdf

Digital Education Advisory Group (DEAG). (2013). Beyond the classroom: A new digital education for young Australians in the 21st century. Retrieved from

https://docs.education.gov.au/system/files/doc/other/deag_final_report.pdf

Lochner, B., Conrad, R. M. & Graham, E. (2015). Secondary Teachers’ Concerns in Adopting Learning Management Systems: A U.S. Perspective. Tech Trends, 59(5), 62-70. Retrieved from https://link-springer-com.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/content/pdf/10.1007%2Fs11528-015-0892-4.pdf

Ullman, E. (February, 2016). A personal statement: how schools use learning management systems to create individualized learning journeys. Technology & Learning. Retrieved from http://go.galegroup.com.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/ps/i.do?&id=GALE|A444093629&v=2.1&u=csu_au&it=r&p=EAIM&sw=w&authCount=1

Wang, Q. (2010). Using online shared workspaces to support group collaborative learning. Computers and Education, 55(3), 1270-1276. doi 10.1016/j.compedu.2010.05.023

Hardware in classrooms & Interactive Whiteboards

There are four eras of digital technology; Pre-microcomputer era; 1950s to the late 1970s. The Microcomputer era; 1977 to mid 1980s-1990s. The internet era; 1993 to 1998. Finally the mobile technologies 2005 to 2010, which is referred to as the “era of ubiquitous access” (Roblyer & Doering, 2014, p. 18-19). Throughout the eras, technological hardware has also development and been integrated into the classroom as educational tools. This blog post will look at interactive whiteboards (IWB) as a hardware device.

The IWB mimics the properties of a whiteboard and to some degree simulate the predecessor, the chalkboard, however take  electronic form and are connected to a computer or projector. Information can be projected onto the board and this information can be altered. Properties and functionality vary between models; for example some systems offer a touch screen surface with multiple users able to input simultaneously (Roblyer & Doering, 2014, p. 165).

Popular IWBs are the Prometheus’ Promethean ActivBoard or SMART Technology’s SMART Board. Each have accompanying software/programs and include a resource bank of images, graphic tools and text (Roblyer & Doering, 2014, p. 165).

There has been debate over functionality of IWBs, Lacina (2009) highlights the benefits as; meeting the needs of visual learners, more interactively teaching, engaging students and using multimodal forms of text (Lacina, 2009, p. 271) However, drawbacks include limited capabilities and high cost; the IWB is estimated as $800-$2500, an LCD projector $450-$1500, computer, software and technology support all to be factored (Lacina, 2009, p. 272).

One study found “teachers were enthusiastic, had seen improvements in student engagement” with IWB technology providing a flexible tool, offering a “considerable range of affordances that other technologies may not” (Winzenried, Dalgarno & Tinkler, 2010, p. 534). Winzenried, Dalgarno & Tinkler (2010, p.549) predicts longevity in IWB and continued use overtime, which conflicts with Lacina (2009, p. 272) who states “technology that will quickly grow outdated – and, if not implemented well, that teachers may not use effectively.”

Despite IWB being a highly debateable topic, I really cannot shed any light from personal experience (as I have no teaching experience to date). I’d love to hear from fellow students in regard to their use of IWBs in the classroom. Do you have any advice or recommendations? Please feel free to share your ideas here.

Reference

Interactive whiteboards: Creating higher-level, technological thinkers? Childhood Education, 2009, Vol.85(4), p.270-272

Lacina, J. (2009). Interactive whiteboards: creating higher-level, technological thinkers? Childhood Education, 85(4), 270+. Retrieved from http://link.galegroup.com.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/apps/doc/A198931292/EAIM?u=csu_au&sid=EAIM&xid=0ffb7ba2

Roblyer, M., & Doering, A. (2014). Pearson New International Edition. Integrating Educational Technology into Teaching. Harlow, England: Pearson.

Winzenried, A., Dalgarno, B., & Tinkler, J. (2010). The interactive whiteboard: A transitional technology supporting diverse teaching practices. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology26(4).