Category Archives: weekly reflections #EC&I 833

Coding/Makerspace should only be taught by techies? Agree or disagree

 I agree with the view that Coding should be taught by techies because professionals can only efficiently teach the students about the coding as they are expert in this field. It can also be said that teaching coding is not a cup of tea for a non-techie person as it does not possess any understanding about the execution, identifying and removing errors from code so that that the code can run proficiently.

image source- https://img.freepik.com/free-vector/laptop-with-program-code-isometric-icon-software-development-programming-applications-dark-neon_39422-971.jpg

Coding is a way through which we communicate with the computers so it should be taught by somebody who already knows and has contacted the computers. It is highly based on technical learning that consists of a computer language and implementing them on a compiler file to gain the desired product. It requires a correct syntax, just like English would make sense only if the grammar is correct. Coding can be done at any age, by any gender and at any level of skill. Nowadays, even middle school children have a high level of proficiency in Coding, they are highly skilled by the institutes to bring new designers to the future of the coding world. All this knowledge about the coding is possessed by techie professionals rather than non-techie persons. This very activity includes designing operating systems, laptop/phone applications, websites, games, etc. If the sequence of the syntax is not followed, it will give the designer an error and the program would not run. This is where the “techies” step in and guide the students how to avoid or eliminate an error. They act as doctors to the program that resurrect the Code by adding or subtracting some of its elements. Only they can identify the fault and work upon it because the techies themselves have been in that stage and they were directed by their teachers the same way they are directing students now. The developer may come to know the problem and rectify it but that will take a lot of time. If they choose to seek help from a co-worker or the person who has taught them, it becomes easier and efficient as it consumes less time and brings out the best results for the developer.

Experience with Assistive technology, Challenges and Limitations

Assistive technology is a kind of software program or product that is mainly used to enhance, sustain or improve the working capability of person who is suffering from disability. Irrespective of the fact that this technology provides an effective opportunity and allow people with disability to manage their day-to-day activity with ease, there are certain challenges associated with this, for instance, individuals with minimum understanding of technology face challenge to use this. I believe, the primary purpose of assistive technology is to maintain or improve an individual’s functioning and independence, thereby promoting their well-being.

image source- https://itchronicles.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/assistive-technology-defined.jpg

It gives exclusive experience of learning with by performing different activities. With this technology a disabled person can smoothly and efficiently perform the task that he was not able to perform perfectly due to lack of his ability. Moreover, a person who has to use this technology requires sufficient knowledge about these tools so that one can improve the working condition. As per this article, here are some challenges of using assistive technology,

Challenges-

  • Lack of training also effects on individuals with disability ability to take proper and efficient use of devices.
  •  Lack of understanding and ineffective training to use are some of the various challenges which affect the individual to take proper and efficient advantage of assistive technology.
  • Additionally, most of the people in elderly age face difficulties to use this technology correctly which creates complexities and issues in front of them. Failure to have proper understanding related to the use of assistive technology makes kids, individuals with elder age opposed to this technology and make them feel harder to take proper advantage of it.  Moreover, lack of family involvement also creates limitations, as assertive technology may need to include stuff related to electronic worksheets, wheelchairs, different software, and taking calculators. This lack of family involvement creates challenges in front of people with disability to use this technology.

Limitations-

Technology is offering feasibility which is providing many advantages and opportunities. Assistive technology is a breakthrough that is offering people with disability to perform the day- to-day activities in an appropriate manner and with ease. However, there are some limitations which is affecting their perceptions to use this technology, in this it is needed to properly educate people about the importance of this technology and provide them training to use them in an effective manner. It is rarely used by people due to lack of understanding as it requires higher level of cognitive skills for its operations. Also, this technology is not easily accessible to all.

Assessment technologies

Inspite of the innovation of so many digital sites, I believe, the present traditional system demands too much from a teacher because a teacher is the only person who can makes the best use of all available resources. Therefore, to make teaching learning more effective, teacher should adopt different strategies and perform various activities to facilitate learners to acquire certain skills and qualities. There is no doubt I am using Facebook, Instagram, and many other social media sites for a long period of time but, to be very honest, I am not a social media- friendly person.

image source-https://blog.tcea.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/rQ6PihuxWftF0aslS7VVwg-header-1.png

In my previous classes, I learnt about multimedia sites such as jam-board, sketchpad, Mentimetre, scribjab and many more which are very easy to use. Out of these resources I really like the DESMOS as it provides equal opportunities to every student. I have used the Desmos graphing calculator few times, and I must say that it works pretty well for graphing most functions. Well, it is true that for learning & understanding Math’s, we really don’t need a graphing tool but sometimes it really helpful for the students and teachers to understand it very well. It has a lot of applications such as graphing calculator, scientific calculator, four function calculator, and matrix calculator that really helps the students and teachers to do mathematics. Teachers can use this as a teaching resource and students can enhance their mathematical knowledge by bringing digital media into their education. Because of its interactive and creative activities, it provides equal opportunities to each and every student. That means it is equally digital accessible to everyone.

image source- https://thumbs.gfycat.com/EachGiantBeardeddragon-size_restricted.gif

DESMOS is a blend of paper and technology, it is an amazing and powerful facilitation tool for teachers and students as it provides wide range of resources. It is a free graphing calculator, and teachers can use Desmos to help students connect mathematical concepts to concrete, real-world shapes and pictures. Recently, desmos completed its curriculum for math’s subjects from grade 6th to 8th, in this curriculum desmos includes various courses, units and chapters for teachers and students.

I am hoping to learn new digital sites which are very helpful in the field of education. Looking forward to learning more new digital tools and new skills from you all!!

Thank you

Lovepreet Kaur

The Social Dilemma

This week, I watched The Social Dilemma for the first time, it is a documentary that examines how social media and technology continue to do harm, polarize society, and abuse their influence to make money through surveillance. The growth of conspiracy theories, the exploitation of social media for political purposes, and its detrimental effects on mental health.

image source-https://therideronline.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/social-dilemma.jpg

I think this documentary raised a lot of worthwhile concerns, although most of this information is not entirely new. However, I think it might be useful for certain people to view, especially if they become involved in “fake news” and start to accept the conspiracy theories that are circulated online. Moreover, I believe, this documentary explores the dangers of social media and the internet in general, affecting our mental health and daily lives. Throughout the movie, multiple highly ranked social media company members are interviewed, many of these people used to be managers and directors of popular companies such as Facebook, google, and Twitter.

image source-https://faculty.lsu.edu/fakenews/images/socialdilemma.jpg

Beginning with some of the points that the Social Dilemma highlights.

  •  It is an invasion of our privacy and we don’t even know it.
  • Social media is a suitable environment for depression and insecurities.
  • People are unaware of the ways in which their data is utilised against them.
  • technology is taking control over us, as each activity is tracked, monitored and recorded by technology.

The film does effectively bring awareness to mental health and suicide rates increasing with technology. Most importantly, the movie creates an atmosphere that makes the audience feel like they personally care about the audience, as opposed to some dominating social media companies.

At the end, I would say that, “The Social Dilemma” is a very well-made film. It will undoubtedly have a good effect on the lives and perspectives of the majority of people. The majority of people are already aware of the impacts of the internet’s development, but this documentary stresses their significance even more.

Thank you

Lovepreet Kaur

Tools for distance & online learning

During covid-19, I started using digital tools to teach my students, initially I was only aware of the google meet, but later on, I started using google documents, google classroom, and sketchpad to teach them math’s. But, when I starts my master’s journey, I get to know about more digital applications and tools. At that time, I realized the importance of digital tools in our teaching- learning process. I believe, the ideal online learning experience starts with clear learning goals, dynamic activities, and supportive digital tools. Nowadays, digital tools are playing very important role in distance and online learning as it inspires some creative new approaches to teaching. I have categorized different tools under different categories. i find this article, very informative as it explains the importance digital tools that we can use in our classrooms.

image source- https://blog.quizalize.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/elearning-tools-2.png
  • Synchronous and virtual learning tools-  

During covid-19 pandemic, Google meet, Microsoft teams and zoom gained much interest as many classrooms moved to a virtual environment. Therefore, Google meet, Microsoft teams and zoom are one of the main synchronous tools for online classes as these tools are available all around the world. These tools will let you connect with one person or a whole group at the same time. One of the most notable benefits of these tools are, it will help you to show your presentations, and will help you to collaborate with others easily.

  • Planning tools-

Google drive, wakelet and plan board are very good planning tools as it allows you to store materials and resources for teachers and students. As a teacher, you can plan your daily lessons and create content for your students with the help of these planning tools.

  • Presentation tools-

Google slides, PowerPoint and Canva are very essential and significant tools for presentations. These are easily accessible to everyone, and good for group presentation as you can easily track your group member’s work. I personally prefer to use Canva, as it provides you unlimited pre-created education templates which allow you to create individual and collaborative assignments for your students.

  •  Video and screen casting tools-

For video and screen casting, Flipgrid, screencast, and we video are most widely used tools. I prefer to use Flipgrid, as it is an incredible platform, where students can get learning content and then respond to prompts by creating short videos.

  •  Demonstration tools-

After planning and presentation, demonstration of the work material is very important, and for demonstration, Padlet, WordPress, and google jam board/sketchpad are most commonly used tools.

  • Engagement tools-

I believe, the most Curriculum coverage engagement learning tools are you tube, khan academy, and Mentimetre. I believe, for students these are the best engagement tools as it is easy to share information, and all the resources are free to use.

image source- https://cdn.iste.org/www-root/560×315-Online-Learning-Landing-Page-Main-Image.gif

“Digital technology has several features that can make it much easier for teachers to pay special attention to all their students”               –Bill Gates

Thank you

Lovepreet Kaur

“Is the Internet really a productivity tool or merely an endless series of distractions?”

The Internet is indeed a wonderful and amazing addition in our lives, as it can be known as a kind of global meeting place where people from all parts of the world can come together. along with advantages, there are some disadvantages also which act as a distraction of us while we use internet. The aim of teaching was to impart theoretical knowledge to the students but nowadays, theoretical knowledge should be imparted in more practical way. therefore, the best way to do, is the use of internet, and digital technology. There is no doubt, internet provides us a lot of opportunities, but sometimes it can be a distraction. According to this article, Balance in the Digital Age, it is critical for families to comprehend how digital addictions can encourage multitasking, which has a negative impact on children’s development and interpersonal relationships. The significance of creating plans to “keep humanity and ensure that, even as we are all connected electronically, we do not lose our potential for human connection” is also emphasized in this article. It is crucial to teach students and people, how to be responsible and effective digital citizens in a time when human connection and productivity can be so easily lost in a world of social media posts and text messages.

image source-https://d.wildapricot.net/images/default-album/productivity-tools-for-nonprofitse59b9f5cd74149b09776ca7bda2172d8.png

 Also, by this article, “How the internet is destroying your focus” explains the negative impact of excessive use of internet on human beings. Even though, internet promotes multitasking, but it also encourages distraction at the same time. For example, working on one device, you can still watch a video having 10 other tabs open, play Spotify in the background, and get notifications from Gmail and iMessage at the same time but in this way, you can not concentrate on one thing!

The Internet provides opportunities for growth, and can be used for a variety of things. Even with the help of internet, students become more active and alert in the class-room. Also, teaching has become easier than before. For instance, if I have to explain a diagram to the students, I can easily do this with the help of smartboard. Also, some of the things that you can do via the Internet are, make your classroom more interactive by using different digital technology such as Projectors, PowerPoints, and Google slides.

I believe, teaching and learning is a never-ending process. So, it should be upgraded constantly with the time. teachers need time to develop their technological fluency, apply pedagogic principles to the available materials. Only by doing this, they can make their classroom more tech based.

““Our use of the Internet involves many paradoxes, but the one that promises to have the greatest long-term influence over how we think is this one: the Net seizes our attention only to scatter it.””

i found a very interesting video which is on “single tasking is the new Multitasking” hope you will like it!

Audio-Visual technology

Educational technologies are changing with the rapid change of time. Earlier, traditional teaching methods were using in the classroom, but nowadays digital classroom are completely replaced the traditional classroom. Audio-visual technologies are an excellent tool to incorporate into our teaching methods, and these tool makes even boring concepts interesting, makes it enjoyable, have full attention of all the students, and most importantly, it helps in retaining the memory for a long time. As also mentioned in this article, “The use of audio-visual aid makes the subject matter easy to understand and explain and students learn quickly which supports the use of audio-visual aids methods do seem to facilitate the acquisition, retention and recall of lessons learned”. Therefore, I believe, Audio-visual technology really made our classroom more interactive and interesting.

image source- https://i0.wp.com/wiobyrne.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/GleamingReflectingCricket.gif?ssl=1

Advantages of using Audio-Visual technology

  1. Better understanding– Using pictures of the things you want your students to learn, makes the presentation more practical as it will leave an impact on student’s mind and gives them a better understanding of the topic. The most valuable advantage of audio-visual aids in teaching is the fact that they help students to understand what is being explained during the classroom lecture. Many students have a hard time visualizing what the teacher is trying to explain to them, and audio-visual aids make this much easier. For example, when a physics teacher is trying to explain to their students how a DC motors works, it is much easier to show the video to students on a screen rather than to have the students visualize one in their head. 
  2. Grab students’ attention– Use of Audio-Visual tools can be a great way to grab the attention of the students even towards topics that otherwise may seem boring. Moreover, it helps to build the interest, enhance the energy level of teaching, and provide a realistic approach and experience to teachers and students. And it also helps to focus.
  3. Long lasting knowledge– Human brain often remembers things better when it creates a map about the topics and links them with something from its daily life. This property can be greatly used by using audio-visual tools. This will help the students to remember things easily, and for a longer period of time.
  4. Engages Students: Audio-visual aids can help keep students engaged and therefore interested in what they are learning. Many of the concepts and ideas taught in class can be displayed in one form or another. Audio-visual tools not only engage students, but it also helps students to remember what is being taught in the classroom, and it is much easier for the students to recall something that has been visually presented as opposed to learning from text or a teacher speaking.
  5. Promotes collaboration and communication: by using Audio-Visual tools in the classroom, helps to promote collaboration and communication skills among students.
  6. Active learning environment: Audio- visual tools also helps to promote active learning environment for students as well as for teachers.
  7. Increased depth and detail of the topic: when a teacher use Audio- visual technology in the classroom, it helps to increase the depth and detail of the topic, which ultimately helps students to gain better understanding of the topic.
image source-https://i.pinimg.com/originals/0f/0b/48/0f0b48e71dae625f8f5afe5d1c4dbaec.gif

Disadvantages of using Audio-Visual technology:

  1. Can be a Distraction: Audio-visual aids can be a distraction for some students and can discourage learning if used in the wrong circumstances. Leaving a video on in the classroom and not getting the students to do anything with the video is asking for trouble.
  2. Technological Problems: Many audio-visual aids rely on technology, and this can lead to problems in the classroom. Especially when using projectors and speakers, many problems arise when teachers are trying to display a video, play an audio track or use the interactive smartboard. 
  3. Time consuming- due to the lack of knowledge of how to use technology in the classroom, can create a lot of problems, and one of the problems is time consuming. As tools are taking much time than usual to explain a topic.
  4. Expensive- some schools cannot afford expansive tools and technology due to the lack of resources funded by the government. Therefore, it can be expensive for some schools.
  5. Illusion of learning: it also happens sometimes, when a teacher tries to explain a topic to their students with the help of Audio-visual tools, it creates illusion of learning as students may overestimate their learning towards their topic.

Thank you

Lovepreet Kaur

Learning Theories

In my perspective, the most important topic I learned is creating learning outcomes using Bloom’s Taxonomy. The reason I chose this topic because the Bloom’s taxonomy provides a framework for instructors which can help to focus on higher order thinking. The hierarchy of six levels i.e., Knowledge, Comprehension, Application, Analysis, Synthesis, and Evaluation helps in designing performance tasks and assessing the students. By using different Bloom levels, teacher can easily prepare a study material depending on the age-groups, culture, background, and prior knowledge.

Importance: A teacher can design an interesting course by using different competencies of Bloom’s Taxonomy. This method puts the teaching process in order with respect to the difficulty level. A teacher can be self-reflective about the curriculum development and the assessment. By implementing this method, a teacher can move beyond the lecture and the process of memorization. The six cognitive domains help to recall and recognize from the lower level to complex levels.

Image source-Blooms-Graphic-1024×757-00772b45d3974746afa6aa8a34db64e6.jpg (768×568) (thoughtco.com)

Identification and Incorporation of Knowledge in Teaching Practices

In my paper I will explain this with an example of Teaching German Language to the students using Bloom’s Taxonomy.

1.       Knowledge: I will begin the lesson with tips and notes to keep in mind while practicing. The levels of lessons will be designed at BL-1 stage as it will engage the learner in such a way that they are expected to remember the exact translation/meaning of the various German terms used. As this learning method involves the recall of knowledge as is, it comes under the purview of BL-1.

2.       Comprehension: I will help the learner in framing short sentences or phrases with complete understanding and comprehension of the German words used.  As the learner will be able to reproduce the knowledge in his/her own words with comprehension, the lesson will cover the BL-2 stage.

3.       Application: After learning the German phrases, the learner will be able to greet/introduce oneself to someone who speaks only German. The learner can apply the knowledge as is in situations where German is the “lingua franca”.

4.       Analysis: In this, the learner will be able to differentiate, compare, and classify between different words of German language.

5.       Synthesis: The learner will be able to compile the different information, words or sentences and will be able to produce different sentences in German language.

6.       Evaluation. The learner will be able to have thoughtful judgments over his/her writings and narrations.

Developing a teaching philosophy has a specific importance such as creating a methodology, ideals as a teacher, having teaching beliefs, and core values. This puts a positive impact on students and improves the classroom’s environment. Moreover, with the help of good teaching philosophies, instructor can reflect and act correctly in a classroom.

While reading Gagne’s nine events, many other theories came into my mind, and I tried to interconnect those with Gagne’s events.

Image source-Nine-Events-of-Instruction.png (1644×944) (educationaltechnology.net)

As the Gagne’s nine events provides us the framework for an effective learning. In the first event, it talks about gaining the attention of the learner. We can gain attention (ARCS model) of the leaner by telling the stories, showing pictures, or by demonstrations. It will help to increase the performance of the learner. The second events talk about informing learner about the objectives. This helps the learner to organize their thoughts and get an appropriate objective. Here we can apply the approach of cognitivism. Here we can also apply relevance of the ARCS model. Next is to stimulate recall of prior knowledge. In this, we can build the previous knowledge of the learner which also reminds us about the Schema theory. For this, we can also take the practice test to make the leaner recall about the previous knowledge. After this, we can add more details and information to the process. This gives the learner more responsibility to create a map about the learning process. The next Gagne’s event is to provide a stimulus for learning. This helps the learner to sequence the information by getting the fair idea of the topic. In providing learning and guidance, we can give the relevant examples related to the topic. It helps the learner to gain the cognitive skills and increases the future performance. Moreover, this event can be also related to the BL 3 level of the Blooms taxonomy. In the elicit performance; we have to allow the learner to acquire new skills and knowledge. Every learner will have their different viewpoints (constructivism) and we can relate this event to BL 4 level. You can present a picture and ask the learner to choose the correct response. After this provide relevant feedback to the learner as it will generate confidence (ARCS model) and feel motivated. This can be a quiz, verbal comments or so on. While giving the feedback you can specify by saying “You are doing a good job”. After this evaluate the learner to determine if the lesson has been learned properly or not. Check of the learner can follow the Bloom’s highest levels.  In the last event i.e., enhance retention and transfer, inform the learner about the similar problems. We can also provide the additional practice and in the end review the lesson.

other theories that we discussed during our class our, Behaviorism, Cognitivism, and Constructivism

Image Source-Behaviourism-Cognitivism-and-Constructivism-as-Learning-Theories.png (850×462) (researchgate.net)

BEHAVIORISM: One of the methods of learning employed in the practice exercise is that if a learner does not answer correctly to a question, he/she will be repeatedly asked the same question several times even after having answered it correctly. In this way, the learner when asked the same question again, is bound to give the write answer, as he had repeatedly gone through the same question again and again. Thus, the behavior of the learner is manipulated to make learning happen. It follows Classical Conditioning Theory as repetition of association leads to learning in above-mentioned case.

COGNITIVISM: As learning a new language involves various terms that a learner is completely new to, this theory is designed in such a way that new data are connected with existing schemas in the learner’s brain. For example, the learner is introduced to the term ‘Wasser’ with an image of water body provided in the background and is asked to give its English translation. The learner immediately can connect the already-existing schema for ‘water’ in his brain and add the term ‘Wasser’ to it. In this way, Schema Theory of Cognitivism approach is applied in this course to make use of dynamic schemas in the learner.

CONSTRUCTIVISM: There are certain pronunciation rules mentioned in this theory that make use of the differences in American and British accents. Three different learners with different accents (British, American, French) would interpret the pronunciations at their own discretion. Hence, this will lead to different viewpoints/variations in the pronunciation of that particular German term. As this method involves the learners to interpret the information as per their own schemas, ‘constructivism’ approach to learning is employed.

It is important to always keep in mind about the learner behavior such as reading, hearing, seeing, writing, doing and experience. We should write the content in an appropriate manner by starting from the lowest level up to the highest. Use voice modulations, full stops in the audio of the WBT. Use appropriate colors and do not make it too flashy. It should be clear and interesting and also very attractive. Write the straight – forward information in the content part. Avoid using confusing statements and do not forget to include the questions, quizzes, tests or so on, as it will engage the learner and make him to learn in a better way. A well designed WBT will help the learner to grab knowledge effectively.

Thank you!

Lovepreet Kaur

What is educational technology?

As time goes on, use of technology is increasing day by day. Everyone knows that the Internet and technology have made the world so small that everything is possible with just in single click. And in terms of education, technology and education nowadays are interrelated as we are discovering and implementing new ways of learning with the help of technology. Educational technology helps the students, to learn and understand the material, and it can also be used as a tool for communication and research. From that article, “Benefits of Ed tech in the classroom”, I get to know about the benefits of using educational technology in our classroom as it helps to increase the engagement, collaboration, productivity and creativity among students.

Image source-https://c8.alamy.com/comp/2C8APHC/educational-technology-word-concepts-banner-e-learning-digital-education-infographics-with-linear-icons-on-violet-background-isolated-typography-2C8APHC.jpg

Educational technology breaks the boredom of the classes, it completely replaced the traditional classrooms, as it helps the students in keeping them engaged, builds the strong base of knowledge and triggers the curiosity of the children. Moreover, it introduced the concept of teaching with the help of artificial intelligence, virtual reality, augmented reality, 3D printing and various other methods to make education interesting and thoughtful.

During Covid-19, the online class has played an important role in imparting knowledge to the students. As well as all the educational institutions are offering online courses to students which helps them to improve their learning experience. Moreover, I am also attending my online classes from the last year, so I must say technology in education is entirely changed the educational system.

Image source-https://tech.ed.gov/files/2021/12/NETP-slide.png

From that article, “School work and Surveillance”, I found this quote, “Technologies designed to prevent or identify cheating”, very interesting as it talks about the importance of surveillance in education. In addition, this article, “History of Ed tech” talks about the importance of educational technology, and discussed that educational technology helps in oral communication, written communication, broadcasting and video, and many more.

“We need technology in every classroom and in every student and teacher’s hand because it is the pen and paper of our time”                -David Warlick

Thank you

Lovepreet kaur