Tech Impacts Learning

Does technology impact learning? Are there advantages and disadvantages of using tech? YES!! I LOVE using technology in Math, Science, Health, any subject but are my students learning the skills they will need for the future?

It was pretty hard for me to DISAGREE with the fact that technology has an impact on learning when it really goes against what I value in education but I found some very interesting information that supported this side of the debate. This article Tablets Out, Imagination In about how the people who work for the tech companies send their own children to schools without tech was pretty eye-opening. Why would they not want their children to learn in an environment that utilizes the latest apps and devices? The article states that they believe in experiential learning that promotes creativity, problem-solving and innovative thinking skills. I do believe that all of the screen time that students are getting between home and school has an impact on the social skills that students need to practice and develop. The article also stated that the education systems that heavily invested in computers saw “no noticeable improvement” in their results for a reading, writing and math assessment. Now I am not a fan of assessments but I wonder what tool is out there that measures student’s growth in preparing them for the future?

Then my research happened upon this video by technology author Nicholas Carr, who wrote a book on this topic entitled “The Shallows”. I learned some interesting facts about the brain like the fact that we are overloading our short-term memory with all the multi-tasking we are doing and we are not transferring knowledge into our long-term memory where deep, reflective thinking happens. I can relate to this myself because I feel like I am constantly doing 3, 4, 5 things all at once but is all of this multitasking making me smarter? A Stanford Study mentioned in the video reported that heavy multitaskers did poorly on six cognitive function tests. It also stated that the more we are attracted to the latest “bits” of information the less we worry about how trivial it is. Are we teaching our students how to filter what they are reading on their devices?

I do agree with this article provided by the AGREE side of the debate that technology does encourage all students to participate and it is useful to differentiate and personalize the needs of students. I use Google Classroom with my own students which has been a great organization tool and gives me the opportunity to provide instant feedback on their assignments. I also use the app Remind to communicate with parents, which I LOVE!! I have always been passionate about technology and I will continue to look for new innovative ways to use tech to enhance the learning in my own classroom. What are your thoughts on this topic?

Oh, and by the way…hi :)

After writing my first two posts, and checking out a few of the blog posts on eci830.ca I realized that I haven’t introduced myself yet. For those of you who do not already know me, my name is Kari Krug and I am a grade 4 teacher at Regina Huda School. This is my sixth year at Huda and I have taught everything from KG-4. I received my BEd from the University of Regina in 2011 and prior to taking my education degree I spent two years teaching English in China at Jingmen Foreign Language School.

In 2016, I had the amazing opportunity to volunteer with the Canadian Teachers Federation Project Overseas in Guyana, South America. To read more about my powerful learning experience please visit my write-up in the STF bulletin found here. While being there, I realized how extremely fortunate we are in Canada to have easy access to education, and so I began my MEd as soon as I got back.

Although a Master’s degree was not something I ever thought I would pursue, my trusted colleague and ‘advisor extraordinaire’, Andrea Sterzuk, convinced me that I should go the thesis route. This past two years of taking graduate courses and diving into the world of research has been both terrifying and enlightening. I look forward to continuing the crazy journey with this EC&I class, and pushing myself out of my comfort zone.

Ed Tech – The Great Debate!

When looking at the topic, it was rather difficult to disagree with the statement that “Technology enhances learning” as in most ways I find students are more engaged when using technology. At times, as a grade 8 teacher I find that students are addicted to their phones and become distracted by technology. Often students show up to school with their headphones in, they go for recess with their head phones in, or as soon as they finish an assignment, they want to play games on devices or chromebooks. I liked the SAMR visual because it is a model that supports teaches understand the integration of technology. This idea was made known by Dr. Ruben Puentedura which allows teachers to develop, design and infuse learning supported by technology.

SAMR-Model.jpg

This visual provides a more real life view of how this can be implemented. Most teachers would being by grazing the surface by using substitution for writing notes or reading a textbook, later transformed into allows creation of new tasks with technological advancements through the use of apps for videoing, making story boards, etc. I think some teachers need more training for those who are intimidated by technology and at times they fear the students may know more than the teacher.

All in all, I do support technology in the classroom but I think there needs to be perimeters. Students need rules that they have to follow while also implementing a digital citizenship lessons throughout the year. Students need to understand how to use technology appropriately but also need to take a break from it! I find social skills have decreased a little when it comes to classroom discussions as they do not interact a whole lot outside of school if they are not involved in sports or group tasks in the evenings. Often parents will tell me that their children come home from school, have no homework, and just play on a gaming system or a device. I think we need to support students through understanding how to use phones but I also think we need to continue to teach social skills and how to work well within a group with peer interactions.

Teaching in a Digital Age: How Educators Use Technology to Improve Student Learning

Communication: Technology, distraction & student performance

6 Pros & Cons of Technology in the Classroom in 2018

 

 

……and we’re off!

BLOG –  he says……set up your own blog he tells us.  Insert …fear face and panic.

Connie Britton Panic Attack GIF by Nashville on CMT

Ok – I can do this.  There has to be YouTube video or something on this right? I mean, if I can figure out that my Maytag washer error code F21 means that something is stuck in the drain, then I can definitely set up a blog space – right?  🙂

So here we are – Edublog – my new friend.  So many different things we can do on here.  This will take time, but I am ready.

The world of technology is everywhere we look and we either “get on the bus” or be left in the dust.  I mean my Grade 2/3 class have their own laptops and they have come such a long way since September 1st when they didn’t even know what the backspace key was.  Now they are making Sways and Flipgrids and adding to SeeSaw.  They learn so quickly and soak new things up like a sponge.

I am excited to be taking this class with you all and with Dr. Couros – who is the GURU of technology.  Can’t wait – let the games begin!

 

Image result for technology quotes for teachers

Like a fish out of water

The crazy thing is that I am probably considered a fairly tech-literate person, and I have always been comfortable and enthusiastic about trying new things with tech in my classroom. Yet, this class has me completely overwhelmed and it’s only week 1. All week I felt like I should’ve been ‘doing something’. Whether it was reading articles, or engaging in some sort of research around the topics. After endlessly scrolling for a couple hours on the weekend, I sort of just gave up and hoped that I’d learn more about what I should be doing each week in class tonight.

This class is so different from the other 5 graduate courses I have taken, and that is not a bad thing, but I really do feel like a fish out of water. And someone mentioned last class about already thinking about our final project!? Yikes!

I hope tonight brings some clarity, and I hope I can gain a bit of confidence so that I don’t feel like I am drowning. The good news? Anytime I have felt like this in my life, it has turned out that I was in exactly the right place that I needed, I just didn’t know it at the time. I am banking on the fact that this is where I need to be. Wish me luck!

EC&I 830 – First Post!

Hello!  This is my first post on my blog site, many more to come!  I have never used ‘wordpress’ before but consider myself somewhat technologically savvy – I’m excited to learn new things in this course. I have taught and taken online courses in the past, so the online course format is a little familiar to me.

I teach at Saskatchewan Polytechnic in the Practical Nursing Program, and use technology regularly in the classroom.  I posted a picture below, just to play around a bit – but I thought it could represent the ‘start of my journey’ in EC&I 830.  This Journey 1is my third class for my Masters of Adult Education Degree. I’m looking forward to our next class this evening!

Technology does NOT enhance learning in the classroom!

Check this out!!

Article: Negative Effects of Using Technology in Today’s Classroom
Written by: Timothy Smithee

Link: https://itstillworks.com/negative-effects-using-technology-todays-classroom-1549.html

Annotation: Smithee acknowledges that there can be many benefits to integrating technology into the classroom setting. However, he admits that there has been several studies done that prove there can be many negative effects on children who use technology in the classroom. Smithee then out lines four of these negative effects. They include cost, diversion of resources, limited learning, as well student distraction.

Technology does NOT enhance learning!

Check this out!!

Article: Negative Effects of Using Technology in Today’s Classroom
Written by: Timothy Smithee

Link: https://itstillworks.com/negative-effects-using-technology-todays-classroom-1549.html

Annotation: Smithee acknowledges that there can be many benefits to integrating technology into the classroom setting. However, he admits that there has been several studies done that prove there can be many negative effects on children who use technology in the classroom. Smithee then out lines four of these negative effects. They include cost, diversion of resources, limited learning, as well student distraction.

Pre-disputandum Week 1

…But is it actually good for anything in the classroom???

Featured Image Source

Hello ECI830’s and beyond,

I am SO excited to be back with Dr. Alec Couros for another Ed. Tech class.  I have been so lucky to take 2 classes (ECI 831 and ECI832) with him in the past and have gained a plethora of relevant knowledge that I have translated directly back to my classroom!  This term I think I am going to set up my blog a little differently – I am going to post my “pre-debate” feelings on the topic and then follow up after Monday night’s class and see if my opinion has been swayed!

This weeks question: “Technology in the classroom enhances learning”

First, what is technology?  It is defined on dictionary.com as,

1. the branch of knowledge that deals with the creation and use of technical means and their interrelation with life, society, and the environment, drawing upon such subjects as industrial arts,engineering, applied science, and pure science.
2. the application of this knowledge for practical ends.
3. the terminology of an art, science, etc.; technical nomenclature.
4. a scientific or industrial process, invention, method, or the like.
the sum of the ways in which social groups provide themselves with the material objects of
their civilization.
Second, what is learning?  It is defined on dictionary.com as,
1. knowledge acquired by systematic study in any field of scholarly application.
2. the act or process of acquiring knowledge or skill.
3. Psychology. the modification of behavior through practice, training, or experience.

I commented on the Padlet this week and tagged the following image from this site.

Image result for samr model

I am a visual learner and love this as a way to explain what technology does in a classroom.  In my opinion, there is no way to steer clear of technology in the classroom.  It is all around us and it is not going anywhere – by not using it and not teaching our kids how to use it safely, we are setting them up to fail in the world they are integrating in to.  They need the important skills that learning through and with technology provide.  The jobs that kids will have as they grow up require many skills that weren’t as crucial when I was growing up and technology allows for these skills to grow – multi-tasking, research based rather than rote learning, quick pace learning, etc.

In order for technology to enhance learning as the topic suggests, you need to choose worthwhile resources that transform and allow your students experiences that they couldn’t get elsewhere.  As suggested in the picture, this will get you into the transformation stage where you are offering your students something new and exciting and relevant.  Having technology readily available at school has the ability to enhance learning, but just because it’s there doesn’t mean it’s going to benefit children.  We need to ensure that the skills they are gaining are creating technology and media literate learners, not just learners who know to use a computer or tablet.

Technology for technology sake WILL NOT enhance learning.  This is the idea that you SHOULD be using technology so you show a video or find a website and use it because you feel like it’s good practice, and don’t understand the real life connection the resource can have for your students.  Technology causes a great divide in many classes on account of accessibility at home and on the go, so using these resources in the classroom should be worth while and precious.  Many families cannot afford or choose for their children not to have devices or social media for other reasons and this makes it hard to offer enhancing lessons outside of the school.  Use the valuable time we have with our students in a meaningful, engaging, transformative way!

I’m so looking forward to hearing tonight’s debate and hopefully informing my opinion!

❤ Dani

“Educating the mind, without educating the heart,

is no education at all.”

-Aristotle