Something that I’ve noticed (and that Dwayne also mentions), is the rise of using ICTs as a reward for students. I don’t think I actually like the idea of this (and I’m probably on the outs with this!), but bear with me….
Most of the times that I’ve witnessed students using ICTs as a “reward” is with SEP (Special Education Program) students. I’ve seen teachers give a student an iPad during parade to keep them occupied and out of trouble. Although this is a good idea in theory, it then leads to other students in the class seeing this and feeling left out. Most of the schools I’ve worked at only have a class set of iPads in the library or a couple in the SEP, so there isn’t a lot of opportunities for all students to experience this reward.
I think it ultimately all comes down to the resources available- if a class has a wide range of ICTs (not just iPads) then rewarding students with individual play with an ICT can be very useful… as long as it isn’t just a way to keep the student distracted or a type of busywork.
I found that the blog post written by Sanna also applied to me, as I usually find myself watching videos online in my free time (usually interviews with my favourite actors or humorous videos) but I also use YouTube as a resource for assignments. For one assignment in particular, I used a song written about the Three Little Pigs (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mWjUSHimgAA) as background audio in a video I made. In fact, I have a whole playlist on my YouTube account dedicated to any teaching related videos I find during my searches.
What is it?
I chose to look deeper into innovation 108. It is a practice innovation type and the settings learning theme. The description in the Google spreadsheet mentions that students use digital cameras to take photos of different words around the school (for example, signs, posters etc.) This is linking literacy work while integrating ICT’s, as students are able to link the usage of words outside of the classroom.
How might it be used?
I also found a website (http://www.wacona.com/digicam/digicam.html) wherein teachers from a primary school share their ideas of how they incorporate digital cameras in their class. I especially enjoyed the idea of requiring the students to demonstrate proper knowledge of working and handling the camera before getting a “photographer’s pass”, since there is always the possibility of students misusing expensive equipment without proper direction. I think that, personally, I would not allow very young students (Prep or Year 1) too much free rein with the cameras, as they may accidently drop or break the camera, even after instructions. My professional experience is taking place in a Year 2 class, so I would like to integrate some of the ideas into my class.
Why it helps student learning
By allowing students the opportunity to lead their own learning (they could use the photos of words around the school as a story) it lets students explore creatively and work with each other. I think it also helps that this could allow students to get outside of the classroom (with supervision) instead of sitting in their desks all day.
There have definitely been some courses where the ICTs used were vital to the learning, however, this semester I am also taking two Mathematics-based courses, one of which uses MyMathLab Global. This site is completely different to any other course I’ve done in terms of delivery. Each week, I have to complete practice questions and then quizzes to gain Mastery Points. Usually in my courses, I simply view the lectures and readings and then write an essay or something similar. I absolutely enjoy the variation (it makes it feel like a video game!).