Thursday, April 28, 2011

Classroom Collaboration

There are hundreds if not thousands of web 2.0 applications, tools and platforms to select from, which can be very overwhelming for educators who want to begin integrating technology into education but don't know where to start. However by learning just one or two technologies, their pros and cons, and how they can be incorporated into the classroom, most educators overcome their fears of and develop a certain comfortability level with tech. usage. Check out this link which shows how teachers can use web 2.0 applications to truly build community in the classroom. Although 13 different applications are displayed, consider how incorporating one or two of the applications can truly enhance authentic learning in the classroom.

Facebook? Why Not Face To Face?

Recently a number of individuals have asked me to share resources to better understand what attracts kids/teens to social media, particularly Facebook. Click on this link for an extensive and thorough parental guide to Facebook by Anne Collier and Larry Magid.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

8 Tips for Educators to Engage Students

Click on this link for 'back to basics' reminder tips to help maximize student learning.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Bloom's Technology

In this 2.0 Bloom's Taxonomy (the new 'verb' version) pyramid the creator has woven digital tools within the various levels of thinking to show how technology can assist learners in their development of and progression towards higher level thinking. This digital pyramid is a great primer/overview for educators who are trying to understand how technology can enhance their curriculum as well as parents who want to understand how technology help their child be a more engaged learner in the classroom.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Author: Samantha Penney,

Friday, April 15, 2011

Successful Education Abroad- Can it be Successful Here?

For an international perspective on educational philosophy and methodology check out the Time Magazine article on Finland's Educational Success. After reading the article ask yourself- what ongoing efforts are involved for Finland to maintain current achievements? How will they raise the bar even higher? It is healthy to learn how other countries approach education and see what we can realistically incorporate into our own schools. However, we must also factor in differences of countries economic conditions, societal and cultural influences and etc. Countries have tried completely patterning their educational system including philosophies and methodologies to achieve Finland's success, but received mediocre results. Can you see a school system like Finland's succeed in a United States public or private school? Lastly, it is interesting to note of the few rules for Finland's students in the classroom, cell phones and i-pods are not allowed. Perhaps their technology policy will change moving forward?

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Student's Perspectives on Ed. Tech.

Click on this link to view a sampling of a survey conducted by The Speak Up National Research Project asking students to predict what school would be like in 2015. Questions included- What would “going to school” be like? Would learning be different? What would be the role of the teacher? 

After reading through most responses it is clear these students want to be engaged learners through platforms (read- technology) and vehicles which are second nature to them. Educators, administrators, lay leaders and key stakeholders who value the shift towards technology integration in education can help these students achieve their visions now in 2011. How? By educating those around them and acting as the change agents in their schools.

Educating these constituents can start with something as simple as showing them this link on 'The New 3 E’s of Education: Enabled, Engaged, Empowered- How Today’s Students Are Leveraging Emerging Technologies for Learning' whose findings highlight the need for mobile learning, online and blended learning and e-textbooks. Educating them on who their student and parent body is, what their needs are, and where they are at technologically is a good first step!

Friday, April 8, 2011

21st Century Learning

A great video created by Dr. Eliezer Jones to help educators begin to wrap their minds around 21st century learning.

21 Things In Education That Will Be Distant Memories By 2020

One of my professors tweeted a link to this Blog Post by Tina Barseghian discussing 21 things in education that will be distant memories by 2020. While I don't think all 21 envisioned changes will actually happen by 2020 I appreciate the thought taking place recognizing the shift towards true student centered learning through technology.
What changes do you envision schools will implement to further facilitate student learning in our Digital Age? Is your vision realistic or idealistic? Does it need to be idealistic in order to eventually become realistic-like the kinds of ideas Tina Barseghian is suggests?

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

What Should We Teach?

This video does a good job of framing one of the big picture questions of education. What are your thoughts? Do you agree or disagree with this Professor? Why or why not?