Models of Compelling Uses of Tech for Educational Purposes


Kid Flattens World - A neat story with interesting implications re: “virally marketing” important ideas to students, re: empowering students in compelling ways, and re: what it really means to be fully literate in today’s society. (BuckleBoy Final Episode - Overview of BuckleBoy's campaign for seatbelt safety; BuckleBoy Episode 2 - BuckleBoy visits an elementary school to talk about seatbelt safety; BuckleBoy: Shanghai American School - Video he made for kids in China)


Reading


Feynman, Richard. (1999). The pleasure of finding things out. Cambridge, MA: Perseus Books. pp. 1-7, 12-15.
These anecdotes contrast factual knowledge with deep understanding.

Garmston, Robert. (2004, Summer). Group wise: Group work has its dangers, but facilitators have some helpful strategies . Journal of Staff Development, 25(3). Retrieved June 23, 2007, from http://www.nsdc.org/news/jsd/garmston253.cfm
Spiro, Rand. (2002, Spring). Pioneering a new way of learning in a complex and complicated world. Retrieved November 30, 2003, from http://ed-web3.educ.msu.edu/newed/spring02/faculty1.htm - This brief faculty profile outlines the key concepts of Rand Spiro's cognitive flexibility theory and its implications for teaching and learning.


Research


Ma, Liping. (1999). Knowing and teaching elementary mathematics: Teachers' understanding of fundamental mathematics in China and the United States. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. ISBN 0-8058-2908-3.

Rixon, Andew, Rixon, Sascha, & McWater, Viv. (2006). Exploring the language of facilitation. Group Facilitation: A Research and Applications Journal, (7), 21-30. Retrieved June 23, 2007, from http://www.anecdote.com.au/files/Exploring%20the%20language%20of%20facilitation.pdf

Spiro, Rand J., Feltovich, Paul J., & Coulson, Richard L. (1991). Cognitive flexibility, constructivism, and hypertext: Random access instruction for advanced knowledge acquisition in ill-structured domains. Retrieved July 26, 2006, from http://phoenix.sce.fct.unl.pt/simposio/Rand_Spiro.htm
This ground-breaking paper details the key concepts and principles of cognitive flexibility theory and explains its importance in preparing learners to acquire knowledge in non-linear, complex domains.



Resources


Cite Journal - Constructing Critical Literacy Practices Through Technological Tools & Inquiry - Links to great examples of student work

Cognitive Flexibility Theory - This brief summary outlines the key concepts, principles, and examples of cognitive flexibility theory.

Freymann, Saxton & Elffers, Joost. Vegetal como eres: Alimentos con sentimientos. NY: Scholastic, Inc. ISBN 0-439-29130-5.
This book is a great tool for emotions vocabulary and provides great inspiration for student projects.

Garmston, Robert J. (2003, Spring). Group Wise: The facilitator is the group's instrument for expressing and understanding relevant ideas and information. Journal of Staff Development, (24)2, 73-74. - Excellent article that summarizes the key language, roles, and purposes of facilitators, along with helpful discussion prompts.

Gravois, Michael. (1998). 35 ready-to-go ways to publish students' research & writing. NY: Scholastic Professional Books. ISBN 0-590-05014-1.
This excellent book contains reproducible templates for a variety of student projects such as data disks, flap books, super trioramas, story cubes, story wheels, etc., which can be adapted to any subject area.

Irvine, Joan. (1996). How to make holiday pop-ups. NY: Beechtree Paperback Books. ISBN 0-688-13610-9.
This book contains instructions, ideas, and examples of pop-up cards that can serve as inspiration for student projects.

Keirsey, David, & Bates, Marilyn. (1990). Por favor, comprendeme: Tipos de caracter y temperamento. Del Mar, CA: Prometheus Nemesis Book Company. ISBN 0-9606954-3-5.
Students can take the personality test in Spanish, then read the interpretations. Great for reinforcing adjectives, ser v. estar, etc.

London, Jonathan. (1992). Froggy se viste. NY: Scholastic, Inc. ISBN 0-439-05902-X.
Students can take turns dressing and undressing froggy paper dolls while a partner retells the story.

Numeroff, Laura Joffe. (1995). Si le das una galletita a un ratón. NY: HarperCollins Publishers. ISBN 0-06-025438-6.
This book provides an excellent model for circular stories that are developed through text written as logic chains. Students and teachers can benefit from writing clone stories based on this model.

Peterson, Jean Sunde. (1993). Talk with teens about self and stress: 50 guided discussions for school and counseling groups. Minneapolis, MN: Free Spirit Publishing. ISBN 0-915793-55-5.
This book could serve as the inspiration for a variety of conversation prompts and student projects regarding topics that are inherently interesting to teens.

Powers of 10

Protocols & Other Resources - This PDF contains a set of graphic organizers and matrices that can be used to support group processing in staff meetings and professional development workshops.

Reading Popular Culture in the Classroom - An outstanding look at issues in using popular culture in classroom instruction. If you are in a hurry, scroll down to the section entitled Handout, Media Study: Reading Popular Culture. (From Lee Sherlock)

25 Random Things Innovative Educators Can Do To Enhance Teaching & Learning (From Lynn Fulton Archer)



Structured Opportunities to Move & Talk


  • Affinity Diagram - Have students jot down key ideas or concerns about a given topic individually on separate Post-it notes, then ask them to work together to organize the ideas or concepts into meaningful sets. Have them label each set.
  • Carrousel Brainstorming - Post chart paper on the wall, write a question on each page, divide participants into groups, give a different colored marker to each group, send a group to each paper, give them one minute to jot down answers to the question, then have them move to the next page.
  • Focus Groups - Divide the tasks into 4 pieces, send a "facilitator" to guide each small group through their piece of the task, pull the whole group back together for the finished product.
  • Foldables
  • Four Corners - Provide a variety of readings or topics, form groups by favorites, participants discuss, each person shares the most valuable idea they are taking away from their group's discussion, no comments from others are allowed until everyone has spoken.
  • Grab a Word - Listen to, read, or watch a piece of "text" (an audio clip, statement, or video clip), and then from the center of the table, grab the word that you associate most closely with what you heard, read, or saw.
  • Human Graphing - Once participants have completed a multiple-choice survey, personality quiz, etc., and tallied their results, send them to different locations in the room based on their scores so that everyone can see the visual distribution/clustering of the people in the class.
  • Inside/Outside Circles - Have participants make 2 circles facing one another. Give the people in the inside circle a question, and have the outside circle answer them. external image msword.png [[file/view/Inside Outside Circles.doc|Inside Outside Circles.doc]]
  • Jigsaw - Divide students into groups (1, 2, 3, 4). Give each group a different set of paragraphs to read, a skill or process to learn, etc. When time is called, regroup students so that each new group is comprised of at least one member of the original groups (each group should have a 1, a 2, a 3, and a 4 in it) so that the representative of the original group can teach the information, skill, or process to the new mixed group.
  • Key Ideas - Ask students to identify 3-7 sentences containing key ideas regarding the topic of study.
  • Key Words - Ask students to extract 3-7 key words that summarize the topic of study and devise a graphic organizer that will help others remember them.
  • Learning Centers
  • Popcorn - Stand and say one word that you associate with the topic.
  • Power Teaching - Skip past the little song and watch the way this teacher provides small chunks of input in ways that engage students voices, bodies, and minds. Consider the ways this might be adaptable to a world language classroom.

  • Power Teaching - Think about the ways the techniques demonstrated in this video could be adapted to a world language classroom in order to provide students with small, functional chunks of input in ways that help them to process and remember what they are learning. Notice how as the video continues, students copy the teachers' voice in their responses

  • Prioritization - Give each student a red dot, a green or blue dot, and a yellow dot or Post-it flag. Post a list of ideas, topics, or activities on chart paper around the room and have students "vote" on the topics using their dots. (Red dots=high priority, green/blue dots=moderate priority, yellow dots = low priority). Have students "defend" their choices or attempt to come to consensus on the choices.
  • Problem-solving Activity - Tips, techniques, and resources for conducting oral problem-solving activities with students that are thematically related to the curriculum
  • Read & Retell - Give students something to read, then have them retell it to a partner, adding a personal experience or connection in the process.
  • Round Robin - Seat students in small groups. Call out a controversial question or statement and allow students to express their opinions--but students are only allowed to talk one at a time, according to the order in which they are seated around a round table. Consequently, if they wish to respond to something someone else has said, they must make a note of that so that they can remember the comment they wish to make until it is their turn. When it is their turn, they are only allowed to make one comment and/or ask one question. In this way, all students (including those who are reluctant to speak), get a turn.
  • Story Squares - Sketch something in each box related to the topic. Trade papers with a partner. Point to a square on your partner's paper that seems interesting to you and listen to them tell you the story. external image msword.png [[file/view/Story Squares.doc|Story Squares.doc]]
  • Talking Chips - Give each student in a group 4 chips of a different color. Students may make comments or ask questions at any time during the small group or whole class discussion, but each time they do, they must "pay" a chip. When they are out of chips, they cannot speak again until everyone has used their chips. Conversely, for each chip the student spends, s/he may earn a point toward some privilege or reward.
GrpgStksTlkgChips.jpg
GrpgStksTlkgChips.jpg


Structuring Discussions


  • Affinity Diagram - Have students jot down key ideas or concerns about a given topic individually on separate Post-it notes, then ask them to work together to organize the ideas or concepts into meaningful sets. Have them label each set.
  • Carrousel Brainstorming - Post large pieces of chart paper around the room. Put a topic or question at the top of each sheet. Divide students into groups and give each group's "recorder" a different colored marker. Give each group 30 seconds to 2 minutes to brainstorm a list of items or answers related to the topic or question. When the time ends, have each group move to a new piece of chart paper and continue the process.
  • Focus Groups - Divide the tasks into 4 pieces, send a "facilitator" to guide each small group through their piece of the task, pull the whole group back together for the finished product.
  • Focus Questions - Give each small group a list of questions and ask them to choose at least 3 to discuss.
  • Four Corners - Provide a variety of readings or topics, form groups by favorites, participants discuss, each person shares the most valuable idea they are taking away from their group's discussion, no comments from others are allowed until everyone has spoken.
  • Inside/Outside Circles - Have participants make 2 circles facing one another. Give the people in the inside circle a question, and have the outside circle answer them. external image msword.png [[file/view/Inside Outside Circles.doc|Inside Outside Circles.doc]]
  • Jigsaw - Divide students into groups (1, 2, 3, 4). Give each group a different set of paragraphs to read, a skill or process to learn, etc. When time is called, regroup students so that each new group is comprised of at least one member of the original groups (each group should have a 1, a 2, a 3, and a 4 in it) so that the representative of the original group can teach the information, skill, or process to the new mixed group.
  • Key Ideas - Ask students to identify 3-7 sentences containing key ideas regarding the topic of study.
  • Key Words - Ask students to extract 3-7 key words that summarize the topic of study and devise a graphic organizer that will help others remember them.
  • Popcorn - Stand and say one word that you associate with the topic.
  • Prioritization - Give each student a red dot, a green or blue dot, and a yellow dot or Post-it flag. Post a list of ideas, topics, or activities on chart paper around the room and have students "vote" on the topics using their dots. (Red dots=high priority, green/blue dots=moderate priority, yellow dots = low priority). Have students "defend" their choices or attempt to come to consensus on the choices.
  • Problem-solving Activity - Tips, techniques, and resources for conducting oral problem-solving activities with students that are thematically related to the curriculum
  • Read & Retell - Give students something to read, then have them retell it to a partner, adding a personal experience or connection in the process.
  • Round Robin - Seat students in small groups. Call out a controversial question or statement and allow students to express their opinions--but students are only allowed to talk one at a time, according to the order in which they are seated around a round table. Consequently, if they wish to respond to something someone else has said, they must make a note of that so that they can remember the comment they wish to make until it is their turn. When it is their turn, they are only allowed to make one comment and/or ask one question. In this way, all students (including those who are reluctant to speak), get a turn.
  • Story Squares - Sketch something in each box related to the topic. Trade papers with a partner. Point to a square on your partner's paper that seems interesting to you and listen to them tell you the story. This activity works best with students who have had at least one year of language study. The teacher should remove the English labels for each box and replace them with labels in the target language before using this worksheet with students. This activity can be used multiple times (for example, the teacher can direct students to choose events from their childhood, from their summer vacation, from a holiday break, from Homecoming week at school, from their favorite television shows or movies, from a short story or novel that they are reading in class, etc.) external image msword.png [[file/view/Story Squares.doc|Story Squares.doc]]
  • Talking Chips - Give each student in a group 4 chips of a different color. Students may make comments or ask questions at any time during the small group or whole class discussion, but each time they do, they must "pay" a chip. When they are out of chips, they cannot speak again until everyone has used their chips. Conversely, for each chip the student spends, s/he may earn a point toward some privilege or reward.


Subject Area Resources





Transforming Worksheets Into Interactive Activities





Technological Tools That Support Creating Compelling Classroom Experiences


Cool Tech Tools - A regularly updated list of free, online tech tools from Cherice's TeensNTech wiki that support students and instructors in designing classroom experiences that are compelling.


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