Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Resource Log, Entry 11-15

Out surfing and I found some interesting things.

#11 This first site is http://www.sedl.org/pubs/tec26/cnc.html. It is a published guide on Constructivism and Technology. The page I indicated is titled, "Computers and Constructivism."

#12 The second site I found was http://www.quasar.ualberta.ca/edit573/Links/constructivism.htm. It was a website dedicated to Constructivism links. Not all of the links worked, but even the general topics were helpful to use as the basis of a search. The page was titled, "Constructivism Links."

#13 This next page was very new to me, and I will cover it further in a separate blog entry, but it was at http://www.miamisci.org/ph/lpintro5e.html. The site was titled, "Constructivism and the Five E's." I had never heard about the 5 E's. It was an interesting way of gaining perspective.

#14 This resource was at http://www.funderstanding.com/content/theories/about-learning/poetry-and-constructivism-and-better-learning#more-394. It was titled, "Poetry and Constructivism, and Better Learning." I hadn't come across something so specific about Constructivism, this is a fantastic way to really start breaking into Constructivism for me.

#15 The last site (for now) was at http://www.exploratorium.edu/IFI/resources/constructivistlearning.html. It was titled, "Constructivist Learning Theory." The entire paper spoke from the perspective of museum educators. I think that the perspective that they provide is a valuable resource for teachers to learn from.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Reflections Journal, Week 4

This is the first time I commented on one of my own finds, but in this case, it was the first article of it's kind that I had been exposed to. The document is titled, "Is Constructivism Universal: In Search of Meaningful Technology in Morocco and Namibia," and can be found at http://learnlink.aed.org/Publications/Concept_Papers/constructivism.pdf I although I watch the new and consider myself a rounded individual, I had never thought to apply constructivism or the educational practices and/or theories that I have learned to other countries. I began to wonder, "Have others in my field, here in the United States, had places in their education where they studied or were made aware of educational policies/standards that are practiced in other countries?" I asked around to a few willing people, most replied with short answers all pertaining to "no." Obviously, I'm not going to be doing any serious research, but with the little informal research I did do, I began to think about the vastness of the field of education. I know all the studies I have undergone, as I'm sure most pursuing this field can identify with, and I cannot imagine how we could have worked in a class on global education. The fact that there is so much to learn, and the structured format that is already in place, I don't see how there is any room for expansion. I still do wonder - have others in my field come across such information in their studies?

Friday, January 23, 2009

Resource Log, Entry 7-10

I found these links while out surfing the net. I really enjoyed the content, I hope you will too!

#7 This link is to a document. This document is titled, "Is Constructivism Universal: In Search of Meaningful Technology in Morocco and Namibia." I have to honestly say haven't gotten to read this document in the depth that I'd like to, but I really did find what I read to this point fascinating. I'm going to save the rest of my comments for my next reflection blog.

#8 This link is to an online book, well it looks like a book. Anyway, this is a really informative tool for constructivism and technology integration in the classroom. I really think I'm going to save this one for future reference. I really like the lesson integration within the document.

#9 This link leads to a publication that is a resources for existing teachers that are new to the whole constructivism and technology integration thing. This publication seems to serve as a "how-to" guide for teachers wanting to enrich their classrooms with hands-on technology.

#10 This last link is just a really great source for using as a citation for a possible document in this class, as well as other EDTC classes.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Reflections Journal, Week 3

Information overload – Whew! I was reading a post on http://graduatingsoon-techclass.blogspot.com/2009/01/little-apprehensive-about-authoring.html, one of our fellow classmates, and I heard the same tone I sense coming from deep within me. “We’ll be publishing a Wikibook (spooky noise inserted here),” and I have to say the idea of publishing something that all the world can see, bur realistically won’t really, is a bit overwhelming! This new task, and the above mentioned post, got me to thinking – and usually that just means trouble! I started to ponder, is this assignment anxiety due to the sheer complexity of this assignment, or is it simply because I’m using a foreign technology to accomplish this task. Sometimes it’s hard (well for me it is) to learn new tricks as a seasoned (okay – old) dog! I further wondered (hold onto your seatbelts!) would students feel overwhelmed in the same way, or would their presumed ability to “learn new tricks,” negate that.

I continued with my work as usually whilst I considered the previous conundrums. Now, as I’ve continued my work, I’ve ended-up in the sandbox. I’m starting to really dig in to the whole sandbox idea. Talk about a whoosh of information! I had no idea what a sandbox was until I began this class. As I’ve been exploring this new technology, someone walked past my desk and asked me about it. I started spouting off all kind of terminology that I now understood with ease, but it was apparent buy the absent look on their face that I had lost them somewhere back at the starting gate. This interaction got me thinking, how much did attitude play a part in accepting the new technology and the assignment? I love Google; I think it’s a great tool. Even though I had never used GoogleDocs before, my attitude toward it was positive and open. On the other hand, I had never used Wiki for anything, and publishing something with a tool I was unfamiliar with wasn’t super appealing. Now that I’m becoming more familiar with this process, it’s becoming less daunting of a task. I’m even beginning to welcome it. I think that perspective with the unknown can really make the execution of the project that much more successful – I hope to remember this in my classroom. I hope that when I’m flooding my students with new information that I remember to also help their perspective stay positive.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Resource Log, Entry 6

#6 APA Format has always been a scary thing to me - but once I found the website below, I really became less afraid of them. Now, it's not such a big deal for me, but that doesn't mean I like doing them. Okay, this isn't exactly constructivism, but it is really helpful!


Friday, January 16, 2009

Reflections Journal, Week 2

This is my first reflection, I think I'm on the right path. We'll soon see.

I found this (it is number 4 on the previous entry) visual tool that breaks the constructivist view down and couples it with technology. http://hagar.up.ac.za/catts/learner/1999/nordhoff_hi/iro880/learning/construc.htm

Of all the things I sorted through, thus far, I really liked the break-down format of this document. I think it really creates a solid foundational understanding for how technology use can be enhanced by constructivism. My biggest "dispute" (loosely stated), was that it is so concise that this may be inhibiting to the average educator attempting to incorporate constructivism and technology into a classroom. The question that evolves from my "dispute" is, is a more restrictive view make the material being introduced more appealing? I took this question and started asking around. I am one of those people who prefer to have all the information, and sit down and sort it all out for myself. What I found from most of my peers is that too much information is often ignored. Most of them like to get their information spoon-fed to them. Hum. This all came from a group of grown-up's in an office, imagine what the kids want!

Resource Log, Entry 2-5

I had a fantastic reading time looking up some more goodies for our class. I found these next for to be particularly interesting. I put the first one in APA format, and provided the link as well, but the other three were just mostly web pages that I retrieved today and yesterday. I would use January 15 or 16, 2009 for the APA citation.

#2 Strommen, E. F. & Lincoln, B. (1992). Constructivism, technology, and the future of classroom learning. Education and Urban Society, 24(4), 466-476.

#3 What computers bring to Constructivism and vice versa

#4 This page looks like a task that would be assigned in higher level learning. I thought it might be helpful in our book development.

#5 I found another visual tool that breaks the constructivist view down and couples it with technology.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Resource Log, Entry 1

Here goes mu very first resource log entry! Wahoo! Now let's see if I did it right ;-)

I thought that this was a great paper that hits both constructivism and technology and the role the two play together. I added the APA citation, without the tabbing, formatting wouldn't allow for that. If you go directly to the link you'll see the paper.

#1 Matusevich, M. N. (May, 1995). School Reform: What Role can Technology Play in a Constructivist Setting. Retrieved January 14, 2009, from http://pixel.cs.vt.edu/edu/fis/techcons.html

Monday, January 12, 2009

Week 1 Discussion

Question: What is my reaction to this course overview?
Answer: Like anything new, I find it completely overwhelming! But, and this is a big one, I am calmed by the thought of students everywhere looking over a foreign syllabus and trying to construct meaning out of terms that aren't yet a regular part of their vocabulary. This is going to be an exciting adventure!

Question: How do I feel about a 100% constructivist and collaborative course like this?
Answer: I think offering students a more constructivist approach is the best way to teach. Sure call be biased, but I've seen it work, and work well. I'm not naive enough to think it is the only way, or that another approach might be better for different students, but I am fond of constructivism. In addition, I also think that by marring constructivism and technology together, a beautiful byproduct is created.

Question: How do you feel about publishing your learning on wiki's and blogs?
Answer: I'm indifferent about publishing. In some cases I think that something I publish my be of assistance to someone out there, but on the other hand somewhere out there is a really big place - it's a bit overwhelming to think about it.

The First Day

This is the first day I have ever blogged! In some ways, I feel adventurous, in other ways, I feel completely behind the times. Regardless, as I approach these next few months, I know this experience will give back to me as much as I put into it. I look forward to reading the comments and discussing Constructivism and Technology with others who share this interest.