33. Learning Adventure – Day 1

Housekeeping:
You are able to check your updated score through your email today. If you have any question regarding your score, please don’t hesitate to ask.

PART I. Your topic and partner(s)
Before you choose your topic, you need to think about these questions first.

  1. Which grade level is your Learning Adventure targeted at?
  2. What is the subject?
  3. What is the topic of the Learning Adventure?
  4. What Georgia Performance Standard (or any other content standards) does your Learning Adventure address?

This project asks you to develop your lesson plan based on the mandated content standards in this country. Here are a list of content standards you can refer to create your learning adventure:

  • In the state of Georgia, curriculum standards are called “Georgia Performance Standards”, or GPS. They are written for every grade level (K-12) and most subject areas. Click on the Georgia Performance Standards tab and then select your subject and grade level.
  • If you’re interested in Mathematics or English/Language Arts, you might refer to the Common Core Standards as well.
  • If you don’t see your subject area listed (subjects such as health, family and consumer science, character education, and a few others), view the “Quality Core Curriculum Materials” – the predecessor to the GPS (not all subjects have made the conversion yet).
  • If you are interested in speech therapy or special education, here are some possible standards: “IEP Goals & Objectives Bank.”

Also, because this project asks you to complete a lot of things, I would prefer you worked with a partner (or partners) for this project. It’s okay if you find yourself planning an adventure in a subject or grade different than the one you identified at the beginning of the semester. I am open to people working alone, but you need to be forewarned that this is a lot of work – being able to share the work load will help you stay on target. If you are going to work in a group, 2 or 3 members would be good.

PART II. Essential Questions

You’ll want to get students interested in your topic by starting with an essential question. Please read this article and get some ideas about an essential question.

  • Essential questions are organizers and set the focus for the lesson or unit.
  • Essential questions are initiators of creative and critical thinking.

We’re going to try and write a few ourselves today.

  1. On an index card, write a question related to a topic about which you enjoy learning. For example, “what happened to the dinosaurs?”, “why did the Titanic sink”, etc.
  2. Get in a group with 2-3 other classmates, and use a tubric to turn your question into an essential question.
  3. How good is your question? Use the essential question development checklist on the last page of this handout to see how well you did.

For the rest of class time, work with your partner to create some essential questions to guide your adventure using the handout. Complete the Inquire section of your adventure.

PART III. Creating your Learning Adventure site
You will need to create a NEW site for this learning adventure project. If you’d like to create a new Google Site, you know how to do it. If you’d like to create a site using other sites, such as wordpress.comblogger.com, or tumblr.com, please feel free to do.

Please do the following when you create a site:
1. Make sure the title of your site reflects the nature of your adventure.
2. Make sure your navigation bar reflects the sections in the Rubric.

PART IV. Stop Animation Video
For the next 3-4 class days, we’ll be working to create stop animation videos. The videos will be used for your Hook page. Let’s watch some examples first.

Now, you should have some idea of what stop animation is. So, the purpose of a stop animation video is to explain a concept in a creative and engaging way. The basic mechanism is that you take a series of pictures and present them as if they are moving using a video-editing software. I am currently thinking of using Youtube, instead of a specific software. Youtube will be much easier to use to create a video.

For Friday:
We will be the first day of creating stop animation videos.

32. Our Final Project

Housekeeping:

  1. Your Tool Commercial result is available.
  2. Each project score is somewhat modified.

PART I. Adjustment
Since the last two projects (Slowmation Video and Learning Adventure) were collapsed into one, we need to revisit our list of projects and scores. Here’s my idea: Learning adventure project –  20% to 30%; Social media project – 10% to 15%. But before modifying this plan, I would like to ask your opinion first.

PART II. Learning Adventure
This Learning Adventure project will be the last project in this course, and will continue until almost the end of the semester. This is a final project because you need to integrate all of your skills into this one project. Please make sure that you need to create a NEW website for this project. You can use any website for your learning adventure (e.g., Google Sites, Tumblr, WordPress…)

Examples
Before we get to all the details, let’s first look at some examples of Adventures created by former EDIT 2000 students. Ours will be set up slightly different, but the premise is the same. You are basically creating a web site for students, parents, and teachers. The site is meant to guide a student through an adventure of your choosing (of course, it’s nice to offer them choices within your adventure as well).

Partners and Groups
I would prefer you worked with a partner for this project. It’s okay if you find yourself planning an adventure in a subject or grade different than the one you identified at the beginning of the semester. I am open to people working alone, but you need to be forewarned that this is a lot of work – being able to share the work load will help you stay on target. If you are going to work in a group, 2 or 3 members would be good. You do not have to decide today who you’d like to work with, but be prepared to share this in class on Monday.

Detailed information
Open this Learning Adventure page. We will also talk through the rubric, and that will help you understand what is expected of you throughout the project. You will notice that the criteria for receiving full credit is part of the rubric. Let’s look at this together.

PART III. Content Standards
I want you to design your learning adventure based on the mandated content standards in this country. We have already learned a little bit about content standards in February. Here is a list of content standards websites you can refer to for your project.

As teachers, we don’t really choose what we are going to teach. This is mandated at the local, state, and national levels. In the state of Georgia, curriculum standards are called “Georgia Performance Standards”, or GPS. They are written for every grade level (K-12) and most subject areas. Click on the Georgia Performance Standards tab and then select your subject and grade level. If you’re interested in Mathematics or English/Language Arts, you might refer to the Common Core Standards as well. If you don’t see your subject area listed (subjects such as health, family and consumer science, character education, and a few others), view the “Quality Core Curriculum Materials” – the predecessor to the GPS (not all subjects have made the conversion yet). If you are interested in speech therapy or special education, here are some possible standards: “IEP Goals & Objectives Bank.”

For Monday

  1. Please think about some interesting topics for your learning adventure.
  2. Find your team members if you’d like to do this project in a group.

31. Creativity and Innovation

Housekeeping:

  1. The 3rd reading assignment is due today. Please briefly define the four dimensions of creativity. You don’t need to submit your summarized definitions to me.

PART I. Creativity?
Before we think about creativity, let’s answer these questions first. (Currently the file is only open to me. I will open the questions after class.)

OK, then let’s review a student’s answer together.

Based on these questions and answers, let’s spend a few minutes talking about creativity. What do you think about creativity? Do you think the answers are creative? If so or if not, how would you define creativity using your own words?

And I found this interesting video. Are you creative or analytical? Find out in 5 seconds.

PART II. Grow Creativity (3rd reading assignment)
J. P. Guilford’s FFOE model of divergent thinking offers four dimensions to describe creativity: Fluency, Flexibility, Originality, and Elaboration. Let’s talk about the four dimensions a little bit.

Now that you’ve thought about creativity in general, watch this video from Sir Ken Robinson’s TED talk.

So, what does this have to do with technology integration? Are there tools available that will enhance student’s creative thinking? Are there tools that will enable students to share their divergent thoughts to a broader audience? What types of activities might be possible in your grade/subject area? (just think about these questions, no need to write them up anywhere).

 

For Friday:

  1. If you are interested in Sir ken Robinson’s talk, read “Why Creativity Now? A Conversation with Sir Ken Robinson
  2. Detailed information about the last project will be announced with examples done by previous students.

 

30. Critical Thinking and Problem Solving

Housekeeping:

  1. I am currently rethinking about our course plan to reduce the number of the projects. I will finalize the plan and let you know the revised plan on Wednesday.
  2. We don’t need a laptop today. 🙂

PART I. Problem solving activities

Critical thinking is a way of deciding whether a claim is true, partially true, or false. Critical thinking is a process that leads to skills that can be learned, mastered and used. Critical thinking is a tool by which one can come about reasoned conclusions based on a reasoned process. This process incorporates passion and creativity, but guides it with discipline, practicality and common sense.
(From Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Critical_thinking)

As you can see, critical thinking is important to solve a problem. So we’re going to do problem solving activities related to both. You can work on these activities with your peers.

PART II. Problem solving group discussion
Within your group – respond to one of the following questions:

1. There are 2 types of problems: open-ended and close-ended. Which were your activities?
2. Could your activity be considered problem-based learning?
3. When have you experienced the problem-based learning approach in your classes? (What is problem-based learning?)

PART III. 3rd reading assignment (by March 26, Wednesday)
Here is our 3rd Reading assignment.

Shively, C. H. (2011). Grow creativity. Learning and Leading with Technology, 38(7), 10-15.

While reading this article, please briefly define the four dimensions that J.P. Guilford used to describe creativity. You DON’T NEED TO SUBMIT your summarized definitions of the four dimensions to me. We will discuss about this article on Wednesday.

For Wednesday:

  1. Newly updated plan will be announced.
  2. We will discuss about creativity.

29. Showcase Day 2: Tool Commercial

PART I. Showcase Day 2: Tool Commercial

Today is another showcase day. Your presentation schedule is like below:
5. Erica, Ansley & Jennifer
6. Emily, Alexa & Kara
7. Katherine, Caitlyn, & Caroline
8. Chase

Each group will have approximately 5 to 10 minutes to introduce your commercial and have a Q&A session. Be sure to share brief information of your commercial (name of the website, target grade level, target audience, and/or target subject area).

And, today, you will play another role of an executive board member of the company. While each group presents their commercial, think how the commercial effectively fits your company’s needs. Then you will evaluate each commercial based on four criteria.

– Appealing to the audience (teachers) in a specific domain
– Addressing how the tool supports communication and collaboration in a classroom
– Understanding the media chosen
– Look & Feel (including humor; an eye-catching title; interaction with the audience, etc.)

The online review form is available here. The group whose commercial received the highest score will earn Late Passes!! Be fair as you are the executive board member!

PART II. A heads-up on the next project
These videos are hints for the next project.

 

For Monday:

  1. A new project will begin!

28. Showcase Day 1: Tool Commercial

Do you remember our scenario?

“You’ve been hired by a tech company to develop a commercial for one of their products. The company thinks that their tool will really benefit communication and collaboration in classrooms – but teachers aren’t really aware of their product. The company needs you to develop an infomercial about their product to convince teachers that the tool will benefit students.”

Today is your showcase day. Your presentation schedule is like below:
1. Allison & Ali
2. Zac, Ross & Brandon
3. Nelson, Daniel & Daniel
4. Jordan, Thomas & Taylor

Each group will have approximately 5 to 10 minutes to introduce your commercial and have a Q&A session. Be sure to share brief information of your commercial (name of the website, target grade level, target audience, and/or target subject area).

And, today, you will play another role of an executive board member of the company. While each group presents their commercial, think how the commercial effectively fits your company’s needs. Then you will evaluate each commercial based on four criteria.

– Appealing to the audience (teachers) in a specific domain
– Addressing how the tool supports communication and collaboration in a classroom
– Understanding the media chosen
– Look & Feel (including humor; an eye-catching title; interaction with the audience, etc.)

The online review form is available here. The group whose commercial received the highest score will earn Late Passes!! Be fair as you are the executive board member!

For Friday:

  1. Another showcase day! Snacks will be served. BYOB!

27. Tool Commercial – Day 6

Housekeeping:

  1. You all are supposed to receive your social media strategy plan result on March 7 (last Friday). If you didn’t receive the result yet, please let me know.
  2. If you have any question regarding your score, feel free to ask me.

PART I. Brief review of Tool Commercial
Project Overview
Since we haven’t met for a week, let me refresh your memory. For this project, you were hired by a tech company to develop a commercial for one of their products. The commercial will be more than 30 seconds, less than 2 minutes. The purpose of your infomercial is AWARENESS – it is not a training video. You should show how the product can benefit students (especially to enhance communication and/or collaboration).

On Your Portfolio
Each of you needs to:
1. Create a new page called, “Tool Commercial”
2. Embed your video (or provide a link to your commercial)
3. Add a brief description (Every member can add the same description)
by your presentation day.

Project Showcase
Your presentation schedule will be:
1. Allison & Ali
2. Zac, Ross & Brandon
3. Nelson, Daniel & Daniel
4. Jordan, Thomas & Tailor
5. Erica, Ansley & Jennifer
6. Emily, Alexa & Kara
7. Katherine, Caitlyn, & Caroline
8. Chase

Group 1 to 4 will make a presentation on Wednesday (March 19) and Group 5 to 8 will do on Friday (March 21). If you cannot make it by your presentation day, your score will be deducted according to our late submission policy. Remember, you cannot use your late pass because this is a group project.

Showcase Day
Each group will be given 5 to 10 minutes to present your commercial. Before showing your commercial, please share some information about your commercial (e.g., name of the website, target learner grade level, and/or target subject area). After watching your tool commercial, we will have a short Q&A session. Reviewers (your classmates and me) will ask any question if they have.

PART II. Time to work on your project
The remaining time is yours. Please work on your project.

For Wednesday:

  1. I will prepare some snacks you can enjoy on the showcase days. BYOB!