TEED 512 - Fall, 2012 - Ed Tech Strand

Our Societal Issues Threaded Discussion via the TEED 512 Angel site

The idea for this assignment is that you will select one resource to explore (from a list of ten resources), become an "expert" on the resource, post an initial summary/comment on that resource using our threaded discussion forum on Angel, and then react to the posts of others on the forum. (Please review the assignment details for word count minimums, etc. in the syllabus!)

The first step is to select your resource from those listed and linked below (scroll down on this page).

Once you have selected and thoroughly explored your resource you can begin the threaded discussion process.
  • Sign in to Seattle University's Angel Web site;
  • Select the Angel site for "TEED 512 - Learners and Instruction SECTION 1-12FQ"
  • Click on the "Materials & Strands" tab;
  • Click on the folder entitled: "Educational Technology Strand";
  • Click on the threaded discussion folder entitled, "Threaded Discussion – Societal Issues & Educational Technology" and follow the directions found there. [When you are ready, you will use the "New Post" button to make your initial posting.]

Note that your initial posting must be made by November 1, 2012 and ALL your reaction posts must be made by November 15, 2012.

TEED 512 - Societal Issues Resources

Video Games and Creativity (posted by Margie G)

With all the negative publicity around video games, it's hard to imagine a study touting academic benefits from such games. However, a study released today connects creativity with video games and asserts "there's some intellectual good" in playing the games. Michigan State University's Children and Technology Project studied 500 12-year-olds and found that boys and girls who play video games scored higher on creative thinking tests than their peers. This correlation was true for boys and girls, across all races. The video gamers also had significantly higher visual-spacial skills. What implications might these findings have when we consider educating students for the 21st century? How do you feel about video games as an educator? Are there questions you have for the researchers who conducted the study?

Here is the link to the article:
Article by Mike Snider, USA Today, November 2, 2011

Bring Back The Boys - Posted by A. S.
In her talk, (http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=jynsAdRpoJk ) Ali Carr-Chellman states that boys are behind girls in academic achievement; that there is a gender achievement gap. She claims that this is due to boy's culture
video games) being discriminated against by school policy and teacher attitude. She also sites a decline in male elementary teachers as a factor. All of these things are contributing to boys receiving implicit messages that school is not for them. She does address the academic challenges girls face, and that the achievement gap widens if the boys are African American, poor, or go to an over crowded school.

The statistics she sites are alarming and much of what she talks about reminds me of things we have discussed in our program, specifically regarding Culturally Responsive Teaching; that elementary school are mainly taught by women for girls. Carr-Chellman says the video games are not the cause of low academic achievement in boys, but rather a symptom. Then she says that we need to integrate components of video games into school and curriculum to engage boys.
What do you think? Can we address causes with their symptoms? Are there other ways to engage and motivate boys to learn? I find this topic extremely interesting after seeing a disproportionate amount of boys being disciplined and demonstrating a loss of motivation for school during my field experiences. What are your thoughts, experiences, and ideas?

Orchestrating the Media Collage by Jason Ohler

"Being able to read and write multiple forms of media and integrate them into a meaningful whole is the new hallmark of literacy."

external image EdLeadership.jpg
external image EdLeadership.jpg

"At the epicenter of the evolving nature of literacy is digital literacy, the term du jour used to describe the skills, expectations, and perspectives involved in living in a technological society. How has digital literacy evolved in the 25 years since digital tools began appearing in classrooms? And how can we make it more responsive to our presentneeds?"
To what extent to do you buy into the central claims with regard to education and technology? Where do your views about the role of educational technology in the processes of teaching and learning diverge from theirs and why do they do so?
You can access this article at: http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational_leadership/mar09/vol66/num06/Orchestrating_the_Media_Collage.aspx
This article was published in the journal, Educational Leadership. March 2009 | Volume 66 | Number 6
Literacy 2.0 Pages 8-13

Accessibility in Education Apple Computers
external image AppleUAIcon.gif
external image AppleUAIcon.gif

Accessibility in Microsoft Products
external image MS%20UAIcon.gif
external image MS%20UAIcon.gif

http://www.microsoft.com/enable/products/ /
If you go to the Windows site you will need to click on an operating system (OS) name (e.g., "Windows XP") to get information about that OS. If you go to the Apple site, you'll find a set of links across the middle of the page, "Literacy & Learning," "Vision," etc. Explore these one by one.There are many features built into the Mac and Windows operating systems that make it easier for students with disabilities to use computers. As a teacher, you need to know how these work. Choose one of these two sites or explore them both. These sites will help you learn about these features, including VoiceOver, Zoom, Speech Recognition, and many more.

Communication - Community Voices, Collaborative Solutions
external image iEarnLogo.gif
external image iEarnLogo.gif

iEARN (International Education and Resource Network) is a non-profit global network that enables young people to use the Internet and other new technologies to engage in collaborative educational projects that both enhance learning and make a difference in the world. The specific part of iEARN that I would like you to explore is the iEARN projects page (http://www.iearn.org/projects/index.html).

external image YouthVoicesLogo.png
external image YouthVoicesLogo.png
Adobe - Youth Voices
The idea here is to put digital multimedia tools into the hands of educators and underserved student populations around the world, and to give them plans for using the tools to explore issues and "take action in the own communities." If you go to their opening page: http://www.youthvoices.adobe.com/, you will get an introduction to the project. I recommend that you then click on "Educational Resources" and investigate further. If you sign up you will have access to the curriculum.

TED Talk by Eli Praiser Posted by Kat Behrend


This TED talk by author Eli Praiser, author of "The Filter Bubble," explains how internet-giants like Facebook, Google, and Yahoo are selective about what information they share with you, based on personal information they have gathered through your past internet activity. They filter your queries based on your link-clicking histories, hiding specific links that they don't think you would be interested in.

Both the TED talk and his book raise the question about whether the internet is in fact a democratic, open portal of information if we don't know what's not being shown to us. The issue is pertinent to our job as educators, as we will be teaching students how to conduct meaningful, legitimate research. The more literate we are as teachers about media democracy and the type of corporate selectivity of information that Praiser discusses, the better equipped we will be at raising these issues of social and informational justice with our students. What internet sources will students rely on for neutral, internet-based research?
He also has a list of 10 things you can do to “pop the filter bubble” and see the neutral, un-personalized, un-filtered web. http://www.thefilterbubble.com/10-things-you-can-do

Robots with Red Pens

I'm sorry, Dave. The correct answer was "General Cornwallis."

I'm sorry, Dave. The correct answer was "General Cornwallis."

Dana Goldstein's Slate article "Machines Shouldn’t Grade Student Writing—Yet" investigates the issue of "robots" (machines, really) grading the essay portion of standardized tests, where students are asked to respond to a subject-specific prompt.

Goldstein raises a number of valid if predictable arguments: can a machine "understand" nuance enough to accurately and fairly grade a writing sample? She puts forth compelling arguments to suggest that they can't-- for example, a Brown University computer scientist tells her that "it could take another century for computer software to accurately score [such] an essay [...], because it is so difficult for computers to assess whether a piece of writing demonstrates real knowledge across a subject [area]."

Goldstein's article left me with the feeling that this is scientific progress attempting to reach beyond its reasonable limits, coming up against the cold hard fact that some areas, like writing, which is produced by an infinitely complex system of human reasoning, will always be better understood by a human brain than a machine.

That's my take, anyway. What do you think?

external image VideoInterview.jpg
external image VideoInterview.jpg
The NCTI is the National Center for Technology Innovation.
Go to their Web site (http://www.nationaltechcenter.org/) and, use the search bar at the top of the page to search for the NCTI video, " Ideas on Innovation, An Interview with Yong Zhao." (or just go straight to this page: http://www.nationaltechcenter.org/flash_videos/interview/zhao_interview.php ) You willl have to then select video (click on the close captioned icon) or audio (click on the headphones icon). Yong Zhao is a "Distinguished Professor" at Michigan State University. This should stimulate some controversy! Watch this video and make a few notes. The interview / conversation meanders a bit and comes to no definite conclusion. Nevertheless, it presents some rather direct challenges to your profession and should give you a chance to think about what you value as a teacher. The central question is a twist on a timeless classic: "What knowledge is of most worth in the future?"

It's Time for Technology to Disrupt Education

In his short piece in the Huffington Post, Larry Magid wonders what technology will "disrupt education" as it has in music and with newspapers. He talks about education as a "product families are required to consume" and, unlike other consumable goods, the customers, students and parents, are not in the position of power. He would like to see technology bring education to its fullest potential and expand out of the classroom. He uses several different examples of technology that could possibly be used to do just this.

What do you think?
Is it right to treat education as a commodity, a consumable good with customers and producers?
Should we accord technology the same role in education as we do in our market place?

Here is the link: It's Time for Technology to Disrupt Education

external image PeaceCorps.png
external image PeaceCorps.png
If you're interested in connecting your class to a Peace Corps volunteer abroad, you can get more information and consider signing up at the following website:
I recommend that you click the reddish "Educators" tab over on the left side of the page and explore there for lesson plans and stories, service learning ideas, etc.
Here is a quote from a recent Seattle University Master in Teaching student who introduced me to this site:
"When I was a volunteer, I was connected to a teacher in Kirkland (4-5 grades) and we did a cool penpal program between a class in my community and his class. The class in the USA also rounded up a ton of school supplies, and while on a trip back home, I was able to get the stuff, visit the class, then take the supplies to my community in El Salvador. I also set up a blog that I would write in and the students would all go to their computer lab in the USA and visit it and see my pictures. It was cool for them to see what I was up to. Overall, it was a great experience! I've already signed up and waiting to be linked to a volunteer for my new Spanish classes. As at teacher, when you sign up you get a handbook, monthly e-newsletter, Peace Corps calendar with photos and facts from around the world, the New Coverdell World Wise Schools publications, and other stuff, besides being linked up with a volunteer."
My suggestion is that you explore the possibilities presented via the Web site and then consider how and why you might use this in a classroom here in Washington state.

Living with Digital Natives and Their Technologies
By Jonathan Nalder (2007)
The author contends that our students live in a world that is different from the one in which we grew up (duh) and describes ten applications that characterize technology for today's children. He concludes with some thoughts about social networking. This article is not exactly out there on the edge of current thinking about educational technology and its applications but if you want to consider one author's view of the more or less current landscape of popular technology for the k-12 set, this is a start.

The Story of Stuff Project - Posted by Jeremy Louzao

Okay, so we know that most U.S. students are digitally immersed, with smartphones, social media, iPhones, and video games. But where do all those technological gadgets physically come from? Who makes them, where, and what kinds of material does it take? And what are the consequences of all this tech--and all of our other consumerist items of choice--for our planet and our society? The Story of Stuff Project is a fascinating resource for teachers to investigate these questions with our students, all blossoming from Annie Leonard's 20-minute, student-friendly documentary of the same name. Since the first documentary was made in 2007, the project has expanded greatly, and now classrooms can find even more resources such as The Story of Electronics, The Story of Cosmetics, The Story of Bottled Water, and more.

Kiva.org - posted by Kristi Eisele

Kiva is a non-profit organization devoted to allowing people even in the most remote areas of the world the access to capital and create opportunities for a better life. Kiva works with microfinance institutions to help alleviate poverty. Individuals can lend as little as $25 to people without access to traditional banks and one hundred percent of every dollar you send goes directly towards funding loans. Loans can be used to open a business, build housing, and fund education. Learning more about Kiva and participating in lending can teach students basic principles of economics and microfinance, and empower students to make a difference.

See how educators used kiva.org in the classrooms here.

iPads Used as Text Books: By Emily Zimmerman

Tablets and E-Readers are fast becoming the new text books and computers of our time. The iPad in particular, with is sophisticated functions and abilities is slowly working its way into schools and colleges alike. In the article “BioBook, A Gates-Funded iPad Textbook, Would Create A Free Database For Customized Learning” author Gregory Ferenstein explains how the iPad has been developed into an interactive biology text book with the ability for professors and students to edit and adapt the book to students learning needs. The article explores the uses of the iPad and how it would impact student learning at the University level.

Nicholas Negroponte on One Laptop per Child (posted by Rachel)

In this video, Negroponte enthusiastically shares the success of and plans for his non-profit One Laptop per Child that provides cheap, efficient, durable laptops to children in developing countries. (Note: the video was recorded in 2006, but the website should be more or less up to date.) Their goal is to improve lives through education, and they've chosen laptops as the tool for achieving it. Laptops are seen as being synonymous with education. The organization believes that since digital technology is responsible for rapid change in the global economy, it should also be the solution. They believe that laptops provide an opportunity for children learn the skills they need for the 21st century--like creativity and collaboration.

What benefits and drawbacks do you see to this project? Is this an effective use of donor funds to accomplish the goal of providing an empowering education? Do the benefits of this technology outweigh the potential environmental damages faced by people in developing countries as a result of production/waste?