Where I'm From - Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires;
So where am I from? I think it would be overstating things to say I’ve made some great insight about myself from this activity, but it is always interesting to reflect on myself. What makes me, me? What titular events have formed my personality and shaped my psyche? Which memories, which activities, do I remember as particularly powerful – and why? Not all questions I have answers for, but ones I find interesting to ask just for the fun of it.
But how to use this technology in my future? In the short term: not immediately. My placement isn’t tech un-friendly, but it’s by no means an structured with tech heavy lessons in mind. Most of what we do will be discussion, activity, and project based. My CT and I have begun discussing ideas, and she likes to make the activities accessible in class, which means no laptops, no phones, and no tech.
But broadly, I have ideas. I rather like my CT’s discussion and/or project based approach to a social studies curriculum. While it’s not terrifically feasible in my current classroom, with it’s lack of dedicated classroom laptops/tablets/devices and strict no phone policies, if I had the resources, I could think of uses. Googlemaps of historical movements of people – have students make ones based on economic migrations, wartime logistic trains, ocean trade networks, paths of marching armies, or the spread of specific ideas or groups. With Haiku Deck, students could create quick and dirty in-class presentations to link concepts together and show they understand how ideas relate to other ideas across visual AND writing mediums.
These are just two immediate ideas, of which I could brainstorm more with time. But broadly, I think what this lesson showcases is how technology offers excellent opportunities for highly specialized and approachable lessons. As we continue into the information age, the number of resources available for specific lesson tasks will continue to grow. Specific websites can be selected for activities, which might include scaffolding or structures to support student learning, and which can be as specialized or as broad as the website creator’s intent. Creating an engaging slough of tech-based activities for students can be best understood as looking into a host of websites and finding what fits the specific parameters you’re looking for.
I specifically found the video learning segment of this lesson a bit frustrating. I like to read for comprehension, and the variable speed of the explanations, difficulty going back to read, and necessity of listening for instructions meant that the videos were an ineffective way to grasp the processes. I found it easier to experiment with the software, read instructions while using my prior knowledge of general web UI to make inferences, and ask for personalized help when I had questions. I found myself pining for formal written instructions, but made do by using my prior knowledge and engaging with the task experimentally.