Ebrownorama's Blog

My Learning Journey …


Leave a comment

#changingeducation = #timeforaction

We have heard the buzz words #changingeducation #reformation #educationaltransformation, and others for a number of years now. But what change or transformation has taken place?

Change does take time, it is slow to move, but it can, and is happening. But at what cost is this snail-pace change affecting our learners for today and for their future?

Teacher education needs to be on the forefront producing new teachers who are equipped to translate their campus learning into their classroom practice. Many new teachers are not provided opportunities to design learning using technologies in meaningful ways to develop critical thinking and problem solving skills,  and are not prepared to make changes. These new teachers enter their classrooms teaching in old ways because of the way they were taught. Many new teachers need professional development from day one of their careers to be effective teachers in the 21st century.

Standards, benchmarks, documents – created by governments and other organizations are excellent. But how many educators actually know that these exist? Ask a few of your colleagues if they know about the ISTE Standards for teachers or students. Or do you know about the New Horizon Report? First, do you know about them? Do you know how to design learning to promote critical thinking and problem solving, using technology? Now you say, well it’s not about the technology (this statement is sometimes used as a cover-up to avoid learning to use technologies!). So true! And it’s not about the pencil. But we need to use technology in our learning designs to prepare students for the ‘real world’. The world has changed and continues to change–rapidly. Are we teaching the way we were taught, in old ways, preparing our students for our past? Are we doing that because we are comfortable in our zone?

Teaching in the 21st century is indeed very exciting!! It’s a tough job and not for the weak or faint of passion. It’s not for those who have a general degree and don’t know what to do with it so they become teachers (in name). Teaching begins with passion. Teaching requires effort and work and time. It’s time for action! Now! One step at a time – we need to do something to create change. Together we can do it!

Let’s Roll!

 

 


Leave a comment

Canadian Tire HQ Wall of Glass

Friday, April 10th was an amazing day! After one year of pursuing a field trip to this innovative design centre, my students and I experienced the only Wall of Glass in North America!

My students are technical vocational pre-service teachers in various curriculum areas: automotive, culinary arts, graphic design and hair design. Their passion for leading and learning is tremendous and will provide great learning opportunities for their students.

The business/industry work environment that we experienced at the Canadian Tire headquarters in the Air Canada Data Centre in Winnipeg was a state of the art

TechVocSs


1 Comment

Beginning to Focus … Managing the Hose …

The first summer residency is complete in my learning journey at The University of Calgary, Doctor in Education (EdD) program. I have re-read my first blog post where we were asked to state our goals, questions, and why we were in this program.

There has been amazing learning, which brings about change. That was one of my goals. The change has been launched …

My SymbalooEdu webmix for Grad Studies is full and I have started a second which I am now re-organizing to focus my thinking. It is linked here as I am conscious of sharing my learning and want to do that with you.

Our cohort has formed a Community of Inquiry, modelling our learning (Garrison, 2011). You will see that there is a link to our Facebook Page in the webmix linked above. Please share with us, ask questions of us, and give us ideas!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

My iPad is set with pdfs for deeper reading and questioning (Jacobsen, Brown & Lambert, 2013), (OECD, 2010), (Oliver, 2013), and (Parchoma, 2014)) during my flights and drives to various places in the next few days. I cannot leave the learning because immediacy of action is important in change. While I may stop briefly at the ‘rest stop’, I am on my learning journey and eager to see the challenges that will arise.

 

Jacobsen, M., Brown, B., & Lambert, D. (2013). Technology-Enhanced Learning Environments in Higher Education: A Review of the Literature. A Literature Review for the Learning Technology Task Force, University of Calgary, November, 60 pages.

OECD (Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development). (2010). Inspired by Technology, Driven by Pedagogy: A systemic approach to technology-based school innovations.  Online: http://www.keepeek.com/Digital-Asset-Management/oecd/education/inspired-by-technology-driven-by-pedagogy_9789264094437-en#page1

Oliver, M. (2013). Learning technology: Theorising the tools we study. British Journal of Educational Technology , 44 (1), 31-43.

Parchoma, G. The contested ontology of affordances: Implications for researching technological affordances for collaborative knowledge production. Computers in Human Behavior (2014), http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0747563214002428

 

 


1 Comment

Technology is NOT Just a Tool

Every learning environment must be technology-enabled. Technology in education should be ubiquitous–like paper and pen used to be. We need to know how to use the functionality of a technological tool, but there is so much more. The innovation and what can be done with these tools is the fun part and that is where the great learning comes from. What can teachers and students do with a tool for example, having students use a video creation software to create a video to show their learning. Using a tool to make the connection to a real situation is important. The world has great examples for us where innovation and even simple function could not occur were it not for technology. We would not have landed on the moon without technology.

We have looked at literature and had discussions about making thinking visible (Mclean, 2012) and (Ritchhart & Perkins, 2008). Technology allows this to happen.

It is necessary that learners be not only allowed to use technologies, but to provide them with opportunities to create and innovate. This will require much professional development and a change in teacher education programs. We need to work to make this happen because it is necessary. We must position ourselves in the gap employing learning sciences methodologies– regardless of the age of the learners, we need to work together to put into practice what we know where practitioners and researchers work together to create new practices NOT researching in labs but research in context to make the learning real and to make the thinking visible.

 

Mclean, A. (2012, 12). Making Thinking Visible: How to Promote Engagement, Understanding, and Independence for All Learners – By Ron Ritchart, Mark Church and Karin Morrison. Support for Learning,27(2), 92-93. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-9604.2012.01520.x

Ritchhart, R., & Perkins, D. (2008). Making Thinking Visible.Educational Leadership , 65 (5), 57-61.


Leave a comment

EdD Learning Sciences Cohort Reflects on Learning

In reflecting on E-learning in the 21st Century (Garrison, 2011), and the future of research, I asked my cohort to reflect on what has ignited their passion in the learning this summer to bring about innovation and transformation in education. Listen to the podcast below. We will re-visit this when we complete this learning journey and reflect on the change that has occurred.

Garrison, D. R. (2011). E-Learning in the 21st Century – A Framwork for Research and Practice (Vol. Second Edition). Routledge.


2 Comments

Making Thinking Visible

Everybody thinks, or so we think. But not everyone makes their thinking visible. “When learners speak, write, or draw their ideas, they deepen their cognition. Project Zero’s Visible Thinking approach shows how.” (Ritchhart and Perkins, 2008) The authors outline in their article the six key principles that anchor Visible Thinking and characterize our approach in schools.

  1. Learning is a consequence of thinking.
  2. Good thinking is not only a matter of skills, but also a matter of dispositions.
  3. The development of thinking is a social endeavor.
  4. Fostering thinking requires making thinking visible.
  5. Classroom culture sets the tone for learning and shapes what is learned.
  6. Schools must be cultures of thinking for teachers.

Making thinking visible isn’t for students only–it is also for teachers! As teachers, we must model our learning for our students but do we make our thinking visible? Do we share our ideas in some way with our students? Recently, tweets have been abundant stating that we must ask our students to publish their work rather than handing it in. But do we publish our work? If we will make our thinking visible and give our students the opportunity to make their thinking visible, we will be practicing participatory pedagogy and knowledge building.

 

References:

Garrison, D. R. (2011). E-Learning in the 21st Century – A Framwork for Research and Practice (Vol. Second Edition). Routledge.

Mclean, A. (2012, 12). Making Thinking Visible: How to Promote Engagement, Understanding, and Independence for All Learners – By Ron Ritchart, Mark Church and Karin Morrison. Support for Learning,27(2), 92-93. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-9604.2012.01520.x

Ritchhart, R., & Perkins, D. (2008). Making Thinking Visible. Educational Leadership , 65 (5), 57-61.


4 Comments

Pedagogy is the Driver, Technology is the Accelerator

I saw the text that I am using to title this blog post as a tweet a few weeks ago. The tweet resonated with me and I took note of it and favourited it at that time. Little did I know that I would be delving into research based on this very topic at the outset of my doctoral studies this week! Now having learned about the framework for research and practice from reading a prescribed text “E-learning in the 21st Century” (Garrison, 2011) and research that I am working on for an assignment (Hoadley & Cox, 2009) and (Cochrane and Narayan, 2013) emphasizing that educators must first define the learning outcomes and strategies to be delivered and then choose effective and efficient technologies for the task, the tweet has come back to remind me of its importance. Research supports emphatically that educational technologies should be used in teaching and learning (Jacobsen, 2001), however because “the technology got ahead of the pedagogy” (Garrison, p. 124) many policy-makers are now reluctant to move forward in allowing technologies to be implemented in education. They have a fear of  the technologies being used for the “gee whiz factor” (Garrison, p. 131)  rather than for the purpose of improving learning. I get that point clearly, however, as a beginning researcher, and finding the evidence to support that educational technologies improve learning, I feel that I can’t move fast enough to get the word out so that all students will have the best learning opportunities. I may have to read the introduction and the conclusion for fear of not having enough time to read the in-betweens!

 

References

Cochrane, T., & Narayan, V. (2013, 12). Redesigning professional development: Reconceptualising teaching using social learning technologies. Research in Learning Technology,21(0). doi: 10.3402/rlt.v21i0.19226

Garrison, D. R. (2011). ELearning in the 21st century: A framework for research and practice (2nd Ed.). London: Routledge/Taylor and Francis.

Hoadley, C. & Cox, C. (2009) ‘What is design knowledge and how do we teach it?’, in Educating learning technology designers: guiding and inspiring creators of innovative educational tools, eds C. DiGiano, S. Goldman & M. Chorost, Routledge, NY, pp. 19􏰀35. 

Jacobsen, D. M. (2001). Building Different Bridges: Technology Integration, Engaged Student Learning, and New Approaches to Professional Development. Paper presented at AERA 2001: What We Know and How We Know It, the 82nd Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Seattle, WA: April 10 – 14, 2001.