Online video sharing sites are an excellent resource for the kind of active teaching centerpieces
that make a classroom great. But if participation and direct engagement
are the keys to the effective use of technology in the classroom today, then maybe something a little more interactive is necessary to keep active learners motivated, stimulated and excited.
One innovative way to spice up the audio-visual aspects of your learning environment is to move away from viewing video in the classroom and move towards creating it.
These types of projects can combine a number of great take-away lessons for the students into one fun project – and better yet, it works across learning levels! These cooperative projects are excellent ways to:
- Encourage ownership & community collaboration. Group projects work best when every member feels like they hold a piece to the puzzle – and video projects have enough components (like planning, capturing content, editing) that everyone can be equally involved. These social learning exercises can be easily facilitated by tools and content management systems like Blackboard Learn.
At the beginning of the past school year the New York Times’ Tara Parker-Pope wrote an article
diving into what she argued is one of the biggest shortcomings of school curriculums today: life lessons. The article explores research into what children are actually learning and argues that:
“The ever-growing emphasis on academic performance and test scores means many children aren’t developing life skills like self-control, motivation, focus and resilience, which are far better predictors of long-term success than high grades.”
As summer sets in, it’s worth it to take the time to sit back and evaluate how we can all go about incorporating goals of education for life, and not just for education’s sake, into our daily routine. We already know that modern learners
have different needs and require an atmosphere of engagement, but what else can we do to set our students up for success?
BbWorld 2012, Blackboard’s education technology conference
, is happening this summer in New Orleans! And we called upon you to be our VIP bloggers from the event! We received over 30 blog entries as part of this contest so, before I announce the winners, I would like to call attention to some of the incredible posts we received. Every single entry was creative in its own way.
Aside from blogging four separate times, Laura Orsetti from Frontier Nursing University
, blogged while holding her 23-month old on her lap! JD Ferries-Rowe from Brebeuf Jesuit Preparatory School
, an Edline user, not only has a lot to say about BYOT (bring your own technology) but he’s excited for some olive sauce on his muffaletta (must be a NOLA thing). And, Kelt Dockins
from University of Arkansas at Little Rock and a 2012 Golden Catalyst Award winner for Innovative Development
definitely had the coolest blog layout that I’ve seen
Well enough stalling… It is my great pleasure to announce the following individuals as the BbWorld 2012 VIP Bloggers!
The following post is written by guest blogger Leslie Fetzer, Occupational Course of Study Biology Teacher at North Carolina Virtual Public Schools and the 2012 iNACOL/SREB National Online Teacher of the Year.
I have always been of the mind that giving a textbook to students with the instruction to read is not teaching. This is even truer online. Ebooks have their place, but not as the foundation of a good online course. Online courses should allow students to see, hear, read, and experience content in multiple ways. New Web 2.0 tools are popping up at an exciting pace giving teachers an array of options for presenting content through different media. With so much available, it can sometimes be tempting to search for or buy in to what is already out there, but the truth of the matter is that sometimes what is out there may not be exactly right for the content or for the student. In fact, it can often take longer to search for and preview pre-existing content versus creating your own content personalized for individual students.
Here are just a few tips for developing a good online course:
There is a constant buzz in the Blackboard DC office this time of year – the BbWorld Buzz. It seems like everyone has a hand in planning this year’s conference. Whether coordinating with clients on sessions, brainstorming ideas for focus group topics or creating beautiful designs for the exhibit hall displays, there’s a lot going on here! With so many people working on BbWorld, it’s bound to be one of our best conferences yet.
So why should you attend BbWorld 2012
in New Orleans this summer? There are plenty of reasons to name, but we’ve narrowed it down to a digestible Top Five. Take a look at the brief presentation below, and then decide – “Will I be at BbWorld in July?” I hope the answer is, “Most definitely, yes!”