I first took a look at Alice Christie's site. She had some very useful teaching tools and lessons plans for art, photography, podcasting, internet safety, and so on. I particularly enjoyed one of the articles I read under her education technology article links. The article was written by John Snyder and it was entitled Teaching with New Eyes. Here is a quote from that article - "The fact that students need to acquire technology skills does not mean that they must sacrifice other skills. The fact that we need to help students learn to act ethically and kindly and responsibly does not mean that we need to neglect other areas. Good teaching is still good teaching, and kids are still the focus. If we can use technology to shape their assumptions about connections to the community, we will have given them treasure that will be measured in lives, transformed by insight." I think he says it all right there. I especially like that he says "teaching is still good teaching, and kids are still the focus." That has been my concern through all this change in mindset about technology. Learning at 6 & 7 has to be easier then
36. I need to be prepared for these technologically advanced kids so that I can teach with the tools they are already familiar with and use.
I believe that her sight as well as sites such as this can be an excellent tool for teachers. The goal is to get teachers to use such sites and prepare us future teachers to do the same. It is comforting to know that there is so much knowledge available for us to gleen from - teachers that have been in the classroom and sharing what they know works. It is just getting in the habit of utilizing these available resources.
I searched the web looking for sites on suggestions or experiences on iPods in instruction. I found this great article in USA Today published in 2006 that said Duke University gave away free iPods to all incoming freshmans in 2005. In 2006 42 classes were using iPods as study aides. They also issued iPods in some classes and the students were allowed to keep them if they passed the course. I am all for something like that at South Alabama. It seems that class attendance actually went up in some cases because students were excited about discussing what they had listened to. To be honest, I don't know if I could agree with that but I do like the free iPod idea. Do you see me smiling - because I am.
I also found this wiki site on ipods in the classroom. There is a video of this 17 year old's plan for allowing the itouch to replace books, copiers, paper, etc. He has some pretty good ideas for a 17 year old. He has really thought this through. I don't know that this could work. However, just that he is thinking about this - saving money for the schools, the environment, the kids is pretty amazing. He is call this the ischool initiative. I have posted the video in my blog. You can also check it out on http://ipodclassroom.wikispaces.com. Maybe that is our future education system.
I believe this really goes along with the iTunes University topic as well because he talks about all the educational tools available on his iPod Touch such as USA Presidents, Starwalk, Formula (math and science formulas), ways to track attendance, books online (selecting chapters on any books), and so much more. He has almost convinced me to go out and buy one. I could see that this would be very helpful in the schools and really could eliminate alot of costs. I just don't know how you could truly monitor the children's access on the internet and make sure time is not wasted on things like facebook and such. Such wasted time happens as already displayed in the video we watched at the beginning of the semester.