The first assigned reading for this blog: “ISTE 2010: TPAC Radio/Video Show!” mentioned TPACK. My first thought before I even continued reading was “what is TPACK?” Before I went any further I searched for a definition of TPACK, and the light-blub when off! Of course I know this is what we have been doing all along, but for some reason seeing the TPACK model clarified the fact that there are three distinct areas to teaching: content, pedagogy and the integration of technology. However, I would like to add that information literacy could be included in this. Learning how you as an individual learn best through print and digital media includes all three areas.
I am glad I sort clarification on what TPACK was before I watched the radio/video show. They illustrated their main idea by creating an advertisement of a lecture, which used technology to broadcast that same lecture through a variety of methods. They then created a mash-up of the same lecture to emphasize their point that “a lecture is still a lecture” and that technology can be used to do things the old way or in new and creative ways. Their radio/video show was a lecture, but it incorporated visuals and audio, which enhanced the understanding of what the lecturer was saying.
The article titled: “Too Cool For School: Using the TPACK framework” continued the discussion that a teacher has to be a master in three areas: content, pedagogy and technology, but not just technology in of itself, the teacher needs to be able to transform technology or repurpose it for educational ends. In order to do this you have to have a deep understanding of your content area, pedagogy and be able to think creatively about technology. I wonder how many of us possess all these skills or how many years of teaching it takes before you really know your content and pedagogy? The minute you change jobs, from say teaching 6th grade humanities to 10th grade World History, although you can transfer knowledge, in some ways you are starting from scratch if you are unfamiliar with the new content and how you teach middle school students will differ from high school students. Teachers have a lot on their plate, it is more important than ever to support each other, share knowledge and ideas and have technology integrators and administrators support the integration of technology to enhance learning and 21st century skills.
The website on The Technology Integration Matrix is well organized but complex, on going through the difference parts of the matrix I understood the points but as the descriptors did not include examples, I had a hard time grasping exactly what, for instance, authentic learning at the transformative end of the spectrum looked like. It was not until I went to the digital tools index on this website and reviewed some of the examples that I really understood the matrix. The examples made complete sense and helped me realize that maybe this is not as complicated as it first appears. For me the hard part is being creative with technology and seeing the various ways I can use it.
We have covered a lot of material this week from a variety of teaching theories to TPACK, the Technology Integration Matrix, and NETS. As a librarian I do not teach specific content or reading strategies but rather I use the content from specific subject areas to teach the students information literacy, which is more skills based, such as the location, selection, evaluation and presentation of information when researching. In addition to research my role is also to encourage the literate life of students. Being information literate asks the students to learn how to learn: Pose questions, think critically, draw conclusions, share knowledge and continue growing through the use of prior knowledge, skills, initiative and reflection. As information literacy is integrated into subject areas, part of my job, as a librarian, is in collaboration with the classroom teacher, is to identify which research model and technology is best suited to a particular project. Many of the learning theories discussed work for research, especially project-based learning, however I think that Gagne’s Nine Events of Instruction can also be applied to various projects.
Every semester the 9th grade students in Indian Studies come to the library for one period and research a particular state in India for which they create a travel brochure or poster for that state. They use the internet and books on various States in India to find information on the cuisine, transportation, monuments, historical places, festivals etc., of a particular state. You could apply either project-based learning or Gagne’s Nine Events and integrate technology to enhance this research project.
One way to modify this project and to encourage 21st century skills is by incorporating technology. Instead of the students creating a poster on their own, the students could collaborate in pairs and create a virtual travel guide using a technology of their choice, such as Glogster or i-Movie. On completion, these guides could be linked to our school website and shared with the AES community and used as a resource for information on travel in India. By creating a digital travel guide they are integrating technology in an active way, which will enhance their understanding of the state as they can incorporate a variety of digital sources such as photos, movie clips and music. This brings the sights and sounds of India alive for them as well as their audience. Information literacy now also includes digital literacy so not only would students have experience is using print sources but also searching for digital sources, whether it be print or other media. By posting it for the larger community to access they are sharing their learning.
Gagne’s Nine Events – Indian Studies State of India Digital Travel Brochure.
1) Gain attention: Tell the student that from now on they will be planning their own WOW trips somewhere in India!
2) Goal: As India is such a large country that you want them to dig deep into one particular state and create a virtual travel guide. Not only will they learn about the rich culture of a particular state, but also in’s and out of planning a trip, and how use technology to create a visual presentation to share their knowledge.
3) Stimulate recall or prior knowledge: Most of our students are well traveled, they need to recall all the procedures involved, from transportation to hotel bookings to sites to see. They may not have done this themselves but they have observed their parents making travel plans. If someone was visiting their country or state what kinds of historical sites, cuisine and festivals take place. Review travel sites on the web, how are they organized and what kinds of information do they contain.
4) Present the material to be learned: Model the information expected using a trip to from Delhi to Agra. Review what they have learned about India to date with reference to history, geography, culture and various religious and ethnic groups.
5) Provide guidance for learning: Review research skills to locate, select, evaluate and present information. What sources will they use for print and digital information keeping in mind copyright.
6) Elicit Performance or practice: The students will present their Glog or iMovie to the class for evaluation, they will then be able to modify based on feedback from the class.
7) Provide informative feedback: Tell the students what they did well and point out areas where they could improve based on the presentation feedback from their peers and the content of information presented.
8) Assess performance test: Grade the project based on rubric handed out at the beginning of the class.
Source: Flickr - India by robyneyjay
9) Enhance retention and transfer: Students should be able to remember what makes a particular state unique in addition what it means to organize a trip as well as the creation of a digital presentation using photos, text, audio to present key points.