I have it. To a certain extent I want my students to have it.
I don’t want anyone to miss out. On anything. Whilst that can be used in a multitude of different aspects of school the more I read and hear in educational circles, opportunity and exposure to different experiences is vital for development of the whole child.
Following on from the connectivism theory I am going to attempt to keep my students “connected” with the outside world. The current trend in education seems to be revolving around concept based learning particularly within the IB and the new MYP guide. Whilst in theory I agree with a lot of the idealogy behind it I do have some concerns. One big one is that if we focus on a particular concept within a subject based framework it could reduce the amount of topics that may be covered. Something is going to miss out
I will go out on a limb here and say that I want my students to KNOW a lot. Call it content call it trivial, call it fun facts for dinnertime conversation. I want them to develop an interest and remain curious about the goings on in the world.
cc licensed ( BY NC ) flickr photo shared by broterham
This is all well and good in a Humanities type subject area but I aim to focus on the world of Science.
I want them to know what is happening in the world of Science. To find pieces of interest to them that they can have access to, understand, be aware of AND develop their own understanding.
The simple outline of this project is this:
1. Set up my Year 10 Science students with a RSS reader.
I chose my Year 10 class as they seem to be the least digitally aware of all the students that I teach. Blogging is very new to them. There digital lives is limited to facebook, formspring and tumblr.
2. Expand their reading.
By giving them a tool with which they can gather snippets of information I am hoping to give them a broad range of topics within the Scientific umbrella.
3. Give them time to access their reader and reflect appropriately.
I am aware that initially I am going to have to allow 15 minutes (probably more) outside of the normal curriculum time to access their readers.
4. Incorporate twitter into their wider reading.
By setting up a twitter account and following some of the science based accounts gives them another angle to access a wider amount of information. In combination with that, the equivalent of a Paper.li could be produced at the end of the week.
5. Regular blog posts
Admittedly my year 7 students are better at blogging then my year 10′s. They have been doing it for a lot longer though so I don’t feel so bad. I have already introduced some of the nuts and bolts of the wordpress blog they are a little behind the eight ball in this respect but hopefully by giving them a short amount of time in class to just read and to update the appearance of their blog this will maintain enthusiasm.
As to if this is a new thing new ways it is questionable. In the past I have taken time in class to go through back copies of Science Journals and asked students to find an article that they may be interested in so in a way this project is not new. Will this project fall down without technology? Absolutely. So by Jeff’s definition it is HEAVILY technology based.
I want my students to maintain, develop or stretch their interest in Science based topics. CONNECTING with others who may share their interest. OR developing an interest in something that they may not have come across in a regular content driven curriculum. Who am I to decide the content.
I just want to make sure that no one misses out.