Monthly Archives: October 2014

PIDP 3250 Journal Entry 3

JOURNAL ENTRY 3

Objective: This video was posted by classmate Rhonda Hite in her forum “Flipped Classroom Skies the Limit” under the Flipped Classroom category. This video depicts a teacher from Colorado using the Flipped classroom strategy.

Reflective: I have to respect someone who can take an idea of an instructional strategy that is quite different from the conventional way of teaching and apply it with proven success. This video makes me think that anything can be made better, including how to teach while looking at things from a different perspective. I’m inspired when I watch this video and I can see the student’s reception of this strategy to be a positive one. I’ve always known teaching in the traditional sense with teachers in a classroom or lecture hall dictating information and assigning homework while the students take notes and finish assignments at home. I think it takes courage to apply this strategy of instruction knowing that there is limited research on how effective this strategy may be in learning.
( http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational-leadership/mar13/vol70/num06/Evidence-on-Flipped-Classrooms-Is-Still-Coming-In.aspx).

Interpretive: Although Flipped Learning seems to be gaining momentum in the educational world, there are downsides and instructors need to understand where mistakes can be made when applying this strategy. Students in a flipped classroom have to be comfortable and have access to technology and the internet to view the lessons or lectures. Also, instructors need to be able to trust students to watch lectures at home and there is no guarantee that participation from all students will happen. Testing with a flipped classroom model can be a challenge since this model doesn’t promote improving standardized testing. ( http://www.teachthought.com/trends/10-pros-cons-flipped-classroom/).
Finally, I don’t think the flipped classroom would work for all subjects. If a teacher decides to flip a classroom that isn’t suited for the subject, I think that would have negative effects on the students.
(http://thegrumpygiraffe.wordpress.com/2013/01/19/turning-the-tables-on-flipped-classrooms/)

Decisional: The Flipped Classroom model definitely has its pros and cons. It is up to the instructor to decide whether this model is right for the class and if it’s suited for the subject. As someone who wants to be an instructor in the culinary arts, I believe there are elements that would work in the world of cooking. For generations, households have been watching cooking shows on television trying to grasp how to produce the same results. Imagine watching a cooking show where you can take what you’ve learned and apply it in a classroom kitchen the next day with an instructor guiding you along and correcting mistakes you may make. I really think this model can be the future of culinary education because demonstration of cooking methods can be viewed at home and valuable class time can be utilized with more hands on interaction and having students do the real cooking in class.

References:

http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational-leadership/mar13/vol70/num06/Evidence-on-Flipped-Classrooms-Is-Still-Coming-In.aspx
http://www.teachthought.com/trends/10-pros-cons-flipped-classroom/
http://thegrumpygiraffe.wordpress.com/2013/01/19/turning-the-tables-on-flipped-classrooms/

Gamification in the Classroom and the Element of Competition in Education

One of my assignments was to facilitate a forum.  I was the assigned the topic of gamification- the use of game thinking and game mechanics[1] in non-game contexts to engage users in solving problems. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gamification).

As the thread went on the topic of competition came about and I found this interesting article on competition in a classroom environment.  Here were my thoughts, which I wrote in my forum:

“I think the competitive aspect of games takes away from the collaborative learning process, unless it is a team competition where the collaboration is within teams.  Other than that I think competition diminishes collaboration, where the idea of helping someone else can be the cause of your failure.  Also creating a competitive environment ultimately creates the entities of a winner and loser and I don’t think I would use a strategy that would not benefit the entire class.  I wouldn’t want to put that stress and anxiety for students to have a need to win.  I believe competition would only benefit the winners and having an imbalance of “winners” versus “losers” may have a negative impact on the class.”

http://www.alfiekohn.org/teaching/compinCL.htm

The Flipped Classroom

The flipped classroom has been a hot discussion topic in my class in the PIDP 3250.  Here is an example of the strategy being put to the test by a high school teacher in Colorado.  This video was taken from one of our class discussion forums posted by a classmate Rhonda Hite.  I think it’s a very well made video describing what learning can become.  I especially liked the way the instructor talked about preparing students for jobs there do not exist yet and how the way they are learning can help them.

Teaching for Tomorrow:  Flipped Learning

PIDP 3250 Journal Entry 2

JOURNAL ENTRY 2

This Journal Entry was written to reflect upon this video by Susan Cain

The Power of Introverts

“Introverts feel at their most alive and their most capable when they’re in quieter, more low key environments…the key then to maximizing our talents is for us all to put ourselves in the zone of stimulation that is right for us.”

Objective: Susan Cain talks about her needs as an introvert in order to perform at her best. Generally, there is a perception that introverts are shy and aren’t social, however, that is not always the case. She speaks about introversion being more about how one responds to stimulation, including social stimulation. As opposed to extroverts, who require a larger amount of stimulation, introverts perform at their best in an environment that is low-key, often times in solitude.

Reflective: When I watched this video, I can’t help but agree with certain points. She talks about schools, workplaces and institutions being designed for extroverts. Furthermore, she uses examples of a modern day classroom being too focussed on group assignments and if students prefer to do their work on their own then they are labelled as outliers or problem cases.

PIDP 3250 is my second course within the program and so far one of the major focuses has been on andragogy with the main theme of the instructor being a facilitator of knowledge for students. If a student can perform better in an environment they’re comfortable with, why shouldn’t it be supported? Ideally if a student can prove they can grasp the lesson within their own means, even if the assignment is group related, then I don’t really see a problem giving students that freedom. It would be up to me as an instructor on how to judge the comprehension of the student. That in turn challenges me to create criteria or parameters to measure the learning of students, if they choose to do it their own way.
Interpretive: As Susan continues on with her presentation, she talks about the balance between introverts and extroverts. She explains how everyone falls on the spectrum somewhere and it is impossible to be completely one way. In order to focus and be creative, there is an importance in being alone in solitude to find your inner voice without distraction. Often times in group settings, people try to fit in by agreeing with the opinions within the group without even realizing it. Having this information as an instructor can be useful when you identify which students in your class are introverts and where you can alter certain lessons to help them perform better on their own.

Decisional: The main purpose of being an instructor is to have your students understand the content within your curriculum to the best of their ability. I think as an aspiring instructor, I would have to be aware of the different personalities and evaluate how I can create classes that are effective and inclusive for the various types of learners. Getting students out of their comfort zone can be a positive experience and it can help them overcome obstacles they may not realize they can overcome.