In his book “How Children Succeed” , Paul Tough questions whether success is the result of measurable cognitive skills. He suggests that research shows that non-cognitive skills such as grit, self control, persistence, curiosity, and self-confidence are more important in achieving success. Tough contends that character development results from facing and overcoming failure. Upper income children are often overly protected from failure but also pushed to over achieve. Lower income students face so many challenges that they give up. Neither, in many cases, develop the resilience they need to face and overcome obstacles in life.
EDUTOPIA offers some tips on how to teach the “performance values” our students need to succeed. True Grit: The Best Measure of Success and How to Teach It My guess is that overly testing cognitive skills is not the answer to providing students with the character traits they need to succeed. The administrators gave ”How Children Succeed” to all of the staff members in my district. At the very least the research in this bookshould be considered as we redefine how we teach in the 21st Century.
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At the moment, I don’t seem to have much time to create my own blog posts. However I do find using my blog to curate articles has helped me with my personal learning community and with my self directed staff development. In my district we all have to submit a mid year reflection. I’m sharing mine as I hope it might give the readers of this blog an idea of what I am trying to accomplish as a technology integration specialist. Also check out the “A Good Reminder for the New Year” It is a real eye opener. This a slide show so move forward through all of the slides.
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Here are my mid year reflections for January 2014:
The 2013-2014 is my first official year working as the district Technology Integration Specialist. I have been collaborating with K-8 teachers. Last year at this time I noted the ever increasing acceptance of Google Apps in the middle school. This year I am seeing that teachers and students throughout the district are using Google Apps for sharing, collaboration, and creativity. Compared to a year ago, this year’s first blizzard bag day saw far fewer calls for help, This further underlines the fact that everyone is more comfortable using cloud computing. As I have visited different buildings, I have encouraged everyone to continue to implement all of the district’s ICT standards. I have continued to concentrate on the Citizenship, copyright issues, and the availability of creative commons resources. I have been using the SAMR model as a guideline for technology integration. The main focus of technology in education is no longer how to use essential hardware and software; it is rather how to move from substituting and augmentation to modifying and redefining how we teach. In essence we must move toward engaging students in powerful learning by taking advantage of resources that didn’t exist in the past. We can now perform new task that were previously impossible. We must also use technology to address all levels of Bloom’s Revised Taxonomy. Technology can help students move beyond remembering to understanding, applying, analyzing and in the 21st Century most importantly creating. Technology can help our students become lifelong self-motivated learners. It can also help to them to become adaptable problem solvers and critical thinkers. I am seeing more and more teachers showing a desire and willingness to try new things using technology. Many educators in our district are starting to move beyond basic multimedia projects to higher level products incorporating traditional mathematics, science, reading and writing skills along with the use of video and sound recording, etc. We have started to see collaboration among staff members I would like to see more sharing on the ICT site and expanded participation in technology cafes. Educators need to use technology to create personal online learning communities that can take advantage of the vast amount of educational resources on the Internet. I would like to see us continue to encourage teachers to use their own websites and blogs to communicate with students, each other and the community at large. I have continued to search for and utilize resources that align technology with the common core guidelines. We do need to continue to find ways to replace and acquire the devices to provide each student with available access to technology when needed to accomplish educational tasks. I will continue to encourage teachers and students to take risks and to try something new. Technology provides the means for everyone, adults and students alike, to take charge of their own learning and to become responsible productive members of the world. We are making progress. The successful implementation of Google Apps was a first step. I will continue to collaborate with everyone in order to help as all, including myself, accomplish what was once impossible and in many cases unheard of before.
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Narrable, UtellStory, Present.me, Animoto, You Tube Photo Slideshows are all possible on-line alternatives to slideshow software such as PowerPoint and full video software such as iMovie, Movie Maker or Premiere Elements. Richard Byrne provides links to and descriptions of these services in one of his “Free Technology for Teachers” blogs. Everyone should follow this blog. It is one of the best resources for teachers available anywhere. Most of us don’t have the time to curate and elaborate on all the resources available to us as educators. Richard does a great job of doing that for us.
If you aren’t using Google Drive, here are some good reasons to start from Edudemic. “12 Effective Ways to Use Google Drive in Education”
This post is also featured in my Scoop It posts. Click here to see my latest Scoop It posts.
Tags: 21st Century Learning·blogging·Christa McAuliffe Conference·Computer applications·Computer Integration·computer technology integration·curriculum·Digital Story telling·education·education in a digital age·Educational Philosophy·film Making·Google·Google Apps·iPads·kingswood·Kingswood Middle School·krms·math·New Hampshire·Photo of the Day·photography·Powerful Learning·project based education·Richard Byrne·Rick Davidson·schools·scoop it·Story Telling·video making·work skills·writing