Technology That Guides Learning

Using technology in the classroom

Time Out! GAME Plan Progression September 26, 2012

I feel that sometimes working toward a goal is often harder than coming up with a goal in the first place. This week we have been asked to determine how we are doing with regards to progressing through our goals that we established two weeks ago.

My first goal includes being able to improve how I “facilitate and inspire student learning and creativity” (ISTE, 2012). I have already begun planning a lesson that will allow me to offer my students an authentic way of learning and require them to really use some creativity. I have been using internet resources to find unique ways of introducing this lesson and keep my students engaged. It has really been fun finding all these resources that are so adaptable to my classroom. Even lessons that are originally made for pencil and paper format, I am able to tweak them to include technology. While I feel confident that my lesson will allow my students to show their creativity, I always have the question of “will they get it?” I am currently working on my template to make sure that everything is well planned out so my students have no questions about what is expected.

Secondly, my other goal for this year is to become more comfortable in “design[ing] and develop[ing] digital age learning experiences and assessments” (ISTE, 2012). I am trying to incorporate technology into my lessons whenever I can. So far, I have been able to use overhead projectors and laptops for word processing. One problem I am running into is that when I plan out my lessons, I generally do it one month at a time. I sign out laptop carts for the days that I think we’ll use them, but by the time we get to that point, I have been forced to push back other lessons due to necessary extended time. Since my school only has six laptop carts, it becomes difficult to ask for them a few days in advance. I need to remind myself to plan for more time on lessons to avoid this type of problem. On the other hand, in order to learn about new digital tools that I can use, I am in weekly contact with our school’s technology coordinator to learn of new tools that I can use in my classroom. Sometimes I ask her for a tool to use with a specific lesson or student and other times she will share new technology that she has read or attended a conference about.

Overall, I think my progress is going fairly smoothly and gradually. I have implemented what I can, and I have begun planning for what I see my students doing in the near future. I am very excited to introduce my students to these new lessons and technologies, and I hope that they embrace them as much as I have!

ISTE, I.S. (2012). Nets for Teachers. Retrieved September 12, 2012 from:
http://www.iste.org/docs/pdfs/nets-t-standards.pdf?sfvrsn=2

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4 Responses to “Time Out! GAME Plan Progression”

  1. Lauri Oliver Says:

    Emily,

    I had to laugh when I read the introduction to your post this week because I whole-heartedly agree. It is a challenge to develop well-written goals, but it is exponentially more difficult to work towards it. The GAME plan has made me more aware of that journey and how much more complicated it can become as we monitor and adjust our plan as we learn new things. You expressed concern about managing the lessons and making sure you had the laptops reserved on the right day. I have the same issue. It is hard to determine how long a lesson or activity may take, especially if it is the first time you are implementing the lesson in a new way. I think time and experience will solve that problem for you, but in the meantime, it is beneficial to continue a good relationship with your Media specialist.

    You also mentioned that in the back of your mind there is the question of whether your students will actually get what they are supposed to be learning using these new technology tools. I think that is where clearly written objectives and learning goals should be shared with students so that they understand what to do and how they might achieve them (Cennamo, Ross, & Ertmer, 2009, p. 122). More importantly, the method by which we score the assessments should framed in such a way that students can use them for monitoring their own learning goals and teachers can provide feedback to students as they progress (Cennamo et al, 2009, p. 158). Checklists and rubrics are effective scoring tools for open-ended, project-based, and problem-based assessments.
    I think you are well on your journey to providing engaging lessons that assess what students need to learn with new digital tools.

    Lauri

    Cennamo, K., Ross, J., & Ertmer, P. (2009). Technology integration for meaningful classroom use: A standards-based approach. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

    • emilypartyka Says:

      Lauri,

      Thanks for your comment. I definitely realize that time and experience will help me with determining how long lessons will take. Even from year to year or even month to month, I feel that my students change. I look forward to having a better sense of how quickly they can work soon so that it makes my planning easier!

      I do use rubrics as a form of assessment for many of my assignments. I haven’t used checklists very much, but it’s something I will look into. Thanks for you suggestions!

      Emily

  2. Emily- I understand your dilemma. I have planned lessons that incorporate technology only to find that the computer labs or carts are not available. As we use technology on a more regular basis in the classroom the scheduling of tech tools for our use will become more timely.

    I am glad things are coming along for your GAME plan. It can be time consuming not to mention uncomfortable trying to develop a lesson plan that uses technology to get the the core of the topic. You and I have like minds about setting a goal to feel more comfortable with technology. This program really has helped me out a great deal. However, it is still difficult, at times, to use new technology tools for my current lessons. Sometimes, I have to go “back to the drawing board” a few times before I can bring the proper resources and subject matter together. I will tell you, though, the process makes me a better evaluator of the tools that I use and are user friendly and appropriate for my students. Practice makes perfect I suppose. Good luck with your GAME plan.

    Tabatha

  3. sergio fedoroff Says:

    Now that I have read your post I have to go back and formulate my goals in terms of technology standards, because I have formulated some goals in general terms, although I do use technology on daily basis. On the other hand, carrying the plan is a completely different game, it’s just like following the diet or the exercise routine, consistency and discipline are key words here.
    It is a shame that your school has few technology ressources, I do work in an inner city schools that has all the problems that a inner city school has, except technology tools, we do have computer labs, smart boards, cps, all kind of software, etc. The challenge on the other hand is use them every single day and plan lesson that are rigorous enought and use technolgy at the same time


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