Digital tools for online learning

Digital technologies offer a powerful means to enhance education in multiple ways. They simplify the creation of instructional materials for teachers and provide individuals with innovative methods to study and communicate. The global reach of the Internet, coupled with the widespread use of interconnected smart devices, marks the onset of a new era. Consequently, it falls upon instructional designers and educators to harness the potential of state-of-the-art digital technology to transform education, ensuring that accessible, high-quality learning opportunities are available universally.The impact of these technologies on the delivery of education is profound. The recent COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the importance and validity of employing digital tools in education.. Furthermore, digital tools have precipitated a paradigm shift throughout the entire educational system. They not only serve as reservoirs of knowledge but also act as mentors, evaluators, and collaborators in the creation of information.

The use of technology in education has made life easier for students. Instead of writing things down by hand, they now use a range of software and tools to develop presentations and projects. Technology has remained essential for teaching kids outside of the classroom. Because digital learning fosters creativity and gives students a feeling of achievement, it inspires them to learn more by deviating from the norm. It is impressive that all countries have been able to embrace remote learning techniques using a combination of online, radio, television, and mobile platforms. These make information easy to obtain, easy to remember, easier to save, and easier to convey. Education has become more interactive, easier to share knowledge, and has raised excitement for learning participation, all of which contribute to a dynamic, sociable, and enjoyable learning environment.

I love online learning, but I haven’t done much with it before. During COVID-19, I taught online in India using Zoom. During my master’s,  Using Zoom to attend class every week has been a lot of fun, and I can see myself attempting to use this online resource in the future for meetings with coworkers, high school students, and adult learners. Zoom’s use of break-out rooms makes for an excellent platform for small-group discussions, and the format for large groups is excellent for information sharing. I can’t wait to use Zoom for my upcoming class presentation.

To begin, I would like to discuss some tools that I have previously used and some that I am eager to try. I made use of Zoom, Google Classroom, Mentimeter, Kahoot, and Canva. I can’t wait to use many new apps, like Quizlet and Flipgrid.In my previous course, EC&I 834, I had the opportunity to use tools like Kahoot, Mentimeter, and Canva, which I found to be amazing. Before this course, I had never used these tools for my learning. These tools added a new dimension to my studies, making them interactive and engaging. I discovered the power of creating dynamic presentations with Canva, engaging quizzes with Kahoot, and interactive polls with Mentimeter. It was a refreshing change from traditional learning methods, and I believe these tools greatly enhanced my understanding and retention of course material.

Google Classroom is a suite of online tools empowering teachers to assign tasks, assess student work, grade assignments, and provide feedback seamlessly. Initially designed for use with school laptops like Chromebooks, it aimed to enhance digital learning and eliminate paper use in classrooms. As more schools have shifted to online instruction, Google Classroom has seen a significant increase in usage as teachers swiftly adopt paperless instruction.I am enthusiastic about using tools like Google Classroom for online teaching. The shift would improve accessibility, engagement, and efficiency. Students could access materials from anywhere, and I could offer timely feedback. The paperless environment aligns with modern practices, though challenges like connectivity and community building would need attention. Overall, the transition promises a dynamic and effective learning environment.

 Zoom Throughout COVID-19, Especially when parent-teacher conferences weren’t an option,  zoom was one of the best ways for me to engage with children and parents online. The representation of an in-person meeting using Zoom makes talks more intimate and meaningful while enabling simple and accessible communication between two people. Zoom is deserving of its spot as one of the top digital teaching tools for me because of how widely  it has grown in education.

Kahoot I want to use Kahoot to teach students.  The first time I used Kahoot in my presentation I found it to be a very interesting digital tool. I would like to use Kahoot to teach students. It is a website for education that uses games and quizzes as its foundation. I can use this application to make surveys, conversations, or quizzes to enhance academic lessons. Students answer questions while simultaneously playing and learning while the information is presented in the classroom. Kahoot! encourages game-based learning, which boosts student engagement and fosters a lively, social, and enjoyable learning environment.

Mentimeter combines word clouds, polls, and quizzes with digital tools to create a central location for both online and in-person learning interactions. All things considered, this is a very powerful presentation tool that both teachers and students can use. This technology allows for the creation of presentations that receive instant feedback. I used it in presentations for graduate classes and I want to use this to engage with students using live polls, word clouds, quizzes, and multiple-choice questions and to track learning and understanding by asking questions and downloading results.

Twitter can be a useful tool for teaching online. However, all students must be active on Twitter to see posts, readings, and comments. This way, teachers can ask questions to the group. However, not all students may join in. Some might not feel comfortable answering questions publicly. For instance, questions about experiences with assessment or technology are good. But, questions about personal things like religion or politics are better for private forums, such as Zoom, rather than on Twitter.

 Quizlet is a tool utilized by all grades in numerous educational programs and institutions that enables kids to learn the material in a variety of ways. One of the best digital teaching tools available to teachers is this one, which includes flashcards, multiple-choice questions, and even memory games.I want to use it because it makes teaching and learning more fun. I can make different sets of questions that will help students get ready for tests and exams. Students can enjoy studying with Quizlet because it has fun game formats to offer.

Flipgrid is a social learning platform that enables teachers to ask a questions via voice or video recording, to which students can then react via voice or video recording. On movies made by teachers or students, students can provide comments on Flipgrid. A knowledge-sharing and knowledge-creating online community is established by this web of discourse. I would like to use this tool because it is convenient and flexible for me to use for the assessment of students Because the speaking is recorded on video, I can decide when and how to assess your students’ speaking. Moreover, It encourages students to reflect and self-evaluate. Video recording includes students in their learning process by allowing them to view their recordings and identify their speaking strengths and areas to improve.

When asked the question, “How would you feel about teaching with these tools in an online or distance education class?” I consider my experiences in taking an online education class. I find myself quite open and enthusiastic about utilizing these tools in a virtual teaching environment. Having been a student in an online setting, I understand the importance of engaging and interactive tools to facilitate learning. Tools like Zoom, Google Classroom, Kahoot, and others not only make learning more accessible but also foster a sense of community among students, despite physical distance. They offer diverse avenues for participation, from interactive quizzes to collaborative projects. I appreciate the flexibility and convenience these tools provide, allowing for personalized learning experiences and accommodating various learning styles. My positive experiences as an online learner have certainly shaped my perspective on the potential of these tools to enhance the teaching and learning process in an online or distance education class.

Overall, I think online tools for distance learning are only going to improve and create greater opportunities for online learning and communities. We can observe how Twitter has influenced discussions, especially when there are no negative comments or interruptions from trolls. It is exciting to think that the many different tools at our disposal may have a greater impact on education in the future. I have had a great experience with them throughout my Master’s program and I hope they continue to grow throughout education.

 

Productivity Suites in Education: Transformative Tools for Teaching and Learning

I recently saw some cool tools that students can use to learn in different ways. It’s awesome to see what’s out there now, like gadgets, websites, and apps, all for free! They help teachers, students, and parents connect with each other. It’s amazing how much things have changed since I was in school.

Two notable competitors in the field of productivity suites, which are now essential in contemporary education, are Google Workspace  and Microsoft 365. The way educators, students, and administrators collaborate, communicate, and interact in the digital age has been completely transformed by these platforms. Microsoft 365, a comprehensive suite of tools, offers a plethora of applications including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Teams, and OneDrive. Because of its cloud integration, educators can easily create, distribute, and grade assignments. It also makes file sharing and editing effortless. Furthermore, Microsoft Teams has become a central location for online classes, hosting live lectures, panel discussions, and group projects from a single interface. Google Workspace has found its special place by offering easy-to-use online tools like Gmail, Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Drive. Teachers especially like Google Docs because it lets many people work on a document together at the same time, making collaboration a breeze. This makes it easier and more efficient for students to work on projects together and edit each other’s work. Google Classroom acts as a central hub for managing assignments, sharing news, and giving feedback, simplifying the process for both teachers and students. What makes Microsoft 365 and Google Workspace stand out is their focus on teamwork and communication. By using shared documents, calendars, and communication tools, educators can connect with their students outside of traditional classrooms. Students can access materials from any device, work together in real-time, and get instant feedback. As education moves into the digital age, relying on these productivity suites is not just convenient but essential for creating better learning environments.

When I make presentations, I use Microsoft Word, Google Docs, Google Slides, and Gmail. Microsoft Word helps me plan my ideas well because it has many useful features. Google Docs lets me work easily with others on group projects. Google Slides gives me lots of nice templates to make my presentations interesting. And Gmail helps me talk to my team and stay organized. Using these tools makes it easier for me to create good presentations and share them with others.

According to the article How Google Took Over the Classroom – The New York Times Productivity suites, exemplified by Google’s suite of educational tools, have revolutionized education by providing a multifaceted approach to enhancing teaching and learning experiences. These suites, including Google Classroom and Google Docs, facilitate collaboration among students in real-time, fostering teamwork skills and creating an interactive learning environment. Moreover, the accessibility and convenience offered by productivity suites enable students to access educational materials from anywhere with an internet connection, breaking down barriers to learning and seamlessly integrating technology into classrooms. The cost-effectiveness of Google’s educational tools, such as Chromebooks and free classroom apps, makes it feasible for schools with limited budgets to adopt technology, democratizing access to quality education. Additionally, productivity suites empower educators to innovate teaching methods, from flipped classrooms to personalized learning experiences, by providing tools for creating interactive lessons, delivering timely feedback, and efficiently tracking student progress. By streamlining administrative tasks like managing assignments and attendance, these suites free up teachers’ time to focus on instructional activities and student engagement. Ultimately, productivity suites play a pivotal role in preparing students for the digital age by equipping them with essential digital literacy skills and familiarity with technology platforms commonly used in professional settings, ensuring their success in an increasingly technology-driven world.

“Unlocking Educational Potential: Exploring Alternative Paths in Productivity Suites and Future Innovations”

Exploring alternative approaches to productivity suites in education involves considering open-source options and emerging technologies while speculating on their future evolution. Open-source productivity suites like LibreOffice and Apache OpenOffice offer cost-effective alternatives to proprietary suites, allowing educational institutions to reduce expenses and maintain control over their software infrastructure. These platforms provide similar functionalities to traditional suites, with the added benefit of flexibility and customization potential. Additionally, the integration of emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and virtual reality (VR) holds promise for enhancing productivity tools in education. AI-driven personalization features could cater to individual learning needs, while VR simulations offer immersive educational experiences. Furthermore, collaborative platforms tailored to the needs of educators and students could emerge, incorporating project management tools, interactive whiteboards, and real-time collaboration capabilities. Accessibility and inclusivity will also play a crucial role in the future of productivity tools, with a focus on built-in accessibility features, support for multiple languages, and compatibility with assistive technologies. Tighter integration with learning management systems (LMS) is expected, streamlining workflows and facilitating data analytics for educators to track student progress effectively. By embracing these alternative approaches and anticipating future developments, educational institutions can better meet the diverse needs of learners and educators while fostering a more engaging and effective learning environment.

The article The History And The Future Of Cloud Office Suites  elaborate that productivity suites, like Google’s set of educational tools, are really important for helping students learn important skills they’ll need for jobs in the future. Tools like Google Classroom and Google Docs let students work together on projects, talk to each other, and use technology easily. When students use these tools, they learn not just how to make documents and presentations, but also how to work as a team and share their work, which are super important skills for jobs nowadays.

Overall, productivity suites play a crucial role in modernizing education, improving teacher efficiency, enhancing student learning experiences, and fostering collaboration among all stakeholders involved in the educational process

 

Today’s Episode is Brought to you by the Letters A and V!

This week during our EC&I 833 class, our presenters: Graeme Gieni and Michael shared an excellent video and history of audio-visual technologies and their integration and impact in education. I enjoy the episode. This reminded me of my old days.

“Empowering Education: The Transformative Impact of Audio-Visual Tools on Student Learning”

The utilization of audio-visual materials in education holds significant importance today as it enhances student learning. This growing reliance on audio-visual aids in teaching and learning stems from various factors. With the availability of such aids, students can now readily share knowledge and access information instantly. Moreover, learners can grasp ideas and concepts more efficiently. In the modern world, an array of audio-visual aids such as videos, music clips, flip charts, slideshow presentations, and overhead transparencies are readily accessible. These resources have become indispensable across educational settings, spanning from early childhood education to adult learning. By leveraging these resources, children have shown improved focus and retention of knowledge. As audio-visual technology continues to proliferate, it has transformed communication, allowing teachers to utilize these advancements to foster greater collaboration between teachers and students in the classroom.

“Adapting Education: The Tech Evolution in Classrooms and Remote Learning”

A year ago, numerous classrooms integrated fundamental audiovisual tools such as whiteboards, projectors, document cameras, speakers, computers, iPads, and apps like YouTube, as discussed in the presentation. However, with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in Spring 2020, education transitioned to a remote learning setup. This shift prompted the rapid uptake of more advanced tools known as fourth-generation tools. These tools encompassed video conferencing platforms like Zoom, Google Meets, and Microsoft Teams, as well as screen capture recorders, video editing software, and digital portfolios like seasaw. Many teachers experienced first-hand the challenges from not exposing their students to different forms of technology when they were forced to move teaching and learning online.

Utilizing teaching aids enhances teaching effectiveness, engages learners, and fosters a more participatory and knowledge-focused teaching-learning process. The integration of teaching aids is crucial for making the teaching-learning experience outcome-driven, straightforward, effective, and engaging for both educators and students. Especially when introducing new or abstract concepts that may pose challenges for comprehension, audio-visual aids play a vital role. They enable teachers to illustrate concepts that might otherwise be challenging to convey verbally. During my time teaching at a school in India, I encountered challenges with students grasping complex topics like photosynthesis, chemical compound nomenclature, and mole concepts. To facilitate comprehension, I frequently relied on audio-visual aids to simplify these concepts for the students.

Furthermore, individuals have diverse methods of processing, absorbing, and retaining information. For instance, some individuals are auditory learners, meaning they comprehend information better through hearing rather than reading. Conversely, visual learners prefer absorbing information through visual means. By incorporating audiovisual aids into their presentations, teachers can cater to multiple learning styles simultaneously.

How about: “Exploring the Magic of Sesame Street”

Introducing Sesame Street, the groundbreaking children’s TV program that revolutionized educational entertainment! Premiering in 1969, it set a new standard by implementing a detailed curriculum with specific educational goals. During its first season, Sesame Street embarked on an innovative promotional campaign aimed at families in low-income, inner-city areas, who traditionally didn’t engage with educational TV. Recognizing the need for tailored outreach, the show’s creators devised creative strategies to connect with these communities. As the series progressed, additional resources for preschool settings were developed, further enriching the educational experience for young viewers everywhere. According to a study published in the journal Early Childhood Education by Television: Lessons from Sesame Street, Sesame Street viewers, in particular those from lower-income areas, were found to be better prepared for school than their counterparts who did not watch Sesame Street. In comparison to their peers, children who watched Sesame Street scored higher on tests in science and English, had higher overall GPAs, read more books, valued achievement more, and were seen to be more creative.” Sesame Street stands out from traditional schooling: kids enjoy it, find it engaging, and it boasts high production value. While anecdotal, personal experiences and interactions suggest children may prefer it over classroom learning.” I am sharing an engaging video that demonstrates how children can learn about numbers.”

https://youtu.be/HUL4T8WcFdA

“…We now know that ‘Sesame Street’ encourages children to love school only if school is like ‘Sesame Street.’ Which is to say, we now know that ‘Sesame Street’ undermines what the traditional idea of schooling represents.” – Neil Postman

In this blog post, we’ll delve into the thought-provoking statement by Postman regarding Sesame Street. Before we dissect this quote, let’s first explore what exactly we mean by the “traditional idea of school.”

 

 

 

 

 

Let’s talk about the traditional concept of school. As defined by Wikipedia, a school is a place where teachers guide students in learning. Now, the big question is: How does Sesame Street influence the learning spaces and environments for both teachers and students.

I came across an article by John S. Macnab that discusses two key concepts from Postman. First, it mentions how teachers’ roles have changed, now resembling entertainers more than traditional educators. Second, it talks about how the classroom, a social setting, has been replaced by solitary screen time, altering the learning environment.

The Responsibility of Teachers: As technology evolves, the role of teachers has shifted from being knowledge keepers to facilitators of learning. This change is evident from traditional schooling to modern platforms like YouTube. John S. Macnab emphasizes that altering educational media also alters our perception of educational value. Teachers must adapt, integrating new media into education while imparting essential skills for success in today’s dynamic society.

Shifting Social Dynamics in Education: Postman highlights how “Sesame Street” disrupts traditional schooling by replacing social interaction in the classroom with solitary screen time. Without opportunities for collaboration and critical thinking, classrooms risk becoming passive environments. It’s essential to ensure that technology integration serves a purpose, fostering skill development in communication, creativity, and critical thinking. By prioritizing meaningful engagement over passive consumption, we can maintain the social fabric of the classroom and cultivate vital skills for students’ future success.

What does this signify for modern education?

https://www.edelements.com/setting-the-context-a-brief-history-of-edtech

As we explore the integration of technology and audiovisual tools in classrooms, it’s crucial to recognize the transformative potential of educational TV programs like Sesame Street in shaping 21st-century education. Since Neil Postman’s 1985 work “Amusing Ourselves to Death,” education has evolved significantly. We now embrace technologies like Bring Your Own Devices (BYOD) and 1-to-1 classrooms, enabling interactive learning experiences through platforms like Kahoot, Quiz, and blogging, along with collaboration tools like Microsoft Teams. Even entertainment platforms like Netflix offer interactive content. As AV technologies evolve, education adapts accordingly. However, it’s essential to critically analyze learning with AV technology, allowing students time to connect and engage meaningfully. Particularly in the era of online learning, fostering relationships with students is paramount for effective teaching and creating meaningful learning experiences.

Finally, there are a few questions about Sesame Street that remain in my mind:

  1. How do we determine if Sesame Street effectively teaches children without a formal curriculum, assessment, or accountability for its performance?
  2. Are students tested or quizzed on what they learn from Sesame Street, and do they apply these skills in different contexts?

Feel free to share your responses to these questions in the comment box below.

See you in the next post!

 

 

“Crafting My Unique Educational Philosophy: A Personal Exploration into Teaching Theories”

During my Bachelor of Education in 2017 in India, I learned about key education theories like behaviorism, cognitivism, and constructivism. These theories became the foundation for how I understand how students learn. When putting them into practice, it means using positive reinforcement for good behavior (behaviorism), creating activities that make students think (cognitivism), and encouraging interactive learning where students build knowledge together (constructivism). So, my teaching philosophy is a mix of these approaches, using various strategies to support different ways students learn and creating an engaging and lively learning environment.

In my current role as an early childhood educator in Canada, I have the incredible opportunity to shape the learning experiences of young minds. I find merit in incorporating aspects of different learning theories into our daily activities at the daycare. We seamlessly blend principles from cognitivism, constructivism, and behaviorism to ensure a holistic development experience for the little ones. By embracing cognitivism, we create activities that stimulate cognitive processes, encouraging children to explore and comprehend the world around them. Through interactive games and hands-on experiences, we foster a constructivist approach, allowing kids to actively engage, collaborate, and construct their understanding of concepts. Additionally, behaviorism principles come into play as we provide positive reinforcement for desired behaviors, establishing a structured environment that supports skill acquisition and social development. Whether it’s a captivating storytelling session sparking cognitive curiosity, collaborative art projects promoting constructivist exploration, or a reward system encouraging positive behaviors, our activities are thoughtfully curated to encompass the richness of these educational theories, nurturing well-rounded growth in our young learners.”

In my daily routines with the daycare children, I notice the influence of behaviorism theory. This approach emphasizes face-to-face interaction, which is evident in my practices. I apply behaviorism principles when teaching social norms and expected behaviors. Unwanted actions lead to “time outs,” while positive actions receive verbal praise or visual rewards like sticker charts. As a teacher, when children want to talk in class, I ask them to raise their hands. When we’re walking in the daycare, we go in a line. These are examples of behaviorism in my class. These skills are important because, in life, you often have to wait in lines, like at the bank or grocery store. Also, raising hands ensures everyone gets a chance to share, instead of just a few students answering all the time. It’s like taking turns. And, by reviewing and testing, we make sure children are learning and meeting the goals in the curriculum.

In my day-to-day teaching at the daycare, I heavily incorporate the principles of cognitivism theory, particularly when it comes to teaching alphabet recognition and sounds to the children. According to Ertmer and Newby, this theory views individuals as active participants in their learning process. In line with this, I utilize instructional methods such as explanations, demonstrations, and illustrative examples, which align with guiding student learning effectively. I apply these principles in our activities using engaging tools like play-doh, alphabet pretzels, Alpha-Bit cereal, and sidewalk chalk. These strategies have proven to be successful, although it’s essential to note that the children I teach don’t experience cognitive delays, and our setting is less prone to extensive distractions compared to a classroom environment.

I conclude with thoughts on the constructivist theory, which, in my view, heavily relies on understanding each learner and their unique experiences. As educators, our goal should be to cultivate teaching methods that resonate with learners, considering their individual backgrounds. However, in classrooms marked by socio-economic, racial, cultural, and sexual diversity, this poses challenges. How can educators effectively implement constructivist approaches when learners’ experiences are so varied? Addressing this question is crucial to creating inclusive and meaningful learning environments that cater to the diverse backgrounds of students.

Looking back on my teaching journey, I’ve noticed big changes in how I think about teaching and what I do in the classroom. When I started, I had certain ideas about how to teach based on theories like behaviorism, cognitivism, and constructivism. But as I worked in different classrooms with diverse children, my beliefs about teaching shifted.

Dealing with children from different backgrounds made me realize that a one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work. Each student is unique, and I needed to adapt my teaching to meet their individual needs. This made me more committed to creating a learning environment where everyone feels included and where learning is meaningful.

Facing challenges, celebrating successes, and taking part in training have been crucial in shaping my beliefs. I’ve learned that being flexible, always learning, and putting children at the center are keys to effective teaching. As I keep going in my teaching journey, I’m open to new ideas and ready to learn about emerging teaching theories. Education is always changing, and I believe in adjusting my approach to provide the best learning experiences for my children.

Intro to ED Tech and “Journey Through Learning Tech: Basics to Reflections”

Hello everyone! This is my first blog post of ECI833. Let’s explore the basics of educational technology together. In a world full of new ideas, educational technology is like a powerful force changing the way we learn. It’s reshaping how we learn things. Come along as we look at what educational technology is and where it came from. We’ll discover how it has shaped education in the past, how it’s influencing us now, and what it might mean for the future.

Educational technology falls into the category of tools and resources that support and enable access to education. This encompasses various equipment, programs, and materials used by teachers and students to enhance the learning experience. Whether inside or outside the classroom, these technologies assist students in attending classes, collaborating with peers, connecting with others remotely, and acquiring new skills. Educational technology empowers teachers to create digital textbooks, gamify lessons, manage attendance, assign homework, conduct quizzes, and receive instant feedback. This shift to technology, including smartphones, computers, and tablets, is disrupting traditional teaching methods, necessitating that educators adapt to the evolving digital landscape. As the technical world undergoes significant changes, teachers must embrace up-to-date tools to engage students in the digital era, requiring innovative teaching approaches and the introduction of fresh concepts. The use of educational technology by teachers has become imperative in today’s educational environment.

I think educational technology is like a powerful engine that’s changing the way we traditionally learn. It includes many different tools and platforms that are made to make learning better. From what I see, the most important thing about educational technology is that it can remove the limits of where you are, so people all over the world can easily get knowledge.  Using smart computer systems, pretend worlds, and interactive activities in education has really changed how we learn and understand things. These technologies help all kinds of learners, making the learning environment more personal and interesting. Also, more people can access education through the internet, letting everyone learn at their own speed.

learning, tablet, education

Photo by WOKANDAPIX on Pixabay

But we face problems like not everyone having equal access to technology and worries about keeping personal information safe. These issues make us think about the moral duties that come with quickly improving educational technology. It’s important to find a good mix between coming up with new ideas and making sure everyone can benefit. Educational technology is a powerful force shaping how we learn in the future. We need to use it wisely to make sure everyone gets a fair chance to learn.

When I reflect on my use of educational technology, I realize that historical and philosophical contexts play a crucial role, whether I’m aware of it or not. Exploring how technology has evolved in education has given me a deeper understanding of the progress made and the hurdles faced.

When I was in primary school, we didn’t have many fancy gadgets, and teachers mostly used books for teaching because there wasn’t enough money for computers, projectors, or smart boards. But things changed around sixth grade when I started learning about computers and their parts. My science teacher began using projectors to teach, making class more interesting. Back then, I didn’t have a computer or internet at home, so I could only use them at school. It wasn’t until college that I got my own computer for presentations and projects. I think technology has made learning more fun. After finishing my teaching degree in 2019, I started working at D.R.S. Convent School. It was exciting, but after just three months, everything shut down due to COVID-19. I used to teach science and math, and I loved doing experiments in the lab. But the pandemic changed everything. Now, with schools closed, learning has to happen online. It’s not easy for students, teachers, or parents. We’re all adjusting to this new way of learning. For the first time, I had to create online materials so students could keep learning at home.COVID-19 has made things challenging, but we’re doing our best to keep education going, even if it’s from a distance.

Looking back, important events like bringing computers into classrooms or moving to online learning have influenced how I see using technology. Learning from the difficulties and achievements of those who did it first gives me good ideas on how to use technology in a helpful and ethical way. Thinking about different educational theories has shaped how I bring technology into my teaching. Whether I’m focusing on putting students at the center, making sure everyone feels included, or using critical thinking methods, these ideas guide how I use technology to support these important principles. Also, thinking about what’s right and wrong from past events, like worries about privacy or making sure everyone has access to technology, has made me more aware of how my choices with technology can affect people. It’s really important to find a good balance between trying new things and being responsible with them. In summary, my educational technology journey is a dynamic interplay between understanding historical contexts and aligning with philosophical perspectives. These factors shape both my conscious decisions and the nuanced aspects of my educational practices.

Summary of Learning: EC&I 834

This is a very short course, and I’m thrilled that the process gave me the chance to explore and develop an online course that I can utilize later. Now I am ending up with this video. Because of the planning and writing of this specific summary of learning, I was able to reflect on my development and learning throughout my Master of Education program at the University of Regina. The expectations, learning preferences, and interests of students are constantly changing the ways teaching and learning are done. The most recent developments, which changed the conventional classroom, were all centered on technology. As a result, blended learning has become more popular. I now know a lot more about learning management systems, course tools, and the potential future of education with blended learning at its forefront. I want to express my gratitude to you all for your assistance and the knowledge you have provided. I enjoyed a lot in this course with my peers and Katia. It was an amazing journey for me, and I enjoyed the process. 

Here is the link to the video of my summary of learning

https://youtu.be/-DMtRuM45GQ

 

Course Walkthrough

Here is my final walk-through blog. It was a great journey full of knowledge. At the start of this course, It was a struggle for me to develop an online course at the start of EC&I 834. I had to choose my target student demographic, a course style and toolkit, the course’s content and objectives, the course’s assessment requirements, and basically how the course prototype would be organized overall. I chose Grade 3’s geometrical shape topic from the curriculum as my course prototype. All of the courses and activities in the course that study various types of 2D and 3D shapes will be tied together for the final project. The program will also be related to Saskatchewan’s Grade 3 math standards. Google Classroom will include all lectures and exercises, including tutorial videos that can also be viewed on a YouTube playlist. I made a very interactive video on Lumi. In the beginning, I found it difficult to use the LUMI app. I had never used this kind of online platform before in teaching; even during COVID time, I only taught students through Zoom sessions and Google Slides. It was a great challenge for me to make a video on Lumi but I’ve been motivated by EC&I 834 to work more, learn new skills, and apply them in the real world.I wrote several blog posts that describe various aspects of the creation process You can view them into my blog list.

Lesson plan

My lesson plan is based on Grade 3 Mathematics related to geometrical shapes, which discusses two and three-Dimensional shapes and their vertices and attributes. Here is the link to my lesson plan video.

https://app.lumi.education/run/366QoN/

After attending the class, students will be asked to give answers to the following questions:

  1. what are shapes?
  2. What is the difference between 2D and 3D shapes?
  3. What shapes can you think of that you either see, use, or come across daily?

Throughout the courses, I used a variety of instructional strategies, interactive digital resources, and opportunities for textual and visual learning for the students. I used Google Forms and Kahoot to make a quiz.  I make a presentation on Google Slides to make them understand the concept of geometrical shapes. I also added a worksheet to it. I also tried to incorporate Google Jam boards and quiz activities that would help the students relate their classroom learning to real situations. I used the ADDIE template in this course The ADDIE template was a very helpful tool that really helped me out with the development of my lesson plan. With the help of a template, I planned and organized the course content, assessment tools, and course layout.

There is no doubt that technology makes learning exciting and engaging now that I’ve learned about a range of tools, online and digital resources, and pedagogical components related to online learning environments. An excellent approach for attracting students to interactive learning is through technology. Our classroom doesn’t have to be set up the same way it was in the past because of technology. Technology in education has been the biggest game-changer in teaching that we educators will ever see. So, I believe that technology enhances learning, and realizing this fact was the major takeaway.

The link for my final walkthrough video is here:

https://watch.screencastify.com/v/V5sEiB2JYBMNOZlmwtwK

Online Collaborative Learning

In the classroom, collaborative learning fosters a supportive and welcoming atmosphere where students and teachers cooperate to accomplish shared objectives. During collaborative activities, there is more opportunity for connection, support, and the sharing of experiences, all of which help to develop deep and meaningful relationships between students and teachers. A strong student-teacher relationship in the classroom is an engagement that tries to foster mutual respect and trust. Getting to know your students better, providing them with alternatives, and inspiring them to study more successfully every day are all ways to build a closer relationship with them. Teachers who engage in this way appreciate their students and acknowledge their individuality. When students and educators get along, a safe and pleasant learning atmosphere is generated in the classroom. This accelerates students’ intellectual advancement. The application of collaborative learning involves teachers and students both learning from one another. There is a sense of mutual progress and appreciation as a result of the teacher appreciating the significance of the contributions provided by the students and the students appreciating the instructor’s efforts to facilitate their learning. I believe that groups can participate in a range of activities, from spontaneous talks to more organized collaborative group activities. Collaborative group learning is one method that students can use to communicate with other students in the course. Successful collaborative group activities give participants a sense of community and give them a shared active role and responsibility within their existing groupings. In well-designed learning environments, higher-order thinking abilities are developed, meaningful learning takes place, and an eLearning community where cooperative group activities are encouraged begins to form for online learners.

It takes time and work to develop a great classroom community, but the rewards are enormous. While supporting students’ social and emotional growth and improving academic achievement, a supportive and connected learning environment can have a long-lasting effect on their general well-being. Online discussion forums are one of the simplest ways to promote student participation and enhance everyone’s learning in order to promote a sense of community in the classroom. Post discussion ideas on a daily or weekly basis to promote discussion and encourage students to approach the course material in new ways. The solution to a dynamic and fascinating online discussion is to use open-ended discussion questions that promote opposing viewpoints. It will be beneficial for me to encourage students to assess the sources, share their opinions, and possibly even stir up some disagreement.  

In my course prototype, I made a video on Lumi, and I also use Google Classroom, where I upload videos, and activities for students. Google Slides, rubrics, and quizzes. I Try to add notes, links, or voice explanations right to the images to make sure students are engaged with my material. These interactive features direct the student and assist them in paying attention to the information we wish to highlight.

In addition to this, I like Zoom and video conferencing because they allow students to connect in smaller groups when they need any kind of aid. Even in a remote setting, Zoom meetings for collaborative learning can be quite productive. To solve their problems, I can set up Zoom meetings. On this platform, I am best able to continually and consistently instruct my students. The Visual Prompt will also be used by me to guide pupils when they closely analyze an image. To separate students into smaller groups for teamwork exercises and conversations, I can use Zoom’s breakout rooms function. Give each group a distinct assignment or subject to work on. Through this learning activity, students learn how to develop conceptual learning techniques, how to think critically, and, how to notice and understand.

In conclusion, for online learners to achieve success and be happy, a sense of community is crucial. Teachers can provide possibilities for the community by planning a course, interacting with students, and providing activities. The work to develop these chances will probably prove to be well worth it. Even when students are only staring at a computer screen, collaborative learning practices can help them feel engaged and connected. Planning ahead and using the right tools are essential to facilitating participation, and I’ll undoubtedly use a variety of technologies to make my course prototype engaging and create a collaborative learning atmosphere in the classroom.

Accessibility and Equity

After having a discussion on this topic, I personally think that the sudden change to online learning may exacerbate already-existing inequalities. Due to the digital divide (unequal distribution and access to technology) and the consequences of a global pandemic on diverse socioeconomic and racial groups, many students will be disproportionately impacted by the switch to remote work. This requires teachers to consider pedagogical concerns as being inseparable from logistical and technological ones. Creating an inclusive pedagogy that prioritizes fair access to the learning environment requires taking into account all the variables that might have an impact on a student’s performance. Access to the learning environment for all people is one issue that needs special attention. Given the swift change in learning environments, how can faculty and instructors guarantee that all students have access to the materials they need to succeed in the course? So, In order to ensure that all learners may succeed, it is critical to investigate trends in equality and access as more students rely on digital resources for their education.

While teaching online, I need to prioritize the requirements of the students as much as I would with face-to-face instruction when I’m thinking about installing or utilizing digital resources in my classroom. When developing content, I must take into account the knowledge, expertise, and learning preferences of my students, as well as their access to technology and areas of interest.While planning this To be more effective, I must make sure to use a range of strategies. To make studying more approachable, we will try to incorporate a variety of textual, audio, and visual cues. Because some students can feel more at ease using particular methods than others, I must also offer a wide range of opportunities for them to demonstrate and apply what they have learned. For example, some students feel bored while doing the same activities, and most of the students do not like doing discussions. So, I planned different activities to make learning more interactive.

I have to think about how I can help all students succeed when teaching online courses, whether they are delivered entirely online, partially in person, or both.  For in-person classes, inclusive techniques involve creating inclusive learning environments where students feel valued and included, outlining specific requirements for coursework and deadlines, and ensuring that the learning and evaluation are approachable and relevant to all students. When in-person classes are canceled and learning shifts to online spaces and methods, these ideas can still be applied, but access and equity can look very different in online teaching contexts, and become increasingly complicated when students are no longer on-campus. Transparency, accessibility, and adaptability are essential components of inclusive teaching and learning that can be addressed when applied to online learning environments.

Transparency

Students can be encouraged to learn and can achieve better success if the justification for instructional decisions is made clear to them. However, the added difficulties of distance learning make it even more crucial to be aware of concealed expectations and curricula that we can take for granted. As a result, we must be careful not to assume anything about what our students already know or are capable of. Transparency is emphasized in inclusive techniques by setting clear, mutual expectations for both students and teachers. 

Accessibility

Students who are expected to work from home might not have access to reliable, high-speed internet connections or cutting-edge software and hardware, or they could have to share devices and bandwidth with parents or siblings who are also working from home. Data plans for students who rely on mobile devices can be exhausted or run out before the conclusion of the semester. Unfortunately, due to state and local rules, community-based facilities like libraries and coffee shops that we might have wanted to recommend to students are probably no longer open. Remote instruction might be particularly challenging for kids with disabilities. 

In my course, when preparing for online teaching, I USED A QUESTIONNAIRE TO CONTACT STUDENTS such as:

In case we need to switch to the internet, do you have dependable internet and a computer at home? In case we need to use Zoom or another video conferencing solution, does your computer have a camera?

Do you have any accessibility requirements for me about online teaching, such as the need for readings in alternative formats, conversation transcriptions, certain discussion board strategies, or a preference for video discussion over discussion boards?

Flexibility

Working with students’ diversity in a variety of ways is a key component of equitable and inclusive education. Right now, that entails taking into account all of the different ways that their lives are impacted. It is crucial to be as adaptable as possible as I become used to the new standard of distance teaching and learning. To do this, I need to change the way I approach teaching. For example, I might balance synchronous and asynchronous tools and course materials so that students have multiple access points, refocus on active learning strategies, offer multiple options for assessment and evaluation, and give students some latitude to meet deadlines within reason.

What is Accessible Education? Equality vs Equity in Inclusive Learning -  ViewSonic Library

 In the context of online and blended learning, various ethical and social considerations are essential, in addition to accessibility and equity. Social connections between students may be impacted by online and blended learning. To overcome feelings of isolation and stimulate collaborative learning, it is important to develop a sense of community and meaningful relationships. Long-term use of technology for learning can cause digital addiction and distraction, which have a negative effect on student’s ability to concentrate and their general well-being. It’s critical to strike a balance between screen time and other endeavors. Moreover, global viewpoints and cross-cultural interchange can be fostered by connecting students and educators from other countries through online learning. But it’s critical to approach this discussion with consideration for various cultural norms and beliefs.

Content creation with LUMI…

The Content

This module seeks to help students develop knowledge related to 2D and 3D shapes, comprehend the fundamental distinctions between 2D and 3D shapes, identify typical shapes present in everyday objects, and investigate each shape’s unique properties, such as sides, vertices, and edges. The module provides a comprehensive list of standard 2D and 3D shapes found in everyday objects, such as squares, circles, cubes, spheres, triangles, cylinders, and more. Visual representations and descriptions accompany each shape for easy recognition. The module discusses each shape’s crucial properties, such as its sides, vertices, and edges. It illustrates how important these characteristics are for describing and characterizing various shapes.

Activities and tools used in the module

After watching this video students can be able to understand the answers of these following questions: What are shapes? What is a shape called? What shapes can you think of that you either see, use, or come across daily? What are the different attributes of the shape? After watching the whole Lumi video, I will have an open discussion with them regarding 2D and 3D shapes. I will Design mini-games or challenges related to 2D and 3D shapes. For example, students might be tasked with matching shapes, identifying attributes, or solving shape-based puzzles. I will provide them with direct feedback so they feel more comfortable talking to me about their issues related to the shape. I have looked for ways to make sure that there are opportunities for kids to form relationships with their teachers and one another through the use of a variety of digital tools and group activities to create a feeling of community in the classroom.

Learning Outcomes 

With the help of this module, students will be able to understand the properties and characteristics of different geometric shapes, such as the number of sides, angles, and diagonals. In order to solve problems and understand higher-level geometry topics, students should be able to mentally manipulate and visualize geometric shapes in two and three dimensions This module will assist students in building their ability to use geometric principles to solve a range of geometry-related challenges. Students should be able to apply geometric concepts to real-world situations, such as calculating the area of a room or the volume of a container. Depending on the module’s level, students may learn fundamental geometric operations with a compass and straight edge, such as creating perpendicular lines or bisecting angles.

Overall, the creation of this blended learning course has been a process of ongoing learning and in-depth reflection. I’ve made a conscious effort to stay true to my initial goal of using a mixed-learning environment to create a fun and interactive course. I’m excited to collaborate with others to create courses with additional grade levels.

click the following link to watch Lumi video

https://app.lumi.education/run/366QoN/