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Sunday, May 1, 2011

C4T April 17

My assignment for this C4T isSpeaking Of History. This is a very interesting blog page by Eric Langhorst, a history teacher in Liberty, Missouri. His latest post was a presentation that he was giving at the 2011 Missouri Council for Social Studies Conference in Kansas City. It was a wonderful presentation on the use of social media for teaching history. I was not aware of the availability of history material on YouTube. And, i really liked his comment in which he compares Facebook to Twitter. He states that Facebook is people you knew in the past and Twitter is for people you want to know in the future. Although I am new to Twitter, I do see the usefulness of it,however, I am not yet in the habit of using it on a regular basis. I hope to do better with using it in the future. I also like the information about Flickr - I don't use that now but will have to try it out. There is so much technology out there that can be used in the classroom! We have to be open to change and willing to try new things to keep our students interested. Also, I think if we incorporate technology, they are learning a useful real life tool that they will carry with them into the future in addition to the facts and the history! We will be preparing them to use and to be open to all that is available through the internet for when they are no longer students but contributing members of society through the workforce and as future parents themselves. What amazing things we could accomplish if we were to take advantage of all the information that is available to us!

Below is the comment I left for Mr. Langhorst.

Hi Mr. Langhorst! My name is Lisa May and I am a student in Dr. Strange's EDM310 class at the University of South Alabama in Mobile, Alabama. I really enjoyed the presentation on social media! I am learning new things everyday about each of these services. I would not have thought of using YouTube to teach history but there seems to be a lot of videos available. What a great way to teach the students something useful with a tool that they are all accustom to using on a daily basis. I would much prefer my own children and later my students would be watching something interesting about the Constitution or Declaration of Independence than the latest parody of a rap song!I will have to suggest it as a resource when they are doing there next research assignment!

I am new to the world of social media and have not yet acquired all the necessary skills but I am trying and I am learning something new everyday. My personal blog page is a work in progress but I would invite you to visit and leave a comment if you have a chance!

The second posting to Mr. Langhorst blog post was another presentation that he had given at the 2011 NETA Conference called Not your Dad's History Class. This was a very interesting slideshow that focuses on the evolution of the classroom. It made reference to current methods of teaching: 1. Teacher finds content 2. Teacher presents content to students verbally 3. Students obtain the content usually through written assignments 4. Students demonstrate knowledge usually through a test. His argument/ presentation is that with the use of technology, we can make the classroom so much more! We can make it a much more personal learning experience through the tools that are available to us. However, we can't lose sight of the objective of education. We have to focus on the lessons not just the tools to convey them.

All of this can be accomplished through the use of communication with the students, with other educators, with the parents, etc. It is necessary to collaborate with others that are teaching as you are. It is necessary to build a PLN, the use Twitter, to be social, to find out what is working. It is easily accomplished by inviting others to help with your content, the use simulators, to use demonstrations, use lectures, use videos, there is so much out there that is free and at our disposal as educators, use it! And, finally, BE CREATIVE! Ask your students for input! Energize your lessons, and you will be amazed how much more the students will learn and retain!

These lessons, can be applied to any class not just history! If we incorporate the technology that is available to us into our classroom, we can spark the interest of the students. We can ignite their desire to learn by making it fun and exciting! We can make them want to learn and to come to the classroom if we make it a more personal experience in which they can participate and show their individuality and creativity while not even realizing how much they are learning.

Below is the comment I left for Mr. Langhorst:

Hi Mr. Langhorst,

My name is Lisa May and I am a student in Dr. Strange's EDM310 class at the University of South Alabama. I enjoyed your slide show! I am sure that it was a hit at the conference! I look forward to the day that I can attend these conferences to further my own education and hopefully incorporate that which is being done with technology into my own classroom!

I completely agree that there has to be an evolution in the classroom. Technology has presented us with so much information and so many tools that can make our education system so much more rewarding for the student if it is used! The old way in which I was taught through lectures and memorization is so outdated! The students have access to all the facts,they are right there at their finger tips at all times. We as educators now need to focus on how to use it and to develop their creativity and innovation skills to put this technology and information to use. So much is being lost when we focus only on the facts and test taking. We need to make the past come to life so the students can learn the lessons not just the facts!

This evolution needs to take place in all classrooms - not just history if we want to engage the students so that they become a contributing force in not just society but the world!

I invite you to visit my blog and see the summary I have written of your slideshow!

4:45 PM

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