Sunday, October 6, 2013

Blog Post #7

What can you learn from these conversations with Anthony Capps?
By: Jennifer Hamrick and Dominique Jones

After watching the videos Project Based Learning Part 1 and Project Based Learning Part 2, what we learned from the conversations with Anthony Capps is why Project Based Learning is important and the benefits for the students. Project Based Learning is a method which you learn by. It is not to show what you have learned at the end of a lesson. The project is the lesson. It is a not just a means to show that the student has achieved something it means to get the students to learn something. There are four goals for preparing a project and they are an authentic audience, make sure it has the students interest, it should involve the community somehow and driven by content. We learned that you want an authentic audience because the students will take more pride in their work and try harder. The project needs to have the student’s interest so that it relates to the students lives. Involving the community shows the students how this project can be used in the “real” world. Driven by content means that the curriculum meets the Alabama and Federal Standards. A very crucial part of Project Based Learning is the opportunity for students to revise and reflect on their work. Also, you should never limit a student on their research. You will always get more than you expected if you don’t limit them. Collaboration is sometimes hard for the students and they don’t care for that part but, the students love doing the projects and learning in this manner. Giving a student a choice is another great aspect of Project Based Learning. When a student is given a choice then you give them ownership and pride in the work they are doing. Most importantly what we learned is that, when students are engaged, they are also learning.

screenshot of Anthony Capps and John Strange
In the video iCurio, Anthony Capps discusses the four main benefits to icurio in his opinion. The first benefit that we learned is that icurio is an online tool that allows students to safely search websites that have been pulled along with images and videos for educational purposes. Essentially, it is a filtered website safe for children to use to research. The second benefit is the storage capacity for students. It gives students practice in organizing online and how to store and find valuable information they may need in the future. A third benefit to icurio is the directory feature made available to students to help guide them in their searches. And lastly, icurio has a read aloud feature so students who are unable to read the screen can have the screen read to them and research can still be done.

In the video Discovery Education, Anthony Capps talks about the website Discovery Education. The main points that we learned about this website is that with the text research video and visual resources are available. By using this it helps students to visualize what they are learning about. If a class was learning about volcanoes, they could not only read about them but see pictures and watch a video of some erupting. With Discovery Education you can bring the experts into the classroom via video and essentially take a field trip to the other side of the world. This website is a great enrichment to a student’s research experience.

Use Tech Don't Teach It and Additional Thought About Lessons
By: Jennifer Hamrick

In the video UseTech Don'tTeachIt, Anthony Capps talks about using technology in the classroom and not just teaching it. Some of the things that I learned from this video is how students really enjoy the opportunity to use technology to prove what they have learned or to learn something. To kids, technology is natural. I learned that technology shouldn’t be taught. Instead it should be a part of your curriculum and you should design your project around it. Think of a scaffolding and build around that concept. Let the students use the research tool the first week. Then let them use a video tool the following week. During the third week, have the students do a research project that requires a video component. One thing to remember is that you should only choose one technology at a time to learn and give the students ample time to use and review. Then let them continue using what they have learned as you introduce the next tool. Some of the benefits of using technology is that it gives students an opportunity to express themselves by creating. It’s shareable and it’s real. Students won’t be using this kind of technology in their 20’s but this will be the stepping stone to get them started on what they will be using by then. Don’t forget to let students make mistakes. By letting students make mistakes and reflect on them, they learn and can improve. Lastly what I learned is, do the project yourself first. It won’t make you knowledgeable enough to answer all your student’s questions but it can help you understand why they might be asking that question.

In the video Additional Thought About Lessons , Anthony Capps explained his theory on the 4 layers that are necessary for having a successful lesson. What I learned from this lesson is that when breaking down a lesson into 4 parts, you first start big. Figure out how the lesson plan will fit into your school year and is all the content standards covered. The next layer is breaking the lesson down into projects or units. Decide how you will unfold the unit to make sure it is meaningful and it all connects in some way. The third layer would be knowing what you will teach weekly. Ensuring that everyday you get something done. And the last layer which is just as important as the the other three layers is the daily lesson. You will need to plan on how you will deliver the unit to your students, grasp their attention and then keep them engaged. In this video, Anthony Capps referred to this process once as a stair step and I really liked that thought process. When I began to think about making a lesson plan and treated it like a stair step, it made it much easier and not as overwhelming.

The Anthony-Strange Tips for Teachers Part 1 by Dominique Jones
In this video Anthony Capps, a third grade teacher at Gulf Shores Elementary, and Dr. Strange made a list of of things that teachers should know.

Six things teachers should know:
1. Teachers should be interested in learning,if you are not a learner you will not be a successful educator. You need to constantly learn even outside the classroom.
2. Teaching is hard work and can be fun. It is a constant process and is very rewarding.
3.Teachers need to be flexible and creative.Be prepared for the unexpected to happen.
4. Start with a goal. Ask yourself what do you want the outcome to be. If it is not looking like what you wanted it to be, you need to be flexible and change your plans and still be able to have the same outcome.
5.Engage students 100% of the time. It is critical that no child is left behind. Make the lessons exciting so that kids are motivated to learn.
6. Reflect, revise, and share work with an audience. Get your students to give more presentations and have the audience reflect. Also self -reflection is beneficial to learning.

I really enjoyed this video. I thought the tips were simple and will be easy to implement when I become a teacher. Most of these tips I already knew about but being prepared for things to go unexpected never really crossed my mind. I always need to have a back up plan because situations will arise when I may need to change my lesson plan. Also, knowing how to keep a student engaged may be harder to do than to it sounds. I know it may take me a while to figure out how to keep a student engage but that is the process of learning. I am very glad I watched this video because it is very helpful.

1 comment:

  1. This applies to your personal part of this post.

    "Some of the things that I learned from this video is how students really enjoy the opportunity to use technology to prove what they have learned or to learn something. " One, not Some; that, not how

    Good summary.