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When I want to lift up the learning and achievement in my students I teach backwards. With technology and blogging that has become a lot easier because I can get exactly what I need at each step along the way , I can get feedback in class and then look at the learning on their blogs. When you look at student blogs you can see each student is quite different as they process information in their own individual way. It really makes you appreciate the value of differentiation. I blogged about how my year 9s had wanted to see what I meant when I asked them to make up a planet. I took that lesson on board from them and now, when I want my year 10s to advertise Adelaide in French , I thought, well, the best thing I can do is show them French people advertising Australia to their own people. I found two vloggers who were approaching it differently. One uses his iPhone and creates very popular videos of his road trips which are quite spontaneous and funny. The other one has a polished approach and sets up videos and interviews and has roadtripped himself around the world this way and it is now his job. That in itself opened the eyes of my Year 10s. They found it interesting to think French people did this. I could then show the Xavier by bike blog – Don’t dream your life, just live your dreams. Xavier did a bike road trip from Lille to Dubai and blogged about his adventure, with videos in French and English. They could understand bits and pieces of the videos but could see how French people advertise Australia to their own people. We then fed in some vocabulary, expressions and ideas for presentations. As they sorted out their own thoughts on that, I constructed my own brochure on the board as they looked around for what they thought they needed. It isn’t really about connecting the dots. Students are in the internet age. They have a lot of packets of information and ideas in their heads. It’s more an atomic approach to learning where you get the electrons and neutrons to fly around the nucleus of the core learning to create something structured and meaningful. I want my year 10s to produce an advertising text for Adelaide and then a one minute video in French to advertise Adelaide. As we go along I can feed in more vocabulary and expressions, we can look at the videos again and they will be able to see they are achieving something valuable. We have started with shop recommendations. In both of the videos they looked at what our shops were like and we have done plenty of shopping vocabulary and practice so it’s a good place to start. Education comes from the latin educere. I am a firm believer in leading them out and up.
Filed under: blogging, classroom, e-learning, methodology, technology | Tagged: Australia, Blogging, learning, Teaching for Effective Learning, teaching in the 21st century, technology, TfEL, vlogging |