Reflecting on DC101 Week 1

How can creating, connecting, collaborating and communicating online help us learn?

To me this seems simple – especially when looking at middle/high school student and teacher learning. However, when we are looking at early years education, I am less clear.

I can see how we can use these tools to share what young children have learned in their classrooms, and certainly their teachers can connect to other teachers to share ideas, strategies. And we can always use technology to show song videos and simple games for children to gain keyboard skills. But beyond that, can we use it any other way to help their learning?

5 Thoughts

  1. I understand where you are coming from in terms of young children feeling a bit left out of this conversation. I guess my thoughts are that like “real” life children learn to participate in culture through socialization, exposure and experience.

    If we want our MSHS students to feel comfortable and confident in sharing their voice and participating in an online culture of sharing then we have to begin showing younger children that they matter. We can teach them that what they create has value and an audience. Even if that audience is their teacher, classmates, and family.

    Jacqui just wrote a great post about her thoughts: http://bit.ly/t14VCC might prove useful here as well. We want young kids feeling that they can contribute to the Internet as soon as they are aware of what it is.

    I have been keeping a blog for Kaia since she was born, but she is just now starting to understand that it is her place to share her life experience. She is starting understand that her creativity adds value to the larger world around her. Here is a quick example: http://dearkaia.blogspot.com/2011/10/pretty-puppy.html After we made this little film, she said let’s put it on my blog so grandma can see!

    She seems to be understanding creating and connecting pretty well. I would say.

    1. That’s a good point. If they already have a presence on the web, then when they develop an awareness of it, they will likely feel some sense of belonging. And I think for most people, blogging begins as a way to connect with family and friends. Perhaps we need to look at setting up blogs for all children as soon as they enter our school, regardless of age, so that an ongoing record can be created.

      I guess at times I question the amount of time it takes for teachers to create the content on behalf of these young children and question whether it is the best use of their time given that many of the children cannot participate. I suppose, as with all things, it is a balancing act.

  2. Not sure I feel comfortable with the idea of teachers creating content for kids. We don’t draw for them or write for them, then why do we think we should create digital content for them. Remember the analogy of the garden bed. Let kids create organically and on paper for as long as they want and/or can. Teachers can simply help kids plant their work into their blogs in an effort to create an audience and an authentic place for connection to others.

    Analogue work can and should be posted on blogs, asthe important part is the conversations that build around student created content. Blogging should not be an add-on for teachers, but a place where they share what they are doing already. Once they become more adept at using digital methods of creating content, then they can move their students to a more balanced approach. To start simply use blogs to show and share what you already do in class everyday.

    1. I think I am saying the same thing as you. For our very young students – like Helen E’s kids – the teacher writes up learning stories of what the kids are doing in class and sharing some of the product the children are creating. The teachers are, in effect, creating content because they are interpreting and explaining what the children are doing so it is more meaningful to the parent audience.

  3. Or are we changing the way we learn or at least the way we package it, to go with available resources? There is so much out there that is being created that is great, yet it is near imposible to find. So, if we reinforce skills to locate, scan, digest, and repurpose, we will do well.

    Interesting sidebar on created content for kids. Just read an interesting article about Youtube and Disney teaming up to create content.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s