Teaching & Learning in a Digital Age
Question: Are there some helpful strategies and tips that will help me in my digital age classroom?
In this section you will look at some resources that are specific to teaching and learning in a digital age with the goal of identifying some that will provide new strategies and also new ideas for further investigation.
1. Take a quick glimpse at each of the content boxes below and then select one that you that has resources you are most interested in exploring today. Reflect on the information and resources, adding some to your own Personal Learning and Reflection Document for future exploration and/or implementation.
Assessment in a Digital Age
1. One of the new learning units in the REMC site is titled: Assessment Tools for Learning. This is also being offered as a free course for credit.
Select one of these areas to get a glimpse of some great tools.
2. Another way to assess students is through the creation of multimedia projects to demonstrate their learning. The Multimedia Tools to Engage Students is another of the REMC self-paced or virtual courses offered.
- Try your hand at creating a simple animated gif
- Look over the free video creation tools in Creating Your Video
Classroom Design and Management for a Digital Age
This is a short introduction video about things to consider when planning to teach your classroom in this digital age. This introduces concepts such as basics and the importance of your district and building tech support staff, creating and printing posters to help with management, classroom setup and design, planning for flexible seating, establishing procedures, and technology competencies and standards.
Direct link to the video on MiStreamnet/Eduvision
One of the considerations all of our districts are evaluating are the different Learning Management Systems (LMS). A great resource for comparing them and planning for one is located on the keepmichiganlearning.org site: https://keepmichiganlearning.org/guide-to-selecting-an-lms-for-k-12/
Immersive Reader to help your students
Microsoft created Immersive Reader, an app and resource that is not limited to a Windows computer or browser and helps diverse readers. Some of the features that can help students:
- voice dictation (Speech to text)
- blocking out everything but one line to help students focus
- identifying parts of speech on the screen
- changing spacing, fonts and lines to avoid "visual crowding"
- breaking words into syllables
- translating text into 70+ languages (40+ read aloud)
- changing the color, size and font of text to make it more legible
- using the picture dictionary feature to see visual definitions
Students are working on an activity. Part of it involves reading on a screen on their laptop or Chromebook.
A student realizes that they need some help. They grab headphones out of their pocket or backpack.
They pull up Immersive Reader in a program or app that supports it. Immediately ...
They can hear the passage dictated. It can be translated into a language they're more confident using. They eliminate distractions, break up syllables and make the text easier to use.
- How much teacher support does it take for the student to do this? Zero. (After the student knows how to access it.
- How much attention does it call to the student that they need help? Zero.
- How much does it empower the student and help them to self-support their struggles? A ton.
View additional tutorials on MiStreamnet (created for 21things4students):
Opportunities for Learning Online
There are a host of learning opportunities available both for educators and students, and many of them are free. The list below is just a small snapshot of the online opportunities.
- Learn at your pace for Educators
- Mentored and virtual courses for Educators
- REMC virtual courses, Free
- Offers over 35 free virtual courses that provide teachers with SCECH credits for continuing education
- REMC virtual courses, Free
Khan Academy provides math and science courses for students that are composed of short lessons with videos.
Michigan Virtual Middle and High School courses: Mentored and virtual courses for students. Many districts in Michigan provide access to these at no cost to students.
Teaching Strategies in a Digital Age
This is an introduction (8 min video) to some tips and teaching strategies for a digital age classroom. A PDF document of this content is provided directly below the video that contains live links to the web resources mentioned in the video.
2. After you have completed step 1, Open and read the section of thought provoking questions titled "Challenges to Learning With Technology in a Digital Age Classroom" below, and add some reflections to your document before you continue to the next section.
Challenges to learning with technology in a digital age classroom
Some of the challenges identified by teachers:
- Getting their attention away from their computers:
- "All Eyes On Me" verbal cue to look up
- "Shark Jaw" verbal cue to put their laptop screens closed halfway and look up
- Cyberbullying. See the Classroom Resources on the right.
- Misinformation and Fake News
- 21things4students Fake or Real News Quest for Middle School
- Grades 10-12 Exploring Actual Examples of Newspaper Bias
- New Resource from Common Sense Media: Young Voter's Guide to Social Media and News that includes Tools for Teachers.
There is one more part to this learning unit.
Continue on to Privacy and Security.
ISTE Educator and Education Leader Technology Standards
Addressing the ISTE-E and ISTE-EL (International Standards for Technology in Education - For Educators and Education Leaders)
a. Set professional learning goals to explore and apply pedagogical approaches made possible by technology and reflect on their effectiveness.
b. Advocate for equitable access to educational technology, digital content and learning opportunities to meet the diverse needs of all students.
c. Model for colleagues the identification, exploration,
evaluation, curation and adoption of
new digital resources and tools for learning.
a. Create experiences for learners to make positive, socially responsible contributions and exhibit empathetic behavior online that build relationships and community.
b. Establish a learning culture that promotes curiosity and critical examination of online resources and fosters digital literacy and media fluency.
c. Mentor students in safe, legal and ethical practices with digital tools and the protection of intellectual rights and property.
d. Model and promote management of personal data and digital identity and protect student data privacy.
ISTE-EL standards target the knowledge and behaviors required for leaders to empower teachers and make student learning possible.
1. Equity and Citizenship Advocate
c. Model digital citizenship by critically evaluating online resources by engaging in civil discourse and using digital tools to contribute to positive social change
d. Cultivate responsible online behavior, including the safe, ethical and legal use of technology.
4. Systems Designer
c. Protect privacy and security by ensuring that students and staff observe effective privacy and data management practices.
5. Connected Learner
c. Use technology to regularly engage in reflective practices that support personal and professional growth.
MITECS Competencies and ISTE Technology Standards for students
MITECS Michigan Integrated Technology Competencies for Students, and
1. Empowered Learner
b. Students build networks and customize their learning environments in ways that support the learning process.
c. Students use technology to seek feedback that informs and improves their practice and to demonstrate their learning in a variety of ways
2. Digital Citizen
b. Students engage in positive, safe, legal and ethical behavior when using using technology
6. Creative Communicator
a. Students choose the appropriate platforms and tools for meeting the desired objectives of their creation or communication.
b. Students create original works or responsibly repurpose or remix digital resources into new creations.
c. Students create original works or responsibly repurpose or remix digital resources into new creations.
d. Students publish or present content that customizes the message and medium for their intended audiences.
7. Global Collaborator
a. Students use digital tools to connect with learners from a variety of backgrounds and cultures, engaging with them in ways that broaden mutual understanding and learning.
b. Students use collaborative technologies to work with others, including peers, experts or community members, to examine issues and problems from multiple viewpoints.
c. Students contribute constructively to project teams, assuming various roles and responsibilities to work effectively toward a common goal.
d. Students explore local and global issues and use collaborative technologies to work with others to investigate solutions.
Cyberbullying Teacher Resources
21things4students CyberSafety Unit
Common Sense Media
Applied Educational Systems: The 5 Best Cyberbullying Resources for Middle School
Resources for School Administrators
These resources were developed in the spring of 2020 to aid administrators dealing with the Covid19 circumstances.
Guide to selecting a Learning Management System from keepmichiganlearning.org
Planning Guide: Scenarios and Considerations for 2020-2021 - a continually updated document produced by the National Institute For Excellence in Teaching (NIET). This guide has sections on:
- Taking inventory
- Operational Plan
- Academic Plan
- Student, Family and Staff Support Plan
- Professional Development and Training Plan
- Full Set of Considerations for 2020-21 Standards Recovery Plan Example & Template
Return to School Roadmap for District and School Leaders around Technology from the Opportunity Labs. This roadmap addresses:
- Do First
- Do Before School Starts
- When Schools are Open and Operating