Digital Technologies Week 3.

The intentions of todays digital technologies class was to learn about and use multimodal texts. Alongside this, we used ActivInspire to create slides that we can use within a classroom setting to introduce mathematics within the topic of Egyptians. A multimodal text is where its creator will use two or more semiotic systems to create …

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The intentions of todays digital technologies class was to learn about and use multimodal texts. Alongside this, we used ActivInspire to create slides that we can use within a classroom setting to introduce mathematics within the topic of Egyptians.

A multimodal text is where its creator will use two or more semiotic systems to create the text. There are five semiotic systems, these are as follows:

  • Linguistic
  • Visual
  • Audio
  • Gestural
  • Spatial

Prior to creating our ActivInspire slides, we also discussed that using a yellow background with blue writing and comic sans font is good for helping children with dyslexic tendencies, as this makes it easier for them to read. Beauchamp (2012, p8), further emphasises this by saying multimodal texts often make the lesson easier to understand, “the multimodality of technology is another reason to use it, as it allows teachers to present an idea in a variety of different ways to help pupils understand it”.

My partner and I created our slides to link numeracy in with the Egyptians topic. We created a key where number would equal to different hieroglyphics. The aim was for the children to be able to add up simple sums with the hieroglyphics, rather than numbers. Once the children understood how to add with the hieroglyphics, we moved on to multiplying with the hieroglyphics. When the children have finished their work, they can come up and retrieve their answers by moving the revealer. The CfE level that we created this lesson for is second level.

I will definitely use ActivInspire within the classroom, this is an exciting and fun way to present lessons to children. As a result of ActivInspire, I believe the children will be very engaged as they can use the smart board.

References

Beauchamp, G. (2012) ICT in the Primary School: From Pedagogy to Practice. Pearson.

Digital Technologies 18/01/18

Today’s lesson focused around the use of programmable toys used in education, in particular Bee-bots.  From this, I gained knowledge on when programmable toys were first used in education, what the benefits of them are and I also worked as part of a group to create our own numeracy lesson using a Bee-bot.  Throughout this […]

Today’s lesson focused around the use of programmable toys used in education, in particular Bee-bots.  From this, I gained knowledge on when programmable toys were first used in education, what the benefits of them are and I also worked as part of a group to create our own numeracy lesson using a Bee-bot.  Throughout this task, we had to think about Curriculum for Excellence outcomes, this gave me good insight into what creating lessons will be like in future years of being a teacher.

I was surprised when I learned that programmable toys were first used in education in the 1960’s when Seymour Papert created Logo.  Logo allows children to participate in complex programming as they can control an arrow which allows them to draw shapes, symbols etc.  Ever since then, the use of programmable toys within education has expanded and children continue to get more out of technology as time goes on.  This is stated by (Janka, 2008, p2) when he states “The curriculum introduces programmable toys as a good example for developing knowledge and understanding of the contemporary world.”  As well as this, programmable toys have numerous amounts of benefits.  As technology such as Bee-bots allow children to see if they are correct or incorrect quickly, they can gain instant feedback.  Through this, the children are always in control and learning hands on, this allowing time for them to engage and get the most out of their learning.  Children are often able to pick up how to work them quickly, this is backed up by Lydon (2008) as she introduced twenty-eight nursery children to Bee-bots and twelve were able to use them themselves without any further help after only being told how to use them once.  This shows the active engagement children have with independent learning and how much they appreciate a challenge through using programmable toys for the first time.

After working as a group using Bee-bots, I am aware how engaging and active learning with programmable toys is as I loved creating a game using them.  From this, I can understand why children get so many benefits out of using them and how much of an important role they play within the curriculum.  My group created a numeracy game with the Bee-bots, in which compass bearings and the three times tables were used.  We made it fun by giving it a treasure hunt theme, in which there was different obstacles to get through on a boat such as sea creatures, anchors, coins etc.  The start box had the question “3×1”, from this, there was a card with 3 on it which gave the direction to go in to get to the next question.  Eventually, the right answers led to a key, which enabled the treasure hunt box on the last square to be opened.  We even gave the Bee-bot an eyepatch to match with the theme! This learning game which could be used in future years as a lesson was the curricular outcome first level TCH-101a ‘I can explore and experiment with digital technologies and can use what I learn to support and enhance my learning in different contexts.’  We choose this outcome as the game we created allows the opportunity for mathematical skills as a whole to be improved, through working on times table and direction skills.  Therefore, if children were to ever engage with this, they would be able to take what they have learned into maths lessons and the outside world.

Overall, this class enabled me to recognize the importance of programmable toys and although they were first introduced in the 1960’s within education, as time goes on they are getting more engaging and allow children to be creative and learn hands on.  I thoroughly enjoyed creating my own learning game with my group and it has made me even more excited to become a teacher and plan lessons to see how much children learn and get satisfaction out of using technology.

References:

ICTopus Article (2008) Sharing Good Practice: Robots in Early Education by Alison Lydon. [Online] https://oponoa-programmeertalen.wikispaces.com/file/view/BeeBot article.pdf [Accessed: 17th January 2018]

Janka, P. (2008) Using a Programmable Toy at Preschool Age: Why and How? [Online] http://www.terecop.eu/downloads/simbar2008/pekarova.pdf [Accessed: 17th January 2018]

 

Digital Technologies Week 2.

The focus of this weeks digital technologies class was based around the use of BeeBot with regards to numeracy. Having previously looking at using BeeBot for literacy, this week we considered the advantages of BeeBot whilst carrying out numeracy lessons. Alongside this, we then began creating a BeeBot map which we tested out and will …

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The focus of this weeks digital technologies class was based around the use of BeeBot with regards to numeracy. Having previously looking at using BeeBot for literacy, this week we considered the advantages of BeeBot whilst carrying out numeracy lessons. Alongside this, we then began creating a BeeBot map which we tested out and will be assessed on.

Pekarova Janka is a supporter of the use of programmable toys within the classroom. There are a number of opportunities which arise from using programmable toys in class settings, Janka discusses the development of children’s instructional and positional language by stating that, “In the field of mathematical development, children should develop the ability to describe simple journey and instruct the programmable toy in order to develop positional language and estimation” (Janka, 2008, p2). Alongside this, The National centre for Technology in Education (2012, p1) provides further advantages of the use of programmable toys in education, they state, “[Floor robots in the classroom] help with the development of skills such as logical sequencing, measuring, comparing lengths, space orientation and expressing concepts in words”. Similarly, Kaur (n.d) agreed with this by saying that the use of the BeeBot encourages children to engage, communicate and interact with each other. He further went on to say that pupils can share learning experiences and learn in context through the use of the BeeBot. The use of the BeeBot allows the educator to provide her students with cross-curricular activities. Alongside this, educators can assess and observe the children’s literacy and numeracy skills whilst playing with the BeeBot.

Myself and my partner agreed to create a ‘snakes & ladders’ board. We made the game so that it was suitable to use throughout the full school. For early years and Primary 1, its just a simple game of snakes and ladders. However, for  Primary 2-4, the dice will be slightly different as it will have the name of the number, the visual representation of the number or the amount in the representation of circles from this, the children will have to look at these different representations of numbers and have to decide for themselves where the BeeBot should go. Finally, for Primary 5-7, the dice will have addition or multiplication questions and the children would need to work out the answer to see where the BeeBot should go.

The experiences and outcomes that we provided for the early level version of the game are as follows;

In movement, games, and using technology I can use simple directions and describe positions.” -MTH 0-17a

“I am developing problem-solving strategies, navigation and co-ordination skills, as I play and learn with electronic games, remote control or programmable toys.” -TCH 0-09a

Overall, today’s session was very good for us to get a deeper insight to the Curriculum and the experiences and outcomes. I personally feel that using the BeeBot for both literacy and numeracy lessons is fun however, there is also great amounts of learning taking place. I will definitely be using this in the classroom in the future.

References

Janka, P. (2008) Using a Programmable Toy at Preschool Age: Why and How [Online]. Available from: http://www.terecop.eu/downloads/simbar2008/pekarova.pdf [Accessed: 16 January 2018]

Kaur, K. (n.d). Benefits of bee bots in classroom. [Online]. Available from: http://beebotsed.weebly.com/benefits-of-bee-bots-in-classrooms.html [Accessed: 16 January 2018].

NCTE (National centre for Technology in Education) (2012) NCTE Floor Robots – Focus on Literacy & Numeracy. [Online]. Available from: http://www.ncte.ie/media/NCTE_Floor_robots_focus_on_literacy_numeracy_primary_12-06.pdf [Accessed: 16 January 2018].

 

Digital Technologies Week 1

Today’s class was an introduction to the digital technologies module. We discussed the definition of digital technology and what will be covered throughout the module, we reflected upon our own skills with regards to technology and explored Glow. Firstly, we reflected upon our own technology and digital skills whereby we marked down how confident we […]

Today’s class was an introduction to the digital technologies module. We discussed the definition of digital technology and what will be covered throughout the module, we reflected upon our own skills with regards to technology and explored Glow.

Firstly, we reflected upon our own technology and digital skills whereby we marked down how confident we felt within different areas of technology. By marking a one, that indicated that the area within technology was a particular strength. However, when marking a five it indicated that the area of technology was an area for development. This allowed us to highlight our strengths and weaknesses with regards to technology.

We looked at and discussed “Enhancing learning and teaching through the use of digital technology” in depth to evaluate the importance of digital technology within education. It explained many key messages that described how vital digital technology is within the curriculum. The document highlighted that the Scottish Government is devoted to embedding digital technology into the curriculum and for young people to receive the full benefit of technology. It also shows that digital technology has been proven to raise children’s attainment and enhance learning and teaching for them.

Finally, we navigated our way around Glow in order to become more familiar with some of the features that are available. We added tiles to our own personal launch pads that will be useful to us as student teachers and as we progress after university.

To conclude, today’s input was very useful and informative. It gave us a clear insight into the digital technologies module and allowed us to analyse our own digital skills. It also gave us the opportunity to have a look at an academic source to evaluate how important digital technology is within the Scottish curriculum and navigate around Glow. I believe that this module will be enjoyable and beneficial to me and allow me to develop my digital skills.

References

Scottish Government (2016) Enhancing learning and teaching through the use of digital technology. [Online]. Available from: http://moodle.uws.ac.uk/pluginfile.php/391375/mod_resource/content/2/Digital%20Learning%20and%20Teaching%20Strategy%20.pdf

Digital Technologies Week 1

During this class I have further explored the meaning of digital technology. At the beginning of the period we looked into the module handbook and assignments so that we are aware of what it will involve. I was able to explore the meaning of definition of digital technology throughout the session and I know its … Continue reading “Digital Technologies Week 1”

During this class I have further explored the meaning of digital technology. At the beginning of the period we looked into the module handbook and assignments so that we are aware of what it will involve. I was able to explore the meaning of definition of digital technology throughout the session and I know its key objectives as stated by The Scottish Government (2016) are to improve the skills the teachers have, develop the possibility of a wider connection with the world, boost curriculum and assessment distribution and empower the leaders of change. The use of digital technology such as computers, tablets, games or programable toys are an interesting way to make education a lot more interactive and ‘makes learning more fun’ for the children but one of the possible problems that may appear, which personally I found quite unexpected, is that a lot of teachers don’t have the skills and knowledge about the items to be able to use in their classroom (The Scottish Government, 2016).

The Scottish Government (2016) Enhancing learning and teaching through the use of digital technology [online] Available from- : http://moodle.uws.ac.uk/pluginfile.php/391375/mod_resource/content/2/Digital%20Learning%20and%20Teaching%20Strategy%20.pdf [Accessed 9th January 2017]

 

Digital Technologies – Week 1 09/01/18

Within my first class of Digital Technologies we focused on what digital technology is, along with identifying our strengths and things we wish to expand our knowledge on throughout this module.  Within class we read “Enhancing learning and teaching through the use of digital technology” which was published by the Scottish Government in 2016.  We […]

Within my first class of Digital Technologies we focused on what digital technology is, along with identifying our strengths and things we wish to expand our knowledge on throughout this module.  Within class we read “Enhancing learning and teaching through the use of digital technology” which was published by the Scottish Government in 2016.  We also spent time looking on Glow, which was very beneficial as Glow Blogs are a key aspect to completing this module successfully.

Before this class, my idea of digital technology was vague and I mostly associated it with all being online, however I now have the understanding that there are many more different aspects to it.  For example, Bee-bots are educational and a useful form of digital technology.  I also found out different facts about digital technology that I did not previously know, such as how it helps to increase levels of attainment and
close the attainment gap.  Due to this, I feel as though this module has been beneficial for my learning already as my understanding of what digital technology is has increased.  To be able to identify our progress at the end of the module we highlighted aspects we felt we were and were not most confident in, or had never worked with before.  This gave me a good opportunity to think about what I need to work on most and what different forms of digital technology I will be working on in upcoming weeks.

The Scottish Government (2016) highlighted four main objectives that they wish to carry out to ensure digital technology helps children in all aspects of the curriculum.

  • Develop the skills of educators
  • Improve access
  • Empower leaders
  • Enhance curriculum and assessment delivery

I feel as though these points are very important as if teachers are not comfortable working with digital technology themselves, then they will lack confidence and find it hard to engage children in their lessons.  Therefore, teachers being given the appropriate training means they will be able to highlight the positive effect digital technology has on children and from this they may themselves take great enjoyment in creating lessons for all areas throughout the curriculum.  Ninety-two children between ages eight to eleven consulted with the children’s parliament, during this they talked about how learning with technology is fun.  Therefore, through teachers incorporating technology into the curriculum where appropriate, children will be more interested and focused as they are learning through something they take an interest in.  From this, I have been able to identify the importance of teacher knowledge on digital technology, therefore I am satisfied that I choose this module as I feel as though it will increase my confidence in relation to teaching with technology in future years.

We also spent time navigating glow and adding tiles onto our launch pads, this allowed me to identify useful tiles for just now whilst studying and also for future years of being a teacher.  I found this time very important as reflecting through Glow Blogs is essential within this module, therefore exploring the site made me more confident with using it.

Overall, the first class of the module Digital Technologies enabled my understanding of what digital technology is to be expanded, as well as giving me the time to explore different books and Glow.  I am pleased that I choose this module as already I have been made aware of how important it is for educators to be confident in teaching with technology.  Therefore, through this module I am hopeful that my confidence and skills with using digital technology will increase.

 

References:

The Scottish Government (2016) Enhancing learning and teaching through the use of digital technology [Moodle Resource] Available: Digital Technologies module on Moodle. [Accessed: 09/01/18]