Category Archives: 1.2 Integrity

Enhancing Digital Technology

Would you accept children being failed to be educated on maths or language?  Although they are being brought up/growing up surrounded by it and to have a successful, positive experience within and out with school they must have developing knowledge and skills of these subjects.  I’m assuming your answers would be no, therefore, why do you sit back and accept the fact the majority of children are being failed to be educated on technology.  Why is this the case when children are completely surrounded by digital content whether that’s; television, mobile phones, games, tablets, kindles, laptops…etc.  These are all digital tools which children will see within their everyday life yet it gets pushed away within the classroom.  By doing so children are merely consuming the content of the TV, game, kindle etc. rather than learning about HOW the content is created, why do we not teach children these skills and promote the creation to allow children ownership of what they are growing up admiring.

When exploring the different website’s Derek shared with us my brother was sitting in his bedroom playing Minecraft in his own little bubble.  My brother is someone who loves to learn, as soon as he finds something he is interested in he researches it meaning he knows SO much about Minecraft where he has a number of books he’s read inside out, a huge youtube playlist with a number of videos of Minecraft and a notebook with a number of notes he’s taking when watching his friends play Minecraft.  My brother is 9 years old.  If someone this young is so interested in learning about this game it would make perfect sense if he was taught a little about it.  Therefore I sat with him and we went through the website  which explains how Minecraft is coded.  He was stunned at how HE could code and make the game work exactly like it does when he plays it.  He was so engrossed in the whole process that he completed all the challenges and watched every single video intently.  Seeing him so inspired and enthusiastic to create something which he and all his friends play every other day was very rewarding.  The next day I came downstairs to witness my brother sitting with 4 of his friends (of various ages and genders) going through the challenges learning how to code.  Honestly i was amazed and my eyes were opened to how much children are actually interested in the ‘behind the scenes’ of games they play.

After exploring coding and sharing it with my brother I showed him Mozilla and the features of X-Ray Goggles and Thimble.  We explored these together and learned how to use these together, it was a great experience as I realised he actually knew a lot more than me about digital tools  and he actually educated me on different factors as I was educating him.  During these activities I realised we were actually learning collaboratively as he and his friends were.  We were also sharing our; learning, knowledge and skills.  This highlighted to me that this could easily be adapted to a collegiate learning culture if it was introduced into schools.

In this video it is stated that learners are encouraged to take advantage of the opportunities offered by technologies and by doing so it will help raise attainment, ambition and opportunities.  This is stated for digital learning week however from this video it is clear this should be the case for the whole year through and when looking at the principles and practice of technologies this is also the case.  Angela Constance also discusses the fact that schools should embrace digital technologies and I think that with most/if not all schools have access to digital tools therefore we should continuously embrace this fact and take advantage of it.

As a developing student teacher I feel it is essential to reflect on how we are embracing digital technology within the classroom.  I think this is something which is advancing and improving within schools however I think it is essential that we introduce different ways of using and developing digital technology in teaching and learning.  As I stated before children are growing up surrounded by digital technology therefore I believe their interest and enthusiasm for using and learning about digital technology is there embedded in them, it is up to us as teachers to enhance this and take advantage of the children’s interests to allow teaching and learning to be the best it can be within the classroom.  I think there are many possibilities and opportunities when looking at technology and I am very excited to be part of the growing/developing teaching and learning of technologies.

 


The website’s I used to form these opinions are;

https://teach.mozilla.org/tools/

https://code.org/learn

http://www.gov.scot/Topics/Education/Schools/ICTinLearning/DLTStrategy

http://www.educationscotland.gov.uk/resources/d/digitallearningweek.asp?strReferringChannel=educationscotland&strReferringPageID=tcm:4-615801-64&class=l1+d86716

http://www.educationscotland.gov.uk/learningandteaching/curriculumareas/technologies/principlesandpractice/index.asp

 

 

Bloom’s Taxonomy

Tricia asked us as part of our questioning and discussion to come prepared to the second workshop with a context and questions to follow this context.  When looking at this I felt extremely nervous as it looked a lot more difficult than she had explained.  However as I got started it was such a straight forward, helpful aid to use which allowed me to think of very in depth questions that would make the children think and learn in a wider context than just the topic.  For this I chose children of primary 4/5 and a book called Wonder by R.J.Palacio which can link in with a variety of curricular areas.  I think this would be a wonderful class book to read together as a class as there are so many different learning points within the book.  This book can link to; language, health and wellbeing, religious and moral education, drama and art and design.  I used the Bloom’s Taxonomy to aid me in thinking of my questions and I found this the most helpful process for questioning.  It allows you to start off with simple, easy questions which you can come up with on the spot which you then take and explore deeper with the questions linking.

PBWorks (no date) Bloom’s Taxonomy (Revised) [online]. Available at: http://pcs2ndgrade.pbworks.com/f/1318607148/RBT.PNG (accessed 23/02/15)

RBT

Remembering – Ask the children;

  • Do they remember the key points in the chapter?
  • Do  they remember a time they felt the same way as some of the characters at these key points?
  • Do they remember ever experiencing anything that the similar to the key points?

Understanding – Do the children understand;

  • Bullying?
  • Exclusion?
  • That people are different i.e look different, have different personalities etc
  • That bullying etc. have an effect on other people as well not just the individual who is being bullied
  • Friendships and relationships- can be good and bad…

Applying – The children could put themselves in the position of either the main character or another character from the book, they could write a short story or produce a comic book strip (or something similar) which can show what is happening and how they are feeling about the situation as that person.

Analysing – The children could have a discussion where they can explore the reasons why certain people act/react differently.  Is it possible they’re doing so because their home life and experiences or because peer pressure from friends etc..

Evaluating – The children could put themselves in one of the characters positions and defend their actions which could bring a debate into their discussions.

Creating – The children could create; a comic book strip, story, piece of art, pivot animation or a range of other things which expresses their feelings and point of view of the book.  The children could then work in pairs to have 10 minutes to look and jot down questions they have.  They could then ask those questions and have a discussion with their partner exploring their thoughts and feelings.

 

We Need More!

Health and Wellbeing.

This is a subject which I strongly, strongly believe should be introduced more throughout every single year spent within school.  I understand that a lot will be covered within this as it is a main focus within the curriculum however personally I find that many teachers are too shy or uncomfortable with exploring some topics which arise in this area of the curriculum.  As a teacher I will ensure I’m a positive figure that children know they can approach when they have difficult questions or problems that they possibly don’t feel comfortable with taking to their friends or family.

Mental and Emotional Wellbeing is a subject I find isn’t explained as much as it should be in the primary school.  Children must understand that what they feel can take over their mental health if they don’t talk about it.  They must understand that it’s okay to feel a range of emotions but they should learn to overcome feelings which make them upset and unhappy to allow their mental health to stay strong.  They must be aware that support is available for them and that they are not alone!grass  Children must understand that building strong relationships impacts their mental health as I feel some children and even myself forget this/find this difficult to understand until things get tough.  Many children and adults think that being alone is what they need however it’s hard to understand how this affects your mental health until you experience it.  I think that this may be the case because it’s not explained enough by some teachers and parents which is why I’m excited to cover this area with the children in my classroom so I am able to make a change to their lives in the long run!

 

Social Wellbeing is something I wasn’t actually familiar with until this semester.  I think this is an area which is so important within the classroom as all pupils will be able to understand each other and communicate with each other and myself in respectful manners where they can explore opinions and views without causing distress to anyone.  This is so important for children to build and gain confidence within themselves which will strength their self worth.  Children will be able to gain a true sense of belonging as they will understand how important and special they are within their school and community.mind  I think this is one of the most important factors for young individuals as many of them won’t experience this in their home life where their confidence and self worth may be very low and due to this they will struggle to build strong relationships with others therefore it is essential they experience this and understand this through school.  I’m thrilled to be introducing/explaining this area within my own classroom as I will be making a huge change to each individual allowing them to feel good about themselves.

Physical Wellbeing is an area which I was so nervous to learn about as I felt it would be centred around physical exercise which I personally struggle with.  However learning and reading about physical wellbeing has made me more confident as there’s so much more to it than exercise.  It’s very important that children understand what is good/bad for their body and how this actually affects them.  When speaking to children and being surrounded by them I find that yes they understand what foods and drinks are good/bad however they don’t care.  I find that they don’t care because they don’t fully understand the consequences of them – which is why I’m looking forward to teaching them about this as it will inform them on areas which their family members or peers don’t know about.  It’s also so important for children to fully understand how to be safe and how to keep others safe when possible.

3 takes responsibility!

This is a prime example of why children need to understand how to be safe and what to do in a serious, unfortunate accident.  Most of the time children will be surrounded by one or more adults therefore if anything happens usually there’s someone to help.  However in the case of an extreme emergency where the responsibility falls upon the child they must have an understanding of what to do to allow their mental and emotional wellbeing remaining stable throughout the aftermath.

Overall I am looking forward to making a positive difference in many young individuals lives when teaching health and wellbeing.

Control, control, control…

As a pupil and a sibling I feel as though it’s often portrayed that teachers must be in control of the classroom and the children.  I always remember being in certain classes where my peers would have commented on the fact the teacher couldn’t control them therefore they would play up and misbehave.  I also remember my parents commenting on how certain teachers just have no control because they have no discipline within their classroom.  However this semester has really opened my mind to all these comments which I’ve been surrounded by.  As a teacher I am not controlling children therefore I’m not controlling the class.  As a teacher I will be (from day one) building positive, strong relationships with all the pupils in my class where we will gain mutual respect.  Yes there will be set out rules within the classroom however they will not be set in stone by myself as the classroom isn’t mine, it’s ours – mine and the pupils.  Boundaries must be set my myself as I am the teacher however in my experience children understand this and they actually want the teacher to have those set boundaries so they have a clear understanding of their expectations within the classroom which sets a positive atmosphere.  Children/pupils need a certain level of strictness within the classroom to allow them to feel safe and secure, this will allow positive attitudes from both myself and the pupils which then leads to positive behaviour.  Being a teacher isn’t about controlling your classroom, it’s about setting fair rules and boundaries with the pupils to allow; clear understanding, mutual respect, positive attitudes and positive behaviours which ultimately leads to a fantastic running classroom with a brilliant classroom ethos set by everyone within it.

3 actions for Social Studies

To develop my knowledge and skills in social studies I will have at least 3 actions which I can work on this semester and throughout my time in this course.

  1. I will ensure I get into the habit of being up to date with current news and weathnews-woodn-dice-depicting-letters-bundle-small-newspapers-leaning-left-dice-34802664er disasters to make sure I am prepared for any questions children in my class may have on current news and weather disasters.  If anything arises which I don’t fully understand or know much background in I can do a little research on the subject so I am prepared for discussions within the classroom.
  2. I will focus-history-book-words-45473373do more research on past events which are important topics within school as there are many which I will have forgotten or have never touched on throughout my own time in school.  I can keep a log of topics and research I do in this semester which I can then continue throughout my years in this course and as a teacher.
  3. I will research and find out more about the climate changes and the environmental differences in different countries which will give me a good foundation to start my research and learning on the area of people, place and environment.

climate-change-word-cloud-12343620

http://www.dreamstime.com/photos-images/news.html

SMART Science

Developing confidence and competence in science will take time, however by starting now will help ensure I’m excited and enthusiastic when the time comes for me to teach it within the classroom.

stock-photo-smart-specific-measurable-attainable-relevant-time-bound-goal-setting-concept-sketch-on-a-61714297

Here is my action plan for this semester;

  • Specific – We (as a class) can carry out a topic on The Solar System where a visit to the Glasgow Science centre would be appropriate as we could visit the planetarium.
  • Measurable – I will develop a lesson plan which I can photo graph and blog about.  This will be done when I learn how to lesson plan effectively.
  • Achievable – I will research into this using; websites, books, talking to family, friends and the teacher I will be working with on placement.  Due to this being a topic I enjoyed in school I have good knowledge which I can use with this topic.
  • Relevant – This is relevant for the children as the CFE areas which it would cover are; Space, Topical Science, Forces and Electricity and Waves.
  • Timed – By the end of this semester I will have my planned lessons and trip on a poster which I will then blog about.

This is something which I am excited to do and I will continue to use this method with other subjects.

 

http://www.glasgowsciencecentre.org/school-visit/planetarium-education-programme.html

5 Attributes..

These 5 attributes are some which I believe are very important in terms of being  teacher.

Integrity

Official definition; 1- The quality of being honest and having strong moral principles.

2- The state of being whole and undivided.

My view of this is:

 To be professional you must have integrity as it important to be open and honest with your class as they ask difficult questions or challenge your own person views.  It is being open to change with your techniques, attitudes and beliefs.  It is also being open and honest in terms of asking for help when it’s required or seeking advice on issues which you thought maybe didn’t go so well and there’s possibility for change.  It’s also using your own experiences to help within the school environment, whether it being in the classroom or in the staff room etc.  I think integrity is having the confidence and the courage to speak up when problems arise and support is essential.  It’s also having the confidence and courage to voice your views (appropriately and where necessary) on different topics which you teach with the children however doing it in a way in which you aren’t persuading the children to think the same way, making it clear that these thoughts are purely personal.

Patience

Official Definition: The capacity to accept or tolerate delay, problems, or suffering without becoming annoyed or anxious.

My view of this is:

To be a professional teacher you must have patience as it is important in all aspects of your job; within and out with the classroom.  Children will be very challenging with your patience as a teacher as some individuals will take longer to grasp certain aspects of the course where others will fly through certain work.  Also many children will challenge your patience as a teacher as they will become unmotivated and distracted easily where they won’t want to do their work therefore it is your responsibility to keep them on track.  However if a child continues to do this it will become very irritating and disruptive, being a professional with patience will allow you to deal with these situations appropriately.  Also within the staff room if a class with personalities occur patience is essential to avoid confrontation and allow a healthy, comfortable work environment.  Moving onto parents, having patience with parents is important as they should be comfortable with asking both simple and complex questions in which you have the patience to; answer, discuss and explain to them anything they may not understand.

Empathy

Official Definition: The ability to understand and share the feelings of another.

My view of this is:

To be a professional teacher it is important to have empathy as children will normally be more comfortable and work best when the teacher can relate to them.  It’s important when a child doesn’t understand the work given to them that you understand their struggle and you can relate to them as this will help you have the appropriate approach when discussing any issues with them.  Having empathy will also allow children to be more comfortable in exploring ideas where they’ll ask more questions and feel at ease when making mistakes that they can then learn from.  It is also important to have empathy when talking with parents if there has been an issue with their child.  It’s important to understand where the parent may be in terms of their emotions and their understanding of the issue which is of concern therefore it is essential to approach them with the appropriate manner.

Tolerance

Official definition; 1- The ability or willingness to tolerate the existence of opinions or behaviour that one dislikes or disagrees with.

 

2- the capacity to endure continued subjection to something such as a drug or environmental conditions without adverse reaction.

My view of this is:

Tolerance is very beneficial to a professional teacher as they will be challenged very single day where their tolerance within the classroom will be pushed to the limit.  Being a teacher is often a challenge where children’s behaviours can be very unruly and it is difficult to get them back on track with the appropriate behaviour.  Children will also have opinions on certain work where it’s possibly even the opinion of ‘what’s the point in this I’m never going to need this… I’m not doing this’ which proves to be a struggle when keeping children on task.  Therefore having tolerance is very significant.  It is needed in order to deal with situations without ‘loosing it’ and shouting at the children as this has no real benefit.  Having tolerance within the classroom will help to provide a happy, controlled and relaxing environment where tempers are kept at a minimum and children don’t waste their time ‘winding up’ their teacher.

Fairness

Official Definition: is the quality of making judgments that are free from discrimination.

My view of this is:

 

To be a professional teacher fairness is one of the most important attribute’s as each and every child should be treated with equal opportunities within the classroom.  Education is something which should be provided to all children will the same level of quality whether it be in a deprived area or a very developed area.  Whether a child comes from a rough/working class background or a wealthy/middle class background their education and the attitude shown from the teacher should be no different.  This is also important in terms of gender and ethnicity where a child should never be treated any different due to something which is out with their own control.  This is essential  for children to experience during school and it is essential for teachers to provide this to each child throughout their school experience where they should reinforce this to the children and stop any behaviour which shows any form of discrimination.