The Growth of Enterprise Pedagogy: How ICT Policy is infected by Neo- liberalism

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Many people associated with the educational system have the view that ICT use is the new best thing and it will solve many future problems in the world. This is all true however the article explains other reasons that conflict this main idea. The growth of ICT is far more problematic than is typically acknowledged by the proponents of the so-called digital age.

‘A generation of children have become the unwitting participants in what can only be described as a huge social experiment’ (Armstrong &Casement, 1998,p.2).

When I first read this statement I completely understood it and believed it. So much money has been put forward by the government to supply schools with computers and other technology, but with so little serious evaluation. If I was to suggest a solution relating to this underlying issue, it would be for individual schools to investigate the change an ICT research has on the student’s grades. For example if in the new year the school plans to bring IPads into the classroom as teaching resources, have a study ready to analyse the effects it has. Simply have before and after results. I wanted to look further into this statement because surely somebody has investigated and had proof of the positive results ICT use can have on a classrooms results! I found an article on http://www.mff.org/pubs/ME161.pdf. It included 6 summaries of investigations that had been conducted. For example one of the studies was conducted by James Kulik. He used a research technique called meta-analysis to aggregate the finding of more than 500 individual research studies of computer based instruction. He found:

  • On, average students using computer based instruction scored at the 64th percentile on tests of achievement, compared to students in the controlled conditions of learning who scored in the 50th percentile.
  • Students learn morein less time when they receive computer based instructions.
  • Students like their classes more and develop a more positive attitude when their class involves computer bases learning.

These finding are proof that there is research out there that shows technology has a positive impact on many students in schools.

Brown, M. (2005).  The Growth of Enterprise Pedagogy: How ICT Policy is Infected by Neo-Liberalism. Australian Educational Computing, 16-22.

http://web1.broulee-p.schools.nsw.edu.au/groups/mallee/weblog/4eca3/images/42738.png_

A bridge too far? Explaining beginning teachers’ use in Australian Schools

GA_PRICTHeaderImage__1ICT use in the classroom is now days a very popular tool to help children engage in material that they are learning. Because it is a ‘new’ aspect of classroom life I see how it is necessary to educate those teachers who have been teaching in the classroom for 30+ years on how to correctly utilise it. Many teachers who are from an older generation struggle to even use computers let alone electronic whiteboard and Ipads! To ensure this happens I would suggest the school does a course maybe once a year for those teachers who struggle. The problem does not stop there, as well as not being able to use the technology some teachers will struggle how to use the technology effectively. There is no point using an Ipad in your classroom if the students are learning nothing from it. As said in previous blogs, in order for technology to effectively be used the teachers must combine knowledge of the content, knowledge of teaching and knowledge of the technology. If this guide is used technology use will be a success. Again this method could be shown to teachers during a course.

Teachers who have been teaching for 30+ years sometimes have the attitude that ICT is too difficult to use and not reliable enough, so therefore they just do not use it all together. This can have a major impact on the children in the classroom. Because technology is such a big part of our lives now and will most likely be used in future jobs, for example, when it is not used in the classroom children do not get to experience the use of it. I know I learnt the majority of my computer skills in primary school. It is very important to gain these skills from a young age. If ICT is not used it can also effect those kinaesthetic learners (those who find it hard to stay on topic for a long time). ICT is huge teaching tool for these types of learners as it helps them engage in what they are doing and keep them on topic. If ICT is not used these children could struggle to learn the content.

Bate, F. (2010) A bridge too far? Explaining beginning teachers’ use of ICT in Australian schools. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology, 26(7).

Blog week 3- Why mobile technology makes sense in the 21st century classroom

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‘Teaching and learning is an interesting space right now’. The first statement of this article pretty much sums up my reaction to the paper. Reading this article has leaded me to deeply analyse the advantages and disadvantages of using mobile technology in schools. Honestly I would say prior to reading it I was quite anti technology, but after reading the article it has persuaded me to think otherwise. Here is how my train of thought appeared:

Disadvantages of using smart phones in schools-

  • The BYOT (bring your own technology) method could be a problem for those who financially cannot afford the technological device required. This could lead to things such as low self esteem.
  • When technology is used in the classroom it is often left up to the student to drive their own learning. Are students mature enough to be left to their own devices like this? Will work still be completed?
  • It’s about pedagogy first, technology second. Some teachers may not know how to effectively use the smart phones in a classroom and their use may just be a waste of time.
  • When students have their own device to access social networking sites, cyber bullying can be a big issue for children.

Advantages of using smart phones in schools-

  • Because of the lifestyle children are brought up in, the use of mobile devices like iPads taps into students preferred styles of learning and suits their interests. This will make students more likely to engage in the topic being studied, therefore in taking information.
  • Smart phones and tablets are flexible. For example students can investigate topics further and revisit learning if needed. This is very beneficial for study techniques before tests and exams.
  • Mobile technology is more convenient to use than laptops and PC’s because they are smaller, and more convenient to carry around.  For example most people would take majority of their photos on their smart phone because it is always easy to carry with them.
  • Using smart phones in schools allows us to teach children to have digital literacy skills, and be safe and responsible online. Quote from the article; ‘It is like expecting our young people to be safe and competent drivers on the road, but not allowing them to drive a car’.

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I agree with the statement in the article; ‘Dealing with some of the negative uses far outweighs the disadvantages’. There are so many positive ways smart phones can be utilised in classrooms. Time Magazine (2012) revealed a study that showed students that used mobile technology (iPads) in the classroom scored better in literacy tests than those that did not. Saying all this technology will be necessary for most job situations in their future lives. It is necessary they learn the skills to correctly use them early in their life rather than later.

Isard, J. (2012) Why mobile technology makes sense in the 21st Century classroom. The Professional Educator

http://techbeat.com/2012/10/using-tablets-atschool/

http://blog.compete.com/2011/09/13/backpacks-get-lighter-while-ebook-retailer-wallets-get-heavier/

Blog week 2- Too cool for school? No way!

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What do you refer to as ‘technology’? I know, as an 18 year old, I would suggest technology would be items such as ipads, laptops, and video cameras… but is that really all? The Mishra and Koehler article made me realise that technology does not just refer to the things that were created after I was born, it refers to anything artificial. For example pencils, analogue clocks and handbags were all new technology once upon a time. Wanting to look further into this theory I looked up a dictionary definition of the word ‘technology’. According to dictionary.refrence.com technology is ‘the branch of knowledge that deals with the creation and use of technical means and their interrelation with life, society, and the environment, drawing upon such subjects as industrial arts, engineering, applied science, and pure science’. This definition proves this theory is correct as well as briefly describing how technology could be used to stimulate ones education.

Not knowing how to use a certain item of technology effectively in a classroom is very similar to a mathematician not having the teaching skills to teach his very knowledgeable content in a classroom. In order for technological devices to be a positive learning device, teachers must understand how it can be used correctly. The article states that if you use the TPACK method, technology in the classroom can easily be an effective learning recourse. TPACK stands for combining technology knowledge, Pedagogical knowledge, and content knowledge to create a method used by teachers that guides them to correctly use technology in the classroom. I believe this is very important because I can think of much too many example of incorrect technology use in schools. The method will eliminate technology constraints, and will continue to transform technology into useful classroom aids.

Mishra, P. and Koehler, M. (2009). Too Cool For School? No Way! Learning and Leading with Technology. International Society for Technology in Education.

1. Bubbl.us – a brainstorming creator

2. WordPress – website and blog developer.

3. Wolfram Alpha – information search tool.

4. Prezi – Like a Powerpoint but on the internet. More interactive using zoom. Can add audio (you’re talking aswell as background music). Children love it, you could make one to stimulate student or you could get students to make one of there own (much more engaging than power point).

5. Survey monkey – create surveys that could be used in the classroom e.g. feedback on lessons. make sure questions are relevant to age.

6. pixlr – a photo editor very similar to Photoshop. features are free.

7. creative commons – gain non copyright images.

8. voci

9. google news archives can be used to find articles from before a certain date. Eg. Type in your birthdate and see what was happening 30 years before you were born.

10. sportsplan

11. text2mindmap

‘Digital Native’- Week 1

There is a growing body of evidence that makes the notion ‘digital native’ a little more complex, and highlights the complexities of young people’s technology experiences. I agree with this point in the article and feel the term ‘digital native’ is just assumed by many people. Yes, the younger generation would have more of an upbringing in technology and a better idea of how to use different technological devices, but there are many baby boomers, for example, that are very good with computers. What would they be labeled? From my experiences I feel that ‘digital native’ is used as an excuse for many older people. They sometimes feel as if they have no chance at learning new things about technology because it is something that only the younger generation participates in.

Another point that I would like to make, is that technology can negatively influence a child learning, as well as positively improve it. For example, the use of spell check now on phones and computers can allow children to think that they do not need to know how to spell correctly because the computer will fix errors they make. I believe this is not a good attitude to display. On a positive note using technology can enhance learning by all the different influential programs that can make learning basic things a more realistic approach because they can see how it may help them later on in life.