Self Organised Learning Environment (SOLE)

A couple of years ago I watched a TED talk presentation ‘The Child-driven Education‘ by Dr. Sugata Mitra, about an experiment he devised that showed that children can and do learn about a subject or technology without the need of formal instruction or guidance from a teacher. This was called ‘the hole in the wall’ experiment. Dr.Mitra had a computer with internet set up in a wall of a slum in India and left it there for children to notice and explore with their peers. What happend was amazing. The children worked out how to use the PC and internet through learning and collaborating with each other. This experiment led Dr Sugata to develop SOLE, a learning cloud for children anywhere in the world to learn through a line of inquiry. Schools across the world have joined this ‘School in the Cloud’ where the students work out answers for themselves about questions posed within small collaboration groups. These small groups work togther searching the internet to answer their question. The groups are also encouraged to assist other groups. The teacher’s role within this learning environment is to let the children come to their own conclusion. After the reasearch is conducted, groups then present their findings to their class mates. This form of learning gives students agency over their learning. Thanks, Fiona.


The Arts and ICTS

When incorporating ICTS into the arts into the curriculum, it is always worth while to see what’s happening at your local art gallery or museum. Often these public art spaces put on educational and fun interactive exhibitions specifically catered to children.The Ipswich Art Gallery often exhibits interactive and virtual art axperiences for children of all ages to explore and learn. The ‘hands on’  and often digital experiences created are designed to engage  the children’s interests in a new or little exposed subject area. There’s a virtual music concert exhibition on at the moment! It’s called ACO Virtual.The Thanks, Fiona.

Flipped Classes and Doodlecast

Yesterday whilst researching some ICT ideas for Prep and the lower primary setting, I started to feel quite underwhelmed. It seemed like much of the ICTS that ‘enriches’ student learning were geared more toward year 3 grade level or above. For example I came across a term, ‘flipped classroom‘. A Flipped class is when the teacher uploads the lesson and tips to help with the learning online. Students then access and view  the recording  outside of school, at home or anywhere if they have a mobile device then come into class and work on their home work and assignmnents collaboratively. Sounds very much like the university stucture of learning to me. Flipped classes have really exploded in the USA. Many schools are now opting to teach via this method. See this vieo here for more information on it. Whilst this is all great, it is aimed at upper primary and high school students. After some more online searching I did finally come by a really interesting app for ipads called Doodlecast Pro, a piece of software used to integrate students learning with ICTS and it’s appropiate for lower primary classes! View this video on how it  can work within a lower primary setting here. Thanks Fiona:)


Starting point for gathering information


After searching  online: integrating ICTS in teaching and learning,  I found some interesting and relevant information from the University of Sydney- ICT resources for graduate teachers . There’s quite a lot of relevant and useful information in a broard sense. Kind of like a starting point for pre-service teachers to get their heads around some ideas or concepts of ICTs and how to implement ICTS in the classroom in meaningful ways to enhance learning. I located some information on ‘Mobile Learning’, a brief definition of what mobile learning is: teaching and learing with the use of moblie technologies, for example ipads. The information also explains that this can bebroken into two components: learner mobility, meaning that students and teachers can use and access the learing on a mobile device which means that they can be at home, on public transport, at a library etc, not confined to the classroom to learn. Mobile device– the use of lap tops, mobile phones, ipods, ipads etc to access the learning and or to create learning. Thanks, Fiona:)



‘Goodish practice’ isn’t good enough

As part of this course we are to think and to challenge our ideas of integrating ICTs into learning so that it enriches and transforms students learning. I have been guilty of thinking that ‘goodish pactice’ is good enough. I will elaborate. I have used Youtube clips, visited web sites and diplayed it to a class on a smart TV and have used Power Point presentations as part of my lesson plans. Fellow edc 3100 student and blogger Jess also expressed similar teaching experiences with the use of ICTS during past practicums and how the ICTS used simply ‘amplified or replaced’ exisiting recources rather than enriched the overall learning. Simply watching a Youtube clip or having students take digital photos instead of drawing their subject isn’t enriching or transforming their learning. ‘Goodish practice’ really isn’t good enough. This morning I watched the Red Balloon School for teaching English Youtube clip “Grammar cops” (viewed in week 3 of the Learning Path) view the video here. I was inspired! I saw authentic learning occuring and the use of ITC was integral to the overall learning.  Thanks, Fiona



I love to Pinterest

After browsing my peers blogs, I came by learningtoteach101 (cool name for a blog) and in her blog she talks about her love of Pinterest. How wonderful is this social media and resource sharing website?! It contains seemingly endless ‘pins’ and ‘boards’ of ideas, pictures and videos that people collect to  share with others from anywhere in the world. Pinterest is pretty awesome!  In fact I used pinterest semester two last year whilst on my first primary prac in a prep classroom. I created a maths rotation activies board suitable for prep age children.I will be going on Pinterest in the near future to get ideas and inspiration for teaching in a year 1 setting for my next prac. Thanks, Fiona:)


Are you Kiddling me?

Safe search engines for children are high on many of my fellow blogging students minds and so it should be. Afer reading Mr Clancy’s post that mentions ‘kiddle’, a safe search engine for kids, I was intrigued. I had to find out more about this site claiming to be  ‘Google for kids’ when I know of and use Google Junior.

Kiddle‘ apparently is a safe search engine designed for safe internet use for children to use and made by Google. As it turns out, that’s exactly what ‘Kiddle’ want users to think! This search engine is NOT created by Google and has NO association to the mega corporation.I did a simple ‘Google’ search to find this out. Have a look at this UK newspaper, Mirror article’What the Kiddle?‘ Here. So what is a ‘safe’ internet search engine? Try Google Junior? At least Google Junior is associated with Google and indeed owned by Google. It took some time to find out who is behind the child safe search engine. Her name is Panvi Diwanji, VP for Engineering at Google.