Saturday, April 5, 2014

Technology Tools to Support High Yielding Teaching Strategies

This semester of the Instructional Technology & Digital Media Literacy program I am enrolled in ED7726, Teaching, Learning, and Assessing in the Digital Era. As my first assignment, I am learning about high yield teaching strategies presented by Dr. Robert Marzano and John Hattie. Dr. Marzano’s research identifies nine highly effective teaching strategies that educators can use in the classroom. Marzano is clear that these strategies are not the only effective teaching strategies available to teachers, but should be included in a teacher’s repertoire of teaching strategy tools.  The strategies are known are the Marzano 9 and are divided into three categories. Strategies 1-3 are strategies that will help students learn by creating an environment of learning, strategies 4-6 helps students develop understanding, strategies 7-9 will help students  extend and apply knowledge.  Marzano’s 9 strategies are:
  • (1) Setting Objectives and Providing Feedback
  • (2) Reinforcing Effort and Providing Recognition
  • (3) Cooperative Learning
  • (4) Cues, Questions, and Advanced Organizers
  • (5) Nonlinguistic Representations
  • (6) Summarizing and Notetaking
  • (7) Homework and Practice
  • (8) Identifying Similarities and Differences
  • (9) Generating and Testing Hypotheses

John Hattie research offers teachers several strategies for improving instruction and student achievement. He organizes the strategies by their effectiveness. These include:
  • showing what success looks like (modeling)
  • not labeling students
  • exposing students to examples and models 3 to 4 times not at once but during a period of time and varying the strategy used (modeling and practice)
  • teaching at a high level or accelerated pace
  • self and peer reflection  to improve instruction

My first assignment was to select technology that supports high yielding teaching and learning.  I began planning a unit in which students will create a book trailer of a book of their choice. The students’ objective is to create a visually appealing and informative book trailer to entice others to want to read the book.  This lesson addresses the following CCSS:

As I planned and developed this unit, I looked for opportunities to use technology to help students achieve the task.  The technology tools I selected are  Thinglink, Animoto, Screencast-o-matic, and Google image for searching.   I feel these technology tools will support the high yield teaching strategies I’ve identified and included in my book trailer unit. These technologies will support the high yield strategies I’ve incorporated in the unit.

At the onset of the project, students should be shown models of good book trailers. This will help students identify the characteristics of a good book trailer.  

Graphic organizers will help students plan their book trailers.  The story’s events can be identified and organized to help students organize and sequence the events. CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.6.3.  Planning begins with a graphic organizer. This will allow students to identify images and events to include in their book trailers. The website provides many graphic organizers that will help students idenfity and organize story events.  Animoto, a slideshow generator, will allow students organize and sequence digital images as they build their book trailers. Modeling these technologies is essential for students to successfully use the tools. Screen capturing software, such as screencast-o-matic, can be used to create tutorials on how to use the tools to accomplish the task. This is my Animoto tutorial.  Tutorials can help students revisit instruction and can provide additional support for students who need it.  As teachers assess their student’s progress, they can have students revisit a tutorial for additional support.  

Having students find pictures and illustrations to demonstrate their learning will engage students by making learning personal and meaningful. CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.6.2.a  Selecting appropriate pictures and illustrations to convey a message that furthers the understanding is a desired learning outcome of this unit.  Students must develop an understanding of how images can represent a thought and help convey the thought.  Practicing this skill is essential to helping students identify appropriate pictures and illustrations for their book trailer.   Thinglink is a tool that can help students practice associating images with ideas and thoughts.  Teachers can share an image and students can identify related ideas. Using screencast-o-matic, I developed a Thinglink tutorial for students to use.

Hattie identifies reflection and self assessment as an effective method of improving teaching.  Opportunities to discuss and share outcomes amongst peer is a very powerful strategy teachers can implement.   Reflecting on how well the objectives and standards of the unit were met will help teachers make necessary adjustments to the unit. Similarly, student self assessment  and reflection is a powerful way for students to learn.

This assignment asked to identify technology that would support high yielding teaching strategies.   Technology is a tool that can help improve student learning. Teachers should look for opportunities to integrate technology in their teaching to support student learning. 

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