Saturday, October 30, 2010

Thank you Jeff Utecht

I had the pleasure of attending an SAI 21st Century Learning training last Monday with guest presenter Jeff Utecht. I wanted to share my learning with teachers in real time, so I took notes on our shared wiki. I was really tickled that several teachers did check in during their planning time and sent e-mail comments to me regarding the notes. As we continue our journey in developing our professional learning network, sharing information and communicating effectively and efficiently continues to seem like information overload for many educators. So, here are the major points from the workshop.

A New Learning Landscape is Developing
  • We live in a society that is always on. We discussed the rescue of the miners in Chile. People could see this anywhere in the world for free via the internet. When did we, as a society, expect this access? At the movies, they don't tell people to turn their cell phones off, but to put them on vibrate. The shift has happened that people will be connected. We blame kids for always being on their cell phone, but it's a shift in society.
  • Seniors today (born in 1993) will never know a time without internet. By 1996, mobile computing/palm pilot has come out. This is the world that they've gown up in.
  • Is there another generation that has created their own global language (shorthand in texting)?
  • By 1999, the first iPod comes out. Our kids will always know digital music - won't know tapes, or even CDs.
  • By 2001, wikipedia comes out. Many kids will never have an entire set of encyclopedias.
  • By 2003, Skype comes out and they'll never have a long-distance bill.
  • By 2005, YouTube redefines media
  • By 2006, kids are called the MySpace, and then the Facebook generation.
  • 500 million users are on Facebook - They went from 400,000 to 500,000 users in under 100 days. This is how the world is. You can either block it or embrace it.
  • Book: Millennials Rising. We're in the middle of an education revolution. There are 300,000 more incoming freshmen across America than the year before. Suicide rates are at an all time low. They believe it's their environment and they're going to fix it. They believe we screwed it up and they're going to fix it. Homocide, violent crimes, and abortion are at an all time low.
  • Digital Natives born 1976-1991 - This is the hardware generation. They grew up with "the stuff" - Atari, computers, the first Nintendo. This time period was when all of the hardware was made. People born in this timeframe are good with the hardware. They can program the blinking lights on the VCR because they're not afraid of pushing buttons on the remote.
  • Web Natives born 1991-2007 -  They don't always know the hardware side of things. They don't always organize their files with folders like the Digital Natives. They are constantly on the web.
  • Mobile Natives 2007-??? - (2007 is the first year that the iPhone came out). These kids will change schools. They live in a time where laptop computers have always outsold desk top computers. They are expected to use the trackpad/touchpad, and the mouse is hard for them (kindergarteners). This generation will expect to be mobile. Go to a computer lab? What's that? They expect to be mobile.
  • 66% of text messages during school comes from parents
  • Idea: Work Life vs. Social Life. There used to be a clear line between our work life and our social life. That line is now blurred. We now answer e-mail at home, send text messages from home, etc. School life and social time - schools are still trying to keep a clear line, when society isn't as much. Should schools be understanding that homework can be done a different way? Should we be blurring these lines?
  • Can students multi-task? Are they able to listen to music, talk, text, and do homework at the same time? Possibly it depends on the level of cognitive work that we're asking them to do. If they are doing low-level tasks, they probably can multi-task with some of these other things and still accomplish their work. 100 questions instead of 50 questions doesn't make something hard, just tedious and boring.
  • Constuctivism - our learning theory
  • Connectivism - an extension of our learning theory "Learning occurs within shifting environments, not entirely under the control of the individual." Examples - Chilean Mine; Oil Spill
  • Bloom's Revised Taxonomy - "Create" is at the top at the pyramid. Create - Evaluate - Analyze - Apply - Understand - Remember. What about kids who jump straight to create without going through the other phases? Are we scaffolding these skills in schools? - "My kids do good stuff, they made a video." Yeah, but did they analyze, etc. along the way?
  • Today's Digital World - Includes: Global Connections, Social Connections, Access to Information

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