Monday, December 17, 2012


My personal theory on how individuals learn is based off my observations of other educators during my education as a student and my six years of classroom experience as a teacher.  I believe students learning potential is obtained when you design lessons that challenge learners of all cognitive levels. Lesson design should spark student interest, fun and engaging and connect with real world application.  Successful lessons should incorporate 21st Century Technology; have a healthy balance of lecture / demonstration and engaging assignments or projects.  Lessons that apply multiple layers of learning experiences will strengthen the individual ability to retain and recall the information discussed (Laureate Education, Inc. 2010).  This course has given me opportunity to revisit theories that I learned during my undergraduate classes and learn about new technologies that can help students’ bridge the gap to the 21st Century work force.
Looking back at the technology discuss in this course compared to the technology that I currently use in my routines and lessons, I really don’t the overwhelming need to update my resources. Resources like Voicethread are great for allowing student to discuss the assignment digitally from any location around the world with internet connection. This technology can be used in a classroom room setting or in industry.  Personally, I can see the benefits of using Voicethread, but I’m not in a hurry to make the conversion from PowerPoint and an open discussion format. I believe today’s students are digitals natives and are very experienced with communicating with others via social media outlets, cell phones and emails.  I believe at this young age, students should still learn to communicate in person and
Another resource that I may incorporate in my lessons is “Virtual Field Trips”. Using the online resource to organize the information, students can develop “Virtual Field Trips” ranging from architecture to power tool safety tips and educational videos.  This gives the students the opportunity to exposure new technology and documents their findings in a presentation type format.

Long term goals: I will continue to use all to the technology that I currently have available in my classrooms. If new technology is presents, such as Voicethread, I will determine if my students can benefit from the technology or if the reward is worth the effort in converting to the new technology.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Social Learning in the Classroom

Social Learning in the Classroom
Dr. Orey stated that Social Learning Theory has students engaging in constructing artifices and conversing with others helps maximize the learning experience (Laureate Education, 2010). I would have to agree with Dr. Orey’s view after reviewing my classroom operations and teaching styles.  Majority of my classes allow from the students to learn from my lecture and demonstrations and apply them to the various assignments and physical projects.  Allowing students to engage in conversations amongst each other to solve problems is beneficial in multiple ways. While developing problem solving and communication skills, it also allows focus on more the needy students or overall flow of the classroom.

Today in my wood working class, I opened the class with today’s objectives and building procedures for the tool box project.  I provided several of the advanced students with instruction with the next stage of the assignment. At the end of the instruction, I told them that they will be expected to instruct the other students “how to” complete the next stage in the building process and demonstrate what the procedure.  The classroom slowly turns into a student driven environment and overseen by me.

Laureate Education, Inc. (2010). Social Learning Theories. Baltimore, MD



VoiceThread is online media is an online collaboration resources that has the ability to transform traditional classroom projects into online learning experiences that can be access anywhere around the world.   The instructor or student has the ability to load a document, voice recording or video and allow from feedback or collaboration from others.  VoiceTread is a great tool if internet and computer resources are available and easily accessible.
VoiceTread can be incorporated into Career and Technical Education (CTE) but it might require some creative thinking to incorporate the technology.  The project that I feel can use the VoiceThread technology would be my Woodworking “Catapult” project.  During the course of the project, I have the student’s research different designs and sketch various versions (catapult and trebuchet).  Students could upload their images, then collaborate with their peers on which design would produce the best siege machine and why.  Once the collaborating is complete, they can produce presentation of the design they chosen and explain why their design is worthy.
During the group collaboration, the instructor and review the information being discussed and provide feedback. This virtual document can also be used as notes or a future presentation. Overall, I think VoiceThread and bring life to an exhausted lesson and provide students to 21st Century Technology skills.

Reverse Engineering the "Tool Box" project: