14 Replies Latest reply on Mar 31, 2016 6:17 AM by holmesg

    Let's Get Personal

    holmesg

      Adding technology tools to traditional models of learning will possibility produce better 'old' outcomes. So how do you move from the hype of implementing online tools to personalizing lessons for students? Tim Hudson believes the answer is less instructional time. Read the article by Tim Hudson and share your thoughts on why less instructional time will solve the math problem.

        • Re: Let's Get Personal
          holmesg

          The author began the article by providing statistics on student proficiency in math.  The statistics are alarming.  As I reflect back to my early years in school, I can remember being given projects and hands on activities to help up better understand math concepts.  What was most useful was the teacher step aside and allowed the students the time to master the concepts through the projects provided.  Like the author, I believe that if teachers give students less lecture and more time to engage in the concepts, more mastery learning will take place.

          • Re: Let's Get Personal
            glen_w

            I think "less time using direct instruction" and "more time allowing students to explain and explore" concepts is important. I have tried this with science and find students are able to demonstrate deeper thinking.

              • Re: Let's Get Personal
                holmesg

                @Glen,

                When students are given the opportunity to engage in exploratory learning, they learn much more than they would if the teacher lectured.  Here is an excellent discussion on exploratory learning environment and opening the opportunity for students to take charge in their learning.

                 

              • Re: Let's Get Personal
                iVelvet

                Let's face it. The attention span of our students is much smaller than it used to be before electronics and technology disrupted our world.  We need to be sure that our face to face sit and get is precise, to the point, and gives just enough knowledge for our students to take away and apply in a hands-on/real-world activity.  I truly believe that if it does not apply to their real world, many will not master it.  I love that the article points out the ownership of learning.  That is such an important piece as we facilitate our students.  Don't give the answers, let them struggle and then come to the answer on their own.  Ownership is key!  Thanks for sharing holmesg!

                  • Re: Let's Get Personal
                    holmesg

                    You are correct, the attention span of our children is very short.  If we consider the research, the average attention span varies around eight to ten minutes  ("Attention Span Statistics," 2015), (Richardson, 2010).   This means our lectures should last no longer than ten minutes and should be followed by interactive activities.

                      • Re: Let's Get Personal
                        iVelvet

                        I have worked with several teachers trying to "flip" their classroom and they record their 45 minute lectures.  YIKES!!  I really try to encourage them to chunk up their lessons, or to give some information, but not all of it.  It is good for students to get a basic idea and then learn more about it themselves.  Sometimes that is more meaningful.

                          • Re: Let's Get Personal
                            holmesg

                            iVelvet,

                            Maybe you can suggest that the teacher use the video as a follow up for students to use as needed to remember concepts, but not a 45 minute video lecture.  They turn off after the first 15 minutes and we are no different.

                            • Re: Let's Get Personal
                              glen_w

                              I agree that a 45 minute "flipped video" might be too much for ANY student to take in. I recommend teachers at my school chuck lessons into segments of ten minutes or less. Personally I find students seem to pay better attention to a short explanation. I also am impressed at how many students are then able to focus on an opportunity to demonstrate understanding after that.

                        • Re: Let's Get Personal
                          vkajones

                          On a personal note... answering this question...How is it that so many students across such a wide range of ages and achievement levels fail to understand and be confident in math?  I know my dislike for math or my confidence in math came from not really ever having a basic understanding of how the basic principals of math worked and or how math fit the big picture in the universe. It wasn't until I took a math class at UT that the aha lights went off in my brain. In elementary and especially high school it was really just memorization and studying to the test. No teacher had ever taken the time to connect math to real life situations or problems.  There was no connections.


                          When I started teaching it was not only my goal to make sure the basics were taught, but also to make sure that math was  connected to personal experiences. 


                          I love the Pizza Hut Blog that started this week where everyone is encourage to participate in a contest but the contest involved solving a real math problem. Not only is Pizza Hut making math fun, they have connected to the technology and social media.

                          • Re: Let's Get Personal
                            AnnemiekeA

                            Authentic learning and involving real-life problems in math works very well, but teachers need to be aware of the added challenges this (usually involving more text) approach may bring for students with reading or concentration difficulties. Real-life mathematical problems are best presented in a multi-sensory way, to keep everyone on board.

                            • Re: Let's Get Personal
                              mralsop

                              If the article means that we should be less didactic, I think it's correct.  This guy seems to have it cracked:

                              London maths teacher on shortlist for million dollar teaching prize | Education | The Guardian

                                • Re: Let's Get Personal
                                  holmesg

                                  I agree with you.  Didactic teaching is teacher focused.  When lessons are teacher focused, it is the teacher who learns from the research and preparation.  Assigning students authentic lessons that incorporates deeper thinking, research and problem solving will create future ready, well- prepared students.  Thanks for sharing the article.  It is heart warming to see teachers getting recognition for the hard work that they do.