Archive | June 2014

Play Is Essential for Preschool

I attended a meeting two weeks ago, and one of the topics was play versus academics in the early education environment.  We were asked to to stand to either side of the room with the headings being “Just Let Me Play” and “Academic Common Core Ready.”  I know that children lern through play and preschool students engage their whole body in play to understand the world around them.  The concern with that is children do not get outside to play like they did years ago creating fun with their environment.  This article brings to light what research states about threats to preschool play.  During the meeting, I chose to stand next to “Academic Common Core Ready,” because I believe you can balance the two by merging them together.  If play is planned with intentionality, students will learn academically through fun filled activities.

This entry was posted on June 23, 2014. 2 Comments

Top 10 Issues Facing Technology Usage in Society

This article highlights the top ten issues teachers are faced with when using technology in the educational setting.  Although this article doesn’t speak to this, however, parents and students are given rules on technology usage and must sign-off before they are released to utilize the Internet and computers in the educational setting.

Jeopardy Curation

Jeopardy Curation

Thanks to this technology class and my PKM System, take a look at the back wall. During this CD 11 class, technology was integrated to engage the students in a final class activity using a game of Jeopardy. The game was created highlighting four categories with five icons (answers) under each category. The students were throughly surprised, as was I because the game actually worked with music and the sound effects liked designed.  At the end they were all Jeopardy Champions!

Capturing Data

Capturing Data

This photo represents the data collected on 4-year olds at the end of the year using data the Desired Results Developmental Profile 2010 (DRDP-2010). Edwards (2014) states, “The data always show room for improvement, but the daily analysis fuels our commitment to improving student achievement and teacher effectiveness. Teachers in early care/education collect data twice a year using the DRDP-2010. By doing so it drives their instruction and supports them with planning and using differentiated instruction to move their students towards mastering each developmental level: exploring, developing, building, & integrating  (Click on the above photo to learn more about Desired Results Developmental Profile 2010).

Reference:

Edwards, M. A. (2014). Every child, every day: A digital conversion model for student achievement. Pearson Education: NJ

Feedly

Finally, I learned about Feedly.  I thought Feedly was a link on my blog page, and I couldn’t understand why I wasn’t getting the same results as my colleagues when they spoke about Feedly.  Thanks to Dr. Bonni, I am able to have the blogs I follow, the RSS feeds from the organizations I am interested in, as well as any subject or personal readings I like to engage in all in one place.  It is so much easier to log in to Feedly, and Viola, it is all there for my reading, tweeting, answering, and blogging post pleasure.

PKM Sentiments

This video describes how I feel, now that I have learned about Personal Knowledge Management. My first question was, why? Now that I know why, I believe we have all become super readers through researching, tweeting, retweeting, sharing, blogging, and posting. We have become familiar with so much had we not had this experience, where would we be? As the song states, “we changed the story (seek, capture), we solved the problem (sense, curate), we worked together so hip hip hooray (share,create)! The super readers saved the day!!

This entry was posted on June 22, 2014. 4 Comments

Building The Digital Foundation in Early Learning Environments

The preschool setting of the past focused on the whole-child and teachers planning haphazardly on their beliefs as to what the child should know. In former years, kindergarten was a time for children to prepare for school.  It was the place where children learned to share  and develop social skills among their peers with adult assistance and guidance, while learning emerging academic skills in literacy and mathematics.  Today, kindergarten is the new first grade.  It is the place where academics take precedence over social/emotional development (Anonymous, 2007). It is beneficial for children to enter kindergarten with some form of school experience, where they can better adjust to the academic demands they are about to experience.  The concern surrounds children from low-income families because they enter kindergarten without prior school experience or with exposure to low-quality early care/education experience, which positions them behind their middle-class peers in terms of school readiness (Anonymous, 2007).

Literature suggest ways in which to better serve our diverse student population versus current program practices.  Picciano (2011) states six issues related to planning and implementation of technology in the educational setting.  They are new roles for administrators and teachers, obtaining hardware and software, the integration process into the curriculum, professional development for teachers, and the overall outcome of technology instruction. In analyzing these practices, Senge et al. (2012) suggest utilizing theories and practices surrounding the five learning disciplines: creating a context for organizational learning, personal mastery, shared vision, mental models, and team learning.  However, most organizations have not accomplished that level of discipline.  As stated by Fullan (2010), the ability to lead with your glass half full, trusting in your team members, through collaboration and guidance overtime, will result in an organization built on  a solid foundation.  This is defined as collective capacity, the emotional commitment from all stakeholders; the ingredients that make all systems go.  Currently, early care/education is being aligned with K-12 as it relates to the Preschool Learning Foundations and Common Core State Standards. As educational organizations move their efforts to build collective capacity among all stakeholdersthe digital divide and support with closing the gap is being addressed in the early care/education programs.  Preschool classrooms are building the digital foundation by integrating technology in the learning environment.

According to Edwards (2014), “It’s like the movie Field of Dreams, build it, and they will come.”  During collaborative planning, educators developed a lesson around a subject that would interest the students, Dinosaurs!  They began with simple yet complex technology tools that would capture the interest of the students, as well as support the competency level with technology usage by the educators involved with the lesson design. The students were able to research fossils using the Internet, look at and document their findings using a digital microscope and document camera, take pictures with a digital camera, and use a interactive whiteboard for lessons.

References

Anonymous. (2007, January). Revisiting the NAEYC position statement on   developmentally appropriate practice the conversation continues. YC Young Children, 62(1), 1-3.

Edwards, M. A. (2014). Every child, every day: A digital conversion model for student achievement. Pearson Education: NJ

Fullan, M. (2010). All systems go: The change imperative for whole system reform. Corwin: CA

Picciano, A. G. (2011). Educational leadership and planning for technology. Pearson Education: NJ

Senge, P., Cambron-McCabe, N., Lucas, T., Smith, B., Dutton, J., & Kleiner, A. (2012). Schools that learn: A fifth discipline fieldbook for educators, parents, and everyone who cares about education. Crown Business: NY