Week 6 Blog #etlead How does the culture of your current teaching environment differ from the learning environment you experienced as a student?

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When I think about my learning, as I was growing up, I think of minimal technology and the teacher as the authority.  I remember playing Oregon Trail on an old floppy disk on an old computer, which was the game to play.  I remember having the job of cleaning the overhead projector film rolls.  I did not learn keyboarding until I was in high school.  These were my experiences with technology in elementary school.  During this time, the format that we “did school” in was listening to the teacher and doing what the teacher said, I don’t remember working collaboratively.  The teacher was always right and we had to listen to the teacher.       

Things have changed dramatically since I was in school, especially elementary school.  My daughter who is in Preschool knows how to run an I pad better than I do. Children are starting to use technology at very young ages and it is important that teachers keep up on that technology.  Students are not only learning how to play games but they are learning how to crate games through programs like Unity 3D (Gonboy, 2014).  Students know so many different programs they can be teaching us how to use these programs so roles are shifting and school environments are changing (Gonboy, 2014). 

In the past, the teacher was seen as the authority and the only holder of knowledge.  Today, schools are seen as learning environments where knowledge is being created and transferred back and forth (Douglas & Seely, 2011).  Students are learning with their peers, not just their teachers.  Students are learning skills in gaming communities like how to learn from others (Douglas & Seely, 2011).  In schools we need to be having our students work in groups and have the social interaction and learn from each other. 

In doing research, I did not go to a computer until later high school and college years.  It was straight to a book or encyclopedia.  Today, many students have not even heard of an encyclopedia.  “Students are using technology as investigators and producers of knowledge” (Pearlman).  Students today use various types of technology in doing their research.       

Schools and education are continuously changing and teachers should embrace these changes in technology and classroom structure.  Students and teachers are now interacting with each other to create learning.  Technology fills most classrooms and schools.  Our classrooms and schools are becoming learning environments.  After doing reading and research this week, I have come to realize how important it is for teachers to stay current and accept the change.  This weekend is when ASTE begins and it is a great way to keep up on current technology and learn about it.      

 

Pearlman, Bob. Designing New Learning Environments to Support 21st Century Skills.

Tech. N.p., n.d. Web.

“The Potential of Unity.” Interview by Kyle Gonboy. Google.com. Youtube, 12 Feb.

2014. Web. 20 Feb. 2014. <http://uasleadership.wordpress.com/site-map/week-six-overview/&gt;.

Thomas, Douglas, and John Seely. Brown. A New Culture of Learning: Cultivating the

Imagination for a World of Constant Change. Lexington, KY: CreateSpace?,

2011. Print.

      

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2 responses »

  1. Megan,
    I agree with your point that “the teacher was seen as the authority and the holder of knowledge”. I know it sounds arrogant, but I kind of miss those days. It always made me feel good to be the “go to guy”. I remember my kids would come home from school and if the teacher said it, it was truth. It didn’t matter what mom and dad said, the teacher knew everything. The good thing was, I knew the teacher and could trust her with my kids. Now, truth comes from “Google”…whoever that is. Now, the mantra is, “it must be true, I Googled it”. Well, truth comes from random sources that cannot always be trusted. Now what do we do about that?

    Anyway, in today’s world, school seems to be the place where students learn, but not always the source. The classroom seems to be as Douglas and Seely said, “a place where knowledge is being created and transferred back and forth”.

    I think that teachers, in order to be connected, must be actively involved in their students learning while they are in and out of the classroom. That is why it is imperative for them to learn the games and activities that the students are participating in so they can continue to influence and guide their students.

  2. One thing about not being the ultimate “dispenser of knowledge” is that it is okay when you don’t know something. With technology, it is easy to find answers. Although, you do have to be careful of your source. Several times each year, I go to my laptop when a student has a question that I cannot answer.

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