Educational Digital Resource Roundup
This course will explore a variety of topics that are trending in education as well as digital resources that augment learning in these areas. Topics include formative assessment and feedback, gamification, self-regulated learning, creativity and collaboration, and open educational resources.
Allow 5 - 7 hours per session for completion of all requirements.
This is a course for teachers, technology specialists, curriculum specialists, professional development specialists, or other interested school personnel. Participants are expected to have regular access to computers. In addition, participants should be proficient with using email, browsing the Internet, and navigating to computer files.
Course Goals and Objectives:
During this course, participants will learn skills and strategies to:
- Participants will learn what qualifies as student centered learning and explore digital tools that can support effective self-directed learning experiences.
- Participants will explore resources that students can use for independent learning and identify tools that can be used to support standards aligned curriculum.
- Identify benefits of integrating games and gamification in educational settings.
- Explore educational digital resources and games.
- Participants will explore Blooms Revised Taxonomy and evaluate the importance of creating in this model.
- Participants will describe various digital tools and strategies for creating content to demonstrate understanding.
- Participants will understand the importance of providing effective feedback as well as the research behind using formative assessment practices.
- Participants will explore digital tools that can enhance feedback provided to students as well as tools for gathering formative data.
- Participants will learn the importance of collaboration for learning and gain strategies for how to teach this 21st Century skill.
- Participants will explore digital resources that enhance collaboration.
- Learn what OER (Open Educational Resources) are and how they can be used in education.
- Learn responsible fair use practices and attribution policies for using and modifying OER materials.
- Explore a variety of OER repositories and choose a resource to evaluate
Required Readings, Activities and Assignments: Each session includes readings, an activity and a discussion assignment, which participants are required to complete within each week.
Students will be evaluated on the frequency and quality of their discussion board participation. Students are required to post a minimum of two substantial postings each session, including one that begins a new thread and one that responds to an existing thread. Postings that begin new threads will be reviewed based on their relevance, demonstrated understanding of course concepts, examples cited, and overall quality. Postings that respond to other students will be evaluated on relevance, degree to which they extend the discussion, and tone. Each week a new question will be posted to the discussion board for participants to answer and respond.
Orientation: (1-2 hours)
Participants will prepare for the course with an introductory reading and ice breaker activity. Participants will read tip sheets for participating in online discussions, credit information, and complete an orientation survey.
Week One: Digital Tools for Student-Centered and Self-Directed Learning (5-7 hours)
Self directed learning and self regulation are important 21st Century learning skills that students must possess to be successful in the digital age. Learning resources have never been as accessible and open as they are today. This access allows students to explore and learn independently and supports deeper learning. According to the New Media Consortium Horizon Report for K-12, "These active learning approaches are decidedly more student-centered, allowing learners to take control of how they engage with a subject and to brainstorm and implement solutions to pressing local and global problems. The hope is that if learners can connect the course material with their own lives and their surrounding communities, then they will become more excited to learn and immerse themselves in the subject matter." Participants will explore different resources and digital tools available to support and encourage self-directed learners.
Week Two: Games in Education and Gamification (5-7 hours)
Game based learning and gamification is a growing trend in classrooms across the globe. Gaming has potential to increase engagement, motivation, and active learning. "Games in education can supplement time-tested pedagogical practices with new technological solutions to long-term problems. We can have the best of both the new and the old. Games can help educators answer the ongoing assessment question, develop kids’ metacognitive skills and empathy, and break down the boundaries between academic subject." Participants will explore research about games in education, explore a variety of digital game resources and evaluate usefulness toward meeting curricular goals.
Source: Jordan Shapiro, Mindshift- Guide to Digital Games in Education
Week Three: Digital Tools to Support Creativity and Innovation (5-7 hours)
Creativity is an important 21st Century skill with far reaching effects. According to the New Media Consortium Horizon Report for K-12, "A shift is taking place in the focus of pedagogical practice in schools all over the world as students across a wide variety of disciplines are learning by making and creating rather than from the simple consumption of content." Focusing on creativity augments curriculum across any content area, especially in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics). Participants will explore why the importance of creativity and how it supports innovative thinking and problem solving. Participants will explore a collection of tools that cultivate creativity skills.
Week Four: Digital Tools for Feedback and Formative Assessment (5-7 hours)
Educators who practice formative assessment strategies and adapt instruction based on these assessments are able to adapt their instruction effectively to meet the needs of individual students. They are also able to provide specific and targeted feedback that is critical to the academic growth of students. Providing feedback and using formative assessments can be enhanced through digital tools. This week will introduce participants to research on formative assessment and feedback as well as exploration of digital tools.
Week Five: Digital Tools to Support Collaboration (5-7 hours)
Collaboration is arguably one of the most important 21st Century learning skills. In fact, according to the New Media Consortium, "Collaborative learning among both teachers and students is a growing priority for schools, especially around how it can stimulate educational technology uptake. Research studies have revealed that teamwork exercises and cooperative learning environments bolster student engagement and performance." Digital tools can be used to make collaboration more productive. Participants will explore the importance of providing collaborative learning experiences and explore tools that support effective collaboration for deeper learning.
Week Six: Open Educational Resources (5-7 hours)
"Traditionally, education materials have been produced by content publishers who sell them for profit. With the advent of the internet and a global push for increased collaboration among educators, the desire to share materials freely while still protecting the copyrights of the original creator have grown. In addition, there is a growing expectation that when public funds are used to produce educational materials, the resulting materials should be a public good.”
Source: Isabel Little, author of Open CTE Resources: Educators Guide
Participants will explore what OER resources are, how to find and submit resources to OER repositories, and evaluate one resource.