Tomorrow, our summer Teaching with Technology course (52 students plus 2 teachers!) jumps back into action after a month’s hiatus. What makes this School of Education class really neat is that we meet six times in the summer, in which our students are imagining themselves as teachers; six times in the fall, while they do two days of observation in classrooms; and twice in the winter, when they become full-time student teachers in secondary classrooms.
So we get to be along with them on their growth journey. I can’t wait to hear what they’ve been seeing and thinking. (I know from Twitter that some are thinking, “Oh my word, I already need a nap.”)
We have a bang-up agenda for our first class. First, Greg Grossmeier from the UM copyright office is going to talk with them about the kinds of things they need to know about copyright, mashups, posting stuff online, and the digital TEACH Act. I know that librarians often grouse about teachers “not knowing anything about copyright,” but let’s be honest … when YOU went through your teacher training program, was it covered? It sure wasn’t in mine, and it barely was in my library school training. So what I’m hoping is that these teachers will go into their practice a step ahead instead of scrambling later on.
We end our three-hour session with a guest appearance by Barry Fishman of the School of Education and School of Information, talking about his work on the leadership team for the National Educational Technology Plan.
The visits remind me of just how lucky we are to be on a big, robust campus, where experts are at our fingertips. But even if you’re in a K-12 setting, you’re rarely more than a few hours from a university, and tools like Skype, DimDim, UStream, and Elluminate means you can now digitally converse with experts for little or no money.
Anyway, in between the two sessions, we’re going to launch part one of a two-day discussion about how we evaluate student digital work. This is something that’s been on my mind explicitly for much of 2010 and implicitly for much longer. What should we be assessing? How do we know if it’s the student (and not the programmer) who we should credit for excellence? What is the common vocabulary we need to know? How much should we be evaluating our student’s tool fluency (can they make it “go”?) versus their thinking?
So what the students will be doing tomorrow is exploring a piece of real digital work and exploring their instinctive responses to it.
I uploaded the slides to VoiceThread, and since it’s so easy to duplicate your projects there, I made a parallel copy for you to explore. Hope you’ll click the LOG IN OR REGISTER button to share your thoughts. Or pass it on to your staff, if you find it useful. Most staffs have never talked with one another about what makes for good digital work … it’s really illuminating to do so.