A pre-service teacher's journey to solve the ICT + Pedagogy equation

Digital Technologies Resource — March 14, 2016

Digital Technologies Resource

The second resource I will be creating for EDP4130 will comprise of another unit online that provides authentic learning experiences on digital systems in order for students to be assessed on creating their own digital game at the end.

Please watch this space for more information- coming soon! 🙂


Design and Technologies Resource —

Design and Technologies Resource

Well it seems I have neglected this blog since EDC3100 but now I am back due to EDP4130 task requirements 🙂

I am going to be creating a resource that assists teachers in educating students about multiple aspects of design and technologies. The aim is to provide a unit online that will lead students into designing a water system that promotes sustainable water consumption.

Watch this space for more information as I progress! 🙂

Reaching the course finishline — June 14, 2015

Reaching the course finishline

It’s hard to believe that the semester is nearly over and our ICT course has come to a close. I have learnt a lot in this course (besides a large amount of acronyms) but there is one thing that stood out that I will take away with me…

ICTs enhance student learning, more so than just replacing traditional approaches to teaching.

Before starting this course, I mainly incorporated ICTs in lessons for simple reasons, such as using Notes on an iPad to collect data, instead of hand writing them. I thought that ICT use in the classroom was as simple as using an ICT medium instead of a ‘boring’ traditional one to teach students. Additionally, I thought that the Interactive Whiteboard was the latest and greatest technology to grace the classroom. Looking back at that now, many of my ideas have changed! I have learnt all about the benefits of so many different ICTs, with some of my favourites being class blogging, Skype, Google Docs, iPad apps such as Puppet Pals, and so many more.

Although following new and various frameworks takes a lot of getting used to, I certainly don’t think this will be the last time I will use the likes of RAT and TPACK!

– Kristie

The role of ICTs in PCK —

The role of ICTs in PCK

A little while ago, I wrote a blog about Pedagogical Context Knowledge (PCK) and how lacking this is a huge fear of mine when going on prac. Well, let’s just say that this placement wasn’t any different. I was allocated many topics that I certainly had to research. But would I say this was a painstaking experience? Not exactly. In a way, I was relieved to be asked to teach this content because it meant that my PCK was expanded and it has given me a new foundation for future lessons that I may have to teach in relation to those topics.

I am forever grateful for ICTs during this process as they help to provide information in such a simple way! One of the topics I had to teach involved Aboriginal peoples contact with the Macassan traders, in History. Even though I used this video to help teach the key concepts of this to the students, I could definitely say that it had equal value to me. I learnt so much just from that snippet and then I was able to go away and research further using Google and the likes. I can definitely understand why teachers call Google their lifesaver!

– Kristie

Embracing multi-age classrooms —

Embracing multi-age classrooms

Years 2-6? SIX different grades? How can one teacher manage that?

These were all the questions I asked myself after first finding I was placed in a multi-age classroom on prac. Although I had specifically requested for this type of context for my Professional Experience, I don’t think the whole idea of this hit me until we received final notification of our approved placements. So, I decided I would do a quick Google search to get some advice to prepare for what was in store for me. I came across this document by the Queensland Studies Authority which helped me to picture the experience I was about to embark on. Looking back at this now, there was one point that really resonates with me on the topic of multi-age classrooms:

  • Learning is referred to as “phases of learning” rather than “age or year level appropriate”
    How true this is! I was amazed to see how different year levels were all capable of different things, whether it be expected or unexpected of their age group. What astonished me even more was how it is actually possible to introduce the one assessment task to six different grades! While each grade had different expectations of the task, I loved how the class was able to be taught as one and how students would offer support to each other, regardless of their age.

The above is just one way I saw how teaching multiple different grades is manageable, if not helpful, due to the extensive collaborative learning opportunities available because of the various ability levels present.

– Kristie

Australian Professional Standards for Teachers —

Australian Professional Standards for Teachers

As all of my fellow EDC3100’ers know, at the end of each week on Professional Experience, we had to sit down with our mentors and complete an Interim Report about how we were tracking in terms of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers. I found this process really beneficial as I felt like I was practising for my interview by justifying my reasons for why I felt I had or hadn’t yet reached each standard. It was really helpful to get my mentor’s opinion on this as well, as he notified me of areas I needed to improve on and I was able to work on this throughout the remainder of my prac.

I really enjoyed reading Amy’s blog about how she keeps tabs on what uni work aligns with the standards in a Word document! I admire her organisation and this has certainly given me a push to consider how I should do this too! My mentor showed me this self-assessment tool which helps you to determine where you are sitting with the standards. I haven’t yet had the opportunity to do this for myself but I think it would be an awesome reflective tool to use, particularly as the end of our degrees loom!

Check it out and let me know what you think 🙂

– Kristie

My ICT success story! —

My ICT success story!

If you ask me, Professional Experience put a whole new meaning to “ICTs engage students in their learning”. My mentor had given me the responsibility of teaching the Years 2/3 Maths unit on chance and data. The first step was to introduce chance language and have students grasping this terminology. This was way more difficult than I first imagined. Explaining why drawing a green marble from a bag with 5 other yellow marbles was “unlikely” but not “impossible” (like the students thought) was a challenge. Same sort of thing occurred when trying to explain that drawing a yellow marble was “very likely” but not “certain” (as the students were convinced).

To combat these misconceptions, I came across this online interactive game. The children absolutely loved it and found the visual representation of it really easy to understand. They loved how it provided the options to choose the chance of certain things drawn from the bag and they even cheer when they got an answer right! They thought they were playing a game when really, they were learning at the same time. That right there is a huge positive of ICTs! I noticed a big difference in their chance language knowledge afterwards and found that students would refer back to the game when justifying their reasons for other predictions of chance.

This really gave me a new appreciation for ICTs in the classroom. I would love to hear others’ success stories of integrating ICTs!