For example, there have been several assignments that would be more useful for an elementary or middle school age group and a subject far less abstract and exact as math. One example would be the storyboard/ visual learning tool that I blogged about here. In this particular assignment we were supposed to have at least two (apparently) hyperlinks. For a math class, I hesitate to have hyperlinks because if students are given permission to go off on the Internet, what is to stop them from merely looking up the answer to the math question rather than figure it out themselves? How would that be different than handing a student a calculator to teach them how to add, multiply, subtract, and divide?

This man starved himself to death because he was afraid of being poisoned!

*(click on the photo for the hyperlink to take you away!)*and I got to make text spin around. It took me a long time to come up with an application for such a PowerPoint though. I created a study quiz for a group of high school students preparing to go to the OCTM Math Tournament. Because there is no way to track which questions a student would get right it couldn't be used for a regular quiz or something that the student would receive a grade for. And

*again*I had to include hyperlinks. Did you know that you can Google most math problems and come up with an answer? So in summary, an interactive PowerPoint, while fun to create, would only be useful in limited applications.

A right triangle inscribed in a circle!

On a more positive note, this week I learned how to use Geometer's Sketchpad. This is one computer application that I will most definitely use when I get hired to teach. Even though I'm fairly well versed in the ins and outs of Geometry, I had a revelation, an epiphany, an Oprah A-HA! moment when I had a triangle inscribed in a circle so that the two of the vertices of the triangle were on the diameter of the circle and I moved the third vertex along the arc. By theorem, the angle of the vertex formed by the point on the arc is a 90° angle. Up until I wiggled that triangle around, I have to admit it was something I memorized, but was skeptical about. Using Geometer's Sketchpad it became a concrete knowledge for me. Imagine the possibilities of incorporating such software into my classroom! I think this would be far more useful than a storyboard. Even though they both are visual learning techniques. The difference is that a storyboard is geared towards stories, and Geometer's Sketchpad is geared towards math (and maybe science).

You have mentioned an important aspects of integrating technology into a classroom, not everyone will (or can) use the same technology resources in the same way.

ReplyDeleteI recently attended and presented at the LLT 2009 Conference in Columbus, OH and there were a variety of instructors demonstrating not only traditional uses of MS Office software, but also many free 2.0 items available to educators.