Tag Archives: school_experience

Forde, C., McMahon, M. & Reeves, J. (2009). Putting Together Professional Portfolios. London: Sage.⤴

from @ TecnoTeach


Chapter 1 - What Is a Portfolio

'a space in which you can plan and reflect in depth on your practice, helping identify your strengths and find ways of building on these' (p.1).

OR

'a collection of materials put together in a meaningful way to demonstrate the practice and learning of an educational practitioner' (p.1).

IT IS NOT

'a random collection of materials and artefacts'.

What is the purpose:

* to illustrate achievements?
* to demonstrate ongoing developments of thinking and practice?
* to collect evidence?
* to provide a vehicle for reflection?

Types of portfolios:

* Course Content - contains items that have significant relevance to a course.
* CPD Portfolio - contains record of professional development with reflections and evaluations.
* Competence-based Portfolio - achievement against specific criteria.
* Accreditation for Prior Learning - contains evidence related to prior learning.
* Project Portfolio - contains resources and reflections of groups related to a specific topic.

There are quite a few similarities and differences between what we place in different types of portfolios that it is easy to get blur the boundaries between the main focus or to use the wrong tool for the job.  In this age where many use blogs and wikis as their electronic means of reflection and evidence, I do question whether the correct tool is being applied for the correct purpose.  How often I have seen wikis being used as a reflective tool in the format of a diary and blogs being used as a place to record evidence when the other way around would be much more beneficial.  Surely as years roll on it is much easier to view an organised wiki to view specific key evidence that trail through a specific tag in a blog and likely so, it is easier to map development by viewing the learning journey in a blog than fish through a wikispace.  

If you are using a blog or a wikispace: what is the purpose of your online space?  Look at the different types and purposes and see if you can reflect on the reason you have either chosen a tool or been asked to use a tool and is it the right tool for the job.  Hopefully by looking at the above key aspects, you will begin to understand the 'why' and 'what' of ePortfolios and the online tools available.  There will be cross-overs and stand-alone moments but at the end of the day the underpinning purpose should be a place to map the development of one's relationship between learning and practice.

My Personal Response:

I originally created this blog, not to illustrate my achievements or collect evidence but to share what I was doing with technology in the classroom with a wider audience where the knowledge of the crowd was far greater than the knowledge of the individual.  By joining the 'community of practice' of my fellow educational bloggers, I could learn from them and reciprocate this knowledge sharing by sharing my ideas through this blog where developments in emerging technologies were at the heart of my reflections.

Over the years, this blog has moved a little towards collecting evidence, however, still has the reflective process and sharing as the main reason for posting.  It has still not, to me, met the purpose of 'illustrating achievement' due to it being my personal reflective area to connect with others and converse rather than just show.  Illustrating my achievement comes primarily through my professional CV or through my personal wikispace that provides more a timeline of events and evidence rather than the reflective process.

So the question is, why am I writing about Portfolios and discussing my blog?  It appears that many use blogs for the purpose of a Portfolio and tag specific aspects of learning.  For me, this is not the purpose of my blog, and like the old saying goes, 'what is one man's meat is another man's poison'.  


Forde, C., McMahon, M. & Reeves, J. (2009). Putting Together Professional Portfolios. London: Sage.⤴

from @ TecnoTeach


Chapter 1 - What Is a Portfolio

'a space in which you can plan and reflect in depth on your practice, helping identify your strengths and find ways of building on these' (p.1).

OR

'a collection of materials put together in a meaningful way to demonstrate the practice and learning of an educational practitioner' (p.1).

IT IS NOT

'a random collection of materials and artefacts'.

What is the purpose:

* to illustrate achievements?
* to demonstrate ongoing developments of thinking and practice?
* to collect evidence?
* to provide a vehicle for reflection?

Types of portfolios:

* Course Content - contains items that have significant relevance to a course.
* CPD Portfolio - contains record of professional development with reflections and evaluations.
* Competence-based Portfolio - achievement against specific criteria.
* Accreditation for Prior Learning - contains evidence related to prior learning.
* Project Portfolio - contains resources and reflections of groups related to a specific topic.

There are quite a few similarities and differences between what we place in different types of portfolios that it is easy to get blur the boundaries between the main focus or to use the wrong tool for the job.  In this age where many use blogs and wikis as their electronic means of reflection and evidence, I do question whether the correct tool is being applied for the correct purpose.  How often I have seen wikis being used as a reflective tool in the format of a diary and blogs being used as a place to record evidence when the other way around would be much more beneficial.  Surely as years roll on it is much easier to view an organised wiki to view specific key evidence that trail through a specific tag in a blog and likely so, it is easier to map development by viewing the learning journey in a blog than fish through a wikispace.  

If you are using a blog or a wikispace: what is the purpose of your online space?  Look at the different types and purposes and see if you can reflect on the reason you have either chosen a tool or been asked to use a tool and is it the right tool for the job.  Hopefully by looking at the above key aspects, you will begin to understand the 'why' and 'what' of ePortfolios and the online tools available.  There will be cross-overs and stand-alone moments but at the end of the day the underpinning purpose should be a place to map the development of one's relationship between learning and practice.

My Personal Response:

I originally created this blog, not to illustrate my achievements or collect evidence but to share what I was doing with technology in the classroom with a wider audience where the knowledge of the crowd was far greater than the knowledge of the individual.  By joining the 'community of practice' of my fellow educational bloggers, I could learn from them and reciprocate this knowledge sharing by sharing my ideas through this blog where developments in emerging technologies were at the heart of my reflections.

Over the years, this blog has moved a little towards collecting evidence, however, still has the reflective process and sharing as the main reason for posting.  It has still not, to me, met the purpose of 'illustrating achievement' due to it being my personal reflective area to connect with others and converse rather than just show.  Illustrating my achievement comes primarily through my professional CV or through my personal wikispace that provides more a timeline of events and evidence rather than the reflective process.

So the question is, why am I writing about Portfolios and discussing my blog?  It appears that many use blogs for the purpose of a Portfolio and tag specific aspects of learning.  For me, this is not the purpose of my blog, and like the old saying goes, 'what is one man's meat is another man's poison'.  


Prensky, M. (2010). Teaching Digital Natives: Partnering for real learning. London: Corwin⤴

from @ TecnoTeach

I have always enjoyed reading Marc Prensky's writings where I have connected with his thoughts and ideas. I have to admit, I was rather disappointed when reading his 'Teaching Digital Natives' due to the lack of innovation and creativity that normal comes through in his writings. Marc is now putting forward the notion of 'Partnering for Real Learning' as if it were something new. He is making out that education is still sitting in the Victorian bubble where we lecture children rather than meet their immediate needs, teach programmes of study rather than use the contexts they thrive in outside the educational environment and have learning as a one way street where we fill empty vessels rather than 'partner' their learning. Is this new reading? Is this new theories of teaching and learning? I think not!

Student-centred learning, scaffolding, facilitating learning are not new buzz words or concepts they are practitioners' teaching and learning techniques that have been put forward for many years. They are techniques that I have used with and without technology. To me, all Marc has put forward in his book is to come up with a new buzz word: partnering. Why make new words when they all ready exists and work well: a bit of a slap in the face to him advocating that technology should only be used if it changes the learning and teaching environment rather than a bolt on!!!

To be fair on Marc, there are aspects of his book that align with today's thinking and will be a book that I would suggest to student teachers to read, reflect and debate.

Here are some of the key points that I took from the book:

INTRODUCTION SECTION

* Attention - today's students have a different attention capability than other generations. This is true and true for every new generation of learners. What needs to be noted is that today's generation are multi-tasters who select what they want to focus on and block out what does not interest them. So is it short attention spans for the 'old ways' of learning, as Marc asks, or is it short attention spans that need to be trained to be more focussed to enable deeper learning?

* What students want from schools - not to be lectured, respected, trusted, follow own interests and passions, create, work collaboratively, connect and 'real' education. Again I agree with many of these aspects but this is NOT new reading. As a qualified primary teacher, active learning and meeting the needs of children were at the heart of my pedagogy; that was last century! I have always wanted children to create, collaborate, communicate and co-create with their immediate peers and those around the world. I do believe that we should let children follow their interests and passions but we need to open the doors to other avenues that might spark another interest rather than just keep a child in an 'interest bubble'. Learning is about meeting needs then extending and exploring.

Marc states that the new educational pedagogy should involve 'partnering' to enable the above. Yes that is true but again not a new concept.

CHAPTER 1 PARTNERING

Direct Instruction - teachers who lecture, talk and students listen, take notes, read and memorise. Again the term 'direct instruction' comes in many titles: didactic teaching or passive learning to name a few. Although not a new concept, what I did like was Marc's analogy of this style of learning where he referred to it as the Federal Express where 'you can have the best delivery system in the world, but if no one is home to receive the package, it doesn't much matter. Too often, today's students are not there to receive what their teachers are delivering' (Prensky, 2010:10). How often I see this in a lecture theatre where students are there but the information being delivered is not reaching the recipients. A scenario in many learning environments and one which Marc states can be changed by students and teachers adopting different roles in the 'partnering' process: student as researcher, technology user/expert, thinker, world changer, self-teacher and the teacher as coach/guide, goal setter/questioner, learning designer, context provider, and quality assurer. As you can see, not ground breaking theories of learning just written with Marc's twist of wording!

The rest of the chapters delve deeper into the ways partnering can occur in education looking at 'how' children learn today rather than how they interact with technology. If you are looking to read about ways to 'use' technology with our 'Digital Native' then this is possibly not the book you want to read. If, on the other hand, you want to look at 'how' today's 'Digital Natives' learn then this might be a book to read in conjunction with the key theorists in education to provide a balanced approach rather than a one sided view.

Prensky, M. (2010). Teaching Digital Natives: Partnering for real learning. London: Corwin⤴

from @ TecnoTeach

I have always enjoyed reading Marc Prensky's writings where I have connected with his thoughts and ideas. I have to admit, I was rather disappointed when reading his 'Teaching Digital Natives' due to the lack of innovation and creativity that normal comes through in his writings. Marc is now putting forward the notion of 'Partnering for Real Learning' as if it were something new. He is making out that education is still sitting in the Victorian bubble where we lecture children rather than meet their immediate needs, teach programmes of study rather than use the contexts they thrive in outside the educational environment and have learning as a one way street where we fill empty vessels rather than 'partner' their learning. Is this new reading? Is this new theories of teaching and learning? I think not!

Student-centred learning, scaffolding, facilitating learning are not new buzz words or concepts they are practitioners' teaching and learning techniques that have been put forward for many years. They are techniques that I have used with and without technology. To me, all Marc has put forward in his book is to come up with a new buzz word: partnering. Why make new words when they all ready exists and work well: a bit of a slap in the face to him advocating that technology should only be used if it changes the learning and teaching environment rather than a bolt on!!!

To be fair on Marc, there are aspects of his book that align with today's thinking and will be a book that I would suggest to student teachers to read, reflect and debate.

Here are some of the key points that I took from the book:

INTRODUCTION SECTION

* Attention - today's students have a different attention capability than other generations. This is true and true for every new generation of learners. What needs to be noted is that today's generation are multi-tasters who select what they want to focus on and block out what does not interest them. So is it short attention spans for the 'old ways' of learning, as Marc asks, or is it short attention spans that need to be trained to be more focussed to enable deeper learning?

* What students want from schools - not to be lectured, respected, trusted, follow own interests and passions, create, work collaboratively, connect and 'real' education. Again I agree with many of these aspects but this is NOT new reading. As a qualified primary teacher, active learning and meeting the needs of children were at the heart of my pedagogy; that was last century! I have always wanted children to create, collaborate, communicate and co-create with their immediate peers and those around the world. I do believe that we should let children follow their interests and passions but we need to open the doors to other avenues that might spark another interest rather than just keep a child in an 'interest bubble'. Learning is about meeting needs then extending and exploring.

Marc states that the new educational pedagogy should involve 'partnering' to enable the above. Yes that is true but again not a new concept.

CHAPTER 1 PARTNERING

Direct Instruction - teachers who lecture, talk and students listen, take notes, read and memorise. Again the term 'direct instruction' comes in many titles: didactic teaching or passive learning to name a few. Although not a new concept, what I did like was Marc's analogy of this style of learning where he referred to it as the Federal Express where 'you can have the best delivery system in the world, but if no one is home to receive the package, it doesn't much matter. Too often, today's students are not there to receive what their teachers are delivering' (Prensky, 2010:10). How often I see this in a lecture theatre where students are there but the information being delivered is not reaching the recipients. A scenario in many learning environments and one which Marc states can be changed by students and teachers adopting different roles in the 'partnering' process: student as researcher, technology user/expert, thinker, world changer, self-teacher and the teacher as coach/guide, goal setter/questioner, learning designer, context provider, and quality assurer. As you can see, not ground breaking theories of learning just written with Marc's twist of wording!

The rest of the chapters delve deeper into the ways partnering can occur in education looking at 'how' children learn today rather than how they interact with technology. If you are looking to read about ways to 'use' technology with our 'Digital Native' then this is possibly not the book you want to read. If, on the other hand, you want to look at 'how' today's 'Digital Natives' learn then this might be a book to read in conjunction with the key theorists in education to provide a balanced approach rather than a one sided view.