#COETAIL/ Course1/Week5/# From Theory into Practice

How do you use the learning theories in your everyday practice to support student learning?

I am studying every weekend the COETAIL informational materials and I learned a lot. Recently I applied the concept of  “Connectivism” -asking the students to research more about a theme or an artist that I introduced in the art class. They used the tools of search via the internet and then they posted their new information and their own reflections about that via seesaw.

I live very much the motto of the “connectivism theory” as stated in the article “Connectivism. A theory for the Digital Age”, which said: “Our ability to learn what we need for tomorrow is more important than what we know today”.(George Siemens).

http://er.dut.ac.za/bitstream/handle/123456789/69/Siemens_2005_Connectivism_A_learning_theory_for_the_digital_age.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y

I am applying the same principle myself, learning every day and I am trying to set a good example for my students.

Another interesting theory is  Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy. This theory was revised and updated by his students and published again in this form. 

Common Sense Media created this wonderful video to explain better, Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy.

Remember/ Understand/ Apply/ Analyse/ Evaluate/ Create.

At the beginning of my art classes, I usually revise what we did last time(REMEMBER) and try to connect and build the next knowledge on the previews one and to apply in our new work. In this way, we can create a new idea and evaluate it.

Are you starting to notice different things in your classroom/school?

Yes, the children are very engaged and are understanding the task, because I was able to structure it better and clearer. They are proactive, curious and ask me even more questions. I even got to be appreciated by my managers and the school team, school community-parents, which was so encouraging. https://twitter.com/ISBLearning/status/1237577607878545408?s=20

Have you begun modifying what you do in your classroom/school?

Yes, I was implementing more media and planning better ahead, having so many new resources.  Also, the new situation of VLE(Virtual Learning Experience) forced me to jump in the cold water and gave me the chance to explore more media tools, like the seesaw, Quicktime Player, Seesaw, Zoom Meetings, Adobe Spark, Padlet. 

#COETAIL/ Course 1/ Week4/ #How can we effectively, practically and authentically embed technology within our curricular areas?

I am very happy that lately, I took the courage and I was geeking out, how to use some technology tools for my VLE. Firstly I tried out google meet, then our school decided to switch on zoom meetings. And overnight, here I am daily using zoom meetings.

How have you planned for tech-rich learning in the past?

In the past my tech-rich learning experience was limited. I was very angry when students were lost in their online research about a theme and not stepping into the next phases like planning, drafting and creating.

For this, I was bringing myself as much informational material and I was inviting them to step into action. The only part when I invited them to use the media was once in a while for seesaw recording and sharing.

 Share a reflection about a tech-rich lesson you have taught/facilitated.

After reading the insightful articles last week from my #COETAIL Study,  I was inspired by Kim Cofino, to start with planning my practical use of technology in my teaching practice. I was impressed by her thinking to start backward with the result, and the key question “What do you want students to know and be able to do at the end of this unit? “(3 Steps to Transforming Learning in Your Classroom (Cofino))

So my answer is, I would like that my students will remember some art styles and movements, like Cubism, Expressionism, Abstract Art, etc and to have a wide visual vocabulary to express their ideas and feelings. I want to make them feel confident using the elements of arts such as color, line, and shapes, texture, form, space, etc to express themself and have solid knowledge. I hope that they will understand the elements of the arts and master their art skills and afterward present/communicate them with the help of media tools/skills. I hope, the students will have a good appreciation for art and enjoy exploring it, online or visiting art galleries, museums and often creating art by themself.

Recently, because our situation with coronavirus, forced us to move on the VLE, I could plan and embed the technology benefits in my teaching.

I was using a very structured plan on my planned activity/ art class that I was launching via seesaw posting for each class before 8 o’clock. I recorded myself via Quick Time Player with short videos about the art lesson. I was using even voice recording and scrolling, pointing more on the picture, explaining more precisely. I was triggering questions and inviting them to search more and find answers. Afterward, I was giving bonus tasks for research of a special artwork, or interview, documentary via attached links. 

How might this week’s content influence how you plan for tech-rich learning?

As Kim Cofino says: “If you are sharing kids’ work online, find them an AUDIENCE”, I tried my best to do so.

This week was quite successful because I could learn from my experience. Based on my results of the previous experience, how much information should I give, and reduce the vocabulary and examples for the little ones, and encourage them enough to be motivated to create and give their best? I learned to mention they’re good results in our shout outs and virtual assemblies and virtual talent shows at the end of the week. To post on the weekly newsletter some of their artworks to feel proud by themself and gain more confidence, that they have an “authentic audience”. According to those aspects, I planned in simple clear steps and I asked them to do their best and take enough time to complete their art task, then to take an accurate picture with a clear comment guided on my questions, afterward to post, upload their artworks and reflections on the seesaw journal. Because not everyone has art supplies at home, I encourage them to use even digital tools, like to draw and color with the iPad.

Anyway, it was very motivating for them to create their artworks to share with the public.

Our “Virtual Upper Elementary Talent Show ” Assembly from today, organized by Mrs. Beavers(our music teacher), and our ISB community.

Virtual Learning Art Class via Zoom conference.

#COETAIL / Course 1/ Week 3. #Connected Learning.

How to decide your goal?

Boy, it took me long for this post. Even I explored two weeks ago the content about “Connected learning”, it took me a while to digest and put all the puzzles together. I was so impressed seeing the Ted Talk from Kaufman, (The first 20 hours — how to learn anything (TEDx, Kaufman)), that I was imagining that I could do anything. First I dared to think that I could learn Japanese than I was thinking about Piano Classes, or how to organize my house better, but than I realized that still 20 hours is a precious time for me at the moment and I would like to use my new skills in my everyday. So I decided to be pretty practical, and how my computer skills needed urgently to be improved and because of the dire situation of coronavirus, that flipped our learning system to VLE(Virtual Learning Environment) then I jumped to the conclusion, that I would like to achieve the new skills, for effective virtual art teaching. 

We are supposed to learn new skills and prove how we could use our network and strategy to achieve new skills, so here is my plan for achieving my goal.   

My action plan for the new learning / Effective VLE for Art Class

The skills that I want to achieve is to learn how to practice effective VLE (virtual learning environment) for art classes.

I will use my connections around me to learn that. My connections are my colleagues, my COETAIL instructor, my connections from the media platforms. 

Action Plan:

  1. Firstly, I made a twitter account to reach easily a network of other art teachers and some old friends teachers of mine who could connect me further to their connections.

2. Secondly, I talked to my IT colleagues, to help me with some digital tools. 

They explained to me more tools from the seesaw app, because before I was using it quite limited, only to approve posts or send an announcement once in a while. But now I am able to know how to make a video or create activities, etc. I was even introduced to new apps: like Quick Time app or zoom meetings.

3. And afterward, I will apply those digital tools effectively in my virtual art teaching classrooms.

I create everyday small videos for my students with digital programs and posted as an activity on the seesaw.

I am using insightful comments to observe their artworks and guide them.

4. Additionally, I am offering zoom meetings during our physical class time and guide the students online and answering their questions.

5. I record their results and send them to my colleagues and their parents to show their growth and mine as well:).

6. I will post the most successful ones on twitter.

How will you use your research skills, and take advantage of your networks, to help you learn?

I will research on keywords or hashtags like # virtual learning, #online art classes, #PYP Art classes to search on twitter or other media platforms. I will ask some key people, for example, our preview librarian, who has many connections in China,(because she moved there 1year ago), who is also dealing with the virtual system.

How might this learning experience help you empathize with learners in your classroom/school?

Because of this new situation with coronavirus, affected our whole community, this experience will help the best to have a successful transition to a new system of learning, a virtual learning environment. I hope with this experience to help most of the children, who are affected by this, to learn easily at home and have fun.  

I was amazed by the story of Mimi Ito, Connected Learning (Video, Mimi Ito) who was giving a simple example of how her son was inspired by a passionate person(“the aquarium shop guy”) who was working in an aquarium shop. A special person, who met outside the school, open new interests, connect and ignite the passion in the young people, inspiring them in a natural way to do something that they love.  

What I love most is creating my art and expressing my ideas, memories, dreams with art and share with the people. I enjoy sharing knowledge, my passion for art, connecting with my students, with the hope that it would be life-changing. I hope that my students will go one day to the museums and appreciate art, that they could think out of the box and be creative, and that they could enjoy creating art, having a balanced life.

That’s why every day counts when I am teaching my students and I would like to be effective in all the teaching forms, virtual or real.