Sunday, November 11, 2012

Project Tomorrow


Project Tomorrow is a national education nonprofit group based in Irvine, California, that prepares today’s students to be tomorrow’s innovators, leaders, and engaged students. 

In the report, “Leveraging Intelligent Adaptive Learning To Personalize Education,” two-thirds of principals (67 percent) noted that the use of digital content in the classroom increases student engagement in school and learning, and 45 percent see digital content as a new pathway for personalized instruction for each student.  In my opinion, I think the statistics prove that when students are taught with technological tools they are familiar with they’re scores increase.  These students have been raised in the digital age, but the problem is, most teachers were not.  I am shocked to see that in 2007 only one in ten teachers were using some type of digital games within instruction.  Teachers need to make learning the particular subject fun for students, and I think by adding more digital games will make the subject matter more entertaining as well as encourage competition.  What doesn’t surprise me is that 59% of principals would like to see incoming teachers to arrive with experience in adaptive learning tools.  With the majority of parents wanting technology solutions that provide individualized instruction, administrators need to find teachers that share the same vision.  Since I am going to be one of the new teachers looking for employment, I think I have the knowledge and experience that promotes adaptive learning.  One idea I have is to implement a class website and blog where students can work at their own pace while working collaboratively with their peers.  I will also use online games that students can play that will help with their learning process.

After watching, “Speak Up in Learning to Change, Changing to Learn” different CEO’s explained how crucial it is to change our educational system from what we are used to into a new, technologically centered learning atmosphere.  The people interviewed explained how learning involves more than what takes place in the classroom.  Students are learning by communicating with others, through the community, and also by visiting museums.  What surprises me after watching the video is that even the people interviewed believe that teaching to the test is a terrible way for students to learn.  Why are we still teaching to the test?  Students are not learning how to critically think by memorizing content in order to pass a test.  By implementing different technological ways in which students are used to, teachers can promote an environment that focuses on critically thinking.  I think creating a classroom blog will allow students the ability to offer constructive criticism while using technology that they are used to.  Instead of giving students pointless homework assignments, teachers can give students meaningful discussion questions that can be answered on the blog and students will be able to see different viewpoints.  Nowadays, with the use of technology, teachers can go to websites while teaching a lesson and show students specific examples from museums or from the natural environment.

I think the program “youth TEACH2Learn” by Project Tomorrow, is an excellent way to start preparing students to become future educators.  This program is designed to encourage high school students to begin teaching science and math to elementary school students.  Studies have proven that when children between ages of eight and nine are introduced to math and science are more likely to pursue a career in one of the two fields.  At my new school, I can encourage the administration to adopt a similar program.  Just as AVID helps prepare students for college and teaches students responsibility, this program will prepare students for a career in teaching, as well as earning them 3 units of transferable college credits.  Not only will this program help with preparing future teachers and give students college credits, it will also be a great resume builder, college reference, and provide these students with work experience.  

We believe that by supporting the innovative uses of science, math and technology resources in our K-12 schools and communities, students will develop the critical thinking, problem solving and creativity skills needed to compete and thrive in the 21st century. 

3 comments:

  1. After reading through your reflection to "Leveraging Intelligent Adaptive Learning To Personalize Education", I can see the excitement for integrating technology into the classroom. I am struggling with the practicality of this implementation. I see that technology can be for certain games and study resources, but I do not see technology as a primary resource for delivering instruction. If students were given the responsibility of exercising self-control and participating in a technological form of instruction, there would need to be many limits placed on their virtual social interactions. I believe the teacher is the direct mean of communication and technology can be used to supplement the teacher’s communication.

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  2. Great job Noah! I was also shocked that only 10% of teachers were using digital games in their classroom. With all the data to support the use of technology to engage students, let alone just knowing how much time they spend playing video games and computer games, I don't know how we can ignore its use. At least as new teachers, we may have a leg up on technology that will land us a job!

    I really like you blogging idea for the classroom. I agree it is a great way to get students to reflect on assignments and think critically about concepts discussed in class or read about instead of textbook work. I guess the only problem I see is that not all students have access to a computer or internet. Maybe a hand written blog would be a good differentiation?

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  3. Noah, I liked your reflection on Project Tomorrow's "youth TEACH2learn" program. I agree that it is not only great to prepare future educators but also truly gets young children excited about science and math at an early age. I feel that the youth often dislike science because they don't have much experience with the subject until they reach middle school. Perhaps if more schools utilize this program, more youth will become excited about science in a way that hasn't been seen before.

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