As I look ahead to the intensive on campus, I am curious to learn how deep and wide the digital learning environment actually is.  I am always looking for new ways to engage technology in the teaching and learning process.  Pedagogy is tied to societal trends.  As students and teachers adopt more and more devices and tools in their personal lives, ripples from these changes are having an impact on how we do what we do in the classroom.  Looking at the impact of new technology and techniques on K-12 classroom instruction is a central component to what I plan on pursuing in my dissertation.

To remain relevant, teachers need to keep up with trends and be willing to adopt new tools and techniques as they present themselves. This doesn’t mean that the classroom teacher needs to be an expert on every new digital fad that appears on Twitter, but, rather that they are familiar with trends and make an effort to master one thing that they can use to improve instruction.

Flexibility is the key to future success.

Day 1 Reflection

Dr. Holder introduced himself and the class Today our focus seemed to revolve around research and the importance of gathering good, relevant data and using it to develop a literature review that helps those who read it better understand our train of thought.  Good research has no expiration date.

we looked at an educational myth — Dale’s Cone of Experience.  As it turns out, it is not based on any research.  It is a fabrication.  It was a solid launching point to discuss the need to check what we are seeing as we conduct research to make sure all of our information is data-driven.

We dove into the JFL and some of the research features available beyond “Search Everything.”  This began a discussion about the five-year-or-younger requirement for reference material to be used in our studies. Eric, we learned is effectively dead, and choosing Education Research Complete/Academic Search Complete are great options for launching research.
We also attended the dissertation lecture to make sure we understand the process.
Our final discussion point was to make sure that we narrow our research in our group literature review.  Sound advice for sure!

Day 2

As educators we need to invest in innovation in our field.  Far too often we allow industry, publishers and the like to drive the way we interact with technology.  Teachers need to own the way forward in all aspects of the field.  It is the teachers responsibility to keep up to speed with trends in the field of education.

Teachers need to be on top of changes in the field.

How do I move the field forward?

This kind of engagement in preparation will build value into the work we do and generate good product (students).  Teachers teach because they love what they do.  Every teacher needs to adopt as their philosophy that they are part of the Return on Investment (ROI) in education.

The teaching profession needs to change.  Educators tend to be obtuse about change in instruction.  Some of it is pay, some involves other factors like instructional philosophy and desire to change.

Districts will lose 12-20% of staff each year.  The cost of bringing in new teachers is very high.  The first three years are building years for new teachers.

Throwing hardware at the problem will not solve it.  Technology brings efficiency to instruction.  It also adds an element of engagement.  We have to understand the pedagogy behind effective instruction.

We encourage student voice and choice.  Students demonstrate deep understanding in a manner with which you are comfortable.  Administrators need to advance the idea of Teacher Voice and Choice.  Effective leaders seek input and buy-in from all stakeholders before implementing new programs.  Flexibility in all aspects of instruction is critical.

Other thoughts:

Focusing too heavily on standardized test results reduces the entire learning community to a number.


Day 3

The morning discussion centered on students taking ownership of their own learning.  Learned helplessness is a real thing.  As teachers we need to help students grow through the stages of hand-holding and the like.

More discussion revolved around Micro-tasking vs Multi-tasking.

Excuses for ADHD behavior ignores the need for discipline.

In education, “the customer is always right” does not work. Students who want to work the system to provide hand-holding through the process is not acceptable.

Course as a smorgasbord – synchronous and asynchronous instruction à all within the same course. This would provide differentiation within the course.


A few helpful links:


Four Pillars of F-L-I-P

  1. Flexible Learning
  2. Learning Culture – Rich learning environment à upper end of Blooms
  3. Intentional Content – Create and curate relevant content.
  4. Professional Educator – The role of the teacher is more important than expected. The teacher has to be available.
    1. Involved in formative assessment to inform future instruction.
    2. Collaborative element is active and transformational.


Julie Schell — Flipped classroom in 60 seconds.

  1. BEFORE: Students prepare for full participation in class
  2. DURING: Students practice applying key concepts with feedback
    1. Students who arrive unprepared do not participate.
    2. Students collaborate to build greater understanding.
  3. AFTER: Students check their understanding and extend their learning.
    1. Homework has not been quantified to enrich student grasp of concepts.
    2. What are students doing to push forward their understanding? What are they doing to demonstrate their understanding of ideas?

If students read “With Understanding” we can have a much different dialogue.

The student needs to engage the reading to elevate understanding and discussion. This all must be tied into schema to be remembered.

Was the Civil War about slavery? (9-out –of-10 Confederate soldiers at Antietam never had any connection to slavery/ farming.)

This group of students is interested in developing more collaborative environments in their schools. I am really looking forward to working closer with all of them the rest of the week.

Since Stephana could not see my blog the last few days, this one is for her!

Day 4

Notes and thoughts…

I met some guys in the chaplaincy program this morning. They are excited about the opportunity to serve.



The importance of audio

Vocal quirks

Speakerphone effect

Omni-directional mics

Uni-directional mics

Mics in computers are condenser mics.

Ambient noise

Audacity – Source Forge

Careful of Clipping – high input volume

Be careful of:

Dentilization/ Plosives/ Whistles/ Rubbing

The quality of the instructor’s voice impacts cognition.

Yeti Blue mic

Samson Meteor

Snowball mic

Zoom H2

Sound field amplification

Typically used in larger classrooms.

Helps students in ESE classrooms to stay on task, etc.

$1,000 per set

Will it work in smaller classrooms (15-20 students)?

Students off task, students asking for repetition


BB Grader (Doug’s suggestion) allows the teacher to leave written, audio and video comments.

Round-robin discussion about our presentations

Joanna talked about Naviance and its use or lack of use of this helpful app.


Collage – French Mixing numerous images seamlessly together

Compositing – The resulting image looks like what the scene would have looked like if it actually happened.

It is worth remembering:

72 pixels is kinda low resolution 1200 dpi gives much more detail

Work from folders.

Canvas size or image size can scale up or down the size of the image.


Apple ads:

Given the right parameters, you do not have to teach students to create digital content. You just have to let them.

Broaden the audience for student work. Students will invest themselves into course work aggressively when they want to express the concept.

Mpeg is DVD format.

MLV is mobile device format

FLV is Flash format

WebM is Chrome

SWF files aren’t understood by your browser. Drag it to your BROWSER!

Techsmith – CamStudi

This can be done in QuickTime

Download Helper — Firefox


Your computer does not know what to do with Jing videos.

Take Jing products and …

Copy Google Docs link and share it in Bb.

Working on my video and this blog this week, I learned that IOS and OSX deal with software very differently. I brought my Macbook Air to Liberty this week. I am used to working on my WordPress and Jing video (swf file conversion became a problem on the Air) is a fairly simple process on my Macbook Pro. However, logging on to edit my WordPress pages took some time and a bit of trial and error.


Day 5

Today’s presentations went well. It is a common theme, but there are no silver bullets where technology is concerned. A lot of research needs to be done to determine what, if any, effect all of this tech integration actually has on student outcomes.

I always enjoy getting to know my classmates. Group projects can help us learn how to negotiate through mild frustration and hitches in the system. I always want to put my best foot forward. My group worked through technical issues with Google Docs permissions and presented a great product. We worked together like we had known each other for years.

It was good to have familiar faces in the class as well. Kirt, Doug and Joanna (the order of those names was randomly generated) helped bring the entire class together. The “new” members of our group came along for the ride. We laughed a lot this week.

I look forward to hearing glowing reports of what God does with each of them as they complete their programs and apply all that they have learned.