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A 7th grade student gives a tour of her personal learning environment. PLN. If you ever need to understand the function of Technology in learning, Watch this video

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Comment by Kelly Hagen on August 1, 2010 at 3:06pm
Awesome job. It's very motivating for me as a teacher to see what a great job a 7th. grade student is doing with her account.
Comment by Wendy Eiteljorg on July 24, 2010 at 3:36pm
I use symbaloo in my 5th grade classroom.

I make "desktops" of images and resources for a topic we are studying. I organize them with images towards the top and sites with more text as you move down the page. I also create a few wallwishers for students to share ideas and questions as they investigate. Once I make the set of links ("desktop") I share it with my students. Then they have time to investigate the links and begin their learning on a new topic in a way that makes sense for them (images first or text or video whatever).

It has been super helpful.
Comment by Paula Naugle on June 20, 2010 at 1:58pm
BTW I learned from her and am now using Symbaloo as my start page.
Comment by Jane St. Pierre on June 12, 2010 at 3:22pm
Todd, you raise some of the same questions that I had. Wendy is an amazing student. I am curious how many of the students in this class have the same "responsibility" inclination. What are the consequences for students who do not stay focused on what is important? How much teacher direction is needed and at what ages are students capable of this kind of work. I do believe that teachers should be teaching the use of tecnology in the classroom because that is the world our students live in. I am sure we can learn a great deal from them.
Comment by Todd I. Stark on June 5, 2010 at 3:47pm
This is wonderful!

"It can be distracting, but because there is so much freedom you have the inclination to be responsble."

I'm intrigued by that, since it seems to address the main criticism that people have about the technology. I wonder what it is about the freedom that she finds motivates her to be responsible, and that entails?

This points to an amazing learning environment for people who develop the right habits to use it effectively. I suspect it upon in the usage habits, and not just the medium itself or the content, that effective vs. ineffective use of technology is found. But the tendencies promoted by the medium itself play a significant role.

So what is it about this freedom that makes people more responsible learners? Exposure to more information, forcing them to think about it to organize it better? Exposure to more viewpoints, forcing them to consolidate more information when they summarize? New skills themselves for selectively hunting down and gathering up information?

The student here seems to have gotten a knack for it, is this typical, or what is different between her and students who don't use technology so effectively?
Comment by Paula Naugle on June 5, 2010 at 2:30pm
This is how all students should be learning in our classrooms. Very impressive work.


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