Archive Page 2

10 Ways Mobile Learning Changes the Teaching-Learning Process

 

Teachers’ role


Higher level thinking


QR codes

Students show learning

Teachers monitor learning

Bring outside in

Take learning out

Communicate

From text to media

Global/ Cultural


Extra: Use all of mobile, not just apps

Mobile Learning and Assessment

Can use a wide variety of mobile devices and of mobile apps for capturing student learning, analyzing it, providing feedback, and recognizing learning success.

Identify the specific learning goal

Have QR codes for exemplars that students can refer to anytime during the learning process

Pre-assess with mobile device: Need data to go to one location for analysis

Monitor and collect student data: Transform non-data activities such as texting into data ones. Constant monitoring of students. Daily/weekly review of data. Mobile device  spreadsheet of students’ scores

Use formative assessment: In-class performance tasks and short quizzes

Provide feedback: QR code to New strategy to overcome learning gap; Differentiate in strategies

Peer assess: While doing task on app or after learning task

Self assess: See progress and evaluate how to become better

Use Eportfolio: Wiki Edmodo ….

Celebrate successful learning

Other resources:

Search my education and technology blog bit.ly/hgtblog (Am on EdTech’s “The Honor Roll: 50 Must-Read K–12 Education IT Blogs”).

My modern language blogs are  now at  http://bit.ly/imprml

I have developed many  Spanish activities that allow students to begin to express themselves and to begin to move toward spontaneous speaking as in a natural conversation at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books, Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students,  Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment, and Improving Foreign Language Speaking Through Formative Assessment, are available at   http://is.gd/tbook

Academic Online Poll/Survey Guidelines to Improve Student Learning

Many teachers have begun to use online polling or survey tools in their classroom.  The clicker movement has become transformed into a multitude of  e-polling  tools such as those described in Web 2.0 Survey and Polling Tools.

Some general guidelines for a learning poll in a classroom.

1) Decide on the purpose of the poll.  Is it a pre-assessment, in-progress assessment, or a final assessment?

2) Focus the poll on a single  specific learning concept.  Do not do a poll on all Spanish foods  but on  the subcategory of  breakfast foods.  Avoid sampling polls that cover many different learning concepts.

3) Ask critical essential  material.  Go for the truly important learning , instead of the trivial learning.  It is more important to know what type poetry a poet wrote rather than how many husbands she had.

4) Ask higher level questions  Which of the following  sentences uses an analogy?  or

5) Keep the wording  simple. Avoid negative questions.  Avoid long  questions or statements. Avoid long multi-line possible answers.  Although open-ended questions often allow the students more flexible in how they answer the question, these open-ended answers are hard to analyze for overall class performance.

6) Keep the poll to 10 or fewer questions.  Make it a quick poll to take.

7)  Decide whether to give the poll as homework or in-class.  If done in-class, is it a review of yesterday (or the past few days)?  Is a poll given after  in-class instruction and some practice?  Decide when it  fits in the lesson to give you the best picture of students’ learning?

8) Decide if the poll is anonymous or whether the students identify themselves.  If students identify themselves, then you can keep track of their progress.   If students identify themselves, make sure your poll program can store the data.  Some poll programs have polls that disappear after a certain amount of time. Does the program allow you to manipulate the data such as sorting or ranking?

9) Decide if you will share the class results with the class or whether you will be the only one to look at the data.  If you share the results with the class, does the poll program produce an overall graph with no names or identification of individual students?  For example, the poll may show a graph of how many A,  B, C, and D answers there were for an individual question and  highlight the correct answer.

10)  If you are using the poll for class improvement, do you  provide new strategies for students to overcome the learning gaps shown in the poll? If  you explain the “wrong” answer in the same way that you have previously explained it, then students who are presently confused will still be confused.  Do you have a new different strategy for students to learn the material?  How soon after giving the poll will you give the new strategy? (Research says the sooner, the more effective.)  Do you have students practice the new approach?

11) If at least 20% of the students do poorly (below 80%) on the  poll,  do y0u re-poll students within a few days to see if they have overcome their learning gaps? Can they show that they are proficient?

12) Decide if your next online poll will be this subcategory of the learning goal at a higher learning level, another subcategory of this learning goal, or a new learning goal.  Hopefully, students will see the polls as a logical progression of their learning.

How do you use polls in your class?

My modern language blogs are  now at  http://bit.ly/imprml

I have developed many  Spanish activities that allow students to begin to express themselves and to begin to move toward spontaneous speaking as in a natural conversation at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

What is the Role of Technology in the Teaching-Learning process?

A very creative elementary teacher will retire in June because she no longer feels she can teach due to her district’s technology push.  Her district purchased a math online program in which the computer program presents the math concept and  the program has students do stations for a designated amount of time each day. Her job is to make sure that the students rotate through the stations.

Another teacher no longer has time to relate his subject area to the real world because he has to push through his textbook so students can do the  designated  and scheduled online drill and practice for each unit. The district looks at the student data from the online activities as an assessment measure.

A science teacher has to have her students do a specified number of app activities for each unit.  Although this teacher used to do many student inquiry labs, she has had to eliminate those labs in order to provide students time to  complete all the apps.

Finally, students in Carpe Diem schools spend half to  two thirds  of their day doing computer work. These students score well on state tests. (http://news.heartland.org/newspaper-article/2011/04/22/carpe-diem-charter-school-seizes-tomorrows-innovations-today)

What is your view of the role of technology in the  teaching learning process?  Do teachers or technology determine how students spend their learning time? Who/What  makes decisions about what learning gap  students have and supplies a new strategy to overcome the gap?

I have developed many  Spanish activities that allow students to begin to express themselves and to begin to move toward spontaneous speaking as in a natural conversation.  My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (20+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card-whole class), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate in pairs),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing from 2-4 people) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas- pairs or small group),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics in pairs),  and Grammar speaking games (pairs or small group). Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Modifying ACTFL’s 90% Guideline

ACTFL therefore recommends that language educators and their students use the target language as exclusively as possible (90% plus) at all levels of instruction during instructional time. “ http://www.actfl.org/news/position-statements/use-the-target-language-the-classroom-0

ACTFL has a 90% guideline to indicate how much teachers should speak in the modern language in the classroom. However, I think that ACTFL should concentrate less on the teachers and more on the students. Basically, the question for a language classroom is “Who needs more language practice the teacher or the students?” if the students need more practice, then they should be the ones talking the most in the class, not the teacher.


I think that ACTFL should implement these student guidelines:


– Students’ modern language talking should be 70% of the total talk in each class.

– During each class students should talk at least once with at least five consecutive sentences.

– In each class, students should have at least one interactive  spontaneous speaking conversation with another student of three minutes.

– Each student should say at least 30 sentences in the modern language each class.

I do not believe that students simply saying grammar drills or doing vocabulary drills, no matter how fancy these drills are, constitutes real language use. I would not count those sentences as speaking the language. I would like students to move from practicing the language to using the language even at the beginning levels. I would them to communicate.

From now on, I will only post my modern language/ foreign language/ world language posts to my Improving Modern Language Learning  at modernlanguagest.wordpress.com   Within the next few weeks, I will move all old languages posts to there.

I have developed many  Spanish activities that allow students to begin to express themselves and to begin to move toward spontaneous speaking as in a natural conversation.  My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (21+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card-whole class), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate in pairs),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing from 2-4 people) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas- pairs or small group),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics in pairs),  and Grammar speaking games (pairs or small group). Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Learning App Analysis

Does the learning app:

Present problems, scenarios, etc in more than just words?  For example, does the app show a picture and base the questions on that picture? Do the students have to answer questions based on a short 30 second video?

Present a variety of different problems?  For example, can math students do the math in number format (2+2 = ),  word format (two and two equals), and visual format (two apples and two apples =)

Have a variety of ways that students can input the answer ?  Is the app an  A, B, C, D  click on the button choice  or does it allow students to move things around to show the answer? Can the students say the answer?

Identify when the students have a correct answer?

Identify when   students have an incorrect answer?  For example, the program says, “No, try again.”

Tell which part of the student’s answer is incorrect?  Or tell how the student was incorrect? For example, did the student  incorrectly  spell  the first part of the answer?  Did the students confuse two words?

Allow the students  to try again? For example, the program repeats the same question or a similar one.

Supply at least one strategy to understand the correct answer through explaining the concept?  Does the app provide a strategy to help the students overcome this learning gap?   Does the app supply  text clues, visual clues,  or sound clues   to help the student learn the concept so he/she can generalize to other questions of the same concept?

Tell the correct answer?

Keep track of the students’ progress?  Does it show the students what they have mastered before they  move on?  For example, the app can have a checklist of the various levels of the learning goal.

Make this data  available to the teacher?  Can the teacher  sort through the data by class, from high scoring students to low scoring  students,  and by specific learning goal?

Move the students on to a higher level once the student has shown proficiency?  How many questions reveal proficiency?  For example, does the app check student progress after ten questions or do students have to do thirty before it proclaims student success?

Move students up Bloom’s level of thinking?  Do  the students move up to do a real life example of using that learning?  Are they put in a real life scenario through a video?  Or do they go from abstract practice to more  abstract practice?

Have the student spend more time on learning than on playing reward games?

How is this mobile  app different from a website version of  the same material?  What  advantage does the mobile version have?

I have developed many  Spanish activities that allow students to begin to express themselves and to begin to move toward spontaneous speaking as in a natural conversation.  My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (20+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card-whole class), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate in pairs),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing from 2-4 people) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas- pairs or small group),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics in pairs),  and Grammar speaking games (pairs or small group). Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Guidelines for Technology-Based Learning Conference/ Workshop Presentations

During the past few months, I been to numerous conferences.  I have become very disappointed with the presentations. They have been “See the technology” presentations that did not focus on how the technology improves student learning.  I suggest the following guidelines for any technology-based learning presentations including professional development

1. (33.3 %) How does the technology help improve student learning?
Does the presenter identify the specific learning  topic and specific learning goals that this technology helps with?
Does the presenter show at least four real classroom examples from her/his school or district?
Does the presenter  use  examples from real classrooms and not the company’s website that  a professional artist may have spent hundreds of hours creating as a beautiful, but unrealistic, demo?
Does the presenter show  actual learning not just talk about  student learning?
Does the presenter focus on how this technology uniquely helps the students in their learning?  Why use this technology as opposed to some other technology for the same specific learning goal?
Does the presenter focus on the substance of the program, not its glitz?

2. (33.3 %)  Does the presenter show the critical steps that the students go through in using this learning tool from  start to  finish?
Does the presenter focuses on  the critical parts of the program,  not on the minor parts such as  showing every possible  background?
Does the presenter show the critical parts in the  logical order of  student use (from start to finish of the learning) instead of going through the program menu by menu?
Does the presenter only focus on what the  beginning / average  student user would do and not some advanced feature that students would not usually use?
Does the presenter show his/her final product that is the result of what he/she actually did during this workshop?

3. (33.3 %) Does the presenter go over implementation issues,  tricky or non logical things that could prevent the learning from being successful?
Does the presenter know the program well enough to tell critical details such as this  app only records for one minute or a student  cannot erase if she  uses this part?
Does  the presenter  give a realistic time frame  about how much time it takes the students  to do / use this program? Is that time appropriate to the learning level?  For example,  in one program students create an animated mini-movie  of a conversation that takes twenty minutes  to produce when they could do the same conversation with an app camcorder in three minutes.
Does the presenter  mention other programs /apps  that build on this learning to take students to even  higher levels of learning?
Does the presenter talk about how students  collaborate while using this program/ app?
Does the presenter go over how he/she assesses the learning from this program/ app?

Let’s move from the technology whiz  factor  to  the student learning factor!

I have developed many  Spanish activities that allow students to begin to express themselves and to begin to move toward spontaneous speaking as in a natural conversation.  My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (20+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card-whole class), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate in pairs),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing from 2-4 people) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas- pairs or small group),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics in pairs),  and Grammar speaking games (pairs or small group). Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Common Core and Modern Languages- Do not panic

No, there are no common core standards for Modern Languages.    Yes, Modern Language teachers are looking at  the English Language Arts Common Core.      No, those teachers should not panic.

I  have been in education for over 40 years.  I have seen many many movements and new  approaches.  I have been in education long enough to see the same movement resurface with a new name.  With each new building principal came a new way of doing things, with each new superintendent came the newest approach, and with each new leader of  state education or professional organization came a new vision.  Usually the new approach, especially the common core in Modern Language,  does not require multiple days of professional development even a half day; most times modern language teachers can make the change within about an hour.

I have used a simple technique to change to any new  approach.    I analyze the new approach thoroughly and then determine
1. What am I presently doing that directly fits in that approach?
2. What am I doing that I can modify slightly to fit the approach?  Sometimes it is as simple as a name change or where something goes in a lesson. For example, what  is the new name for an anticipatory set?  I believe that Common Core English just uses different labels than we do in Modern Languages when we use the labels from ACTFL or state guidelines.
3. What do I have to change completely or add to what I already do?

I am waiting for someone to develop the magic cheat sheet that converts  the English Language Arts Common Core to Modern Language learning.  We already do  them, we just have to give our activities a new name or number.

I have attended two workshops on Common Core and Modern Languages  and neither kept it simple. In fact, I walked out more confused than when I went in.  A Modern Language department could do a  CC to ML conversion chart  in about a fifty minute meeting.

If you know of anyone who has developed the magic conversion chart, please let me know so I can share it with other Modern Language teachers.

I have developed many  Spanish activities that allow students to begin to express themselves and to begin to move toward spontaneous speaking as in a natural conversation.  My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (20+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card-whole class), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate in pairs),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing from 2-4 people) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas- pairs or small group),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics in pairs),  and Grammar speaking games (pairs or small group). Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Using Mobile Learning to Become World Citizens

How  mobile  are our students  in terms of their interactions with others through their mobile devices?

How much of  a student’s  learning involves
___ other students in the class?
___ other  classes within the school?
___ other schools within the district?
___ people in the community?
___ people in other parts of the state?
___ people in other states?
___ people in another country?
___ people from several countries?

If  we want our  students to be world citizens,  then we have to structure their mobile  learning to broaden their scope of interactions.  When they use mobile devices, they  can have access to others inside and outside the classroom.

One easy way to expand a mobile  learning activity is to think of the essential question for that learning.  Essential questions are universal.  Three quick examples:
– Do Grocery Store math in which students do real math based on actual prices in other places.  Each class “buys” certain items and post the name of the  item and its price and then make up problems.  María is planning a party but she only has $30. What  and how much of each can she buy for the party from this list of food and prices from our area.
– Have an international art gallery in which students from various countries exhibit  their art about family. Through QR codes, they either explain their art or show how it was made.  They can peer critic each other.
– Social Studies students from different states or countries  present the geography of their area and its impact on the history of the area. The students compare and contrast the geography and its impact from the places. Students can show the geography and its impact through taking pictures /movies and narrating the impacts that they show.

I have developed many  Spanish activities that allow students to begin to express themselves and to begin to move toward spontaneous speaking as in a natural conversation.  My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (20+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card-whole class), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate in pairs),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing from 2-4 people) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas- pairs or small group),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics in pairs),  and Grammar speaking games (pairs or small group). Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Analyzing a Modern Language Textbook for Authentic Communication

Recently I analyzed a textbook for its communication value. Of the 25 activities in one chapter, there were 17 textbook only activities.  A textbook activity deals what is in the textbook such as questions about a picture.   For example, the book showed a tv schedule and asked students about the schedule.  There were  8 activities that encouraged students to talk about their lives .  Each of the 8 activities followed a strict formula in which students substituted in their answer for the given one.   What did your father eat yesterday? He  ate …….  What did  your mother eat?…  Only one activity was longer than 5 lines. The students do answer  questions but they do not react. None of the activities lead to a  free flowing conversation  in which students honestly reacted to each other. None of the personal activities lead to  a  full conversation.

Some questions to ask about your textbook:

1 How many of the exercises are personal ones in which students tell about their lives?

2 Can students tell many things about themselves or does this exercise really focus on practicing a  specific grammar /vocabulary point?  For example, I get up at six. I eat at 7, I lunch at 12.  People really  do not talk that way unless they are recounting their day and then they would add in more details.

3 How long of a conversation does the book encourage?  Do the students say a 8+ line conversation?

4 What part of the conversation is spontaneous and free flowing as opposed to strictly following the formula/questions?

5 Do the students’ statements and questions follow the logical fashion they would in a real conversation ? Or does it twist, in an unnatural way, to present a grammar point/ vocabulary term?

6  Would a target language speaker actually say this conversation?

Let’s help students to communicate not “grammarate”.

I have developed many  Spanish activities that allow students to begin to express themselves and to begin to move toward spontaneous speaking as in a natural conversation.

My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (20+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card-whole class), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate in pairs),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing from 2-4 people) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas- pairs or small group),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics in pairs),  and Grammar speaking games (pairs or small group). Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Mobile Learning Questions

Mobile  Learning Summit 2012

How will you use mobile learning?

Prediction: If mobile learning only focuses on drill-and-kill activities, then mobile learning will fail.
Why only use mobile learning for apps?
How can teachers improve student learning  through the social interactive parts of mobile learning?

Questions for Mobile Learning
1. What is the role of  teachers in mobile learning?
2. How can the students learn through collaboration inside and outside the classroom?
3. How do  students do higher-level thinking for in-depth learning?
4. How can teachers increase students’ learning time?
5. How do students demonstrate their learning on a daily or weekly basis?
6. How do teachers constantly monitor students learning and provide new learning strategies? How do students monitor their own learning?
7. How do students bring their world into the classroom to make learning real?
8. How do students take their learning out into the world?
9. How do students communicate for learning through texting, Facebook, and phone calling?
10. How do students learn from media as well as written information?
11. How do students learn more when they interact with people outside the class/state/nation?

My favorite QR code generator is http://createqrcode.appspot.com/
Use a URL shortener like bit.ly to shorten the long urls
It allows you to enter several links into the one QR code and it allows you to determine the size of the qr code

A video about using QR codes in various subject areas     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ayW032sKtj

 

A few of my previous blogs about Mobile Learning:

Criteria for selecting student mobile learning device (educational concerns)

Aim For Real Learning With Apps

Analysis of Learning with Mobile Learning

Is it really MOBILE learning?

Teaching In the Age of Mobile Learning Devices

My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (20+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card-whole class), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate in pairs),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing from 2-4 people) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas- pairs or small group),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics in pairs),  and Grammar speaking games (pairs or small group). Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Are Modern Language Students’ Real Questions Found in their Textbook?

I recently asked my  Spanish college students to make a list of questions that they w0uld want to ask of a person whom they are meeting for the first time. I was amazed at how uniform their answers were:

What is your name?
What is your phone number?
How old are you?
When is your birthday?
Where are you from?
What are you like? / Are you (athletic, …..)?
Where do you live? /How long have you lived here?
How are you?
What school/college do you go to? What is your major?
Where do you work? /What do you do?
What do you like to do?
How many brothers/sisters do you have?
What is your favorite (music, team, color, hobby, TV show)? / Do you like ( a particular music group, sport, TV show)?

My guess is that if we look at most modern language textbooks, we will not find these questions in the first few chapters.  We may not find these critical question grouped together.   For example, one textbook might not teach “to live” until the 4th chapter and the course only covers the first  5th chapters of the textbook.

I think that we can learn a great deal about what is important to our  modern language students by asking them what they would want to say about a common  topic found in the textbook.  Does the language textbook reflects things that are of importance to students?  Or does the textbook focus on its own  grammar and vocabulary without focusing on what students, their intended audience,  would normally want to say about a topic?  A communicative book focuses on  what real people would ask/answer about a topic in a normal conversation. A grammar focused textbooks presents a very limited amount of  questions but concentrates more on a specific grammar point that has been worked into the questions/conversation.

I have put together numerous speaking mats that present students with a wide range of vocabulary for a given topic so that they can say and ask things that are important to them.  Some speaking mats:
Spanish Activities / Sports Spontaneous Speaking Mat – Small Group
Spanish Clothing Spontaneous Speaking Mat – Partner Talk
Spanish Casa /House Spontaneous Speaking Mat – Partner Talk
I have many other activities where I supply the students with a wide range of possible answers such as
Spanish Friend /Family Member Detailed Description – Partner Talk

My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (20+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card-whole class), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate in pairs),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing from 2-4 people) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas- pairs or small group),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics in pairs),  and Grammar speaking games (pairs or small group). Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Problems with Institutional Assessment

Assessment dominates education from K-12 through college.   There are different types of assessment, formative (helps students improve) and summative (grading of students).  However, institutional assessment  involves the bigger picture of how an institution or a department is doing academically.

In institutional assessment, teachers enter data into a  mega-database. For example, teachers may enter their students’ grades  on each section of the final. Then someone, often a department head,  analyzes the overall results using the online data, to assess the student learning across specific courses and across the department.

Institutional assessment has some basic flows
1) Most institutions have not identified a specific  enough curriculum that can be assessed.  Many contain very general statements of learning.  For example, English might state that  students will write a well-written essay. Has the English department specified what constitutes a well-written essay?  Likewise, a Modern language department may have the curriculum statement  “The student should speak in sentences that have relatively simple structures and concrete vocabulary”.  What does “speak” mean?  Does it mean to be able to talk about one’s life, to hold a conversation. to repeat from memory?  When there are only general  learning statements, there cannot be any  meaningful assessment.

2) If departments have identified specific learning goals, what is the priority of those learning goals? For example, in English the purpose of writing is to communicate ideas or feelings.  Shouldn’t the organization of ideas be more important than the spelling?  Or does spelling/grammar have the same assessment weight as organization?  Likewise,  in  Modern Languages, are all skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing) treated equally in assessment weighting even though both in class and in the real world, people listen and speak almost double the amount that they read and write?  Have the specific learning goals and their priority been communicated to the teachers/students through a department website/wiki?

3) The departments do not have exemplars that show the quality that they expect of students.  Does the English department share  electronically with all English teachers essays that show what constitutes a high level paper,  an acceptable paper, and a non-acceptable paper?  Again, are these exemplars on the department website for each course?  Does the Modern Language department share audio files of  a good ten sentence conversation through their website or an their department app?

4) They have vague assessment tools.  The English department has a generic rubric (has good organization,  conveys ideas, etc.) that can be interpreted differently by different people.   What type of essay will be the written? An autobiographical essay requires a very different approach than a contrast essay.  In Modern Languages, how will writing be assessed – holistically or analytically?  If different educators can come up with different scores for the same student, then the assessment tool does not accurately measure learning.  Teachers can receive a digital image of the rubric and work assessed using that rubric.   How well does the assessment tool match up with how the information was taught in class?  Is the assessment tool such as the final developed  at the  competency level or at the highly competent level?  Students may be competent but not highly competent

5) The departments do not do a thorough analysis to get at the root problem once they have discovered a gap.   If the students do not achieve well, was it due to the  students’ lack of effort, a misunderstanding of  how to answer the  assessment question, a specific word in the  assessment question,   the thinking level of the test question,    the structure of the assessment item,  the textbook, the textbook’s powerpoints,  the teacher’s explanation, the homework, or  the online work?  Usually much additional exploration is needed to determine the real reason for the gap. Once the  department identifies the gap, what  specific strategy will help the students over come this gap?  Will the department suggest  technology-based strategies that appeal to students such as Youtube videos, interactive websites,  interactive apps  and that help the students directly overcome the gap?

6) Most important of all, how does the institutional assessment help  students improve in the course right now?  Most institutions assess once a semester.  After the analysis, the department  focuses on  what changes will happen in the future year.  Unless regular assessment is done in small intervals  throughout the year and changes made almost instantly, then the assessment does not benefit  the present students.  Next year’s students may be very different than the students who took this assessment.  Classroom teachers need access to the online data and analysis so they can take class time to provide  the students new learning strategies.  Then, students can be successful learners!

How does your institution assess  student learning?

My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (20+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card-whole class), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate in pairs),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing from 2-4 people) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas- pairs or small group),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics in pairs),  and Grammar speaking games (pairs or small group). Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Students Paired Oral Testing Better Than With Examiner Modern Language

Based on Brooks, L. (2009). “Interacting in pairs in a test of oral proficiency; co-constructing a better performance”. Language Testing 26(3): 341-366.

Brooks’  research shows that students who are tested in pairs outperform students who are tested one-on-one with the examiner.  In addition, the students’ interactions were more complex and revealed that students co-constructed a more linguistically demanding performance. In addition, when students worked in pairs, they more closely resembled the oral interactions typical of a real conversation.  In paired testing students demonstrated a wider range of interactions (17) to the individual format (10).   The paired students mostly commonly had these interactions: seeking confirmation, asking a question, asking for agreement, clarification requests, and prompting elaboration, finishing sentences, and referring to partner’s ideas.  Over half of all interactions in the one-on-one with the examiner was asking a question.

As Modern Language teachers, we will want to encourage oral communication in the classroom.  We can have our students do more oral work in pairs.  We can structure students speaking  from very basic conversations up to free-flowing spontaneous conversations about common topics. Our scaffolding will allow our Second Language students to have more complex and personally meaningful conversations.

Most of the  Spanish activities I have developed are for pairs. A few of them are

Spanish Tell Me About Yourself Substitution Sentences    (Partners substitute in their own answers to tell about themselves

Spanish Conversation Questions Spontaneous Speaking Partners  (Partners ask basic questions and then variations on those questions)
Spanish Friend /Family Member Detailed Description – Partner Talk   (Each partner talks about a family member using possible words)

My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (20+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card-whole class), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate in pairs),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing from 2-4 people) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas- pairs or small group),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics in pairs),  and Grammar speaking games (pairs or small group). Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

 

Is it really MOBILE learning?

Mobile learning or mlearning is the hot topic.  An interesting question is “Is it mobile learning or just wireless learning (not fixed to wired device)?”

Do students do their mobile learning from their usual desk/chair?  If they stay in one spot, it is truly “mobile” learning or is it just wireless learning?

Students do mobile learning when they

1) Interact with other classmates.  If they regroup and work within their new group, they  are mobile. For example,  on one day, they work in small groups to brainstorm ideas,  each student independently develops one of the ideas on his/her own and, then,  the regroup to put together their ideas.   Their learning does not happen in just one fixed  location, their desk.

2) Use data from various parts of  the classroom. They may have QR stations where they do various aspects of the learning goal.  An art teacher  may have QR codes  in each corner of the room that help students compare/ contrast four styles of painting for the same theme of family.  Modern Language students may be asked to look at a poster, painting, or picture, pretend to be in the picture, have a conversation, and record that conversation.

3) Capture data from other parts of the room.  Science students may use their mobile device to take pictures of their growing plant over many weeks, of how far the sun’s light go inside the classroom over several months. Math  students can take pictures of  real math problems with the prices of actual  food such as a gallon of milk for $3.99

3)  Interview other people in the school for information and views.  The wandering students can take their mobile device, record the conversation, take a movie of something, or  take pictures.  ??????

4) Use data or capture specific  information from other parts of the school or community.  Social Studies students can take pictures of local history places, events or objects, interview community members for their memories, put together a wiki page for that place, and create QR codes to show how that place played a critical role  in the development of the place.  They put an actual QR code in front of the historical place.

5) Access in-depth information on a topic from other students and people.  Music students may create online surveys of what type music people listen to and how often. They can ask the survey takers to explain their choice of music and, then the students analyze the data.

6) Interact with people from other parts of the state, country, and world.  Students can use relatives and friends to find people other locations. For example, a student from Rochester NY may interact with a student from Quito, Ecuador regarding  celebrations to find similarities and differences.

7) See multiple views.  Since  each student in a small group can each access information (music, pictures, movies, text), students can see different views of the bigger picture and then create a synthesized view. In an English class, a group might focus on the human condition of romantic  love. One student finds a work of art, one finds a poem, one finds a song, and one finds a movie; they collaborate on showing different types of romantic love.

8)  Collaborate with   students and others  as part of their homework

9) Develop individual learning projects based on interest as well as group collaborative projects.  In Science students can explore a certain aspect of pollution (noise, chemical, in the air, etc) that interests them. They can develop their own hypothesis (school halls have more noise than an airport) and then gather data to prove it.

Mobile learning implies mobility of  physical place, mobility of expanding thinking, and mobility of interacting with others inside and outside the classroom, and mobility of individual work.

My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (20+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics),  and Grammar speaking games. Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

World Language Students’ Scaffolded Speaking Output With Substitutions

We teach world languages so that our students can speak it yet we do not teach them  how to speak.   Students identify  speaking in the foreign language as creating the most anxiety in language learning.    Young, D. (1990). “An Investigation of Students’ Perspective on Anxiety and Speaking.” Foreign Language Annals. 23:539-553

Krashen explained the importance of input, students listening to us as we speak the target language; however, he stressed that comprehensible output is the goal of language acquisition.  Krashen, S. (2003). Explorations in Language Acquisition and Use. Portsmouth: Heinemann.

The world language teachers’ overemphasis on input, their talking in the classroom, creates a myth of promoting  student speaking.

I watched many Olympic swimming events. I watched for many hours. Can I swim any better now than  before watching them? No!
I watch musicals on TV, go to musicals in theaters,  and listen to choral groups.  Can I sing any better now with all that input? No!
Every day I  watch marathon runners go past my house early in the morning.  Can I run faster and do a marathon from all their input?  No!

Input provides the initial sounds, sentence patterns, etc.  for students.  However, students have to move to guided  or scaffolded output so they can produce the sounds and,  more importantly, the sentences to converse with one another.  Students do not  magically go from hearing our speaking to their conversing in the target language.  We need to give them some assistance as they begin to put together sentences.

One technique is to provide the students with  modern language sentences which contain choices. They select what they want to say from the available words/phrases. They say what is meaningful to them through the selection of words/phrases. They do create sentences on their own.

Scaffolded sentences provide a starting point for narrating and conversing.  In one substitution  exercise, the students change an underlined word to be true for them  such as  “I live in Syracuse.”   For example, I have for Spanish students a “Tell Me about Yourself Activity” in which students say 13 changes, 22 or 34 changes to tell about themselves (Spanish Tell Me About Yourself Substitution Sentences).  In another variation, the students change a word in over 30  questions such as  “¿Te gustar jugar al béisbol?” in Spanish Conversation Questions Spontaneous Speaking Partners .   Once  students do these scaffolded sentences, they better understand how they can recombine sentences and questions to converse with one another. They move toward spontaneous speaking.

My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (20+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics),  and Grammar speaking games. Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Criteria for selecting student mobile learning device (educational concerns)

As schools move toward mobile learning, they have to make decision about the type of mobile device that the students will use.  Regardless of whether the school supplies its own device or whether students supply their own,  there  are some basic minimal  requirements.

1) The device has to connect to the  internet so students can use qr codes, do internet searching,  bookmark commonly used sites,  watch educational videos and create online surveys.

2) The device should have enough memory for basic apps such as an  e-reader, a note-taker/ word processor,   spreadsheet,   media player, and a dictionary app.  The device will have other apps that help the students to climb the learning ladder from memorization to synthesis/evaluation  for their  specific learning goals.  There will be many more higher level learning apps (70%) than lower level ones (30%).  Those apps that simulate or duplicate real-world use of the subject area  learning will be the most useful apps.

3)  The device should have a camera and microphone so students can take pictures, record videos, and record audio. They will want to  capture and demonstrate their learning through images and sound (pictures, sound recordings, and movies).

4) Students need to be able to do texting  on the device so they can seek the perspectives of others and to learn from others outside the classroom.  As students learn to ask good  essential questions, they can seek the perspectives of others so they can go beyond the limited perspective of the textbook.  If we value diversity, let’s bring it into the classroom through seeing the opinions of others.

5) As students use their mobile device to explore concepts through productivity based learning, they will want to be able to call their experts such as their aunt or grandfather for things such as what is was like during the Depression,  how a farm business has been changed by technology, etc. so the mobile learning device needs to have phone capabilities.  Even better, if it can have videoconferencing.

6) Students need access to their social media sites on their mobile learning device so that they can distribute surveys.  When they want to receive many responses, they know they can distribute the surveys to their online friends.  The more people responding, the better the data to analyze and the more critical thinking involved.

If we want students to be prepared for their future in the real world, the world outside the classroom, then we need to start taking them virtually into that world and allowing them to bring that world into the classroom through their mobile learning device.

I have 20+ Spanish spontaneous speaking/fluency activities  available at Teacherspayteachers: 
http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Aim For Real Learning With Apps

During the Olympics many athletes told about their training.  For example, swimmers lifted weights to develop stronger arms. They watched tapes of their turning around  and made adjustments.  They stressed that the most important thing that they could do to improve their swimming was to swim.

Do we use apps  in our classrooms to do  developmental drills or do we use apps to allow students to swim?  Students can do math app after math app of math drills without ever doing real world math; , can the students  figure out how much they are spending in a store and how much change they  are to get back?   Likewise, English students can do grammar drill after grammar drill on various apps;  can they write a persuasive essay about preventing the destruction of a forest for a shopping mall?  Again, modern language students can do vocabulary drills on  food in many different apps; can they, in the target language, order a meal and tell what is wrong with the meal?

Our students will use some developmental apps but then  they have to move up to  real life or simulation apps where students use the learning in real experiences.  For examples, you can give  your  math students a certain amount of  virtual pretend money such as $150.00 and tell them to go clothing shopping at an online store on their mobile device. What can they buy? How much will they have left?   Modern language students can visit a restaurant in their target language and explain to the waiter  what they want to eat  for each part of the meal.

Let’s use apps to do real world uses of the subject area and not to drown students in developmental apps.

I have 20+ Spanish spontaneous speaking/fluency activities  available at Teacherspayteachers: 
http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

World Language Speaking – The Power of Asking and Answering Questions

As I looked at a modern language  textbook, I saw that it had mini-conversations of 2-3 lines.  For example, “Who is looking at the car? ….. Chris is looking at the car.”   In reality, such conversations simply practice the recently introduced grammar of the unit. These conversations do not communicate anything other than grammar.

For me, the ability to ask and answer questions is key to being able to converse in a world language. However, students do need to practice in asking and answering questions.  They need not only to understand what the question word means but also to know how to answer the question word. For example, the Spanish question word, ¿Dónde ….?” means “where” and the student answers with a place.  My students practice in asking and answering questions.  During a recent summer school final, my students, working in pairs, asked  ten questions and gave ten answers based on a randomly selected  common topic in a three minute period; they had no time to prepare to talk. They just began their conversation.  To develop that skill, I have my students do activities like Spanish Question Words Speed-Asking Partner Speaking (http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spanish-Question-Words-Speed-Asking-Partner-Speaking)  in which they practice seeing how many questions they can ask about a topic and Spanish Questions Modified Speed Dating Whole Class Speaking  (http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spanish-Questions-Modified-Speed-Dating-Whole-Class-Speaking) in which they ask a question from a card and their partner answers the question, then the partner asks a questions.  Students need much practice in asking and answering questions before they can do it spontaneously  to find out information from a partner.

How much do you have your students practice asking and answering questions about common world  language topics?  How well do your students communicate in a conversation.

My 20+ Spanish spontaneous speaking activities such as Modified Speed Dating -AR verbs, Modified Speed Dating -Leisure/Sports, Spanish Conversation Topics- Partners, Multiple Sentences  Speaking Board Game, Describing a friend, Talking about classes, Preterite Game & Speaking, and Clothing Spontaneous Speaking Mat are available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

Also, my book Improving Foreign Language Speaking Through Formative Assessment. Larchmont, NY: Eye on Education,  includes a procedure to assess all students in the class in just three minutes. It provides, for each of fifteen language functions such as socializing, asking for and giving information, and explaining, ten different speaking strategies to help students to improve. http://bit.ly/Tutbks.  Also, my Formative Assessment Responding to Your Students, and    Student Writing Through Formative Assessment books.

Smart Phones and Mobile Learning: Best Practices and Lessons Learned ISTE

We will Edmodo for our Mobile Learning workshop so you can respond to and share resources and  ideas.

We will do a survey on mobile learning

Why not?  and how to overcome the negatives

Why?

Learning goals met by Mobile learning

Other schools – each group will read about a different school and post info using  Plus, Minus, and Interesting/ Questions

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Reference

Google 466453

Chacha 242-242
Apps – Dictionary, Thesaurus, verb conjugator, periodic table

Internet search – facts, visuals, TED talks, vids

Change teaching since students can access facts via mobile device

5 Ways Smartphones

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Texting

Get help from others

Get opinions and views from others that give a bigger perspective

Bring  the outside world into the classroom

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Surveys

How many people can complete the survey in 24 hours?

Teach analysis skills in creating and analyzing survey results

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Media to demonstrate learning

Flickr slideshow http://www.flickr.com/

Yodio http://www.yodio.com/

Geo-tours Http://bit.ly/andN57

Audioboo http://www.audioboo.com

Voki http://www.voki.com

Facebook

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Global Interactions

Go beyond just going to sites in other countries or about other countries; have students interact with other students to solve problems such as environment

Skype in the classroom http://education.skype.com/

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Higher Level Thinking

Contrast/ Compare two things

Synthesize from various sources

Evaluate

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Assess Learning

Google Docs including forms and spreadsheet

Poll everywhere / http://www.polleverywhere.com

QR codes for formative feedback strategies

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QR Codes

Label Multiple Change See

QR code generator: http://createqrcode.appspot.com/

QR Posters

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Reactions/ Questions/  Suggestions

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My formative assessment books: Formative Assessment Responding to Your Students,   Student Writing Through Formative Assessment Improving Foreign Language Speaking Through Formative Assessment. http://bit.ly/Tutbks

My 20 Spanish spontaneous speaking activities are available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle


Educational Mobile Learning: A Technology Evaluation Grid

As you begin to plan for using mobile learning, use this grid to help you determine where you want to be.

Tuttle Mobile Learning Device Technology Grid

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My formative assessment books: Formative Assessment Responding to Your Students,   Student Writing Through Formative Assessment Improving Foreign Language Speaking Through Formative Assessment. http://bit.ly/Tutbks

My 20 Spanish spontaneous speaking activities are available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

Analysis of Learning with Mobile Learning

Use the following grid to analyze student learning based on  how you will be or are using mobile learning.

If you are planning for mobile learning, how can you modify your present plan to maximize learning with mobile learning?

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My formative assessment books: Formative Assessment Responding to Your Students,   Student Writing Through Formative Assessment Improving Foreign Language Speaking Through Formative Assessment. http://bit.ly/Tutbks

My 20 Spanish spontaneous speaking activities are available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

Formative Assessment +Technology = Foreign Language Speaking Fluency ISTE 2012

Formative Assessment: continual improvement from where the modern language students are at present  to where we want them to be in their speaking through monitoring, giving feedback and providing time for improvement
Students speaking -> formative feedback ->  students speaking -> formative feedback -> speaking fluency

Technology: Motivates students since they talk about real things;  brings the  foreign language students’ world into the class and allows students to see the world of the new language area
Student talks about the teacher’s digital pictures or Flickr pictures  from target language area with question words data sheet
Student talks about the teacher’s digital pictures or Flickr pictures  from target language area  with a conversation data chart
Student talks about student taken picture posted to class Flickr account  for student’s number of consecutive sentences data list
Student talks about student taken picture  for conversation about last weekend with a conversation data chart
Student tells about his/her house using phone picture while partner monitors using a speaking chart
Student talks about a party, records it inVoki , moves it to wiki page where the student writes suggestions for improvement
Spreadsheet for analyzing students’ speaking per speaking function overtime.

Foreign Language / Modern Language Speaking Fluency (Spontaneous Speaking)  Students go from memorized sentences/dialogues to speaking spontaneously about common topics through scaffolded exercises that continually provide them with new speaking strategies. The students  demonstrate language fluency through speaking with minimal pauses about a new topic with no preparation.

Mobile learning (mlearning) Mobile Assisted Language Learning (MALL)

Two Youtube videos  on the importance of speaking in modern language class http://bit.ly/mlspeaking and of monitoring students’ speaking http://bit.ly/MLFAP2

A few technologies for modern language students to demonstrate their  speaking so they can receive feedback for improvement  Harry Grover Tuttle
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com
Pictures – on phone/mobile learning device
Picture + music Animoto
Picture + voice Voki (avatar), Fotobabble, Audioboo
Pictures + voice Yodio
Voice – phone call / leave a message
Voice recording – phone/ mobile learning device
Video recorded – – phone/ mobile learning device
Live video – Skype

Other resources:

Free Flickr Images for common vocabulary collected by my students for full info go to Blog, http://wp.me/p262R-De  1) Go to http://www.flickr.com, 2) click on the word Search, 3) click on Tags only, on the right side of the search box, 3) then, enter spancon +(subject) such as spancon +casa– search the blog for the full listing. No words, just pictures. Can be used in any language for quick vocabulary review using real objects and for speaking in short sentences.

Improving Foreign Language Speaking Through Formative Assessment. Larchmont, NY: Eye on Education. My book includes a procedure to assess all students in the class in just three minutes. It provides, for each of fifteen language functions such as socializing, asking for and giving information, and explaining, ten different speaking strategies to help students to improve. http://bit.ly/Tutbks.  Also, my Formative Assessment Responding to Your Students, and    Student Writing Through Formative Assessment books. If you did not get a discount for the books at the session, please email me.

My 20 Spanish spontaneous speaking activities such as Modified Speed Dating -AR verbs, Modified Speed Dating -Leisure/Sports, Spanish Conversation Topics- Partners, Multiple Sentences Board Game, Describing a friend, Talking about classes, Preterite Game & Speaking, and Clothing Spontaneous Speaking Mat are available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

Search for modern language or foreign language on my blog https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com


Change Teaching Since Mobile Learning Devices as Outgrowth of Web 2.0

I feel that mobile learning with Smartphones, tablets, etc. comes as a natural outgrowth  of Web 2.0 and therefore our pedagogy with mobile learning has to be Web 2.0 or more.

Most older computer programs were top-down where the computer delivered the specific content and the student did that content in a specified path; they simply plugged in the answers.  Web 2.0 tools are  about the students  creating and interacting.

People used  the older phones  exclusively for talking.  Mobile learning devices allow today’s youth to  interact with the world, to create media,  and to access information.  Today’s youth determine what they want to do  and then use their  mobile learning device for that purpose.

If educators want  students to benefit from mobile learning devices in the classroom, then these educators have to change their teaching from the top-down deliver  teaching method to student engaged-interacting-creating.

Some ways teachers need to change:

1. Since students can access factual knowledge from their mobile learning device, teachers have to move from fact-delivers to  in-depth understanding and connections guiders.

2. Since students can text many other people and access multiple websites, teachers have to help students to evaluate and synthesize many diverse opinions about a particular learning concept/ situation.

3. Since students can access much  discrete information, teachers need to help students to go beyond the discrete learning to  see the big picture, the big  concept or question.

4. Since students can easily create media on their mobile learning device, teachers will move from just student text reports to media reports to demonstrate the students’ higher level  learning.

5. Since students can use the real world tools on the mobile learning devices, teachers will engage students in real life problems that use the critical learning.  Math students can help design a new playground for an elementary school in their district.

6. Since students can easily contact others and can access the web through their MLD , teachers will turn to collaborative project-based   in which students jig-saw their individual knowledge to form a  bigger learning.

7. Since students can ask peers and others for information through their MLD, teachers will help students write better survey questions and help the students  analyze survey data.

8. Since students can access online calendars and learning  interactive environments like Edmodo on their Smartphones and tablets, teachers will empower students  to be more responsible for their own learning.

9. Since students daily use their MLD, teachers can learn  from the students about the many educational and real-world apps that help students to become better learners.

So how has your teaching changed due to using mobile learning devices?

I have 20 Spanish spontaneous speaking/fluency activities  available at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle.

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook   


5 Smartphone (Mobile Learning) Concerns

As I have been using smartphones in my classes, presenting about it,  writing about it, and reading about it, I have some concerns.

1. Why limit mobile learning  to lower-level drill and kill activities?   Spanish teachers can have their students  study vocabulary on a topic such as a restaurant via an app. However, they can also use a QR code to show the students a restaurant  in Lima Peru and have their  students talk about the restaurant.

2. Why limit mobile learning to text-based learning?  A common mobile learning activity is to have students use a QR code to go to a web page and read the information.  Why not take them to a video or a  photo that shows the same  learning?  Math students can watch a Kahn video instead of reading about the math.

3. Why limit Smartphones to  individual activities?  Instead of Johnny sitting by himself learning about a country,  why not have Johnny and Rosa contrast different pictures of the same country?  Johnny has one picture and Rosa a different one.

4. Why limit mobile learning to one small view?  English students can search the Internet on their mobile learning device and find a poem about love  but these same students can create QR posters in which they show how the human condition of love shows up in a poem, a song, a movie, and a TV show. They can compare/contrast the various types of love.

5. Why limit Smartphones/tablets to just learning when students can use it to analyze their learning?  As students do various speaking tasks, they record their scores  in a Google document spreadsheet. They can see how well they  are progressing at any time.  Likewise, they could use an online rubric checklist (Google Doc) to help them assess how well they have written their essay.

How do your students use Smartphone, Tablets or Mobile Learning? Are they limited?

I have 20 Spanish spontaneous speaking/fluency activities at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook   Formative Assessment Responding to Your Students,   Improving Foreign Language Speaking Through Formative Assessment  Successful, and    Student Writing Through Formative Assessment

Using Technology to Prepare Student to Do Well on Finals

We want our students to do well on the class final, department final, school district final, state final or national final.  However, often it is not what our  students know but how they will be tested that determines their grade.

Here are some techniques to use technology to help prepare students for finals so that they can perform well.

1) Give them self-correcting online assessments that mimic  parts of the final.  For example, students can do  several reading comprehension passages  in a program like Quia.  The program instantly tells them whether they are right or wrong. You can build in hints/strategies so that the students can learn  how to get the answer correct such as “Answer the question word ‘Where’ with a place.”

2) Have a wiki where students can post comments on their strategies for doing well in  each section of the test. One student might write “(For the reading passage) I underline the question word in the question and then I underline the answer in the passage.”

3) Have a texting-based program for the class where anyone can text questions as they do  final practice activities. Other students can explain how to get the answer.  For example, one student texts  “Can’t figure out the answer to ‘When do they go to the movies?”‘ since no time is given. and another student responds, “After eating supper tells when something happens; after is a time word.”

4) Use a Power-Point like program that not only quizzes students but then sends them to appropriate online resources if they have incorrect answers.  For example, if students incorrectly identify a math problem, the PowerPoint shows them to a math video explaining that concept.

5) Identify the most common errors that students will make on the learning goals in the final and have the students, in groups, prepare a short one to two minute video explaining those concepts.  They can make these videos not as full explanations but as cheat-sheet videos in which they emphasize the most critical parts.  For example,  Spanish students may review how to ask questions in the preterite tense in the “you” form and how to answer them in the “yo” form and they may review the most common verbs such as “to go” to get ready for a speaking final. They can post these on the school server so that other can access the videos whenever they want.

6)  Use a QR code to send them to a Google Form short 5-10 item quiz based on a final test section.  As soon as the students finish the mini-quiz, show them the class (not individual) results and go over, in class, strategies to overcome  the common mistakes that students made.

Do you know now how your students will do on the final?  Use technology to assess them and help them improve.

I have 20 Spanish spontaneous speaking/fluency activities at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook   Formative Assessment Responding to Your Students,   Improving Foreign Language Speaking Through Formative Assessment  Successful, and  Student Writing Through Formative Assessment

Scaffolding Modern Language Speaking For Fluency Through Questions

In the Modern Language / Foreign Language  class, speaking is the least developed skill .  Teachers may spend much time in teaching a new grammar concept but they usually do not spend that same amount of time in helping students to become better at speaking. One way to help students improve their oral communication involves scaffolding their speaking from very structured speaking to  spontaneous speaking.

Students can start off by  looking at a sheet  of questions and asking one of  the written basic target language question such as “How are you?” and   “Where do you live?”to their partner who answers. Then, the partner  asks them a different question from the sheet. They continue asking and answering for many questions.   A next baby step incorporates the students modifying these basic questions.  I have included  italicized words  for  Spanish students to change (http://bit.ly/squestc).  For example students might change ¿Cuántas clases tienes? to  ¿Cuántos libros tienes?

After students have reviewed question words, they can ask question words about   randomly given common topics such as school and home.  Their partner checks to see which question words they used and tells them which they did not use.  As students develop their ability to ask questions about a topic, their partners answer these questions (http://bit.ly/squestw).

Next,  the students move on to asking and answering questions about a  common topic as presented through a graphic such as clip art picture of a girl at a birthday party or  a family at a beach. The  students randomly select the topic to speak about and begin to have their conversation about the topic (http://bit.ly/scontop)

As students become proficient at asking a wide variety of questions and answering those questions, they increase in their ability to speak. They become more fluent; they begin to speak spontaneously.

I have 20 Spanish spontaneous speaking activities at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook  including Improving Foreign Language Speaking Through Formative Assessment

Final In the Course What is it really?

We are within a few weeks of  finals.  Some good questions to ask are   What is a final?  What learning do we want the students to  show on the final?

A history teacher  tells his students that the final is on  Chapters 1-15 and all they have to do is know that information. Obviously, the students become overwhelmed because they do not know what is really important in the chapters.  They do not know the format of the final – multiple guess or essay writing? They have no idea of how to study for the final.

Teachers give paper and pencil finals, scantron finals or online computer scored.

Let’s look at some possible types of  written final (not project based):

Wikipedia  defines a final as a big unit test.  The final covers the same material that has been previously covered and in the same way but covers more of it in one exam.  An American History final is just  parts of previous tests;  instead of 50 questions, the students have 200 questions.

– Some teachers give a put-it-all-together test in which students have to integrate what they have learned during the course.  For example, an 8th grade  Science final involves students reading and critiquing an experiment on the health of a local stream.  They have covered everything previously in individual sections such as  the biological or physical aspects but they have not had to go to the big picture of the whole stream.

– Some teachers create a final that consists of  the final improvement on previous work.  For example, students have revised a Contrast essay previously in English class and they do a final revision as  their final.

– Some teaches create  a final that goes  far beyond what the students  have learned in class. The final  includes brand-new material such as many vocabulary words  the students have never seen and it may ask  them to do tasks that they have never done before in class. For example, in class students have only answered literal questions on  reading passages  but the final has mostly inference reading questions.   The final generally does not test the regular forms but focuses on all the irregular forms or exceptions.  Only the A+++ students might pass this final.

Some questions about a final:

Do the  students know what precise learning goals will be on the final? Do they know which learning goals are the most important for success in the final?
Do they know how these learning  goals  will be tested such as multiple guess or try to fill in the blank?
Does the final reflect the same level of learning as  done during the course?
Do the students have a sample final that mimics the final  both in content and format?  Do they have an online practice that explains the wrong answers?
Is the final an opportunity for the students to show how much they have learned?

What type final do you give?

I have 20 Spanish spontaneous speaking activities at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Return on Investments (ROI) Improves the Quality of Learning With Technology

Return on Investment (ROI) is a business term that can help us better understand the learning process. The term asks if the investment of time, resources, and people is worth the return. The higher the ROI, the better. In education, our return is student learning. So the question becomes how we as educators use time, resources and people to get the best learning return.

We can ask ourselves what is the ROI for students learning in a certain manner.  A critical question is what technology best promotes the particular learning goal in an efficient manner?

When a class spends five days on doing a podcast about a battle in the US Civil War, they may not be focusing effectively on the learning goal of using DBQ (document based questions) to explain the results of the Civil War. They could do a quick  20 minute Inspiration comparison chart about the war as told in letters from  two soldiers and learn just as much. Although podcasts are a powerful learning technology, they may not be the best tool for a particular learning goal.  In addition, when a class has a blog in which students discuss a  story they have read, they may be missing the individual analysis that can be done just as easily through word processing.  When students word process their  own individual analysis  they more closely duplicate what they will do on  their state ELA assessment.

Our students can use technology to improve their learning when we select  an appropriate and efficient technology for the learning goal.

What technology do you select for your learning goals? What is its ROI?

I have 15+ Spanish spontaneous speaking activities at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Online Grading For Communicating Students’ Learning Problems and Successes

Administrators want accountability for learning in schools.  One way to build greater accountability is for teachers to use online grading programs that give students and their parents access to the  grades.  For example, the teachers can use the free program of Engrade or a commercial program such as Blackboard.

As soon as the teachers enter  a grade for any assignment, the overall grade is updated. If students know their updated grades on a regular basis, they can decide how to improve.   Parents who have access to  their students’ online grades do not have to worry if their children are correctly relaying their grades; they can help direct their children in areas for improvement. For example, when students and parents see a grade of 40/100 for homework, the students and their parents become aware of a critical area for improvement.  When students and parents know grades on a daily/weekly basis, they feel on top of things; they do not complain that they did not know the grade until the five week period.  Administrators and guidance counselors get less complaint phone calls about grades when students and parents receive constant updates on class grading.  When students and parents see on-line grades as they are entered, they can nip any problem in the bud.  Students can do much better in school.

Likewise, administrator have greater accountability since the teachers become constantly aware of the overall progress of the students.  As the teachers enter the most recent quiz grade, they see the previous quiz grades  as well as the overall quiz grade. The teachers see the class average on each quiz so they can decide if they have to re-teach  the concept in a different manner.  Administrators realize that when teachers use online grading programs, these  teachers  have up-to-the-moment feedback on how well or poorly the students are doing.

How does your school communicate grades to students and parents so the students can be more successful?

I have 15+ Spanish spontaneous speaking activities at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook


RSS Education with Technology

  • Tech Integration Teacher, What time is it? August 23, 2016
    When someone asks what time it is, that person wants to know the time, not the history of the clock, not how a clock works, and not what other types of clocks there are. Classroom teachers want to help their students improve their academic learning through technology. Sometimes they need help with technology so they go […]
    hgtuttle
  • Curriculum Focus, Not Technology Focus July 28, 2016
    In my public school career I have been a classroom teacher, a technology integration specialist and a technology administrator. In my technology role, I served under the Assistant Superintendent for Instruction. She had a simple mission: Improve students’ academic learning. My mission was equally simple: Improve students’ academic learning through technology […]
    hgtuttle
  • Students React to Digital Badges: Pros, Cons and Interesting June 22, 2016
      ISTE 2016 By Harry Grover Tuttle, Ed. D. College World Language Students’ Preferences Digital Badges – 52%        Paper Certificates – 48% World Language: Can-Do Digital Badges Digital Badges Pro- – Breaks down proficiency more – Shows all badges at once – Is more attractive – Is more appropriate since we use […]
    hgtuttle
  • Digital Badges: Naming the Badge October 29, 2015
    Once teachers have selected what learning and what digital badges (individual or category badges; see previous blog), the teachers encounter another decision. What will they name each badge? Will they use the full name of the Common Core Standard or the national proficiency? For English, under “Speaking and Listening,”will they write out SL.2 “Integrate and […]
    hgtuttle
  • Digital Badges: Better Than Grades? October 19, 2015
    Teachers understand that the grade in a course consists of many different factors such as homework, participation , projects, tests, etc. Blodget observes that sometimes grades reflect attitude, effort, ability and behavior (http://www.academia.edu/9074119/Grading_and_Whether_or_not_Grades_Accurately_Reflect_Student_Achievement). Equally important, a letter […]
    hgtuttle
  • World Language Students Use of Mobile Devices in the Classroom October 5, 2015
    Do world language students use technology n the classroom? Do their  teachers go beyond having their students use technology simply for the drill and practice in vocabulary and grammar? Students can use laptops and mobile devices to hear authentic language, read authentic texts, read tweets about famous performers, see up-to-the-moment culture,  watch video […]
    hgtuttle
  • Digital Badges: Individual or Categorized Learning Badges? September 12, 2015
    The idea of digital badges sounds appealing for the digital children in classes. As teachers start thinking about digital badges, they have to figure out what badges will be awarded. The teachers can award social or academic badges. If teachers decide to use academic badges, then the teachers may base their badges on the Common […]
    hgtuttle
  • English +Common Core +Mobile = Success (ISTE2014 Poster -details) June 30, 2014
    Here are the ten examples I showed at my English + Common Core  + Mobile ISTE 2014 Poster Session: Based on CCSS Anchor Statements: L.2 Take a Conventions Mobile Online Quiz  to pick the  incorrect sentence from four choices (capitalization) SL.2  Evaluate audio recording of a  book chapter on mobile and predict for next chapter. […]
    hgtuttle
  • Global Cultural Learning Using Mobile Devices (ISTE Mobile MegaShare Presentation) June 28, 2014
    Based on my presentation at ISTE 2014 Mobile Megashare Why teach about other countries? Location: Large view to small on maps. Culture or culture. Find six similarities in a  mobile picture from another culture (“Wars are caused by differences, not similarities.”-Tuttle.) Tell one piece of information from each different Internet visual from a place in that […]
    hgtuttle
  • English + Common Core + Mobile = Success in Learning Poster Session at ISTE 2014 June 25, 2014
    In my ISTE Sunday 8-10 am poster session, I demonstrate many diverse mobile activities to help students achieve the English Language Arts Common Core Anchor Statements through mobile devices. The mobile activities focus on free common tool apps that are available on both the Android and the iPad. The students use the apps as a seamless […]
    hgtuttle

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