I was really impressed with the amount of both interesting and really practical information that Darren inundated us with!I was especially impressed with how he put a lot of emphasis on community both in the classroom!If you read this blog you know that I think community is HUGE not only in the classroom but also online.We have to create positive, responsible communities!Therefore much of what Darren said fit with me really well.I was also really liked what he said about letting students admit their mistakes.This is one of my goals as a teacher, students in the classroom are so paralyzed with fear about not getting good grades or ‘doing it right’ that they have no intention of doing something like…take a chance, think for themselves, or experiment.That could cost them marks and who knows what the repercussions of that could be in the future!! (yes I know it’s hard to be dramatic with type…)This has got to change – we need students to know that mistakes happen and more importantly – it’s all good when they do.
Darren also pushed a few theme lines that are really effective and important:
Create It – when students create things they learn much more efficiently than reading through a textbook!
Publish It – when something is created by students - put it online, make it visible to the world, make their creations matter and students will then take pride in what they do!
Watch It, Do It, Teach It – I was already aware that medicine used this philosophy and I think it is dead on!If you teach someone something there is absolutely no doubt that you yourself had to know it first – you can’t teach what you don’t know!
Interestingly each of these three principles can be aided by using ICT in the classroom!Creating projects, videos, pictures, slideshows, etc. is soooooo much easier with a computer.Obviously publishing is quick and effective with the internet and its even easier for students to be able to watch, do and teach by using technology.