Friday, February 27, 2009

Project Sketch

The project sketch for my project is a leap into the unknown for me. In collaboration with my EAP teaching partner (Mr Martin Hermann), I am about to try and develop a project that will allow my students to pursue their learning in a style that is different to what I have promoted previously as a classroom teacher.

The students will be challenged to start to understand some of the basics of cell biology. This will be done however by meeting not just the prescribed science standards, but also the NETS (National Educational Technology Standards)

from the International Society for Technology Education.

In a nut shell, the students will meet the science standards but within a framework that allows them to "Communicate and Collaborate" (NETS- for Students #2) using digital media.

The big picture is that students will work ( individually or in pairs) to prepare and present a digital "patch" of a larger concept. They will use digital media to add this "patch"to a class "quilt" that will then be shown to the whole class as the lesson.

The students will be working cooperatively (in real time) initially, but also at a distance (when not in class - for example at home) as they combine their pieces to put together. They will be able to make use of each other as resources, and also the teachers (or internet/books) as "experts" if and when needed.

As a result of this process, they are taking responsibility for the learning of not just themselves, but also all other members of the class. In addition, the finished product will be able to be posted on platforms such as YouTube, to allow students from around the world to make use of this resource.

The true test will be to see if this method can meet the science standards within a similar time-frame, and to the same degree of effectiveness, to that used by a more traditional approach. Reflections from both Mr Hermann and myself, as well as the students, will be necessary to determine the cost-benefit of this style of pedagogy.


  1. I wonder how making a digital patch helps kids learn, express their learning, or add to the learning of others in this topic. I'd be interested in hearing you you elaborate on that a bit.

  2. I just read Martin's elaboration on this project and I get it! Wonderful project!

  3. I would love to see the finished project and perhaps do something similar in my Biology class. I like that the students are asked to take responsibility not just for their own but also for their classmates' learning through a creative and collaborative (and of course digital) learning project. Keep us posted on how it goes. I'll have to read what Martin wrote. Jane's comment stirred my interest to read more about your and Martin's project.

  4. I love the idea of all of the students collaborating on one final video presentation on their unit! My one and only concern is that you test the technology tools before you introduce the project for the students. I would recommend that you and Martin actually do a mini project (with fake video clips) just to make sure everything works the way you expect. I wouldn't want this excellent idea to get caught up in tech glitches as the project is being completed by the students.