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Blog Post Forum 4 (Module 6) Option 5

Hello. I am Sandy Dewey. This is Blog Post # 4 Forum 6 for EDUC 638 and I will briefly discuss option # 5, The Flipped Classroom Instruction Model

Sheninger (2014) describes the concept of flipped instruction as a concept of blended learning (pp. 154-155) where the role of the traditional learning environment is reversed and placed in an online format according to Knapp’s article, Increasing Interaction in a Flipped Online Classroom through Video Conferencing (2018, p. 618). It is by this means that content is delivered through video lecture, group collaboration, or where chats can take place, and the idea of homework is now conducted in the physical classroom for activities, discussion, and group work. Whitehead, Jensen, and Boschee (2013) state the use of this approach makes the teacher more a tutor, resource, or facilitator…” (p. 3).

Flipped instruction is seen as a positive for parents who often have issues with the amount of homework issued and reduces the stress of helping their children with assignments. Teachers can benefit from the amount of homework sent home only to be graded later. It also lessens the stress for students as they can turn in assignments while in class.  Thus, reducing the amount of excuses, such as ‘my dog ate my homework.’  Another positive would be to conduct familial conferences between teachers and parents as an easier way of connecting due to work schedules or other commitments.

Some of the cons may be the lack of internet access in some homes or sudden loss of electrical power. Also, families have unique schedules filled with various after-school activities that can also interfere with being online.  Teachers likewise, must make sure that students and parents know how to maneuver the diverse ways of using online tools.  As much as this may be additional work for educators, it is how it is utilized with consistency that brings a constructive change to this format.  If this concept is only used sporadically, then it will not yield productive results.  Yet, this idea should not be discounted as more professions are enabling the flipped method in all walks of life.  This only reveals that this concept is helpful in teaching technology to all parties in school communities.

In our humanity, we must also have the will power to turn off our devices so that we do not begin to look at these as the people we are interacting with.  We need to learn to physically interact with one another. As we read in Hebrews 10:24-25a (New International Version), “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another…”

We should never think that technology is something that we are using to replace the physical and social interaction of people, especially in the concept of families.  We need one another for fellowship as we were created by God to be in fellowship with him.

References

Knapp, N. F. (2018, October 05). Increasing Interaction in a Flipped Online Classroom      through Video Conferencing. TechTrends, 62(6), 618-624. doi:10.1007/s11528-018-0336-z

Sheninger, E. C. (2014). Digital leadership: Changing paradigms for changing times. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin.

Whitehead, B. M., Jensen, D., & Boschee, F. (2013). Planning for technology: A guide for school administrators, technology coordinators, and curriculum leaders. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin, a Sage Company.

Blog Post Forum 3 (Module 4)

I want to describe the relationship between constructivism and the Breaking Ranks Framework. Afterwards, as my school’s leader in educational technology, I will discuss recommendations that I would take to my school leaders based on the core areas along with a simple rationale for each suggested change.

Dr. Roger H. Bruning defines constructivism as a theoretical perspective contending that individuals form or construct much of what they learn and understand based on previous knowledge (Schunk, 2004, p. 229).  Whereas the Breaking Ranks framework according to Sheninger, “does not prescribe a specific model that a school must follow, but rather builds upon the individual school’s data and existing culture to assess strengths and identify needs so that a customized plan for school success can be developed” (Sheninger, 2014, p. 72). The correlation between constructivism and the Breaking Ranks framework is that something can be built upon what is known and what is working to make something better in a school’s development.   This can be curriculum, staff, schedules, board or parental involvement and so on.

In utilizing the Breaking Ranks framework’s three core areas of collaborative leadership (CL), personalizing the school environment (PER), and curriculum, instructions, and assessment for improving student performance (CIA), I would base recommendations for my school by first, taking data from each grade level. Then base the past five to seven years of academic results from student assessments and compare scores to the state and national averages to reveal what our schools’ students know and what they lack. This would formulate curriculum and make improvements to instruction and assessments.  Second, create teams for technology, curriculum, and professional development among the members of the school community in collaborating to formulate new ideas for growth and integration. Lastly, this would personalize the school environment and create unity to build a successful and thorough academic program.

All of this serves a biblical foundation as stated in Matthew 7:24 (English Standard Version), “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock.”  When we know how to improve on something but do nothing about it, we are guilty of inaction and therefore become like the man who builds his house upon the sand as stated in Matthew 7:26 (English Standard Version).   In all our lives, we always have the capacity to be better and do better.  This should be the motto in our own work with students.  We should not accept mediocrity in the daily grind, but rather “press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:14, English Standard Version). The reason we should aspire to do more for our schools, is that Jesus did this in his love for us.

God bless.

References

Schunk, D. H. (2012). Learning theories: An educational perspective. Boston: Pearson.

Sheninger, E. (2014). Digital leadership: Changing paradigms for changing times. Thousand Oaks: Corwin.

Blog Post Forum 2 (Module 2) Option 2

  1. As leaders in educational technology, how can you garner support for the effective use of technology from your staff members? What will this look like in your district, your building, and individual classrooms? How will you plan to offset the “digital divide”?

As a leader of educational technology, collaboration and effective communication would be of utmost importance in the implementation process.  I would garner support from my team by creating a design and illustrating it to colleagues for feedback regarding the pros and cons in its functionality. The team would work to offer proposals of change or provide reinforcements to the project.  As Sheninger (2015) wrote, “…effective teamwork requires that each member fully understand the vision, mission, and plan of execution from the standpoint of the role each member of the team plays in achieving success” (p. 61).  This is very much a commitment like our own personal relationships.  In the workplace, we often tend to assume that everyone knows what to do because they were hired to do such a job.  In technology, this is especially true. Technology is a science and it is within this subject that others rarely question what is good or bad as there are constant changes even after putting the project into motion.   Yet, effective communication between all contributors helps to support the task at hand; without it, the plan would inherently fail, the key word being “plan.”  If the plan was never communicated effectively, then the responsibility falls on the leader.  Therefore, it is important to be as detailed as possible by sketching out a plan and working with the team in delegating aspects for testing results and applying appropriate deadlines.  Thereby, presenting to the faculty members under the tutelage of technology assistants.

Feedback is one incentive that the technology team should target as the main goal in making the program successful.  For without it, the plan may result in ambiguities. Thus, resulting in a breakdown within in the system.  One of the lessons I have learned in some of my workplaces is that the leaders have taken away feedback. The reasoning was because there were too many opinions or negativities when certain technologies were introduced.  The administrators and tech team went ahead and made sudden decisions which resulted in more confusion.  Technology can become overwhelming, but it can be tamed if the correct procedures are set in motion.  According to research conducted on how best to utilize community engagement, “Leadership had to be concerned with, and attentive to, the meaning of community engagement  as well as the meaning of the technology and the way in which it was being introduced” (Kolopack, Parsons, and Lavery, 2015).   If leaders do not build a bridge in striving for unity within their learning communities, this will lead to a digital divide.

The divide can be bridged through the fostering of professional development cooperatives which aim to provide essential instruction from the district level to each individual classroom and is beneficial in implementing  a technology program (Whitehead, Jensen, and Boschee, 2013, p. 77). As a result, creating a collaborative environment that strives for success.

References

Kolopack, P. A., Parsons, J. A., & Lavery, J. V. (2015). What Makes Community Engagement Effective? Lessons from the Eliminate Dengue Program in Queensland Australia. PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 9(4). doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0003713

Sheninger, E. (2014). Digital leadership: Changing paradigms for changing times. Thousand Oaks: Corwin. ISBN-10: 1452276617 ISBN-13: 978-1452276618

Whitehead, B., Jensen, D., & Boschee, F. (2013) Planning for technology: A guide for school administrators,Technology coordinators, and curriculum leaders. (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks: Corwin. ISBN-10: 1452268266 ISBN-13: 978-1452268262