This week I have been on a mission; making connections between two of the schools that I will be running my teaching and learning sessions in. It is intriguing to note that what works in conjunction with technology is the ethnographic approach to building relationships. The virtual world lends itself to a brilliant platform to collaborate and connect educators to engage and enhance the learning experiences for our students. If you add an altruist dimension to the sharing of content and technology with an underlying robust foundation of pedagogy, then I believe the links forged are stronger.
Now that the team has grown from two educators to three, we are asking ourselves the pertinent question of what is the point of all of this learning; is the context and the content reaching our audience, the students of two culturally diverse classrooms (Mishra & Koehler, 2009). Since food, culture and language itself form a vibrant and integral part of language, I visited the Jellie Park Cultural festival, co-hosted by the refugee council and treated myself to a preview of the sounds and sights of the multicultural classroom I will be entering soon.
If a picture is worth a thousand words, how much more powerful is the multimodal experience, query Mishra and Koehler (2009) in their article ‘If you give a Kid a video camera…’. They mention that it is an even more powerful tool as teachers themselves make one minute videos of vocabulary resources to be use on iPods. Linking into my own journey of four sessions, with the 2 diverse classrooms, we will model the use of making videos from a pedagogical premise; situating it in the context of the mock restaurant setting. Designing menus using the vocabulary (on (Quizlet), advertisements (Animoto), Apps for recipes and a meal as a final presentation will be the progression of learning hosted on Wikispaces/Edmodo (VoiceThread Planning Journey), as the reflexive journey becomes embedded in each step.
John Potter (2011), writing about digital self-curatorship, says that we are provided with a tremendous opportunity to use participatory multiliteracies to redesign creative learning environments. Looking at ways of mapping the informal networks onto educational settings, he turns to diverse networked theories of learning; social capital and identity theory adding to the framework. As I explore digital media through the lens of self-curatorship, a pedagogically reflexive exercise both for my research and the mini project, I focus on both the ‘anchored and transient’ self as presented by the learner (Potter, 2011).
Potter, J. (2010). Embodied Memory and Curatorship in Children’s Digital Video Production. English Teaching: Practice and Critique, 9(1), 22-35.
Mishra, P., & Koehler, M. (2009). Too Cool for School? No Way!.Learning & Leading With Technology, 36(7), 14-18.