At first I didn't get what I am supposed to be doing. After rereading the instructions for this post, I see "it is not the technology that is being taught. It is the skills being taught." Langwitches is about learning new languages and the methods of immersion to use that language. The Listening-Comprehension-Podcast blog emphasizes what the students learned through the podcast process. The writer is sure to say that it was not about using Garage Band but about writing, comprehension, collaboration, and listening skills while studying a target language. The use of technology is a way to excite and engage the students. The use of technology is a method, not the goal in itself. I'm catching on.
Flat Stanley Podcast
This was incredible. Or should I say is because this podcast is available for listening, though it is two years old. After reading the story about Flat Stanley, the first graders were inspired to become flat and travel to places. Some of my favorites were about Alabama, Israel, and Tokyo. The student who "visited" Alabama learned how to say Roll Tide after an Alabama football game. She went hiking in the north of the state and visited the beach in the south. The student who went to Israel visited her cousins and prayed for rain while she was there. The boy who went to Tokyo ate sushi, saw sumo wrestlers dressed in diapers, and found a Jewish community. As he said, "Who knew?" The sound effects were good. This podcast covers reading, writing, geography, social studies, and drama. Integrated studies are very effective.
My first impression is to think first graders are too young. However, typically when a challenge is given, students will rise to the occasion. This class is showing me that we need to expect more out of students instead of dumbing them down and babying them along to meet a standardized requirement. I continually fear future classroom experiences with misbehaving students. Using these types of assignments with technology that already surrounds them may be a technique to curb bad behavior.
The Benefits of Podcasting in the Classroom by Joe Dale
This video covers more of the idea behind doing a podcast. It is very beneficial by the examples given in this video. I had never heard the term vodcast before. The teacher that used other teachers to read a story about slavery was very creative. The students responded well. They may have viewed it as entertaining but they also recognized that it is a lesson on American History. The value of project based learning is something I have not given much consideration. I don't prefer to do group projects but once I am in one I realize it is not so bad. Also the pressures and responsibilities are spread out. Creativity seems to flow. Project based learning for young students can mirror real life career experiences. Students learn through the process and produce something of lasting value. I have learned a lot myself by visiting these sites for this Blog Post.