BP5: Reflections on Observations

I’m currently working with middle school students and wanted to return to elementary for my tech observations so I could see up-to-date in class technology usage. I observed a fourth grade at Hambden Elementary in Chardon. I began in a 4th grade class first thing in the morning. The students began their day by retrieving their individually assigned Chromebooks from the charging cart and proceeded with their daily introductory work or completing assignments from the previous day. The platform used in Chardon is Google Classroom so the teacher can assign students work or provide links to every student on their own digital devices. Students had videos to watch that pertained to current learning subject or topic matter, using You Tube, quizzlet, and online document formats for morning work. Students went straight to their very modern style classroom seating and got right to work. Interactions among students appeared to be of work related nature and attentive to the technology available. The 4th grade teacher shared software programs she uses; Reading Wonders for reading, Pearson Realize for Math, and Spelling City for vocabulary and spelling which costs her $50 per year, but she says is worth it. She enjoys the ease of grading and checking completion and understanding through multimodal learning. Each program provides automatic data on assignments completed, and has ample selections for differentiation of material. Mondays, for reading, there is a large group lesson using the Smartboard , but the rest of the week the students participate in centers using technology as one center, a student/self led group, and a teacher led rotation of groups. Technology being available for independent use everyday allows students to have a differentiated learning experience without being recognized as “being a blue bird or red robin.” Students can learn at their own pace and are encourage along the way. The teacher incorporates individual assignments into whole classwork by assigning each child a slide in a presentation to create and in turn present upon whole class completion. They share their slide presentations and can all view it in its entirety at any time but only edit their own. I am getting a glimpse into their daily lives with multimodal learning embedded each day.

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