As I begin to explore the use of technology in the classroom, I posed the question “how can students in social studies classes use technology to create engaging presentations?” Having seen students already use creative tools such as Prezi in my classroom, I was curious to see what other options were out there. I came across the article “Creating Engaging Presentations with iPad Apps” (click here to read it yourself) and found the following applications: Haiku Deck, Prezi, Educreations, ScreenChomp, Doceri, and SnapGuide. Each has its own flair when it comes to sharing information and provides engaging ways for students to present information and share their voice.
The use of technology in presentations allows for students to be creative and innovate in their thinking process. Technology like the applications mentioned in the article above allow them to express their ideas, develop original work, and think in a forum they are already so familiar with. Presentations that include graphics, video, audio and any sort of movement engage the audience, especially an adolescent audience whom is already use to seeing thousands of images in a day and have an increasingly short attention span due to the ability to surf the web clicking from one link to the next in no time. Not only does technology make for an exciting and innovative learning environment, its use in the classroom develops ISTE standard one.
Another method for presenting knowledge is the Learning Illustrated model which provides students with the opportunity to express what they have learned with a collection of images or even a flow chart of words and ideas. Learning Illustrated allows students to create a visual to demonstrate what they have learned and share what their thought process was while learning it. A great resource for this model of reflection is coggle which is an online tool to create mind maps or flow charts. Below is a picture of my attempt to coggle as I read the articles assigned for the first module of this course.
I tried to break the reading down based on the components of ISTE standard one. The three main branches are constructing knowledge, demonstrating creative thinking, and developing innovative projects and processes. As I read I pulled out main points and organized them based on the standard.
Technology truly has made an impact on the learning environment and continues to change the way teacher educate daily. It is important to learn about and utilize the tools that are available and not to be afraid to try new tools in the classroom. Students fortunately are some of the greatest resources when it comes to technology and by allowing them the freedom to express themselves and demonstrate what they have learned with technology they will develop the skills that will be crucial to their future careers. And they might teach their teachers a thing or two along the way! I have no doubt that students will and are able to use technology to create engaging presentations because there are so many resources available to them and I know that I am able to point them in the right direction.