Paper…wins?

In one part of the lessons I was assigned to teach, I actually scanned 4 books about seasons to read to the children as they were too small. This was done after showing an animated video of a tree through the seasons.

Later on they had an art session where they had to  illustrate all 4 seasons on 4 bookmarks. I left my lap top and the books in front of the class for them to refer. 

Guess what? Most of them went to refer to the small books on seasons instead of my lap top! I was quite surprised actually!

This was definitely a good incident for me to reflect on for my lesson. To me, I would think that the sensorial, tactile experience of flipping the page and touching it appealed to them more than my lap top. These parents from an article by Richtel and Bosman (2011) in the New York Times too have the same idea about print books 🙂 

Some parents do not want to make the switch for even their school-age children. Alexandra Tyler and her husband read on Kindles, but for their son Wolfie, 7, it is print all the way.

“Somehow, I think it’s different,” she said. “When you read a book, a proper kid’s book, it engages all the senses. It’s teaching them to turn the page properly. You get the smell of paper, the touch.”

Topic of Interest – Interactive Whiteboards’ Single Touch

Most of the time technology changes and gets better. Sometimes it isn’t the case though, when a product turns out faulty or does not meet the needs of the market. However, I can confidently say that making Interactive Whiteboards (IWB) multi-touch is definitely a GOOD change and improvement!

The IWB that my prac site currently uses is single touch. I may be wrong but if I am not mistaken, the brand is Smart Technologies. It was purchased last year but I think that Smart Technologies have since come up with multi-touch IWBs such as the Promethean Board as mentioned in Bec’s post.

I am going to start using the IWB this week. However, with a large class, I think I cannot expect 100% engagement or focus as they will have to wait for their turn to have a go at the IWB.

So I guess the only solution to engaging everyone with a single-touch IWB would be to conduct the lesson in smaller groups.

I would love to hear any other suggestions 🙂

If you are a principal or know anyone who is wanting to invest in a IWB, here is a helpful list comparing the different series of Smart Technologies IWB by Video Centric.

Cheers! 🙂

Careful there…

Our tutor recently shared a shocking article about a little girl in Britain whose parents are seeking treatment from the psychiatric department for her iPad addiction! – Four-year-old girl is Britain’s youngest iPad ADDICT: Shocking rise in children hooked on using smartphones and tablets (Seales & Harding, 2013).

While I still do think that extreme addiction cases like these are rare I do not deny that it might just be a norm in the near future. You can just take a walk in the mall or dine at a family restaurant and see how parents are ‘soothing’ and ‘disciplining’ or in plain words ‘shutting-up’ the child with their phones, tablets, computers, etc.

Unknown to these parents, they may be ‘shutting-up’ their kids for good, and even from their own lives as the articles states that when the iPad is taken away, the children display withdrawal symptoms.

We may have many forms of nightmares. Some during our sleep at night and some in the form of events or people during the day. However, I think this is the first time  for me that a ‘nightmare’ is in the form of a product – the iPotty. gaaaaah!!!!

:O

Here is an excerpt from an article about ICT in the Early Years: Balancing the Risks and Benefits by Shah and Godiyal (n.d.). They are certainly points I will constantly be referring to for this round of professional experience!

Two widely-cited sets of guidelines strongly emphasise developmental appropriateness: the DATEC
(developmentally appropriate technology in early childhood) project in the UK (Siraj-Blatchford & SirajBlatchford 2002; Siraj-Blatchford & Whitebread 2003); and the American National Association for the
Education of Young Children’s position statement on the use of technology with children aged 3 to 8
(NAEYC 1996). DATEC offers eight general principles for determining the appropriateness of ICT
applications to be used in the early years:

*Allow child to be in control;

*Avoid applications that contain

violence or stereotyping;

*Be Aware of health and safety issues;

*Choose applications that are transparent

and intuitive;

*Ensure an educational purpose;

*Encourage collaboration;

*Encourage educational
involvement of parents;

* and Integrate with other aspects of the curriculum

A fellow blogger, Janine in her post ‘Guided Interactions and ICTs in the Preschool Classroom’ also shares the same concern and states how important it is for us to ‘When implementing ICT’s into the Pre-Prep classroom educators need to develop strategies that acitvely guide and extend children’s learning’. Well said indeed.

References

Seales, R. & Harding, E. (2013, April 21). Four-year-old girl is Britain’s youngest iPad ADDICT: Shocking rise in children hooked on using smartphones and tablets. In Daily Mail. Retrieved April 25, 2013, from http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2312429/Four-year-old-girl-Britains-youngest-iPad-ADDICT-Shocking-rise-children-hooked-using-smartphones-tablets.html
Shah, A., & Godiyal, S. ICT IN THE EARLY YEARS: BALANCING THE RISKS AND BENEFITS. Retrieved April 25, 2013,  from http://www.ejournal.aiaer.net/vol21209/17.%20Shah%20&%20Godiyal.pdf

Facebook status: Deceased

One tutor recently brought up an issue that a deceased friend’s facebook account was apparently being used by the deceased’s family member.  The tutor and her group of friends are receiving notifications from the deceased friend and they are finding the notifications from somewhat disturbing.

One of my immediate reactions to this issue was that of misuse or that of identity theft.

I Google searched for more information and found 3 main ways to go about the issue.

1. Memorialising Accounts.

I was surprised to find a ‘Memorialization’ option for a deceased person’s facebook account. wow! We could actually report to facebook on a facebook user’s death. This was something new to me. Here is a list of what happens when a facebook user’s account is ‘memorialised‘ from this Facebook FAQ page for Deactivating, Deleting & Memorialising Accounts

When a person passes away, we memorialize their account to protect their privacy. Here are some of the key features of memorialized accounts:

    • No one can log into a memorialized account and no new friends can be accepted
    • Depending on the privacy settings of the deceased person’s account, friends can share memories on the memorialized timeline
    • Anyone can send private messages to the deceased person
    • Content the deceased person shared (ex: photos, posts) remains on Facebook and is visible to the audience it was shared with
    • Memorialized timelines don’t appear in People You May Know and other suggestions

Creating a timeline in remembrance of an already deceased person is not allowed. We encourage you to create a Page to do this.

Learn how to request the memorialization of a deceased person’s account.

2. Deletion of Account.

Alternatively if having access digital footprints and  memories of their loved ones is too hard to bear, immediate family members may request for permanent deletion of the deceased’s facebook account. Here is a link to it ‘Special Request for Deceased Person’s Account’.

3. Leaving Passwords to Account.

There is also a ‘trend’ of leaving Facebook Passwords in Wills as the Will creator sometimes would like families to access personal or family digital photos and videos that they do not have in print. You can read more about it in this article ‘People Are Starting To Leave Their Facebook Passwords In Their Will by Davis October 13, 2011.

So far, I have not encountered the death of a facebook friend. However I find these information useful should I encounter a similar experience in future and I am sure that I will as death comes with the contract of life.

 

Artechnology

I was quite blown away when I saw the 3D doodler that Michael wrote about in his post The Age of Multidimensional World.

That got me thinking deeper about technology and art. I remember reading about an interesting November 23, 2012 article by R.AGE section of The Star Newspaper titled Insta-gratification. In the article, photographers talked about what true photography was and how Instagram  ‘democratised’ photography and how it can teach people photography skills to some extent. Interesting take on the subject indeed!

Back to the broader sense of ‘Art’ and ‘Technology’, in this October 4, 2012 BBC article titled Technology & Art: Engineering the Future by Eyal Gever an Israeli 3D digital sculptor. Here is extract from his article :

True art?

Throughout history and up until very recently, mostly the elite participated in the development and creation of art, while the rest of the society was left to enjoy viewing masterpieces.

The public was merely a passive observer.

Today, in our connected world, almost everyone creates. Almost everyone participates.

 

The article is a tad bit lengthy article but it is quite eye-opening, well at least for me. Artechnology for thought!

Gever concludes by saying that the goal of the contemporary artist who is choosing to create art with new technologies should not be to “extract” meaning from the technological platform, but to use it as a base for new bold directions’. 

His vision sounds very much like our goal of ICT integration into our professional experience and subsequently into our work as educators, don’t you think? 🙂