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Running head: 21st CENTURY FLUENCIES: REFLECTION

21st CENTURY FLUENCIES: REFLECTION


Cristina Turbatu
OTL545 Technology and Innovation
Colorado State University Global Campus
Dr. Brenda Bagwell
January 8, 2016

21st CENTURY FLUENCIES: REFLECTION

21st Century Fluencies: Reflection


In order to teach the writing process to a 7th grade student that I tutor, I decided to start
with the prewriting stage, specifically garnering ideas from research, organizing thoughts,
planning an essay, and creating an outline. The student was required to research the pros and
cons of year-round schools, write a persuasive essay to argue for or against year-round school
implementation, and publish her essay in their digital portfolio. The student conducted online
research and used a ReadWriteThink interactive tool to create an outline prior to writing the
essay. The student was engaged while manipulating different boxes and easily rearranging plans
and thoughts using the interactive tool, but found it difficult to keep track of citations.
Challenges and Successes
According to Crockett, Jukes, and Churches (2011), information fluency refers to
understanding how to extract the most valuable information from a myriad of sources. For the
assignment mentioned above, the tutee was supposed to evaluate different research sources in
order to synthesize main ideas related to the advantages or disadvantages of year-round schools.
The student had difficulty in keeping track of the different sources she used. For example, she
researched two sites, but the ReadWriteThink digital tool did not allow her to keep track of her
citations or link the websites that she used for her research with her notes and outline. Therefore,
I suggested to the student that she create a note box to specify the citation so she has all of the
information readily available. In terms of successes, the student was easily able to organize her
main ideas in the researching and pre-writing phase. For example, she used arrows to move ideas
up and down depending on what ideas she prioritized or what arguments she considered more
valuable. The student also seemed eager to outline her research findings and created an entire
outline from beginning to end without stopping.

21st CENTURY FLUENCIES: REFLECTION

Solutions
Peachey (2016) suggests that technology has the capacity to engage students because it
makes them responsible for finding answers or solutions to problems. In other words, they can
create something using digital tools and that allows their learning to become real. While the
ReadWriteThink digital note-taking and outline tool was a time-saving tool that engaged the
student by allowing her to easily organize her thoughts, plans, and extract valuable information
from her online research, as well as making her responsible for creating her writing plan from
beginning to end, it was not the most effective tool to use for research synthesis. As a solution,
the next time around, I can allow the student to choose a prewriting tool that better suits her
needs. By allowing students to choose the writing tool that interests them or best suits their
needs, I can also increase student engagement. Patall, Cooper, and Robinson (as cited in
Goodwin and Hubbell, 2013) found that choice can increase students intrinsic motivation.
Evernote (https://evernote.com/) might be a solution to the challenge of linking research websites
to the writing outline. Using Evernote, students can even incorporate images or other multimedia
in their notes. Moreover, to solve the problem of incorporating citations, the student should use
http://www.bibme.org/ at the same time as using a note creation or outline creation tool.
Conclusion
Implementing a TPACK idea can be an engaging activity, but thorough planning is
necessary to circumvent any type of problems that might limit student creativity or potential. In
this case, the student sought a more complex, all-in-one digital tool that she could use to
incorporate all of her research findings, ideas, plans, and citations, so she needed more options of
suitable technology tools.

21st CENTURY FLUENCIES: REFLECTION

References
Crockett, L., Jukes, I., & Churches, A. (2011). Literacy is not enough: 21st century fluencies for
the digital age. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin.
Goodwin, B., & Hubbell, E. (2013). The 12 touchstones of good teaching: A checklist for staying
focused every day. Alexandria, VA: ASCD.
Peachey, N. (2016). 7 ways you can use technology to engage students. Retrieved from
https://www.english.com/blog/ways-technology-engages-students