Making the Classroom

Nate Kogan
Challenges of the Traditional Classroom


Conceptualizing and Integrating Social Media into the Secondary School Humanities Classroom
Fort Worth Country Day
Reorientation via Social Media
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11 September 2009
Applications in Classroom
• Venue for Student Writing/Digital Portfolio • Allows incorporation and embedding of multiple media (video, audio, graphs) • Allows hyperlinking and inter-textual connections ¬ Emphasizes citing sources. • Ease of comments — from teacher and peers

Social Media Tools

Blogs Teacher-centrism Student-centrism
 Insight and access into formative learning ¬ see students’ thinking process • Students can see each other’s learning process and constantly give feedback • Teacher models constructive criticism and act as lead-learner  Students seek all validation from teacher; lack confidence in own thought.  Obsession with the “right” answer  Teacher responsible for managing and tracking all student work (paper-shuffling)  Propensity for didactic lecturing ¬ reinforces “Sage on the Stage” notions. • Discourages plagiarism through transparency  Reduce emphasis on summative product. • Less focus on “right” answer and grades • Shift focus to comments and students’ intellectual growth.

RSS Reader

• Central repository of student work • Track student assignments & eliminate paper • Create transparency for students to see: • each other’s ideas • each other’s and teacher’s comments • Ease of tracking research and notes • Annotate web pages • Transparent research • Students linked to each other’s sources • Students linked to each other’s annotations


Twitter and Apps

• Backchannel for class discussions • Review tool for quizzes and tests • Collaborative resource collection • Utility to enhance class interconnectedness • Student-to-Student feedback • Student communication with teacher

Isolation of student work

 Students focus on summative product over formative process • Generally cram for tests; prioritize knowledge of meaning-creation • Focus on grade, not on comments  Ineffective (and infrequent) peer-editing • Prioritize social capital above constructive criticism

• Well-designed course management webpage • Facebook-like interface • Easy file-sharing and assignment posting • Calendar and grading functionality

Classroom Interconnectedness
 Create accessibility and visibility for: • Students and teacher beyond the classroom and the school day. • Other classes and educators across the country or the world • Parents ¬ share student work digitally

Collaborative Writing

• Provides insight into formative process • For both teachers and students • Ability to track individual contributions • Ability to track changes and previous versions • Eliminates email attachment clutter

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