Friday, February 10, 2012

Analysis of Collaborative Lesson Plans

Due to all my research this week on collaboration, I took two of my old lesson plans and recreated them to integrate technology. I was able to do this by collaborating with two specialists at the middle school I teach as well as use some of my own background with technology integration. Below are the links to show my newly designed lessons.

Disease Project (Collaboration Lesson)

Frog Dissection (Collaboration Lesson)

Overall, I found this to be a fairly simple thing to do because of the two specialist that I was able to utilize. Since both my librarian and technology specialist are people oriented, they are always willing to work with those that ask. I was able to come to both of them and let them know I had this idea for a lesson, and they were able to help me integrate the technology component. Due to the deadline for this particular lesson, I wish I had more time to pick their brains a little more, but I know I will be able to do this again in the near future. Personally, I believe that both lessons have been re-created are excellent due to the new technology component. The students are excited about the fact they get to make a cartoon instead of a research paper for the disease project. I had a chance to see a teacher use the software GoAnimate, and her students seemed to be having fun and completely engaged! I can't wait to see my students do the same with diseases.  As for the frog dissection, it will also be exciting to see how the students react. Being that iPads are so new, they are exciting for the students. They can't wait to get their hands on them!! The app I plan to use is really going to help with dissecting. Due to the app containing pictures to go with the directions, it will make it so much easier for the students to dissect and not have to spend so much time reading the directions.

This entire experience was nothing but positives except for one negative component. All the positives include the chance to utilize someone else's expertise, introduction to a new software, and the ability to incorporate so many components (Marzano's Nine, 21st Century Skills, NET standards, Science standards) into a simple lesson. The only negative impact is the amount of red tape my district requires me to go through for technology. Since they control our software, I know that the librarian had to struggle to purchase the software and had to go through multiple people. We are now dealing with iPads in the same manner. I'm hoping that there are enough people that realize that these technological tools are only helping the students' achievement, and it will get a little easier.

Since these lessons will not be taught until later dates, I have not had the opportunity to analyze the student growth impact as of yet. However, due to my experience in teaching these two lessons, I personally think that they will provide great student growth opportunities. Each assignment is geared more for the 21st Century Learners than they were before the revision. So, being that I teach 21st Century Learners,  both lessons should be perfect for them.

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