I’ve hovered around #edchat fringes for a couple of years now. Adding the occasional link but never really sure when to take part as people post using that hashtag all the time. I was chatting with @drdouggreen and he was kind enough to give me some more details about when the scheduled chats take place (5pm / midnight GMT on Tues in UK).
So on Tuesday I took part in my first #edchat. I hadn’t realised that they had two different topics for the weekly #edchats and had been expecting discussion on the flipped classroom, but I was more than happy with the alternative: how does giving students more control of their education affect the quality of their education?
I really enjoyed the hour and noticed a few familiar faces from the UK join in as well. I think it worked well for me as I’m on October break and this makes a 5-6pm chat feasible. Usually I’d just be getting in the door and I don’t think the family would appreciate me disappearing with the laptop instead of finding out about their day. I don’t think I’d like that either, so perhaps a midnight #edchat is the way forward – for me at least!
I’m a big believer in promoting learner choice in my classroom. I teach to the planned outcomes (sometimes in a round-about way!) but in a way that suits the class. That one class. It means a lot of work for me at times, but I get a huge kick out of the enthusiasm it generates amongst my learners. What works for one class or child may not work for another and I would not be doing my job properly if I ignored this fact. Yes, you have to retain your role as troubleshooter (I typed behaviour manager first but that sounds far too controlling!) and facilitator but sometimes – and as much as possible – you have to let your class take charge of the learning. I didn’t do this based on any educational research or current policy, I remembered the best and worst lessons of my own school years and remembered that when we were given the freedom to play within the boundaries of the topic we enjoyed it and saw relevance. With that in mind I want to share with you a TED talk by Alison Gopnik. She explains a little about what babies are thinking.
You may think this is a strange choice of supporting video. Please watch it, I hope all becomes clear.
- Personal learning
- Project-based learning
- How to learn
- Learning through making mistakes
- Open and honest discussion with learners
- “Hopefully we do not give students “much” control over content…but give them some control over how they demonstrate mastery.” – berryed1
- “It will improve quality from the child’s point of view. What else matters?” – drdouggreen
- “If kids rely on the teacher for the answers, then we have failed them as teachers. ” – stumpteacher
- “Ownership ups the ante of the student’s interest, involvement and motivation.” – drmcgettigan
- ” ‘Children should be given a voice not only about the means of learning but also the ends, the why as well as the what.’ Alfie Kohn” – cybraryman1
- “I would love the concept of Personal Learning Networks to be introduced to, and used by students early on.” – tomwhitby
- “We have to stop thinking we are the only experts/teachers/leaders in our classroom” – pernilleripp
- “Listen outside clssrm door: Who’s voice do you hear? If solely tcher’s voice: Tcher-Directed. If studs’ voices: Student-Centered.” – prlowe91
- “Teaching kids how to learn is more important than what content to learn. If they commit to the content, the how to becomes easier.” – tomwhitby
- “good for teachers to say “i don’t know”, brings in whole class and dilutes the idea that the teacher is the source of all answers.” – familysimpson
- “Stdnts need 2 feel “allowed” 2 make a mistake or get something wrong & comfortable enough 2 try again. That’s when learning happens.” – KristinHenry1
- ” the goal matters & it’s got to be their goal” – inquirebook
- “Yes, I hope to make poor choices! Makes me human & helps me learn! I’ve learned more from poor choices!” – davidwees
- http://t.co/Ht3FI6ii – The Business Value of QR Codes
- http://t.co/cD6uhLCr – Stump The Teacher’s video for Reform Symposium
- http://t.co/zSDtQVcy – What Is Social Learning? Infographic
- http://t.co/Ei6ttuhH – Steve Jobs Economic Impact Activity
- http://t.co/Fqywj8OC – Developing Mathematical Understanding
- http://t.co/JFTiRfS1 – What Are Literacy Skills?
- http://t.co/IfEg6Lco – Project Based Learning: Why Do It?
- http://t.co/UfkCVRNr – The Value Of Choice In Student Engagement
- http://t.co/gXxIw9SO – Getting All A’s In School: Using Social Media to Assess Learning
- http://t.co/el0mff8B – The Ripple Effect
- http://t.co/ivzCMR27 – Co-operative Learning
- http://t.co/ee6pqRVj – Uncertainty Can Unlock Creativity
- http://t.co/FBXfYeuP – Student Driven Learning = Passion-Based Classrooms
- http://t.co/LYAItEVl – Learn By Doing
New to Edchat?
If you have never participated in an #Edchat discussion, these take place twice a day every Tuesday on Twitter. Over 1,000 educators participate in this discussion by just adding #edchat to their tweets. For tips on participating in the discussion, please check out these posts!
- If you would like to join others in transforming the discussion into action, please feel free to join the Edchat group on the Educator PLN ning.
- Jerry Swiatek does an incredible job of posting each archived transcript on the Edchat wiki created by Steve Johnson. This way you can look back at your favorites!
- Find previous summaries here on this blog – see edchat category on right sidebar
- Follow other Edchatters and make sure you are on this Twitter list if you participate in Edchat!
- Read summaries of the 7pm EST/1 am CET Edchat discussions.
If you’re new to hashtag discussions, then just show up on Twitter on any Tuesday and add just a few tweets on the topic with the hashtag #edchat.