Maker Experiment #3: Assessment & Evaluation

21 Aug

In this last week of CEP 811, I was asked to assess and evaluate my professional and personal experiences and learning throughout this course.

Professional Assessment & Evaluation

Throughout this course, Experiential Learning Theory and Universal Design for Learning (UDL) Theory seemed to stand out as significant.  As mentioned in my Week 3 blog post, and revised in Week 6, I do have an idea of ways in which to implement Maker Education into my classroom.  When I first thought about using Squishy Circuits in my 9th grade English classroom, I was stumped.  I didn’t know where to begin connecting the ideas that seemed strictly science-based into the world of literature and composition.  However, after some reading, reflecting, and further investigation into Repurposing, I was able to come up with a lesson plan that integrates Squishy Circuits into the world of English.  Specifically, this lesson plan is designed to use Squishy Circuits in order to prepare students for an expository essay and demonstration speech.  The effectiveness of the integration of Repurposing, Experiential Learning, and UDL will be evaluated based on comparison with the performance of students in the previous years.  Specifically, I will look at their preparedness for giving a demonstration speech.  It is my hope that this particular lesson would serve to activate prior knowledge, give students hands-on experience in performing a task, and be adaptable to multiple learners.  This particular lesson fits quite well into my curriculum, as it serves as an introductory unit to demonstration speeches, a requirement for 9th grade English at my school.  I’ve also seriously thought about trying to incorporate the simplistic “pass / fail” rubric that was referenced in Wiggins’ blog post that followed two simple criteria:  must be factual and must keep audience engaged.  These simplistic requirements should help lead to more simplistic (yet still effective) assessments (Wiggins, 2012).

Personal Assessment & Evaluation

I would say that I have definitely begun to grow as a result of my experiences in both CEP 811 and the MAET program.  Specifically, I have been very interested in the idea of PLNs in order to grow and develop professionally.  CEP 810 introduced me to Twitter as an avenue toward professional growth and development, and CEP 811 has expanded upon that through the introduction of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs).  While I struggled with the idea and task of creating my own micro-mini-MOOC, I do see a tremendous amount of value in participating in a MOOC.

I also found value learning about the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL).   I enjoyed how SoTL fits in so well with PLNs, not just in the fact that it promotes reaching out to a PLN to engage in scholarship, but also how it encourages the participate to engage in the creation of scholarship as well.  This is something I had thought of before, but never imagined being able to do.  Despite the fact that I am (in a very small way) creating scholarship through my blog posts, I still do not see myself as a valuable contributor.  One day, however, I hope to have gained enough knowledge and experience in order to see myself as “qualified enough” to create this scholarship, but for now, I see a greater value in reading, digesting, and absorbing the scholarship of others.

In addition to this, the TPACK (Technological, Pedagogical, and Content Knowledge) framework for technology integration has become a central focus for me professionally.  After engaging in a 1:1 iPad program at my school, I have found myself (along with other teachers) struggling to find a valuable and appropriate way to incorporate the iPads without allowing them to take control of our class.  The TPACK framework has helped me to put thoughtful consideration into every action I take with the iPad in my classroom.

References

Gentry, J. W. (1990). What is experiential learning? In Guide to Business Gaming and Experiential Learning. (Ch. 2). Retrieved from http://www.wmich.edu/casp/servicelearning/files/What%20is%20Experiential%20Learning.pdf

Massive open online course.  (2013, 21 August).  Retrieved August 21, 2013 from Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Massive_open_online_course

Mishra, P. Teaching creatively: Teachers as designers of technology, content, and pedagogy [Video file]. Retrieved from http://vimeo.com/39539571

Mishra, P. & Koehler, M.J. (2006). Technological pedagogical content knowledge: A framework for teacher knowledge. Teachers College Record, 108(6), 1017-1054. Retrieved fromhttp://punya.educ.msu.edu/2008/01/12/mishra-koehler-2006/

Scholarship of teaching and learning.  (2013, 12 July).  Retrieved August 21, 2013 from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scholarship_of_Teaching_and_Learning

UDLCAST.  UDL at a glance [Video file].  Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bDvKnY0g6e4#t=13

Wiggins, G. (2012, February 3). On assessing for creativity: yes you can, and yes you should. [Web log comment]. Retrieved from http://grantwiggins.wordpress.com/2012/02/03/on-assessing-for-creativity-yes-you-can-and-yes-you-should/

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