Monday, August 25, 2008

If you were a teacher with access to the Internet, what would you do differently?

This is more a stream of consciousness dump at this point. I plan to organize it better after I get all my ideas in --

If I were a teacher with access to the Internet, how would I use it?
(If my students also had adequate access to the Internet, that would change things dramatically - see second list following this one)
  • Bring the world into my classroom - quite literally! With videos and images from every part of the world available on the Internet, think of how much more real the Amazon or the Sahara would feel to the students? Play the Roja song to give a sense of the Himalayas. With tools like Google Earth, we could look at the earth in as real a way as we possibly can. Look at physical features of India and the continents and all the parts of the earth. The study of the co-relation between the growth of early cities, civilizations around rivers and water bodies would be so much more meaningful while looking at the earth on Google Earth. Study of Lat/Lon.
  • Use Google Maps to teach spatial and directional skills. Get the kids to study their neighbourhood; map their trips and holidays; create holiday and field trip logs on My Maps; learn about the planning of cities and neighbourhood;
  • Bring History alive in the classroom using Youtube videos and images from around the Internet. Footage from real events in History like Nehru's speech from the ramparts of Red Fort on 15th Aug 1947, or Gandhi's Dandi Marck, or Google Videos of Doordarshan 's 13-part series on the History of India by historian D.D. Kosambi.
  • Use animations and simulations from the many free science sites on the Internet to explain concepts of Science in a manner that I cannot demonstrate - the water cycle, the various human systems (like the circulatory system, the way the heart functions, nervous system and such). Find good lesson plans for ideas on conducting science experiments - even low-cost ones suitable for India.
  • Use the many Maths websites to get Free worksheets, and exercises for drill and practice. tutorials and animations for advanced algebra and calculus. Use free graphing tools available online to explain concepts of algebra (such as functions).
  • Teach kids how to search for information and make sense of the unweildy amounts of information available on every topic

  • Learn and teach foreign languages and cultures from the various free language learning sites
  • Access free books and poems to use for Language Arts
  • Communication and Collaboration: Use the many tools for authoring and sharing information like Email, Google Docs and Spreadsheets, Wikis (Google Sites), Blogs.
  • Connect with people from all over - Connect my students with others around the country or world through Email, Wikis, Google talk, Skype
  • Stay abreast of current news from all around the World through sites like Google News, Rediff, and others. Use these sites to get kids to relate classroom content to real-world happenings.
  • Use tools like Google Spreadsheets teach students about data gathering and data organization, for keeping student records, lesson plans, and organize all types of data
  • Use Picasa to upload and organize pictures of my students at work, class field trips, student work and performances so I could share them with my students and their parents.
  • Classroom Central: Create a classroom website using a tool like Google Sites to centralize information sharing between me, my students and their homes - to make announcements, share with my students materials like homework & reading lists, maintain my classroom calendar, plan activities with my students, and share pictures of field trips.
If my students also had adequate access to the Internet, that would be truly transformative- it would essentially make my students active creators and producers of digital content on the Internet rather than mere passive consumers.
  • Podcast created by me for my students (use class time for discussions and project work); created by my students as products of their learning

  • Blogs

  • Videos

  • Personalized Maps
Learning would be most certainly be more personalized and collaborative at the same time.


Kenney Jacob said...

Above all Id teach them how to use google so that they can learn what ever they want on their own.

Shuchi Grover said...

of course :)

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