Saturday, November 21, 2009

CBI Project - Main Menu

I believe I have finished the first part of my project. I have already marked out where the other frames will go with their global buttons. The easy part is complete. Now, on to the harder part - the content and animations that go with it. I plan on putting a 5 question quiz at the end of my project to check the understanding of the students at the end of the instruction. From there, I can determine whether the computer based instruction is helpful for the students or not. I think they will like it.

The projects I have already done in class have inspired me to do more with Flash, from quizzes to animations for language arts, math, social studies, and science.

CBI Title Screen - 1st Revision


I changed the font to Chalkduster since my audience will be 4th graders not adults. Hopefully, it makes it more appealing for young kids to want to click on the enter button.

CBI Title Screen

I am working on the title screen for my CBI project in EDIT 484. I originally had the background as a light blue; however, once I started playing around with the color, the green seemed to make the border and the button pop. In my flowchart, I didn't have a title screen, but I think it's necessary to introduce the topic before choosing the menu options in the next frame. On Tuesday, I scanned a bar magnet at school with wonderful results. I was afraid the magnet might mess up the scanner. To my surprise the scanner was fine and I ended up with a high resolution photo to use in this project. I had thought about drawing the magnets in Flash, but the amount of work to do that across my frames would be enormous. Now I can do the animations with my bar magnet jpeg. It'll be so much easier now.

The border is just scaled down versions of the scanned bar magnet. Fitting all of the pieces together was relatively easy, however, lining up the top to the bottom took a little time. I think the results are what I expected. I like the direction of my project so far. Still, there is a lot of work left to be done. I can at least get a good head start this weekend.

I just realized I may have to make my project slightly bigger than it already is. I already changed the size to 800 x 600.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

CBI Sketch & Flowchart for Final Project

Here is the flowchart and sketch of my frames for my final project. I forgot to add the URLs that will be included in my project. The project is due December 1st. I will have to present the project in front of my EDIT 484 class on that Tuesday. I hope that I can get all of the animations done on time. We are working on the title screen and main menu in tomorrow's class.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Computer Based Instruction Project Outline

I have chosen to do my project on Electricity and Magnetism because we are currently working on this unit of study at school. Since science is usually hands-on, I would like to create a project that has some interactivity in it just like if they were to pick up the real objects for science inquiry. At a later date, I could add more physical science standards based activities to the project. This project is geared toward 4th graders, but could easily be used in the 5th grade based on the fact that they are tested on 4th grade standards on the CSTs.

This project will be benefit students in several ways. One, it will have interactive activities to help students review concepts they have learned in physical science. Second, it will allow them to use computer models to reinforce their learning. Basically, it’s the same learning presented in a different format. It also covers two standards in physical science out of the seven for the unit.

Outline of the Project:

I. Magnetism & Electricity
A. Magnets
1. Different poles like the Earth
2. Attract & repel (animation)
3. Magnetic fields
4. Magnets and the compass (animation)
5. Magnets and other objects

B. Static Electricity
1. positive and negative electrons
2. materials and charges
3. two balloons w/ charges
4. wool on one balloon – change in charge (animation)
5. balloons - repel and attract (animation)


Web Resources

1. http://phet.colorado.edu/simulations/sims.php?sim=Magnet_and_Compass

2. http://phet.colorado.edu/simulations/sims.php?sim=Balloons_and_Static_Electricity

3. http://science.howstuffworks.com/magnet.htm

I actually revised my project. Now it only has magnets as the main idea of my project. I am currently working on some sketches for the layout and the flowchart that I have to turn in by Nov. 15th. I have already decided my buttons will actually be a picture of one of the blue/ red bar magnets that I got from Lakeshore. The layout of the Main Menu screen has already been designed. It's the other frames and animations that will be more difficult to produce. The back, home, and next buttons will also be miniature versions of the main menu buttons.

The next posting will have the flowchart and the sketches for all of my frames I will design.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Project #3 - EDIT 484



Project #3 had us make buttons that would jump to another frame. It was very difficult at first. I must have played around with the code for 4 hours before I finally got it right.

One stumbling block was the 3rd button. I didn't realize when I need to jump to the 4th frame that I needed to add blank frames in between. So frustrating, but now I know. I struggled with the 3rd button in class, too. I learn by doing, so though it was frustrating, I learn a great deal by problem solving on my own.

We had to jump to new frames that talked about us personally. I chose teacher, runner, and traveler. On the jump to frames, I added pictures of myself in those capacities.

The colors remain the blues and yellows. I had fun creating the buttons because they were not standard buttons. I played around with the curve tools and created all my buttons that way. I was even able to create a back button for each frame so it would go back to the beginning. It's a little tiring clicking on Control > Test Movie. This way I could test all of my buttons after only clicking on Control > Test Movie once.

Project #4



It didn't take me very long to figure out how to link buttons to websites. I tried playing around with motion before the button, but that didn't work out too well, so I scrapped that part of my project. Now I am agonizing over the details of the project. I have the buttons I like, however, I am not sure they are right for the project I created. I don't want to go with standard rectangular buttons or oval buttons. I have tried both and they don't look right on the stage. I thought the hardest part was going to be the Action Script for website linking. Surprisingly, it was the easiest part. I even know the websites I am going to use. Blue and yellow seem to be a reoccurring theme in my projects. Am I going through a blue period of work. I've tried many other colors and they don't seem right. I always go back to blue.

I added a television screen like background so it wouldn't be so plain on the edges of the project. I got some inspiration from The Unforgettable Album artwork that has thin lines at the top and the bottom which breaks up the solid colors and the picture. I still have to play around with the middle to make it just right.

Here is a screen shot of my unfinished project. Who knows what the final version will be when I turn it in on Monday night.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

My First Flash Project in EDIT 484




The project was an introduction to Adobe Flash and its capabilities. The main focus of the project was to create working buttons and put some motion tweens that make sense in the mock interface. It was a fun project because I was able to play around with what I learned in class. I can't wait to see what else I can do with this program. I already see the applications in social studies, science, math, and language arts. I could make interactive activities, online quizzes, and other content related to the subjects I teach.

I apologize for the bad quality of the quicktime movie. I haven't figured out a great way to convert .swf to a movie file that can be uploaded into my blog. At a later date, maybe I will learn the proper way to export my projects that I am working on in class.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

New Class for Fall 2009

On Tuesday, I had my first class of the Fall, EDIT 484. In this class we are going to learn about Adobe Flash. Concurrently, I am trying to work on being Nationally Board Certified by the end of May 2010. One of the portfolio pieces has to be a lesson using Social Studies and Art. I think Flash will be a way for me to incorporate technology into the lesson also.

I learned what the file extensions .swf and .fla meant on Tuesday. We played around with layers, objects, and several tools during our class session. I am looking forward to learning a great deal about Flash, so I can begin to use it in my classroom.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Three Important Books

I just finished reading Rafe Esquith's Teach Like Your Hair's on Fire. There are many examples given in the book that I would like to try out in my own classroom. I like the property ownership of their desks, building an environment of trust rather than fear in the classroom, and teaching them valuable problem solving skills. There are many more examples. These are a few I want to begin using. To do what this man does every day would take a serious commitment from the teacher. I noticed in his daily schedule that he doesn't have to teach ELD. I wonder how he got away with it when I am forced to teach it for 30 to 45 minutes a day. Two other colleagues are reading the book and I cannot wait to discuss the finer points of the book with them.

A few days ago, I read Malcolm Gladwell's Blink. Everyday examples from doctors to the military to detectives apprehending a "suspect" were given to illustrate the point of the writing. Snap judgments are not always wrong. Unconsciously, we make decisions that we cannot explain, "thinking without thinking" as the second title of the book says. The Millennium Challenge is a perfect example of a situation where the Blue Team had all of the advantages and planned out everything to a tee. Red Team, who lacked as many resources at their disposal, but was able to defeat Blue Team. The book contends that we accept that when an issue or problem has been thought out that the result will be favorable. The book posits that it may not be the case. Gladwell's new book Outliers might be a future read.

Last week, I finished reading The World is Flat by Thomas Friedman. I read it more as a history of technology, but came away with a wealth of knowledge on how the "flat" world works. I gained insight in how a business works - especially supply chains, outsourcing, insourcing, etc. I was amazed that UPS of all companies actually provides services for companies other than delivering packages. Walmart's supply chain is very efficient to the point where they have little inventory. I was astonished to found out after we were losing jobs to Mexico due to cheap labor, they in turn lost out to China through even cheaper labor. Friedman gives many solutions to help our workforce transition in this "flat" world.

My next two books will be Grown Up Digital, I am currently on page 40, and Cultural Literacy, another E.D. Hirsch, Jr. book.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Final Cut


It's Sunday night and I have just finished the final cut of my marathon movie. I am going to burn it on a few DVDs for class tomorrow. Later, I will save it as a file I can use on my blog for everyone to see. After my regular school year is over, I still plan on making a longer version for my family. My movie is roughly 6 minutes long right now. When I am done it will probably be 10 to 15 minutes in length.

I was able to practice a few techniques when I was working on the final cut. I didn't have a lot of footage to work with to do some cutaways, so I had to do a little extra filming today. Only 8 seconds worth. See if you can figure out where I put it. I didn't realize that I could cutaway to still pictures and graphics, too. I am definitely going to play around with this technique in future editing.

To give my music at the end time to fade out into black, I added a black title without words. I chose "Born to Run" by Bruce Springsteen to end my movie project. It fades out well at the end. In addition, I was able to work with the audio clip trimmer to get my music synced up with the start of the clip I wanted and the end one. At first it was a little frustrating, but now I have the hang of it. I kept editing the middle of the movie which made it longer, hence the clip trimmer edit had to be lengthened. Slightly annoying. For me, it was great because I got to practice using the tool. Later on, I am not so sure I will have the patience.

I added a few more transitions between clips. Since I chose cross dissolve, I had to go back and lengthen the front ends and back ends of clips because it cut off a little of the sound on each end. That's no problem. Easy fix. I love the keyboard short cut and now I can't even remember how to bring up the window to do it.

Overall, I am very satisfied with the work that I have done on this project. In essence I worked mainly on iMovie '09, but I also learned how to use my camera and upload footage to iMovie. Now I am ready to film my next marathon in San Francisco on July 26, 2009. Maybe, my wife will learn how to use the HD camera, so I can get some good footage to use in another marathon movie.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Rough Cut

I just finished a rough cut of my marathon video and showed it to a couple of people. They seem to like it so I must be going in the right direction. I haven't put in the end of the race footage, cutaways, or the voice overs(not sure I want those). I was worried that too many of the same type of picture would detract from the overall feel of the movie. I don't think it does because the still pictures move by very quickly.

I haven't created the beat markers to sync the pictures and transitions with the music. I'll do that tomorrow. I extended the clips that needed it. When you press the apple key and then the option key, you can instantly and quickly extend a clip. It's rather easy in fact. I haven't had to use the precision editor yet, though I probably will get the exact edits I want on some of the video clips.

I am very happy with the direction of the project. I am learning the program while practicing the skills they teach in my book. I like using shortcuts, so the book is a perfect match for me. I hate having to open extra windows to do a task that has a keyboard shortcut.

Video and Still Pictures


Last night, my friend brought over his Sony digital camera that also records video and we uploaded about 2 minutes of footage. I'll get to try the stabilization function because the footage is a little shaky at the beginning. What I love about iMovie is the fact that you can crop video. I thought you could only do that in a still picture. It has already come in handy in the first part of the movie where I am talking about the race.

I took my two disposable cameras to Walgreens last night before the Laker's game and picked up the photos during halftime. I purchased a copy of the photos and a photo cd so I could start loading the pictures in the iMovie project. I haven't decided how many of the pictures I will use since some of them are similar. I have to label all of my photos so I know where I took the pictures at each mile marker. It'll make it easier to insert the photos once I label them, too.

I was rereading parts of the Missing Manual for iMovie this morning. I reviewed how to extend a clip using some keyboard short cuts because I realized a few of my clips in the beginning were a little too short. iMovie '09 has made it easier to do cutaways without having to extract the audio from the video clip. I have already decided I will use that technique in several places to make the movie more interesting.

After I finish the project for my Monday presentation, I am going to make different version fro family. For my project, like I said before, I am going to create a shortened version of the movie. That way I can talk about some of the information I learned and how I applied it in the movie. Otherwise, it will be me talking about the project and then watching a 10 minute movie. The whole of the presentation seems too long. If everyone in class takes 15 minutes or so, we could be there all night. Short and sweet is the way I would like to keep it.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Chapter 9: Narration, Music, and Sound

I plan on doing some narration in the marathon video in certain parts. I don't want to over do it, so I will have to be careful to make sure it fits with the overall theme of the project. Because I do not have much footage of the actual race during the middle parts of the movie, I feel like it might need some explanation to help guide the viewer. I have about 30 more still photos to add to the project. I don't anticipate narrating each picture, though I will choose a few to highlight in the movie.

I decided to use Pink Floyd's "Run Like Hell" as the background music for the movie. It seems appropriate for what I am doing and the beats will actually match up with the video. It will be difficult to adjust the sound in the new version of iMovie. In the old version you could just grab the "rubber band" on the sound clip and move it down all of the way to kill the sound during narrations. In the new version, I am going to have to trick the program by using the clip trimmer to take out parts of the audio during my narrations and the people talking in the first part of the video.

I have learned in this chapter about unpinning and pinning the background music. My background music is currently unpinned though I will begin to change that as I add more video footage and stills from the marathon. I am going to have to pin the video in the parts where I want to hear the song playing. In the older version it was easier to use. Alas, a new program brings new challenges. I am looking forward to practicing with the beat markers that can be inserted so I can time the music out with the still photos. I am going to try to use the function "snap to beats" to see how well it works in the project. If worse comes to worse I can use Garageband to edit the sound before I put it into iMovie '09.

I will probably not use sound effects in this movie because I don't think they are appropriate. However, I could change my mind and add some if I think it will make the movie more interesting.

Chapter 10 on photos is next. I just got the second disposable camera from my running partner. Tomorrow I develop the photos and get a CD made. That way I can put all of the stills into my project and start matching the song or beats to my new pictures.

The project is coming along nicely...

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Project Update

I finished the marathon in 5:01:34. Not bad for my first marathon. My friend and I took still photos for each mile we ran that I will be using in my iMovie project. Several other family members also took shots that I will use in the movie. I took before the day of the race and day of race footage on my new camera. My wife was supposed to take footage of my friend and I running through several parts of the race. Unfortunately, my wife pushed the stop button on the camera instead of start button. So now I have 5 minutes of pavement and the occasional running shoes passing by the frame. The video part of the race was not completely ruined due to the fact that another friend of mine was able to capture a minute of running at mile 22. I was hoping for more footage to "play around with". I read the chapter in my book, "Video Effects, Slo-Mo, Green Screen, and Picture-in-Picture" and figured I could try out these effects on my running video. I have less footage to use, but I will make the best of it.

My project has turned into 2 projects, really. I ended up buying an Sony HD camera model HDR-XR100. I had read from my book about hard disk cam,eras and I was still leaning toward a MiniDV camera. If you have read any of Pogue's articles on buying cameras, he tends to lean toward MiniDV. I concur. I have used many MiniDV cameras and they have yet to fail me. After going to BestBuy to buy one for the project, I was unable to find a MiniDV that I liked. Plus, there wasn't a guarantee that it would work with iMovie '09, though I did print out existing cameras from the web that did work. I knew I wanted an HD camera for my own future use not just to use for this one project. I shied away from using my school's camera because I couldn't figure out which one would work with iMovie '09. To save time and a lot of aggravation, I broke down and bought the new, shiny one from the store.

I was not disappointed in my purchase when I got home. I was able to take some footage the night before the race. The fact that I didn't have to rewind or fast forward saved time looking for the clips I needed to upload into the project window. It was easy to do. All of my clips showed up on the iMovie screen. I just selected the ones I wanted and within several minutes they were all loaded for me to experiment. So I did. I had already played around with trimming clips and adding music. I had read the chapter on titles, so I decided to play around with that function. At first, I made 26 black title screens with Mile 1 through Mile 26 with the "Lens Flare" option. It looked cool, but maybe 26 screens throughout a short movie was too much. I decided to limit those titles to about 7 or 8 instead of 26. I don't want to bore my audience when I present it on June 1st.

The more chapters I read in my book, the more I wnat to add to my project though I know there are limitations due to time and execution of the project. Too many bells and whistles could detract from the content of the movie and defeat the purpose. I will be using the techniques and effects purposefully throughout the movie where they are needed. That's more realistic anyway.

Tonight, I am going to edit the first part of the movie that has all of the pre race activities. Tomorrow, I develop the pictures from the two disposable cameras from the race. Since, it will only take an hour to develop, I will be able to add the stills into my project and see how they look with the overall look of the movie. Some pictures may stay, some may go. My friend that did get a minute's worth of footage is coming over tomorrow also. Most of the pieces will be finished before the weekend, so I can put the finishing effects on the final movie.

As a bi product of this project, I am able to send my family a copy of my running of the LA Marathon that they were unable to witness first hand.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Marathon Project

I decided the other day what I was going to film for my EDIT 435 project. I am going to create my project around my running the LA Marathon on May 25, 2009. My wife is going to film me preparing for the race, the minutes before the start, the successful run through the finish line. The start and finish lines are near to each other in downtown. I will be running for 4 and 1/2 hours with a disposable camera so I can take pictures of the race and myself. With the raw footage and the camera stills, I am going to edit a short movie on iMovie '09. I am going to use as many of the functions of the program during my edits. It will allow me to practice using the program, of which I am not that familiar.

I would like to do it "24" style with the beeping times for each mile. I will do a shorter version for the project because I don't want to bore everyone with a 15 minute video of my running the race. later I can do a longer version for my family who are interested in what I do.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

iMovie '09 and iLife '09

I finally received my copy of iLife '09 and my Missing Manual for iMovie '09. First, I watched the tutorial to see what the new changes were going to be in this version. The tutorial makes it seems really easy though I struggled mightily without a manual with the last version. What I like about this project is the fact that I can sit down and take my time to learn it properly. I have a long term project of making a short movie to send family by Christmas time. This will allow me time to practice for several months before I embark on that journey.

I read the introduction which reaffirmed my desire to eventually buy a digital video camera with MiniDV tapes. They just haven't made a digital video camera with enough memory that isn't outrageously expensive. Nevertheless, I will eventually buy one of the newer cameras with a hard drive when two things happen: they can shoot in HD with enough space and the price falls significantly.

Tonight, I am going to read Part 1 on editing in iMovie. The first chapter covers importing video. Tomorrow, I plan on borrowing the school's camera to shoot some footage that I will use to import. I am going to start with some practice footage before I shoot the footage I will use for the presentation in June. I might even re-edit a project i did for my last class, since I was not sure what I was doing at the time.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

iMovie Project in EDIT 435

I finally received confirmation that both the manual written by David Pogue and my iLife '09 software is on its way to my house. Once it is here I can dive right in to iMovie '09. In a project in my last class I struggled quite a bit due to the fact that I was not familiar with the newer version. The old version of iMovie is very easy to use. The newest version looks like it is easier to use then the last version. It's possible they listened to their customers and mad ethe necessary changes because I don't know anyone that like sthat version. When I purchased my iMac during Christmas, I noticed they installed the newest version on my dock, but gave me a copy of the old version in my applications folder. I am looking forward to reading the Missing Manual and playing with the new controls in iMovie '09. I may even buy a camera to add to the experience.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

New Class - EDIT 435

I started a new class today called Computer Systems in Schools - EDIT 435. We have one project due by the end of the Quarter. There are several possibilities for my choice in projects. I could learn a new program and present that at the end of the quarter or I could try out a new piece of equipment like a digital camera or HD video camera. So many possibilities... My school needs grant money for technology since most money is not allocated for that purpose. I could work on a grant or two as my project.

One thing we did tonight was work with Google Docs. Though I had heard about it before, I was not aware of its capabilities. It's like having the Microsoft Office Suite for free. It would be a great way for kids to create projects at home or at the library and then send them to me. I think my colleagues at work would want to know about what Google Docs can do, too.

Instead of a book which usually costs $70 or more, we are subscribing to Smart Computing (www.smartcomputing.com) for a year at a meager price of $29. In these economic times, I am glad we don't have to buy a book. I need to finish the other books that I had started several months ago. Luckily, spring break is coming up, so I should have time to finish at least one of them before I begin reading the articles from Smart Computing.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Media Debate Video Clip

video
Overall, I enjoyed the experience because I got to try out the new features of the newest iMovie. After finishing the project, I still like the older version of iMovie better. I had trouble editing the sound clips and music that I wanted to attach to the project. At first I was going to use the new song by Depeche Mode called "Wrong" because I thought it would add some silliness to a more cut and dry video clip.

The video details a response to specific arguments the Kozma team made. Read my other posts to see those particular arguments. I used my talking points to help prepare for the debate. You can decide how effective I was.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Media Debate Video Editing


What a daunting task! I know the ins and outs of using the old version of iMovie, but my new computer has the newest version. I am slowly getting the hang of using the new controls. As always with the software already installed on the computer, there is not a manual to accompany it. I can see why some people don't like the new version of iMovie; however, one great function is extending the media clip as it is in your project. The old version, you had to split the clip at the playhead and the excess clip went to the iMovie trash. Although you could retrieve the clip in the trash, you had to put the clip back together. Now all you have to do is grab the end of the clip and extend it as much or as little as you want. It actually saves you time. I am used to cutting the clip using the spacebar and the longer view of the clip so I can get really tight edits. I am sure with time I will grow to like this version. The sound and sound effect capabilities are better and easier to use.

Right now, I am about 30 seconds into the 3 minute clip I will be posting on my blog and my electronic portfolio. I am happy with what I have done so far, though I am beginning to dislike the sound of my own voice after repeatedly listening and fine tuning the media clips. The next step is to finish editing all of the clips I want to use in the project. Later, I will add transitions, titles, and end credits. Music will be the last thing I add if I decide to use music or sound effects. It will all depend on if it is appropriate for the project.

One of my future tasks is to figure out how to use the clip I got from my flash drive. It is in Mpeg format though iMovie will not allow me to import it. There must be some sort of conversion process it has to go through before it is able to be imported. I can view the clip in Toast, but not using Quicktime. Very odd! Maybe during spring break I can figure out how to use it.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Clark vs. Kozma Debate Reflection

I believe the Clark side did an excellent job of conveying the points we wanted to get across in the debate. Even the judges said it was hard to put aside their biases and prejudices. Richard Clark was right, it was definitely an "uphill slog". I was part of rebuttal team with Deanne and Joseph. Each one of us covered certain aspects of the debate. I chose to address the examples that were given in the debate. The areas I covered were the truck analogy, the brother who learned from television, and the special education angle. I ended by quoting the response I got from Richard Clark in response to my blog about the upcoming debate.

The truck analogy was changed into a refrigerated truck that broke down and what was inside began to rot. The argument was for media does influence learning. I countered with it is the delivery system that can change for the desired learning or learner, but it still doesn't prove that media influences learning. Though not enough information was given about the brother who learned English from television, I countered with it was the inherent instructional method taught to the brother in his primary language. Not having all of the information about the brother made my argument weak. The third point was the special education angle as it pertained specifically for a blind student. I argued that the media used was necessary for that learner. Clark was not against using technology or media to use with instructional methods.

My whole focus was rebutting the the breaking apart of the media and the instructional method. In that instance, I don't believe I was effective because I was not able to sway the judges. As the Clark team, we were hamstrung by the fact that there really wasn't any current research to back up what Clark's position is. The judges were looking for quantity of research cited and how current it was. We were only able to cite two studies to support our argument and they were not current studies.

The Kozma team did a great job of giving examples at the end of the debate about future technologies. We were not able to rebut these claims that these new technologies influence learning. There wasn't any evidence saying that it did influence. There was a semantic argument put forth at the end of the debate that changed "influence" to "enhance". Enhance means to make better and influence means to affect. They are not the same. Dictionary.com refers to enhance as "[t]o provide with improved, advanced, or sophisticated features" and influence as " the action or process of producing effects on the actions, behavior, opinions, etc., of another or others". I would, however, agree that media does enhance learning, but not influence it. Enhance only proves the media attribute argument that Clark has put forth in the debate with Kozma.

So, in my opinion, it was not proven without a doubt that media influences learning. The argument which started as a debate about influence changed to enhanced. The debate continues...

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Research Related to Clark vs. Kozma Media Debate

We are going to be debating whether media influences learning on Thursday, February 26, 2009. My partners and I are debating on the side of Clark who believes that "media will never influence learning". There are four major areas or topic areas that he covers: media and instructional method, the replaceability challenge, motivation in the media itself, and surface and structures. Kozma wants to reframe the debate to say at a certain point in the future media will influence learning.

Here are some resource links for more information on the debate:
1. "Media Will Never Influence Learning" by Richard E. Clark
2. "Will Media Influence Learning? Reframing the Debate" by Robert B. Kozma
3. "Technology not the Panacea for Education" by Todd Oppenheimer
4. "Does Media Affect Learning: Where Are We Now?" by Nancy B. Hastings and Monica W. Tracey
5. "The Computer Delusion" by Todd Oppenheimer
6. "Clark's Invitation to the Dance: An Instructional Designer's Response" by Robert A. Reiser
7. "The Media Influence Debate: Read the Fine Print, But Don't Lose Sight of the Big Picture" by Sharon A. Shrock
8. "The Influence of Media on Learning: The Debate Continues" by Robert B. Kozma
9. "How Does Technology Influence Student Learning" by John Cradler, Mary McNabb, Molly Freeman, and Richard Burchett

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Theory Presentation Handout


As part of our class readings, we had to choose a theory and create a one-page handout. Anas from class sent a copy of his brochure style presentation for his theory. I started to think about how I would approach the handout for the theory I chose. One of the new publishing templates from the new Microsoft Office 2008 for Mac seemed a perfect fit for my handout. I chose a newsletter type layout that fit the information I had to synthesize. Cognitive information processing theory seems to be a hefty title for a theory that is basically how and when a learner makes sense of the knowledge, recalls and then applies it to the next experience or situation. This theory proposed by Atkinson and Shriffin was first recognized in 1968 and is similar to behavioral theory.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Reaction Essay - Case Study - Denny Clifford

The overall theme of this case study revolves around two different teaching philosophies, objectivist and constructivist. In Denny Clifford’s case, he has to tailor his know-how (clear objectives and direct instruction) into an instructional design that will work for his client (learner centered and socially constructed). Several barriers are present from the beginning; hence Denny must eliminate these barriers to design professional development materials using appropriate instructional techniques and delivery mode systems that work for the client, Cynthia.

The communication barriers in this case study are many and varied. Denny’s client, Cynthia, has given him some directions, but not a clear objective driven assignment. Denny’s use of technical jargon in his conversations with Cynthia is an obvious barrier to the beginning stage of the instructional design. He needs to speak the language of his client in more constructivist terms, so that his ideas can be communicated more effectively and the project can be completed to her satisfaction. Effective communication is critical to the overall success of the project because both the client and the instructional designer need to be satisfied with the design steps throughout the entire process. The analysis, design, development, implementation, and evaluation (ADDIE) will need to be monitored so that each step is successful and the instructional needs are being met. Subsequently, Denny will need to have more face-to-face meetings with Cynthia to ensure success by getting feedback from her at each step to ensure the integrity of the project. Before the goals and objectives are established, he will need to conduct a needs analysis to adequately meet the instructional needs of both the teachers and the students.

Another barrier Denny might encounter are the learners being taught. For the last 5 years, Denny has taught in the military where there are right or wrong answers where as Cynthia is dealing with teachers and kids whom develop multiple answers or ideas. Consequently, Denny will need to adjust to his clientele in order to be effective. Considering his experience as a designer and his knowledge of science and technology, he should be able to adapt to the new needs presented to him.

There are several resources that Denny could use to address the instructional design needs of his client. First, he should contact and interview the teachers to get more information on their instructional needs. To fully understand the constructivist approach, Denny could review the teacher observation tapes by observing the implementation of effective strategies that are already being used. Another resource, the grant proposal, could provide a wealth of information that would provide some direction for Denny. Though Cynthia did not intimate specific goals or objectives, he may be able to attain that information through reading the proposal. A justification in the grant proposal would give him insight into Cynthia’s approach to teaching. Denny may also be able to glean important information about the learning techniques from Cynthia and another teacher’s writings on teaching science in the constructivist approach. Armed with this knowledge, Denny should be able to use the above resources to create a well-rounded set of instructional materials for the middle school project.

For his client, Denny can use several media, delivery modes, and techniques to complete the project successfully. Many media would be appropriate for his client and the teachers. The use of an online course management platform like WebCT could facilitate any distance problems for the teachers including teachers nationally. Whiteboard, online forums, iChat, and web conferencing are tools he could use to allow teachers to continue to share their experiences and aid them in facilitating discussions, a need addressed by Cynthia. Two delivery modes, computer based simulations and games, are important because the learner can interact with the content in a new way. Online chats will enable teachers to share their ideas and experiences in real time on any given day from any given place. The instructional techniques appropriate for this project would need to be learner centered with very little direct instruction. Hands-on, kinesthetic learning based strategies along with dynamic discussions are paramount. Based on Denny’s notes, group discussions will be the key to creating shared meaning and developing problem-solving skills like reasoning for the students.

Ultimately, Denny would need to create the instructional materials using his background of instructional design (how to solve instructional design needs) with the needs of his client who has an established constructivist approach for the middle school project. By eliminating the barriers of finding common ground and speaking the same language, Denny will be able to choose the appropriate media and instructional strategies based on the resources Cynthia provided him and his own observation notes.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Definition and Time Line of Instructional Technology

I like the definition from our book "Trends in Issues in Instructional Design and Technology" because it has the elements that I believe are necessary to cover the wide array of what instructional design actually is.

"...[it] encompasses the analysis of learning and performance problems, and the design, development, implementation, evaluation, and management of instructional and noninstructional processes and resources intended to improve learning and performance in a variety of settings, particularly educational institutions and the workplace." (Reiser & Dempsey, 7)

There are several aspects of this definition that i think are critical for a definition. It covers instructional technology in a global sense, not just education. "Variety of settings" covers any arena where the technology would be present without being too wordy and technical. Three areas are addressed: the problem to be solved, how to design instruction to solve the problem, and the evaluation of the strategies and techniques. In our group work, we incorporated these ideas into our own synthesized definition that goes as follows:

"Instructional Technology is the field of study where hardware and software are used to solve real world problem through an instructional design process that has clear objectives and that is constantly evaluated." - Anass, Joseph, and Christian - EDIT 451

We also all agreed that a blended approach, constructivist and objectivist, to any problem would benefit any and all learners. We believe in learner centered activities with clear and explicit objectives that can be measured in a performance evaluation and also in a criterion based test.

As a group project, we also created a time line of instructional technology. Here is my example of my time line from the readings in our book and a hyper text history of instructional technology. An example of the our own instructional history time line:

Professional Organizations in Instructional Technology

These are 3 of the organizations that I would join so that I would have access to the latest journals, research, and conferences pertaining to my field of study. Since I am a 4th grade teacher, my interest is in educational applications of technology and instruction, but that could easily change as I make my way through the Master's Program at CSULA. Here are the professional organizations that I would most likely join in the future. One organization, ISTE, is a source for our current LAUSD technology standards.

1. Association of Educational Communications and Technology (AECT)
www.aect.org

Mission: “The mission of the Association for Educational Communications and Technology is to provide international leadership by promoting scholarship and best practices in the creation, use, and management of technologies for effective teaching and learning in a wide range of settings.”

Cost: Regular membership $99.00

Publications: Educational Technology, Research, & Development
Quarterly Review of Distance Education
TechTrends

Conferences: 2009 AECT International Convention – annual
October 27 – 31, 2009
Louisville, Kentucky

ISMF - International Student Media Festival

Networking & PD: SecondLife – “AECT members to share and gain expertise as well as network with other professionals.”

Other benefits: AECT Job Center - Employers can post jobs and people can find jobs at the job center.

2. International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE)
http://iste.org

Mission: “Providing leadership and service to improve teaching and learning by advancing the effective use of technology in education.”

Cost: Standard membership - $89.00

Publications: Learning and Leading with Technology
Journal of Computing in Teacher Education
Journal of Research on Technology in Education

Conferences: 30th annual – National Educational Computing Conference (NECC)
June 28th – July 1st, 2009
Washington, D.C.

Networking & PD: Webinar Seminars
ISTE-JHU Certificate
ISTE Institute: Leading with NETS
Technology Leadership Program
Strategic Planning with Implications Wheel® Facilitation
Assessment & Technology Training
Educational Technology Conference Strand Services
Best of the Best of NECC Workshops
NETS for Teachers: Train the Trainer Workshops
Networking - Second Life, MySpace, LinkedIn, and Facebook

Employment seminars: ISTE’s Career Center

Other benefits: ISTE’s monthly e-newsletter, ISTE Update


3. International Technology Education Association (ITEA)
www.iteaconnect.org

Mission: “We live in a technological world. Living in the twenty-first century requires much more from every individual than a basic ability to read, write, and perform simple mathematics. Technology affects every aspect of our lives, from enabling citizens to perform routine tasks to requiring that they be able to make responsible, informed decisions that affect individuals, our society, and the environment.

Citizens of today must have a basic understanding of how technology affects their world and how they exist both within and around technology. Technological literacy is fundamentally important to all students. Technological processes have become so complex that the community and schools collaborate to provide a quality technology program that prepares students for a changing technological world that is progressively more dependent on an informed, technologically literate citizenry.”

Cost: Standard membership - $80.00/ year

Publications: Journal of Technology Education

Conferences: ITEA's 71st Annual Conference
Louisville, Kentucky
March 26-28, 2009

Networking & PD:
Interest Groups – TSA, Women in Technology, Design, Engineering Education, Energy-Efficient Vehicles, and Robotics & Automation
Learning Communities – Hemisphere Listserv, IdeaGarden Listserv, Innovation Station Listserv, and TIDE Watcher Listserv
Facebook Groups – ITEA Young Professionals, ITEA Classroom Professionals, and ITEA University Professionals
ITEA Online Blog – Advocating Technological Literacy

Other benefits: Career Connections – can post resume on ITEA’s website for 2 months free, can advertise openings on website for $100/ month

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

EDIT 451

This blog has been solely created to invite and share ideas on educational technology in all fields. The secondary function of this blog is to record my work in EDIT 451, a class that I am taking at Cal State LA as part of my MA program in Education. I have kept this blog separate from my Mr. Reed's Classroom because, at this point, my work is separate from my classroom practice. As my educational and professional paths converge, I may at a later date try to merge the two blogs, if that is even possible. For now, they remain two separate entities.