PBL and STEAM Education: A Natural Fit

Liu, Jacqueline

CA

Miller, A. (2014). PBL and STEAM education: A natural fit. Retrieved from http://www.edutopia.org/blog/pbl-and-steam-natural-fit-andrew-miller#comment-184731

Summary

Educational consultant and online educator Andrew Miller cites examples on how project-based learning can be integrated into STEAM education (science, technology, engineering, art and math).

Evaluation

This articles presents practical advice classroom teachers who teach STEAM, and it accompanies a video clip showing teachers discussing the assessment and design rubric on the students’ wing design project. The examples offered are insightful and doable. Great piece for STEAM educators looking for PBL ideas.

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Posted in CA-Assessment Strategies, ET-Standards-based Education, IL-Creative Thinking, IL-Critical Thinking, IL-Integrated or Separate, LIBR 250, Z-Discussions | Leave a comment

The invisible iPad: It’s not about the device

Liu, Jacqueline

IL

Cohen, M. (2014). The invisible iPad: It’s not about the device. Retrieved from http://blogs.kqed.org/mindshift/2014/05/the-invisible-ipad-its-not-about-the-device/

Summary
Cohen argues that regardless of the form of educational tools students use, whether it is an iPad or any other device, without a clear goal in mind and the assessment of skill sets students will lose sight of the purpose of project-based learning. In order for students to create products with different technological devices, Cohen urges educators and educational technologists to focus on the foundational skills and to provide guidance for students on how these devices and applications will enhance basic skills.

Evaluation
While this article does not cite any evidence (i.e., statistics) from research studies, the author’s strong opinions stressing the importance of clarifying learning outcomes over the use of difference technological devices make up for the missing data from educational technology studies.

Posted in IL-Creative Thinking, IL-Critical Thinking, LIBR 250, Z-Discussions | Leave a comment

Tools for Success in Online Learning and Working in Teams

I believe having good time management skills is very important to succeed as an online learner.  Being able to prioritize tasks, allocate work and play time, and monitor time spent on a project are essential to managing ourselves in how we spend time (I agree with Stephen Covey on saying that “time management” is a misnomer) and directing ourselves what to do in that block of scheduled time.  I’ve often aimed to set my personal or internal deadline by a day or two ahead of the actual deadline to allow myself extra time to step back, look over my work, and have another person, classmate or friend, to look at it and give me feedback.

Working in teams—and the monster that tagged along—in traditional class setting used to drive me into the little monster that squealed, and I felt nauseated at the sight of working with students who lacked self-discipline and showed bad attitude, even though we all wanted A’s on the group project.  I think the problem with team work in the past was not the lack of setting standards and expected performance goals, but we had trouble adhering to the standard and in reaching the goals.  And that is usually true when some of the team members do not bring the discussion to the table where every teammate can participate.  As Dr. Ken Haycock has pointed out, “[too] often the issues are discussed in sidebars with one other member of the team, in the restroom, in the halls, and they aren’t put on the table for everyone to discuss.”  We need to strive for open discussions with the presence of all the teammates and refrain from having side conversations that do not contribute to team building.  Over time as I gained more experience with working in groups, the monster has gotten smaller because I and most of the team members are enthusiastic, self-disciplined, and bring a good attitude to the meeting.  We bring constructive comments and seek to clarify problems as soon as they surface.  My experience with working in teams has helped me be more patient and less fearful of conflict because conflict do come with collaboration as Dr. Haycock says.  I believe we can resolve conflict when we respectfully discuss the issues openly and honestly.

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SFPL – my local library

SFPL is my local public library, and I feel extremely fortunate to have such diverse and rich resources available in my community.  Take a look at the calendar to see all the eclectic enrichment programs and essential services being offered at the Main library, 27 branches and four bookmobiles.  SFPL has a growing collection of blogs highlighting everything from current events to new acquisitions.  I particularly enjoy using the Main Library to browse their current exhibitions, attend art and music performances and author interviews.  Despite that some people balk at the idea of going to the Main because many homeless patrons use the library as well, I am undeterred and even attracted to the Main for its superior quality of service and programming.  After all, the mission of any public library is to provide access to information for all.   And I think the building itself is a work of art.  The Main is an inviting place for locals and tourists alike.  No wonder yelpers rate it an average of four stars .  And speaking of online social networking, you can “Like” SFPL on Facebook  and follow @SFPLNews on Twitter.

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