Part One: Mr. Brain Cosby's Back to the Future
In Mr. Cosby's video was incredible because here is a teacher who is not only using different types of technology to teach the school's requirements but he is also impeding other subjects as well. Instead of teaching only from the book and giving out quizes to measure if they are learning he has then film the projects or examples done in class, embed them on their blogs and write about what is going on in the video. In that one sentence it shows that they are learning how to listen to instructions so that the project goes right, how to share what they have learn to others and how to put what they have seen/learned into words. BUT HE DOES NOT STOP THERE! Later on with the ballon and flight parts of their lesson he showed them the history of ballons, how they have changed over the years and after they released their own large ballon called "High Hope" High Altitude Ballon in to the sky they wrote about what it would be like if they were the ballon. His students even took it a step further and asked every blog they could find to sent them their "high hopes" to put in the ballon and they received so many from all over the world that they burned a disk of them and put them along side their own hopes. At the beginning of school most of them did not even know where they lived or their own address BUT now he has motivated them to keep going, he gave them the tools to learn on their own and to connect to others. I loved most the parts where they worked on their communication skills to teach other teachers/students in different parts of the world how to do the projects they have done in the class and how they connected Celeste via Skype so that she could be apart of the class. He has proven that if a child learns where education is done in a "meaningful and motivational context" instead of one where learning is in fact memorization for an exam then anything can be possible for them. I aimer someone who starts off with children who not very little and by the end of the year turn them into children who are becoming more of the person they wish to be when they grow up by giving them the means to learn and connect to others.
Part Two: Mr. Paul Anderson's Blended Learning Cycle
Mr. Anderson uses a teaching strategy he calls a "Blended Learning Cycle" that he calls "Quivers". This cycle is in two parts. The first uses the classroom, the web and all mobile devices to teach by connecting the students to others in the world who might be teachers, professors or just other kids who want to learn too. The second is in the five parts that many science teachers use in their own classes and each part starts with "E". The first is Engage where he might ask questions to get the students thinking both in terms that they already know and in a way where they have to think outside the box. The second is Explore where he shows different places they can go to to get answers or to ask their own questions. The third is Explain where he explains the answer. The four is Expand where they build on what they already know and think about the answer in different forms or scenarios. The fifth and final part is Evaluate where they have to think over and over what they learned and how it apply to the topic at hand and in their own lives. To remember this he calls it "Quivers": QU - question, I - investigation/inquiry, V - video, E - elaboration, R - review and S - summary quiz. Here he gives them a problem or question where they first think about what the answer could be only by looking at it and working together. They then investigate by not only using the web but also videos that he makes for them so that they can keep checking to see if what they are doing/thinking is right. They then elaborate and review their findings, what was right/wrong and most importantly why. He ask them one-on-one about the topic and until he knows that they understand it they cannot move to the quiz. I love his strategy because he is having them think in terms of facts from the book as well as how they can physically find the answers from projects and how to explain it in words. My favorite part is where he does not allow a student who does not understand the material well to take the quiz at the end of the sections because he know that they do not know and tries to find ways to explain the subject further. When they were going over Natural Selection he could have played a video or read from the book but by creating a project where they were the "birds" and having them time themselves to see how long it took to pick up the beans if they were big/small with a "beek" that was long/short he made it more about learning for fun than for an exam. I am saving his videos on my YouTube account so that when I begin teaching I can go back to him and remember tips or tools to keep teaching my students.