Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Exploration of K12 Online Conference and/or EdTechTalk

K12 Online Conference 2009 Presentation:
"Keeping Literacy in 21st Century Literacy" by Drew Schrader

I did a search for presentations in “literacy” in the hopes that I could maximize the benefit of this exercise and use whatever presentation I watched as a resource for my “RDG-504 Content Area Literacy” class. This stroke of genius (haha) paid off, as this 16-minute presentation spoke clearly and concisely to issues/strategies being discussed and learned in RDG-504. The presenter even referenced the Tovani text, “I Read It, but I Don’t Get It” which is the required text for RDG-504. I hit the jackpot in selecting this presentation for my review and reflection. The fact that the presenter gave a user-friendly presentation for the "common man" made it extremely easy for me - the education studies rookie - to follow and understand the information presented.

The presenter outlines 3 common challenges in literacy. For each, he clearly defines the issue, a strategy for combating the challenge, and the online tool he recommends as a weapon. He then gives a very brief tutorial on each tool’s capabilities. I took offline notes on each tool referenced, and may consider using them in my RDG-504 lesson plan.

I was completely riveted by this presentation, and understood each issue, strategy, and tool presented. Based on the success I had with this K12 Online Conference exercise, I would use the K12 site as a resource again without hesitation.

EdTechTalk Presentation: "21st Century Learning #113: Roxbury Latin's Social Media Plan"
Broadcast date: October 20, 2009

This presenation involved an EdTechTalk host interviewing the director and another member of Roxbury Latin's information services department (aka the "tech department") about the school's existing and future social media plan. The two men discuss how the plan began as a Twitter profile and now spans multiple social networking resources - Twitter, Facebook, RSS feeds, Moodle, Flickr- to communicate with faculty, students, alumni and prospective Roxbury Latin community members .

It is interesting and important to consider the socioeconomics of the Roxbury Latin community: independent/private school, $20k yearly tuition, 100% college matriculation, 8:1 teacher:student ratio, average 13 students per class, etc. My initial/gut instinct is that the level of technology integration in education is almost entirely dependent on the school budget, which I assume is largely dependent on the socioeconomic status of that school’s community/student population. Therefore, I wonder if technology integration in education, while admirable, is an idealistic and not realistic goal in the average school system.

I found it hard to stay focused having only audio to listen to, and no visual accompaniment. I preferred the audiovisual presentation on K12 Online Conference.

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