So I thought I would compile a list of ICT resources I used on prac. Over the three weeks I taught English (every day), Maths (x 2 lessons) Geography (x3) Smart Moves (half an hour of outside time every second day) and the vocabulary program implemented within the school (3 times a week).
In each of these lessons at least some element of ICT was implemented. Due to the limited resources and the brutality of getting a booking in the computer lab (you had to beg, borrow and steal) the ICTs I used during professional experience were limited in terms of what I would prefer to do. E.g. reality hit. Too long I’ve been given the chance to ‘describe my own context.’ Each student getting their own laptop (ha) a large quantity of iPads (hahahahaha) and reliable internet connection (biggest laugh of all). But I DID implement ICTs and by the end of my three weeks was doing it more my way rather than trying to please my mentor, which felt great.
Here are the resources I utlised:
1. You Tube – videos for engaging students, I think MOST of my lessons had a video from here. For my Geography lesson reviewing cyclones, floods and bushfires I was able to show the students videos of what it would be like inside each one. They LOVED it. Especially the cyclone video which you can view here.
2. Interactive Whiteboard – I used this EVERY day. It was the first prac where I have used one so much. My pracs last year in a private school never really utilised it. My mentor used it for everything, while some of her uses were more as a glorified overhead projector by the end of my prac I was having fun with it and doing whole class games and demonstrations which would not have been possible otherwise.
3. Microsoft Publisher – as part of their English assessment students had to create their own multimodal advertisement using Microsoft Publisher. To set them up to do this I devised a couple of lessons to teach them how to explore and use Microsoft Publisher – I had to learn the program myself as I haven’t had much to do with it…the first lesson bombed out because I didn’t really have a clear goal of what I wanted to tell them to do – second lesson was much better as I had a ready made example. This lesson was done using the elusive computer lab so all students had a computer!
4. Google – students needed to use Google to search for images for their advertisements. I had to demonstrate what they would be doing and how they could acknowledge the source of the images. Of course this also required INTERNET – which depending on the day may or may not be working.
5. Games! I’m a big fan of games in the classroom. I used a few during my Maths lessons – if I had a laptop for every student I would have made it part of their individual learning, but that wasn’t the case so as a whole class we played these games at the start (and end to solidify learning) our Maths lessons….I can guarantee that the students were 100% engaged in the hope I would call them up simply to ‘click’ on the right answer. The best bit was these games went from the simple to complex and helped students put their learning into practice.
Also within this lesson (set of lessons rather as the first lesson was a review and the second lesson I introduced more complex language) I was able to use ICTs to show students what actually happened with a shape slid, turned or flipped. This webpage provided such a simple tool, yet allowing the students to actually see what I meant when I said slide, flip or turn…I literally heard all of them have an ‘a ha’ moment! It was fantastic and by far my favourite moment on prac.
Since doing that lesson I actually also found this game which I love as well and I know my students would have loved! I think games are an important ICT component in the classroom and not to be overlooked just because they are fun.
6. Power Point…historically I’m not the biggest fan of Power Point – when given a choice in assignments I won’t use it, it seems old and not user friendly…boring almost. But Power Point became my PLAN B in case of complete technological breakdown.
In the first week I had a couple of lessons just be complete disasters. Being a state school my mentor required me to use the C2C lesson plans…these could be changed but some of them she wanted specific videos shown…they were the bane of my existence. I couldn’t pre-open the videos because they would just not load when I went to use them, but when I opened them during the lesson they would take forever to connect and I was left thinking on my feet and it never ended well.
After two times having lessons they bombed out because the videos didn’t work and they contained a lot of the content for the students to discuss I started watching the videos prior to the lesson, taking screen shots and making up my own power points – sometimes inputting information that was spoken and other times just having the still from the video.
My mentor was pretty impressed at this – not only did it give me a Plan B because it didn’t require internet it actually worked well to watch the video (if it worked) and then go through the Power Point with the kids discussing main points, things they were confused about, any questions they had. I was pretty impressed with myself and Power Point has redeemed itself in my eyes.
7. Let’s not forget everything else, I used a laptop every day, USB stick to transfer lesson plans onto the laptop I used at school, I used the internet at home tirelessly to search for ideas for lesson plans and activities for the students, printer, photocopier…I was very aware that ICTs were an integral part of teaching and learning.
So those are some of my resources – what are some of yours?