Using technology to maximize student learning

Pedagogic Content knowledge is an area of and Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge are significant theories in the teaching profession.  As we all have experienced at some point in our academic studies, great researchers do not always equate to great teachers.  As a teacher, it’s not just about knowing content, but being able to convey information in a way that it understood by the audience (i.e. students) in the classroom.  As far as educational technologies is concerned, teachers that employ ePCK, integrate technology in a way that maximizes students learning (Koelher et al, 2006).

When approaching a lesson the technology employed should never be chosen first, then the content and knowledge.  Teachers should decide what the end goal or competency is that they want their students to have, and then investigate if there are way to weave technology into them mix.  As Koelher et al (2006) states, technology should be used in a way that enhances the lesson.  Something to be mindful of as teachers, is to not focus too heavily on all areas of TPACK at the same time.  Koelher et al (2006) mentions that students can feel overwhelmed when their teachers focus too heavily on developing their content and technological knowledge all at once.

I recently did a class activity where I sent the students an excel file with data on the times when the ocean was at high tide and low tide. We had spent some times prior discussing the phases of the moon and the gravitational influence on the ocean water.  Then they investigated how the times changed different times of the year in different regions of the world. They choose a country and researched how the changing phases of the moon, seasons and orbit impacted that particular country certain times of the year.

 

Mishra, P., & Koehler, M. (2006). Technological pedagogical content knowledge: A framework for teacher knowledge. The Teachers College Record, 108(6), 1017-1054.

One comment

  1. Hi Tyler!

    Great summary of the PCK and ePCK and also a great point on the student-focused teaching model. I agree it is technology that should follow the lesson instead of technology dictating the way a lesson can be taught. Interesting use of excel, and I also appreciate the element of choice you give your students on which country they want to further investigate. Do students present their findings as a form of assessment in pairs or groups?

    Thanks for sharing,
    Vibhu

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