Synthesis of the Four Learning Environments Explored- table
The link provided (table) is the synthesis that I’ve created to compare and contrast the four learning environments. I look forward to any discussions that arise from this table, as I was feeling a bit unsure about a few of my presumptions after having explored each one. I did find MANY overlapping ideas/tenets and I also feel that as these learning environments change based on upgrades, new understandings and student/educator needs that more overlap is inevitable. I do think that each technology supported environment provides its own “positives” depending on the style of the educator, the needs of the students, the age of the students and access to technology. In addition, timelines must be considered and I believe each of these requires more time to allow students to find relationships, deepen their understandings, communicate with each other and reflect on their learnings, and even more time if they are to apply these understandings in real-world contexts. That being said it cannot be understated that these environments provide deep, rich understandings. In addition, I would like to add that supporting and educating teachers to use these valuable resources should be a goal so that science/math education can continue to support deep, engaging and meaningful learning for students.
Since I am an elementary educator I would also liike to put forth that these should be used in the early grades so that students can begin to consolodate their scientific understandings before “the damage is done”, so to speak. What I mean is that it seems that many misconceptions re: science concepts are formed in early learning and providing for engaging science problem solving and investigations that address these misconceptions would go a long way in hopefully curbing this trend. That being said, just using “technology” to teach scienc e is not a panacea, as there is much misinformation represented in a variety of science vidoes, interactive games, etc. online that is purposely “dumbed down” to be accessible to younger students. In addition, the ideas about technology integration held by the educator cannot be overlooked, as these understandings can colour how the technology is implemented. We need to be cognizant of this as educators and work towards adapting sound technologically enhanced learning environments into our early elementary classrooms.