Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Who Owns the Learning? #CyberPD - Part Two

Thank you Jill at My Primary Passion for hosting #cyberPD this week and Cathy at Reflect and Refine and Laura at Ruminate and Invigorate for organizing.

Chapter Three - The Students as Scribe
When I began reading this chapter, my initial thought was that second grade students can't possibly be a scribe.  For some reason I was thinking of the jr. high and high school classroom where students take notes.  As I read the chapter my thinking quickly changed about how I can use a scribe in my classroom.  I envision having a student recored or jot down learning gained from a mini-lesson in reading, writing or math, or about a science experiment or a concept we are studying in social studies and then create a blog post for our class website.  The student can also be in charge of taking pictures or creating content to go along with the post.  This will be a great way to engage second graders, evaluate understanding and share with parents what is going on in the classroom from their children's perspective.

According to November (2012), "we all know that learning opportunities are never limited to a single time and space, so we have to be prepared to apply our "learner's mind" throughout our lives" (p. 43).  I  read and reread this quote, because this is really what we are trying to instill in our students.  While reading and rereading this quote, I was reminded of something I heard Paul Hankins say about wonder.  He said that kids in elementary school are natural wonderers, kids in middle school need their wonder nurtured and by high school they need to be nudged to wonder.

Chapter Four - The Student as Researcher
While reading this chapter, I immediately began thinking about how I can incorporate a daily researcher into my classroom routine.  Second graders will love being a researcher for the day and finding answers to questions that always seem to arise during the day.

Another important take away from this chapter was the importance of teaching students how to accurately search online.  Second grade is a perfect age to lay the foundation for teaching how to search and assessing the information and source.  According to November (2012) "because children at very young ages are learning to search for and access online information, teaching them how to assess the validity of that material is an essential task for educators today" (p. 57).  I look forward to the conversations we will be having in second grade as we discuss the validity of websites while we research.

As I continue reading the book and the blog posts of those participating in this year's #cyberPD, I look forward to the changes that I will be making in my classroom to help my students own their learning.


  1. Barbara,

    I loved the quote you included by Paul Hankins:

    elementary school are natural wonderers, kids in middle school need their wonder nurtured and by high school they need to be nudged to wonder.

    It does make me a bit sad, though, and I hope that making the shifts we are learning about through #cyberpd would help make things like this change.


  2. Barbara,
    Your thinking about scribes in the lower elementary is similar to mine. I look forward to trying it out this way. These kids are ripe for learning about smart searching- just so hard to get in all we know we should be teaching!

  3. Barbara,
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I, too, loved that you shared Paul's thoughts on how wonder changes through the years. By knowing this and by addressing it in our classrooms, we can be sure to reach each learner!

  4. Barbara,
    Thanks for sharing...Paul's thought on the wonder levels changing throughout school is so true. I feel like Jill, the changes in levels of wonder make me sad. Maybe this will change as more teachers shift their thinking to the Digital Learning Farm mind-set.
    Accurate online searching is a key take away for me too...modeling it in a grade one classroom will be important.