Monday, July 16, 2012

Tool # 9 - Stations/Centers

1) The integration of technology should serve to guide, expand, and enhance the learning objectives. Technology enables students to learn in ways not previously possible. Effective integration of technology is achieved when students are able to determine the technology tools to help them obtain information in a timely manner, analyze and synthesize the information, and present it professionally to the class, teacher, or an auditorium full of people.

2) Students should always be held accountable for any material or work during the class which goes along with stations and centers. Students have a tendency to get off-topic or off-track when working in stations unless they are required to have a finished product. A rubric is essential so that the students will know what is expected of them but also, there needs to be some wiggle room in order for students to express their creative ways.

3) Thinkfinity is a great website for supplemental instruction which would work great as a station at the beginning of a lesson to reiterate and reinforce the vocabulary words. Another good website is Studdyladder. Even though it says early childhood to middle school, many of the activities are coordinated well with the current EOC curriculum. It's a free website and it combines manipulatives and technology where they can draw 3D figures or create them from 2D nets. There are several ways to show accountability, the students could print screen and copy and send it via email (lengthy process and tedious for teacher) or the student can transpose the information from the iPad onto paper and continue using it with the rest of the stations, then turn it in at the end of the lesson.

4) 2 great looking apps are AlgebraPad 2 which helps students with polynomials that are necessary in Algebra, Geometry, and Algebra 2 and gFlash+Flashcards&Tests which is basically flash cards pre-made on the computer. The station would like a few students around 1 iPad or each one having their own and working quietly together or independently (depending on the number of iPads). Every 10 minutes, there's a 2 question assessment covering what they have been going over in their stations, then they return for another 10 minutes and another assessment and so forth. The accountability would be taking the information and being able to answer the few questions. This applies well with the 10/2 rule where for every 10 minutes of instruction (station time with iPad) there are 2 minutes of some sort of self-reflection (assessment) to try and permanently put that material in their brain under learned and not memorized.

5) The students can work on a class project but each station has its own qualities to the project like a dilation. The students have to take a small picture and enlarge it or in geometry terms, dilate it, by a scale factor. One station, the students are working on what to do with the small picture and how to organize it into sections while another station is working on the mathematical portion of the scale and how big to make it. Finally, the last station could be the creative, the most fun and rewarding because of the result and that is actually dilating and making it much larger.

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