woensdag 10 juni 2015

SMART amp Champs: Global Collaboration

The promised follow up about my Global Collaboration project that was started in March, when I invited nine schools from different parts from the US. Each school was linked to a group of three students in my class and the topic was the US and together all my students gained loads of information in order to have a good geographical view on the US.

In order to collaborate I needed to create and share accounts within my domain. Within SMART amp the students could chat with each other and share the content in the workspace. Language wasn’t really an obstacle, due the fact that the English language is mandatory in the Netherlands and they could always use Google Translate. ;) The Time difference (from 5 to 9 hours) wasn’t an issue either, due to the fact that this assignment wasn’t real-time-based.

But now … I’ve learned a new cool feature in SMART amp. Workspaces could be shared with others outside the domain, but …. they will need to have a SMART amp license as well in order to open and work in the workspace-file and make it work. How about that! I really like this feature and saves me a lot of work whilst collaborating throughout the world.

dinsdag 9 juni 2015

SMART amp Champs: discussion on pedagogy

When SMARTamp shifts your teaching from a teacher centered style classroom manager to a more coaching teacher and the curriculum is more student driven, perhaps rules are necessary. In order to gain learning and have respect of others’ work.

Should you be using rules when using SMARTamp in your classroom? Should these rules be created by students themselves or should they be created by the teachers? This should be considered in order to make this work I guess.

Rules when working in SMARTamp could be:
  • don’t touch or remove work that others created.
  • don’t spam the chat
  • don’t spam the workspace
Or from a different perspective, when you focus on the things that are allowed:
  • respect opinions
  • respect property

In my experience and opinion I think that you as a teacher should first give them time to play. ‘playtime’ is not working, but getting to know the workspace, the way SMARTamp works and have them express inappropriate language as well. They'll learn. Especially when they realize that not only you the teacher, but others in the workspace and perhaps from other countries as well. It’ll take time, be patient as a teacher and they’ll start creating their own content real soon. Make this a students centered workaround and not a teacher driven/centered thing. It’s all about pedagogy …. again.

zondag 7 juni 2015

SMART amp Champs expectations

As you could've read I'm going to the SMART amp Champ event in Madrid with other SEEs from Europe, such as Emil Waldhauser (CR), Sergio Gonzales (E), Tapani Raitanen (SF) and from the Netherlands and The SMART Showcase School I teach: Henk-Jan van Mierlo.

I do hope to gain a lot from the SMART Amp Champs workshops lead by Heather Lamb and Ainhoa Marcos. From the next school year on we will start at my school with a total of 6 classes that'll work with personal devices (Apple's iPad) and I've noticed in the past school year that SMART amp really helps and can take learning to a certain level that works perfectly with personal devices. My headmaster would love to see that more teachers will work with SMART amp, especially since we have a few power users in our school. In my opinion we could and should be an example of best practices with the use of SMART amp in classes that bring mobile devices such as iPads, Chromebooks and laptops.

In order to become an expert user I am looking forward to work with and learn from other SEEs that attend this SMART amp Champ Summit and hope to bring back a lot of new ideas, tips, tricks and tools on how to use this collaborative platform in my SMART Collaborative Classroom and throughout the school. I will keep you posted!