Posted by Plamen Miltenoff on 11th May 2015
Guide to the Best Homeschooling and Unschooling Resources
* Free online college courses can be found on many sites, with directories available at sites like MIT’s Open Coursework Consortium. Big players in the open-educational resources movement include Coursera and EdX, which offer MOOCs. FutureLearn is UK-based, with free online courses from UK and international universities. More information about these can be found in MindShift’s guide to free quality higher education, plusprevious collections of open educational sites and resources.
* iTunes University
* Audiobooks Free public-domain audiobooks, read by volunteers, can be found at librivox.org. (Print versions of public-domain books are available at Project Gutenberg.)
Posted in Digital literacy, distance learning, distributive learning, e-learning, ebook, hybrid learning, information technology, instructional technology, mobile learning, student-centered learning | No Comments »
Posted by Plamen Miltenoff on 11th May 2015
Why Inquiry Learning is Worth the Trouble
it’s important to question whether alleged “personalized,” “project-based,” or “collaborative” learning efforts are actually helping students and teachers to “hold ourselves in a state of questioning.”
In a true inquiry-based model, how learning happens isn’t as important as whether that learning encourages students to try to learn even more.
“Inquiry means living in the soup. Inquiry means living in that uncomfortable space where we don’t know the answer.”
Increased collaboration between students and increasing student scrutiny of educational content were two other signs Lehmann and the group said signaled the right approach, even if they clashed with classroom norms. For example, collaboration can often lead to tricky discussions about what part of a students’ work are his or her own and what part is recycled. (see IMS blog entry on academic dishonesty: http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims/2015/05/04/cheating-inadvertently/)
Inquiry-based education should improve student engagement, critical thinking skills, and cross-disciplinary opportunities (see IMS blog entry on cross-disciplinary idea and subjects versus topics equivalent http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims/2015/03/24/education-reform-finland/)
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Posted by Plamen Miltenoff on 8th April 2015
Presentation for the the 2015 MN D2L Ignite Conference.
Please take the survey. Please share your ideas, suggestions, recommendations, corrections
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Posted by Plamen Miltenoff on 24th March 2015
Finland schools: Subjects scrapped and replaced with ‘topics’ as country reforms its education system
Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) rankings https://nces.ed.gov/surveys/pisa/
Subject-specific lessons – an hour of history in the morning, an hour of geography in the afternoon – are already being phased out for 16-year-olds in the city’s upper schools. They are being replaced by what the Finns call “phenomenon” teaching – or teaching by topic. For instance, a teenager studying a vocational course might take “cafeteria services” lessons, which would include elements of maths, languages (to help serve foreign customers), writing skills and communication skills.
The reforms reflect growing calls in the UK – not least from the Confederation of British Industry and Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary Tristram Hunt – for education to promote character, resilience and communication skills, rather than just pushing children through “exam factories”. (http://www.theguardian.com/education/2015/mar/20/labour-calls-time-on-exam-factory-approach-to-schooling)
(My Note/Question: so UK is ready to scrap what US pushes even harder with the STEM idea?)
More on education in Finland and its education in this IMS blog:
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Posted by Plamen Miltenoff on 10th March 2015
The Brutal Authenticity Of BYOD
By allowing students to bring in their own devices for learning–rather than insisting that they learn both content and device in school–there is an important opportunity to connect with not just their personal lives, but their natural way of doing things.
While there are students who badly want technology and can’t afford even the $50, that doesn’t seem to be a strong argument against BYOD adoption, especially in light of what it costs—in time and money—to purchase, train, integrate, and maintain—state-funded, district-purchased, school-assigned devices. This is where schools, local organizations, and communities can step in.
Money and Learning
In the United States there can be a tendency to throw money at problems that are not fully understood. As a nation, America lags behind internationally, the “learning market” being one of the few markets proving evasive in lieu of continued effort, struggle, and spending.
More on BYOD in this blog:
11 Sample Education BYOT Policies To Help You Create Your Own
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Posted by Plamen Miltenoff on 25th January 2015
A team of German researchers has used artificial intelligence to create a “self-aware” version of Super Mario who can respond to verbal commands and automatically play his own game.
Artificial Intelligence helps Mario play his own game
Students at the University of Tubingen have used Mario as part of their efforts to find out how the human brain works.
The cognitive modelling unit claim their project has generated “a fully functional program” and “an alive and somewhat intelligent artificial agent”.
Can Super Mario Save Artificial Intelligence?
The most popular approaches today focus on Big Data, or mimicking humansthat already know how to do some task. But sheer mimicry breaks down when one gives a machine new tasks, and, as I explained a few weeks ago, Big Data approaches tend to excel at finding correlations without necessarily being able to induce the rules of the game. If Big Data alone is not a powerful enough tool to induce a strategy in a complex but well-defined game like chess, then that’s a problem, since the real world is vastly more open-ended, and considerably more complicated.
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