PLN Activity 5_Part One Ignite_An Awesome Experience Ignites Me to strive!

This 5 minutes presentation depicts that why I want to put myself in education. It’s because I was ignited by a voluntary teaching activity in a rural area in China! I got awesome experiences in this journey. It inspires and ignites me to think what I want to strive for in my life, which is something invisible, you can feel it but cannot touch it. You can get it but cannot use money to buy it! Are you eager to know what it is? Let’s check it out in the presentation!


PS. Ignite is a powerful tool for presentation. It forces the speakers to finish each slide within 15 seconds. Therefore, speakers will try to keep their speech concise and terse, so that they can express their ideas in such a short time. If we invite students to use ignite to make a presentation, I think it helps to improve their organizational and presentation skills. However, I don’t think it’s suitable for teachers to use Ignite very often to teach in class because they may not able to response students’ questions immediately.

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PLN Activity 4_Part Two: What it means to be a citizen of the digital age

As technologies rapidly progressed and applied, it connects people from all over the world, it’s easier for us to have cultural exchange and business activities cross countries and regions. Moreover, teaching and learning is not limited by time, place and age anymore, we can learn whatever, whenever and wherever. Technologies do make great impact on our everyday life, especially for those kids who living in the technological era.

Pupils start learning IT when they’re in 3rd grade in elementary schools in Macau, most people may think that IT education is teaching students how to use some software for documentary work, creating class webpage, gaining skills to search information online and so on. By doing so, does it mean we are nurturing competent digital citizens in the 21st century? What should be stressed in order to achieve this goal?

As we know that, many problems were caused because of the inappropriate internet use, such as cyber bullying, stealing or causing damage to other people’s work, identity, or property online, hacking into others information, downloading illegal music, plagiarizing, creating destructive viruses and etc. From those examples we know that people may not know how to use technology appropriately and responsibly. Therefore, as teachers in this technological society, we are under obligation to develop and promote digital citizenship in school, students should be taught how to use of technology in an appropriate, responsible and legal manner. Therefore, guiding students to make good use of technology, try to avoid and diminish its potential drawbacks is the most urgent and significant issue of educational technology!

By discussing the “Nine Themes of Digital Citizenship” in class, it provides me a better understanding what and how should we do as so to prepare ourselves and students to be a competent digital citizen. Noted that these nine elements are crucial to all computer users, it should definitely be stressed by teachers in school, and moreover, I think parents should also know more about that because they play a significant role in family education. If teachers and parents can corporate to promote this concepts inside and outside classroom, it helps to monitor and guide our kids using technology appropriately and wisely. Digital citizenship is not a norm, but a series of action, which should be applied and carried out in the digital world!

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PLN Activity 4_Part One: Exploring Twitter: A MicroBlogging Information Tool

Is your school’s “digital citizenship” practice a pass or fail?

I find the rubric provided by the author very useful, it helps to clarify what school could be doing in working with students to help them navigate in the digital world.

Moreover, I really appreciate the private vs. public discussion in the article. In my opinion, I think both teachers and parents should talk to the teens what should be posted as public. We should guide our students to think about the implications of what this can lead to! Students should form a habit of THINKING BEFORE POSTING! Whenever you post something online, please think about will it also be said or done in face-to-face, we should be responsible for our post and care about others!

Students should explicitly be taught what their responsibilities are for being good digital citizens, and how they can use technology responsibly, carefully, and ethically. More importantly, teachers, parents and educators should modal the way to behave appropriately in the digital world.


Ideas for Digital Citizenship PBL Projects

I think project-based learning helps to shape students’ understanding of digital citizenship. Students are highly engaged in their project because it’s what they are interested in and excited about. It’s a creative learning process! Guided by teachers, students are taught to learn anything, anytime, anywhere by using technology, they learn how to search information more effectively online. Educating people to a high degree of information literacy skills is one of the elements that digital citizenship involved.

Moreover, students can share the final product of the PBL project via some social networks and their blogs! Those are the great platforms to exchange ideas and learn from peers, many conversations can happen at the same time and get inspired by others. It’s a way for students to experience what digital communication is all about.


What is Digital Citizenship?

This video gives us an idea what does digital citizenship mean. It also reminds us it is our job as educators to prepare our students to navigate the information in superhighway confidently and safely so that students can be able to fully participate in digital world. This video also let us know more about the free online accesses/resources, therefore it helps us to realize how technology impacts our culture and what are the ethical issues regarding to the use of technology. I’d like to recommend this video to all teachers, pre-service teachers, children and as well as their parents.

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PLN Activity#3_ Temple Grandin: The world needs all kinds of minds

Temple Grandin, a doctor of animal science and professor at Colorado State University, has autism. Most people think that autisms are brusque, geeky and unsociable. However, Grandin leads us to see autism in a different way. She emphasizes that people with autism think differently to explore the world. She takes herself as an example, she is a visual thinker who thinks in picture and doesn’t think in language. When talking about the churches, whole bunch of churches will come up in her imagination and they flash up in her memory, which likes google the pictures. Her ability of Visual thinking and characteristics of thinking in details has been an enormous asset in her career designing livestock facilities.

There are a lot of studies reveals that Autism may not be able to view the problem from other’s perspective when argument happened(Theory of Mind). However, Temple does have insights into animal minds and be able to provide them a better living environment! Isn’t it interesting?


From the above we know that everyone excels in different aspects and have their unique ways to think! Students can do well if they are highly engaged in the learning! How to turn them on? How to enlighten them? How to let them desire to learn new things? Those are really good questions worth thinking! In my opinion, I think we should teach students in accordance with their aptitude, modify the way of teaching to suit the special requirements of each case and seek the best adapted to the students!

This talk show not only brings out another understanding of autism, but also it inspires us to think what is the ultimate goal of education! Does it only aim to nurture people as Einstein? Or we also want to nurture people like Mozart and Van Gogh? Students entered the classroom with different skills and different needs as human beings. Teachers should try to help them to develop their unique minds to successful! We ought to think about all these kinds of mind and got to work with those because we definitely need kinds of people in the future.

If you want to know more about Temple Grandin, you can watch this movie—Temple Grandin, starring Claire Danes, which tells the school life of Temple, it’s absolutely an inspiring movie!!!

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PLN Activity # 2 :Learning in the 21st Century

What do we dream for schools, dream for our kids? What is the most important thing that school can teach kids? These questions are all well worth thinking.

As the pace of change in the 21st century continues to increase, there is so much information that we are not able to learn it all. It’s not that useful if we just teach students a bunch of things because there will be completely new things to learn after several years later! Therefore, what we want our students to learn is the way of seeing, the way of thinking and to learn to be a passionate learner!


Learning happens everywhere, it should be processed both inside and outside the classroom. In my opinion, the project-based learning is an effective way for both teaching and learning. Students are highly engaged in their project because it’s what they are interested in and excited about. It’s a creative learning process and students can learn from having experience. They can share the learning outcome via some social networks and their blogs! Those are the great platforms to exchange ideas and learn from peers, many conversations can happen at the same time so that it will inspire each other’s thoughts and make the final work better and better! I think that’s exactly what we did weekly in SPED312. We comment on the same topic and publish it on our blogs. it’s a form of communication that can serve as a way to participate in a class discussion.


Furthermore, the concept of game-based learning is interesting to me. To be honest, I never think of that before, it might because I didn’t have this kind of past learning experience. I find it very beneficial because students can learn from failure and try again and again, they have to make decision continuously and skills will be built in the games because players want to enter the next level. It helps to develop a useful social, technical or managerial and problem-solving practice. Isn’t it the significant set of skills that we should have in the 21st century?

I do agree with the advantage of game-based learning and start thinking about how to apply video games as teaching tools in the elementary grade so as to enhance students’ learning motivation.


However, we also need to focus on games in our real life, which build life skills through cooking, structures, robotics etc. Noted that these physical games can have video game elements in tandem to help create a super learning experience! Maybe schools should just be labs /kitchens/farms?

Link to the Video

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PLN Activity # 1 : Technology helps to make great teachers, students and nations!

I do agree with Bill’s point of view. How can teachers improve themselves if they work in isolation and there is little or no feedback regarding to their teaching? Only when doing team teaching, can teachers constantly improve the teaching quality and drive meaningful change. Different kinds of measurement tools are needed in nowadays education, classroom observations, student surveys and growth in student achievement can reflect teacher’s strength and the areas for improvement!

Evaluation is important in teaching and curriculum design. Lets’ take a look at Wheeler’s cyclical model below:


It starts with the aims, goals, and objectives, then selection of learning experiences, selection of content, organization and integration of learning experiences, then lastly on evaluation.

In the Cyclical Model, curriculum is a continuous cycle responding to the changes within education where any new information or practice will bring changes. In this modal, we analyze, modified and re-implement. We can use this modal to evaluate the classes and curriculums.

As bill mentioned in his video, teachers can take a video tape of the classes so that students can review the class at any time at their own pace. Besides, teachers can share the video tape with peers and seek advice to enhance teaching quality. It benefits to both teachers and students. I think technology really helps in teaching and learning, it also changes the way how we teach and learn in 21st century.

There’s no more spoon feed teaching, technology helps to create a student-center learning environment. It enables students to figure things out and construct the answers by themselves. Teachers are the innovator, illuminator, motivator as well as facilitator who guiding students to learn and inspiring them. To integrate technology with learning, students learn what they are interested in and analyze the content critically. They learn how to learn in and outside the classrooms. They become self-motivated learner and learn with enthusiasm! If you are not willing to learn, No one can help you! If you are determined to learn, No one can stop you!


Only when students desire to learn, can they deeply engage in learning and perform better! Students are the future of the society and education is the most important thing the get right for the country to have a strong future as it should have!

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Mini Challenge # 2 : How do they learn in 21st century ?

Technology is always around us. What does it mean to students in 21st century? How many hours do they spend on internet every day for whatever reasons? How does technology make impact on their learning?
Education nowadays is always integrated with technology. Between traditional learning and E-learning, which one do students prefer? This video documents the world I see and includes interviews with some students! Let’s check it out what they said! Click the link to access the video! 🙂

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