Friday, July 2, 2010
The Possibilities with Discovery Education
Discovery Education is a resource that is openly available in my school district. During ISTE, we stopped at the booth and chatted about some unknown features available.
Teachers have the ability to create a class group in DE. Students can then log in at any time to view videos, take quizzes or complete assignments.
Last spring, we were able to tap into this when our 5th grade Growing and Changing unit was revised. The district folks made the required videos available on DE. During our parent meeting we didn't want to spend hours watching the videos so we provided a code that parents could use to preview the videos on their own time.
I can see value in this tool. Teachers could require students to watch a video prior to a lesson being taught. This would save the time spent viewing a video during class and allow for more time to be spent on collaboration and discussion within the face to face classroom environment. While there will always be students who can't pre-watch a video, there are ways to accommodate them. Another tool within DE is one where teachers can choose a picture with a prompt and have students write about this.
So my recommendation is to explore Discovery Education and see how these tools can help change they way you teach. I believe they could provide some of those extra minutes we're always trying to find!
QUESTION: How would instruction change if students previewed movies or articles prior to a teacher's lesson? Could it truly provide more time for face to face interactions, discussions & collaborations? How would you deal with the student(s) who don't have Internet access?