Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Chapter 6: Drawing Elementary

This chapter stressed the importance of elementary students using drawing softwares to enhance their creativity and expression. Programs like these can be especially helpful to support non-linguistic representation. The visuals that the children create can be very helpful to represent vocabulary or curricular concepts.

At first, I wondered why it would be more beneficial for a child to use a computer to draw rather than doing it by hand. In the book, it mentions that students need to learn how to manipulate a mouse and keyboard. It is also mentioned that the computer can motivate some students more than a box of crayons can. It would also be helpful for non-literate students to express themselves through drawings.

I do like the idea of children using this software and expressing themselves through it, but I don't think I would rely on it. I still feel like hand made drawings, especially for younger elementary students, would be the better option. As the students get older, the software would help when designing diagrams of the water cycle or drawings of habitats. I also feel like younger students, such as kindergarteners, would like the idea of actually using crayons and markers as opposed to a computer program. I wouldn't mind using a computer program as a tool, but I would not rely on it.

Chapter 10 - English

This chapter was not what I expected it to be, nor did it live up to the new technology that I thought it would. The majority of the chapter was about the different ways to structure Power Point. Yet what made me question some of the material was the way in which the authors discussed how much text should be on a page. The sample pages showed hardly any pictures and way too much text. They made a point of saying that the students that are really shy are more willing to present a topic when they can use Power Point. In my opinion this is not the right approach for students, depending on the use of Power Point.

I like the idea of having an aid for those who are on the shy side, but there is a difference between that and having your whole presentation on the slideshow so that you don't have to do much thinking on your own. I want to help inspire my students to become more confident with their public speaking skills. Developing those skills in high school is extremely valuable, and it cannot be replaced with technology. The technology should aid the student's presentation, not the other way around. I would love for my students to utilize Power Point for their presentations and to show their classmates resources and information that would otherwise be inaccessible. But I want to always make sure that it is my student's knowledge that shines, and that their use of media merely helps them achieve this goal without overtaking the stage.