Soapbox Hangout

image by psgreen01

This week my colleagues in the IT&DML program had a “Soapbox Hangout.”  My professor in Teaching, Learning and Assessing in the Digital Age, Laura Greenstein, assigned us to prepare a short talk about a topic related to our studies.  We were to “get on a soapbox” and speak about the topic for eight minutes during a Google Hangout.

The experience was enjoyable and thought-provoking.  The hangout lasted for two hours, but the time flew by as each speaker spoke passionately about their topic. Most used presentation tools and screen shares while talking, but one colleague spoke eloquently without the use of a presentation.  Here are the topics that were presented:

  • The Top 10 Things Teachers Should Know about Technology  This presentation started us off with list that incorporated many of the theories, frameworks and tools we have learned about in the IT&DML program.
  • Too Young for Technology?  This is an excellent guide for parents and teachers of pre-school and elementary children.  There are guidelines for how much technology is appropriate, as well as how to make technology use more meaningful for children.
  • If Students have the Answers, What are the Questions? A thought-provoking talk with interesting facts about the number and types of questions teachers ask.  Includes tips for asking more effective questions by working backwards.
  • From STEM to STEAM This presentation introduced the idea of adding the arts to STEM and got us thinking about how to assess creativity.  
  • Common Core Dilemma – The Great Textbook Race – Why are states spending millions of dollars on “Common Core aligned” textbooks when more relevant and current content is available online?  This presentation has many excellent resources for teachers who are stuck with outdated texts.
  • Assessing with MOOCs This presentation discussed the latest ways to assess large groups in online courses, including the use of “robo-grading” for essays.
  • What Teachers Need to Know about ISTE Standards  This was my soapbox presentation, which is embedded below.  I discussed the need for teachers to be aware of these standards and push for their full implementation.
  • The Future of Teaching, Learning and Assessing We ended the soapbox discussions with this thoughtful presentation that emphasized the importance of taking time to process, analyze and act on all the new knowledge that is coming at us in this digital age.
The soapbox format was a great way to encourage us to speak about an area of interest and share relevant research and resources.  I am impressed by my colleagues and look forward to learning more from them.  Below is the presentation I shared.

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Comments (1):

  1. Assessment Network

    June 9, 2014 at 00:02

    Informative review of our hangout- there are so many important topics and I'm glad you shared yours on ISTE.


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