Ten Steps to Transforming Past Lessons for 21st Century Learners by Michael Gorman

10/27/2011 12:00:00 AM

It is important to look at successful prior lessons and infuse these past successes with technology and 21st century skills. I often refer to this in my Jukebox to iPod presentation. When looking at this transformation it is obvious that technology made a past great idea even better. Teachers must realize that they have a vault of awesome activities that have proven to be successful with students. Many times these perennial gems can be reinvented, mixed, and transformed to bring about a new 21st century lesson that will be even more engaging and applicable to today’s digital learner. The more I have worked with teachers, the more I have seen a need to build a concrete method for transforming these past lessons. I would like to introduce you to Ten Steps to Transforming Past Lessons for 21st Century Learners. I have even included a document I call Transforming-a-lesson-with-technology that teachers can use with this post to turn their jukeboxes into iPods.  Please take a moment to discover, and feel free to share and use.  Make sure you visit my 21centuryedtech Blog and also follow me on Twitter at mjgormans. There will be some great posts coming as together, we discover learning in the 21st Century! Now on to transformation… and have a great week! – Mike

Ten Steps to Transforming Past Lessons for 21st Century Learners – Jukebox to iPod!

Feel Free To Download Document To Use While Reading: Transforming-a-lesson-with-technology

  1. Locate that special lesson – Find that successful lesson from the past that you wish to transform. This can be one single lesson or may include a project filled with several lessons. While the  form provided has been built for single lessons… multiple forms could be incorporated for an entire unit.
  2. Declare your standards – After all, why are you doing the lesson? What standards in the curriculum are you trying to reinforce?  Feel free to name more than one… but do keep it simple. Perhaps you wish to cover a power standard or a core standard. Remember that you may wish to complement your curricular area with a standard in another area. This is a great way to provide relevance to students and possibly even collaborate with another teacher. You may even wish to use technology and collaborate with another teacher outside of your school, district, state, or country. Most importantly, start with the standards! Remember, integrating technology means just that… a powerful way to engage and facilitate student competence with curricular content.
  3. Incorporate at least two 21st century skills – You may wonder why I state two. First, I don’t think it will be difficult… and 21st century skillsare so important to our student’s futures.  You may actually find your project will incorporate a large number of these important skills.  Second, in using two 21st century skills, you will be sure that one is measurable on a rubric. Research indicates that the three easiest 21st century skills to measure include critical thinking/problem solving, communication, and collaboration. Critical thinking and problem solving can be measured using tests, quizzes, presentations, reports, discussion, and observation. Communication and collaboration can be measured by observation, journals, seminars, and self/peer assessment.  Third, one of those skills should be one that may be harder, due to difficulty, to determine whether or not it is evident in the student work.  In fact, the  rubric may be recorded simply as  preset/not present, or a statement of “developing”…” evident”… “excels”. These 21st century skills include creative thinking, innovation, empathy, inquiry, intrinsic motivation, and meta-cognition. I think it is fair to assume that technology is already a part of the lesson.
  4. Develop a fun and engaging title – This title should provide a hook for students bringing out items of interest. It should provide relevance while being molded to appeal to the 21st century learner. Have fun, and include it on worksheets, wikis, parent newsletters, class web site, and everyday references to the lesson.
  5. Outline the technology you are going to incorporate – Make sure you keep it simple at first!  You do not want the technology to steal the importance of the content standards and 21st century skills being emphasized. Technology can include Web 2.0 applicationsMega WebsitesSoftware, various devices… phones…cameras…GPS…. Flip Video (remember… not all technology is a computer). The preceding sentence has links to some of these topics with resources found in my 21centuryedtech Wiki. Please take a look. Remember that any technology used may require some instruction. This instruction can be lecture, on-line tutorials, peer assistance, and/or handouts. Wow, an opportunity for more 21st century skills! Try to incorporate more than one technology and remember that the technology could be used for differentiation.
  6. Include an advance organizer in your lesson –  An advance organizer can be anything that assists students in applying their past knowledge and connecting it to the new knowledge that you are trying to teach. It may be a step by step instruction sheet, a graphic display to understand, a picture, a short filmstrip, a tutorial, or a simple discussion.  An advance organizer provides structure and meaning to students. In fact, you may have the lesson be a advance organizer for an entire unit.
  7. Incorporate formative assessment in the lesson -  It is the formative assessment in a video game that is powerful in engaging students. In a game, playesr understand where they stand and where they need to improve. In the classroom, formative assessment can be regarded as check points before the final lesson is completed. Formative assessments can be check off sheets, a conference, teacher observation, and/or discussion. Don’t forget that formative assessment can also include peers as students collaborate and critique each other through formal or informal methods. Last, formative assessment should include self-evaluation that can be one of a number of methods including self -checks, reflections, and journals. Most of all, remember that the role of formative assessment is to give quality to the final outcome, support the standards, and support real learning.
  8. The final product or outcome – The final outcome must be able to be assessed using a rubric, support the content standards, and facilitate 21stcentury skills. It could be large, but may also be small. Technology must be integrated in a useful manner while complementing the curriculum. Also, the final project must be understandable to students. If possible, it should have the ability to be shared beyond the audience of the students’ teacher.
  9. Make a timeline for lesson– Perhaps the lesson is one period or spans multiple periods. Create a timeline that includes major points including introduction, pre-organizers, lesson, work activities, formative assessment, tutorials to scaffold learning, and submission of the final work. The teacher should have an idea and it may even be appropriate to include student input. This time line can be made in increments of minutes, hours, or periods. It is also important that students be aware of the timeline and be held accountable. Once again technology can be used to support the timeline.
  10. Assessment rubric – The assessment rubric should include a measure of content and 21st century skills.  Decide on a percentage for each. Many teachers often use a 70% content and 30% 21st century skills. Remember when grading 21st century skills that the easiest to assess is critical thinking/problem solving, communication, and collaboration. It may reflect individual and group work if appropriate. When working in a group it is effective to have individual component grades in the rubric. The rubric can also contain points of formative assessment and metacognitive activities.  Last, you may wish to include technology integration in the rubric including such tools as RubiStar Rubric Maker.

So there you have it! I hope you have enjoyed these ten steps that will transform those awesome lessons that you have used for years, and bring them into the 21st century. Please feel free to download my Transforming-a-lesson-with-technology document to help you convert your project. Please continue to join me … future posts will also contain resources on Digital Curriculum,  evaluating web resources, Project Based Learning, STEM, Web 2.0, and so much more on 21st Century Learning. Please give this article a retweet if you scroll to the bottom! It’s a great way to spread the word and I appreciate your support. Remember to follow me on Twitter at mjgormans and subscribe to my blog at 21centuryedtech. Thanks, and until next time…  take a moment to look through your files and begin transforming that jukebox to iPod! I am sure you will make a great selection. Have a wonderful and transformative week! – Mike

comments powered by Disqus
Tweets
Photo GalleriesView All Galleries >
Acer C720-2844 Chromebook

(www.acer.com) The Acer C720-2844 Chromebook model delivers speedy performance, a quick boot time of seven seconds, and a matte anti-glare display tha...

Britannica ImageQuest

(www.britannica.com) Britannica Digital Learning has upgraded ImageQuest, a resource for schools and libraries that provides nearly three million rig...

ClassFlow

(www.classflow.com) Promethean has released ClassFlow, a free, all-in-one, cloud-based teaching tool that lets teachers create and deliver interactive...

Adobe Voice

(www.adobe.com) Adobe has released Adobe Voice, an animated video app for the iPad that lets users create and share video stories. The app incorporate...

DeskBoard

(www.boxlight.com) The BOXLIGHT DeskBoard mobile cart adjusts both height and tilt for the P8 ultra short throw interactive projector on a white surfa...

Core 36M

(www.bretford.com) Bretford has introduced Core 36M, a 36-unit charging cart that is optimized for Chromebooks but which also supports most tablets, l...

Edmentum Sensei

(www.edmentum.com) Edmentum Sensei is a mobile optimized solution that helps administrators visualize and track overall school, teacher, and student p...

HMH Player

(www.hmhco.com) HMH has released HMH Player, a new native app for iOS and Google Chrome that streamlines the learning experience for improved digital ...

Juice Power System

(www.bretford.com) Bretford has unveiled an easy-to-use modular power system with exchangeable power components. The Juice Power System uses unique &#...

LightSail

(www.lightsailed.com) LightSail Education has announced a literacy accelerator that combines books with in-text embedded assessments and real-time dat...

myON

(www.myon.com) myON has expanded its digital library to include a set of literacy tools to further personalize the reading experience for students whi...

Nervanix Clarity

(www.nervanix.com) Nervanix has released Clarity, an application that monitors student attention levels as they study and guides them to revisit conce...

MathBall

(www.robotslab.com) RobotsLAB has introduced MathBall, a smart sensor basketball and tablet system that offers curricula in algebra, pre-calculus, phy...

MobileAsset.EDU

(www.waspbarcode.com) Wasp Barcode’s MobileAsset.EDU solutions include everything administrators need to account for their assets, from software...

OpenEd Assessment Creation Tool

(www.opened.io) OpenEd has announced a free tool that lets teachers easily create assessments with the question types required by Common Core standard...

Panasonic TH-80LFB70U

(www.panasonic.com) Panasonic’s TH-80LFB70U interactive LED display features high-speed, multi-touch, interactive capabilities to promote partic...

penveu interactive display system

(www.penveu.com) The penveu interactive display system is a handheld device that turns projectors and large screen displays into interactive whiteboar...

PresentationPro

(www.califone.com) Califone has updated its PresentationPro speaker. The PA310 readily connects with computers, LCD projectors, mobile devices, intera...

PowerSync+ Mobile Companion App

(www.bretford.com) Bretford Manufacturing, Inc. has announced the availability of the companion app for its PowerSync+ enabled charge and sync produc...

PureCharge Carts and Stations for iPad

(www.bretford.com) Bretford Manufacturing, Inc. has debuted the PureCharge family of iPad and iPad mini charging carts and stations. By offering pre-i...

ProQuest Research Companion

(www.proquest.com) ProQuest’s new information literacy product, Research Companion, offers videos that guide users through the research process,...

Sphere2 & Class Send Student Engagement Software Platform

(www.averusa.com) AVer Information has developed a Student Engagement platform, providing teachers and students with the tools to transmit document ca...

TabChargeCT2

(www.averusa.com) AVer has released the TabChargeCT2 charge cart solution, which can hold up to 40 Chromebooks, iPads, Android or Windows tablets, lap...

VoiceLift with Instant Alert and Emergency Video Monitoring

(www.extron.com) The Instant Alert function of the Extron VoiceLift Microphone, combined with a PoleVault, WallVault, or PlenumVault classroom AV sys...

SMART Board 6065

(www.smarttech.com) The SMART Board 6065 is an ultra HD, 4K interactive flat panel that offers collaborative capabilities while ensuring lessons run s...

Gaggle Unity Partner Program

(www.gaggle.net) The new Gaggle Unity Partner Program provides free data integration services for all educational technology vendors. Through the Gagg...

Waterford Early Learning, Reading, Math & Science

(www.waterford.org) Waterford Early Learning Cloud can be used at home or to supplement lessons in classrooms. It can also be used for individual adap...

NetSupport School

(www.netsupportschool.com) The latest version of NetSupport School allows teachers to monitor and collaborate with any mix of technology. An enhanced ...

Camtasia

(www.techsmith.com/camtasia) TechSmith’s Camtasia gives teachers the tools to record lessons, create videos, and engage their audiences. Educato...

Panasonic 3E

(www.panasonic.com) Intel has teamed up with Panasonic to announce the Panasonic 3E, which uses the Intel Education 2-in-1 reference design. Designed ...