Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Blog Post #9 - What Can We Learn from These Teachers?

Several of the videos I watched reminded me of the book I just finished reading, Teaching Digital Natives. There were so many commonalities with Mr. Crosby's Tedx Talk and Prensky's book. As I watch Mr. Crosby explain the Balloon project his class performed and all the activities associated with it, much of this Project/Problem Based Learning and the new Common Core Standards came into full view.

Not only did Mr. Crosby teach the standards, the kids learned so much more! They were free to research, question and be creative. They were empowered, motivated, active, and collaborated and connected not only to their classmates in their school, but to a community of learners worldwide. The students showed passion for the learning, used technology, answered real world questions and were engaged throughout the entire process with authentic audiences. This balloon assignment was language intensive including creative writing (in a science class)! I was blown away (no pun intended) by the amount of different types of learning that took place.

The kids, through their blogs, were able to share their experiences and work with students around the globe.  With this, they connected their teacher to another teacher in New Zealand whose students wanted to do the same project/activities. Their teacher needing some help in getting started so what better way for Mr. Crosby's students to shine and show off how much they learned than an online video session? I could go on and on about this Tedx Talk because it left such an impression on me as a teacher and parent. When Mr. Crosby closed with a quote from another teacher saying that this type of education is a birthright for every child, not just those whose parents can afford to send their students to schools with high test scores, my heart went out to all those people who are stuck in the public system wherever they happen to live. Some kids DON'T have the experiences to build schemas for the world and it is our responsibility as educators to do what we can to bridge those gaps, AND HAVE FUN WHILE DOING IT !


  1. It's Mr. Crosby, not Mr. Chamberlain. Mr. Chamberlain (5th grade teacher in Noel, MO) called my attention to Mr. Crosby's TED Talk. He teaches in a public school.

  2. Barely a mention "Several of the videos" of the rest of the assigned materials.