Tuesday, March 30, 2010

EDIM 508 The Synthesizing Mind

For my Digital Media class at Wilkes University, I was asked to "share a classroom strategy (e.g., project, activity) that incorporates the use of digital resources in an interdisciplinary approach."

Last year, I worked with a school based-technology coordinator to support an interdisciplinary team of 5th grade teachers and students who worked on a project comparing careers in the colonial times to current 21st century careers.  This project managed to involve the following disciplines:
  • Social Studies- Students learned about the colonial life and times in America.
  • Mathematics- Students compared the salaries of a doctor from the colonial times to the 21st century physician and analyzed the cost of living during both periods.
  • Workplace Readiness- Students compared the educational and professional development requirements of the colonial doctor to the 21st century physician.
  • Technology- Students compared the equipment and tools of the colonial doctor to that of the 21st century physician.
  • Language Arts Literacy - Students created  a 1st person narrative script that simulated the life and times of  a colonial physician.
The use of technology was evident throughout the entire project.  The educational team worked to provide students with ample opportunities to develop  "the ability to knit together information from disparate sources into a coherent whole".  (Gardner pg. 46) The teachers worked collectively to establish the essential question and develop the curriculum map using the curriculum mapping software endorsed by Heidi Hayes Jacobs. Students conducted and edited an video interview with a 21st century physician using a digital video camera and Windows MovieMaker.   Students also utilized their 1st person script to create a podcast depicting the life of a colonial physician using a headset with a microphone and Audacity.  The interview and podcast were embedded in a multimedia PowerPoint presentation that students used to present their final project to their peers, parents, teachers, and Heidi Hayes Jacobs during our annual district-wide middle-level conference.

Gardner, H. (2007). Five minds for the future. Boston: Harvard Business School Press.


lance said...

This is a perfect example of how the instructional goals should drive what technologies we use, not the other way around. Great post.

Kirstin said...

Thanks Lance.