Tuesday, July 15, 2008

My New Outlook About Homework

After seeing this video on Never Lecture In Class Again, I have a whole new outlook on homework. I believed that homework taught responsibility and independence. But many of my students had problems working on homework at home because they still needed a lot of one on one support. When they became frustrated, they would shut down and not complete the homework. This video would be a great way for all students to be successful with their homework.

In this video, the teachers videotape their lectures and students watch the video at home for homework. Some students can watch it on their computers and for those students without computers, the video is sent home on a DVD. I know all of my students have a DVD player so that wouldn’t be a problem in my classes. I haven’t done this but I guess students could even download it onto Ipods. At the recent Upstate Technology Conference, I learned that my district even has classroom sets of Ipods for teachers. Some teachers send the Ipods home with the children to listen to lectures.

By having students use their homework time listening to the classroom lecture, it allows classroom time to be used for applying this knowledge. The teacher is available for help and this will relieve some students’ frustrations when they have difficulties. Students can ask specific questions about the lecture that they didn’t understand or need clarification. It also allows for group work and discussion. Students could work on projects to show that they understand the new concept or skill and show they know how to apply this information. What a great way to use classroom time more efficiently! Parents would also be able to see what their children are learning and have informed discussions at home.

With technology becoming more available, teachers need to look at different strategies for teaching students. Teaching the same old ways may not be effective anymore. I’m sure that during pioneer days, the slate board was new technology for the times. But when it was time to scrap it to try newer things, our educational system has not been hurt by taking this risk. This strategy is one of those things that should be tried in the classroom. It might not be feasible to do all of your lectures this way but if you teach the same topics every year, this may actually free you to do other things. If you see where student achievement is increasing by doing this, you can increase videotaping more and more lessons. I think it would be a great way to help students be more successful.

8 comments:

Cathy Nelson said...

They called this the "backwards clssroom" approach at NECC, and there were many great discussions about this. I too find it intriguing and exciting to consider. Now, where do I get the time to capture & create the videos, and then upload them to a a vodcast or burn them to DVDs? Oh yeah, right, the kids can do it all. I forget that sometimes.

Jim Leesch said...

I was excited by this video as well. I'm hoping to get the fist month or so of lessons pre-recorded this month so that I can try it out myself. I can't wait to see the skepticism in the administrator's faces. . .

Christine said...

I saw these guys present at the Boulder Podcast Summit earlier this year. I thought it was a fantastic idea. Now I'm trying to sell it to some of the teachers at my school. We'll see how it goes.

melvisx said...

I think this is a great idea and wonderful tool but I am wondering how you assess if students actually watched the podcasts/videos at home? I would LOVE to spend less time lecturing and more time facilitating and I think this could be the key.

loonyhiker said...

cathy: I don't see how you have time to do all that you actually do! :) But I like the idea of getting kids to do some of the lessons.

loonyhiker said...

jim leesch: I'd like to hear how it goes. Please keep me updated on how your class reacts and how administrators react.

loonyhiker said...

christine: Please let me know if any of your teachers do it and what their reactions and their students reactions are.

loonyhiker said...

melvisx: Angela Maiers has great suggestions on her blog that I think would work for assessing this. The link is: http://www.angelamaiers.com/2008/07/assessing-big-i.html