Innovative Learning Blog
ED 791-Session 4-Blog-"Reflect"-Building bridge between my practice, action research, and what I am learning
'1. Blog and respond to others
Continue building a bridge between your practice, your action research and what you are learning. Share what inspires you, observations, reflections, experiences, connections, dilemmas.... FOCUS: You may consider the elements of ‘SITE’ and the needs of your learners or audience(s). How does SITE apply to you as a learner
I think it's important to bridge what we are learning from our Master's program and see the connection to how it applies to our action research project and our own practices. It's important that we apply what we've learned to our own practices.
It was inspiring to read chapters 6-9 from Baggio because I saw how those chapters applied to both my action research and my own teaching. I also saw how those chapters connected with the SITE model, which is also another model useful for the action research and my own teaching practices.
I ended up taking a lot of notes from Baggio because those chapters outlined in depth what an effective visual looks like. The whole time I was reading these chapters I was thinking about how it related to the website/poster I am going to construct and the presentation I will present for my action research project as well as how it relates to me presenting information to my students.
For example, it was clearly stated in Baggio's (6-9) chapters that "less is more" when presenting. If Baggio had a slogan for presenting information it would be something like: MORE CONTENT, LESS TEXT, APPROPRIATE VISUALS, NO BELLS AND WHISTLES.
Baggio wrote, "The more facts you cram onto a screen, the less likely it is that those facts will be remembered". Baggio quoted Tufte (2001,pg.68) who once wrote: "...graphic excellence is...That which gives the viewer the greatest number of ideas in the shortest time, with the least ink, in the smallest space."
When presenting my action research or to my students, I will be very intentional in my design of visuals and content information. I will keep graphics to a minimum and make sure that the visuals are solely to enhance the experience of the audience connecting with the content.
I have learned from Baggio, Dervin, and the SITE model that we must "understand the context of learners/users so that we can design products (lessons) that will empower them to engage constructively and productively to accomplish worthwhile goals". We have to not ask ourselves "What content should I present?" and instead ask ourselves "What content does the audience want presented and how do they want it delivered?"
Something new that I learned (from Baggio) was that because we learn reading from left to right (and top to bottom), we should place content on the left and graphics on the right. That is good to know because when I present my website and poster as well as present information to my students I will make sure to be intentional about where I place content and visuals. This made me think of how my school uses GLAD. GLAD are a series of "best teaching strategies". One of the GLAD strategies, Cognitive Content Dictionaries (CCD chart), is something all grade levels do at our school and follows the rule of content on the left and graphics on the right. A CCD chart, is chart paper that has 3 columns. In the first column, a word is written, the next column is the definition of the word, and the last column is a graphic image of the word. A CCD can be extended to 4 or 5 columns depending how in depth you want to analyze the word being defined.
I saw a connection between Baggio (chapters 6-9) and Clark (ch.3) in regards to putting content on the left and graphics on the right. Clark (pg. 48, ch.3 ) wrote that "when (an audience) is learning procedures (they) need a clear display of the steps that make up the procedure, with illustrations as appropriate". The sample display that Clark shows on the following page is a two column chart on "How to Brush Your Teeth" with the content (text) on the left side column and the visual images on the right side column. This is important to know if regards to constructing manuals/instructions for my students as well as manuals/instructions used to present information from my action research project.
From Baggio, I also learned about mirroring content and graphics to grab the audience's attention. Obviously, as a teacher or presenter I have a vested interest in grabbing my audience's attention, and so I may incorporate mirroring into my teaching as well as my action research. It was good to know that Baggio wrote "Mirroring is an effective way to wake up your learners, particularly with PowerPoint, but it works just as well with print layout." In other words, mirroring would be a great way to wake up my audience when presenting my action research using PowerPoint (or another presentation tool) as well as formatting my information on the action research poster that I will have to create.
I also liked how Baggio outlined five simple strategies for aligning visuals and connecting it to the learning objective:
1.) Keep it simple
2.) Keep it clear
3.) Keep it focused
4.) Connect with the content
5.) Connect with the learner
Strategies four and five remind me that an effective presentation "...must have an identity that affects the delivery and affects the emotional dimension of learning in order to make the learniner fell something" (Baggio). Baggio outlined that "Content is the key to getting the information out; it is the message. Form, on the other hand, is what attracts the learners’ attention and holds it. It is what has the greatest impact on your learner and their learning. Form is what first relates to the affective domain or your emotions.”
The last thing I wanted to blog about was the SITE model in brief document that was put as a link on ICARE 4 and how it connect to the last writing prompt (How does SITE apply to you as a learner?) of this blog. On the document ,SITE model in brief, it has a list of questions one should ask themselves when presenting information such as:
2. What values do the learners hold?
3. What will motivate the learners?
4. Which tools, systems, and techniques will assist learners to realize goals or values that are important to them?
These are great sociocultural and informational questions to ask yourself as a presenter and as a learner. For example, I can change the subjects in each question and instead they could be:
2. What values do I hold?
3. What will motivate me as a learner?
4. Which tools, systems, and techniques will assist me to realize goals or values that are important to me?
The SITE model serves as a model for educators to design lessons to meet the sociocultural, technical, and informational needs of the learner, however, the SITE model can be used to evaluate ones' own learning experience.