education & tech

mLearning, teacher, scholar, social media

Education + Tech

Education & Tech, was created to build hope that education based on social technologies, can transform the new century, and enable abundance not only spiritually but economically. Milton Ramirez, Ed.D. - @tonnet is the founder & editor. He is a teacher, tech blogger, writes on education, and hails this blog from Union, NJ. For further questions, tips or concerns please e-mail him to:miltonramirez [at] educationandtech [dot] com

Teacher + Scholar

If you are a regular to Blog Education & Tech, you shall remember that I am a blogger and I'd written a post about education almost everyday since 2003. Education & Tech provides you with education news, expert tech advice, classroom management ideas, and social media tools for educators, administrators, parents and k-12 students.

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Speaking of Social Networks, What Came First – Chicken or Egg?

On these days many people claim to be an expert, a tech savvy, a connector or any name you want to create. You should also remember that practice makes perfect and even Marx was to believe that solely practice was the criterion of truth.

Having a Twitter account is not difficult but tweeting is a different story. For some inexperienced users or people not very technical, it may look like shucking oysters. Twitter, however, it is not the only most known/used social network (or microblogging platform for some), there are others which wouldn't be mentioned because most of you already know them.

Our point is, tech experts no need only to intercat in one or more social network. To be a considered a digital fluent, you have to design, create, and remix, not just browse, chat, and interact.

Manish Mohan calls everyone to be patient. He writes in his blog: "Most people don’t get benefit of social networking because they don’t have a large enough network. And then they don’t build their network because they don’t get the benefit."

I still recall someone saying that it just takes 10,000 hours to become an expert. Yes, but have you contributed to your social networks, if not, you can have zillion links and have spent hundred of chatting hours and I, personally, wouldn't look at you as such expert and I'll be doubt of your expertise.

How can you expect to get benefits from social networking by simply creating accounts on various social networking services but not actually using them? Is the closing question posted by Mohan over his Lead and Learn.

What comes first the social networks or the contributions.

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Moving from Security Networks to Evolution of Testing at Schools

Early tonight, there was an interesting edchat on Twitter. How to work with everyone on striking a balance between learning and network safety and security was the topic. After a very crowded meet up, most participants seem to concur to the next recommendations: Quality tasks, relationships, monitoring, follow through, modeling, set the stage for positive behavior, as Becky Fisher wrap it up.

There were innumerable analogies. But there was one that caught our attention, and it was referred to banning not internet use, but thinking. Amy Brown tweeted: "Ban thinking! Isn't that why we created students tests? Oops! Wrong discussion!" This tweet made me remember all discussions Matt Townsley has had about assessments over at his blog. A landing page for any teacher interested on grading and evaluations.

Moving from networks security to assessments is not easy. However, I don't mean to force you to keep reading, but knowing that 90% of our readers are educators, I am committed to take you over The Big Tests: What Ends Do They Serve?

This is an interesting analysis conducted by Gerald Bracey of ASCD. The article spins around how much information a test reveals on a student and how three testing programs may take a teacher to confirm Bracey's investigation. ASCD's writer mentions one domestic and two international testing programs: The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP, Program for International Student Assessment (PISA, and Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS.

The author accurately asserts that "to measure the quality of our schools, we need more instruction-sensitive measures than NAEP, PISA, or TIMSS" and continues to dig in our education history:

    In the last 50 years, the United States has descended from viewing tests first as a useful tool, then as a necessity, and finally as the sole instrument needed to evaluate teachers, schools, districts, states, and nations (Bracey, 2009). In a nation where test mania prevails, tests will occupy part of the education landscape until we can dig ourselves out of that 50-year hole.

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Likes/Dislikes of Google Wave Plus Note Taking Uses

If you are among users like me, post written by Clint Boulton at eWeek is a must read. Boulton discusses the results of an online survey in which it details what people like and don't like about Google Wave. Web consultant Martin Seibert, high-tech pundit Robert Scoble and Gmail creator Paul Bucheit weigh in with what they like and dislike about the open-source platform.

To complement the survey results, Lauren Baum of Edumeme uploaded a video where she shows three functions which were used Google Wave for:

1. Collaborative note taking
2. To record and critique important questions and answers in class
3. To communicate via the backchannel. In this case three people started an impromptu debate about whether a revolution always has economic causes at it’s source.
4. Editing for spell check and grammar did not come until later.

We are still in process of learning Google Wave management, but if you would like to add me to your circle, I will be more than delighted.

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