The effectiveness of hands-on learning isn’t new—for example, the apprenticeship system traces a rich history from ancient times to the present day. But well-designed game-based learning has several advantages over traditional experiential learning methods. It is cost-effective and low-risk (unlike, for example, safety training using live machinery). Perhaps even more important, there are significant learning advantages. Learners can re-enact a precise set of circumstances multiple times, exploring the consequences of different actions. In addition, well-designed games permit learning experiences that aren’t possible in real life—for example, “designing” a dolphin to find out how body size and fin position affect how far it can swim , or deliberately causing the biggest possible virtual explosion to understand why gas line disasters happen.
Posts Tagged ‘eTutor’
With the beginning of school, comes another season of sports of all kinds for our youngsters. We have come to believe that competition is good for us. But research show that “offensive competition.” which involves aggressive gamesmanship, can be counterproductive. A study conducted at the University of Texas disclosed that people who were more concerned with winning than with performing well had lower levels of achievement. If you are competitive or your child is competitive, consider the following:
- Keep in mind that competition is not the opposite of cooperation. Using cooperative strategies will often help one be more “competitive.”
- Accept that other people are needed to get ahead. A combination of healthy competition and cooperation can go a long way.
- Learn to believe in yourself. Do not strive to prove yourself in others’ eyes.
- Keep an open mind to new ideas, information and feedback. Offensively competitive people often resist others’ suggestions.
- Help others to achieve their goals.
In an effort to provide more access to the wealth of instructional content in the eTutor bank of lesson modules we have created an additional program. eTutor Unplugged has been developed to give students and parents another way to access instruction over the Internet. Individual lessons may be purchased for a nominal fee and can be accessed unlimited times for one year.
For instance, in this lesson module on Figurative Language, you can see how the use of graphics and pictures enhance the information and skills being taught. The use of internet links within the Study Guide and in the Resource section provide additional information for student learning.
Lesson Modules cover 27 subjects in the four major areas of Language Arts, Math, Science and Social Studies. Subjects are recommended based on the grade level of your student. Of course you may adapt your selections based on student need.
eTutor Unplugged offers users the option of receiving credit for lessons completed. When enrolling in eTutor Virtual School for a minimum of three months, students may transfer their work for credit which is accepted in public and private schools, universities and colleges, military and when applying for jobs. eTutor Virtual School is accredited through AdvancEd and North Central Association (NCA).
Have you noticed those squares of strange symbols on buildings, signs, in stores and magazines? We are even seeing them migrating to education. Quick Response (QR) codes are used to provide information, show a website, view a picture and a host of ways yet to be discovered. QR codes are similar to bar codes, but they can hold a lot more information. Instead of requiring a bulky hand-held device to scan them, modern cell phones and mobile devices can scan them.
QR code consists of square, black dots arranged in a grid on a white background. The grid can be read by a camera or another imaging device and then interpreted. Information is extracted from the horizontal and vertical components in the image.
However, have you noticed something about all those codes you’ve been seeing? You are right! They seldom have an explanation of how to use them! So, are you wondering how?
Well, it’s actually pretty easy…but you have to have the right tools. To use QR codes conveniently you must have a smartphone or tablet computer equipped with a camera and a QR code reader/scanner application feature. Luckily, the newer smartphones and tablets available today often have an app pre-installed on them. However, if you don’t already have the reader on your device, it’s nothing a quick push of a button can’t fix. Merely visit your phone’s app store such as Android Market, Apple App Store, BlackBerry App World, etc. and download a QR code reader/scanner app. With a wealth of free QR code generation tools available online, this is a medium that requires little or no background knowledge or searching in order to find useful and helpful resources.
QR codes are used in online instructional material created by Knowledge Headquarters, Inc. for K – grade 12 students. The company’s main product is eTutor, an accredited online private school serving students throughout the world. QR codes are included in eTutor lesson modules, study guides and worksheets.
A student completing a worksheet as part of the eTutor learning program may need additional information or a skill to complete his work. Using his smart phone he scans the QR code from the worksheet and it will take him to appropriate, related information in order to successfully complete the worksheet.
Another student may be working on a history lesson module using her laptop computer. She wants to share with her friends an interesting fact she has just learned. She scans the QR code at the top of the lesson module and transports it to her smart phone.
While the eTutor program is easily accessible on laptop computers, tablets and smart phones, the use of QR codes gives students and parents an alternate way to use and view instruction. QR codes are intended to be used with portable, connected devices. Most students have them, expect to use them, and are excited by the prospect of being able to use them in instruction. Additionally, the use of mobile technology and resources that support it frees students, parents, and learning from the confines of traditional settings. Learning can happen in more authentic contexts, or at times and in places that are convenient to students.
QR codes let students be active in their learning. They provide true interactivity and engagement, which translates to more effective and efficient learning. Knowledge HQ has been at the forefront of online instruction since the late 90s. The company continues to keep abreast of the latest technology and how new innovations can improve and enhance the teaching-learning process.
The Pilgrims came across the sea,
And never thought of you and me;
And yet it’s very strange the way
We think of them Thanksgiving day.
We tell their story, old and true
Of how they sailed across the blue,
And found a new land to be free
And built their homes quite near the sea.
Every child knows well the tale
Of how they bravely turned the sail
And journeyed many a day and night,
To worship God as they thought right.
- You will receive a body. You may like it or hate it, but it will be yours for the entire period this time around.
- You will learn lessons. You are enrolled in a full-time informal school called life. Each day in this school you will have the opportunity to learn lessons. You may like the lessons or think them irrelevant and stupid.
- There are no mistakes, only lessons. Growth is the process of trial-and-error and experimentation. The “failed” experiments are as much a part of the process as the experiment that ultimately “works.”
- A lesson is repeated until learned. A lesson will be presented to you in various forms until you have learned it. When you have learned it, you can then go on to the next lesson.
- Learning lessons does not end. There is no part of life that does not contain lessons. If you are alive, there are lessons to be learned.
- There is nothing better than “here.” When your “there” has become a “here,” you will simply obtain another “there” that will again look better than “here.”
- Others are simply mirrors of you. You cannot love or hate something about another person unless it reflects to you something you love or hate about yourself.
- What you make of your life is up to you. You have all the tools and resources you need. What you make of them is up to you. The choice is yours.
- Your answers lie inside you. The answers to life’s questions lie inside you. All you have to do is look, listen and trust.
- You will forget all this.
What is the one thing you give your child that you can never replace? Time. You cannot buy it, sell it, rent it or change it. All you can do is use it!
You cannot change the quantity of time you have, but you can change the quality of your time.
- Write down the things that are most important in your life. Chances are that your family will be at the top of the list.
- Try to remember how you have spent your time during the past few days, hour by hour. Does the way you spend your time reflect your priorities? How much time was spent with your children? How important were the things that you cannot remember?
- Make a plan for how you will use your time in the week ahead. Write it down. Include time with children in your plan. Check to see how you did at the end of the week.
We do what we think is important. Deciding what we think is important can be the first step in making time count.
You remember those days: they want to do something else or just not do it at all. You want to help them make sure homework gets done, but sometimes you ask if it’s even worth the fight. It doesn’t have to turn into an argument. Whether its about homework, staying out late or doing their chores…you CAN avoid an argument with your kids.
First, Three Basic Rules About Rules:
Make sure the rules are clear. Are your expectations about what is supposed to be done, and more importantly, HOW it’s supposed to be done the same?
Make sure the rules are consistent. If homework is supposed to be done everyday before television, there are no exceptions (unless, its agreed upon ahead of time).
Check to make sure these rules are still in place and reinforced on a regular basis.
How NOT to Argue (this goes for your kids, your spouse, your family).
Some keywords to remember are:
- Validate: Acknowledge you are listening. You can do this by paraphrasing or repeating what they’ve said to you. This comes in handy when the comeback is “You’re not listening to me!” Sometimes by repeating what they’ve said first, they realize they may not have a valid argument after all.
- Deflect: Sometimes kids will purposely try to start an argument to get out of the chores or responsibilities. They may try to provoke you by ignoring you, starting an argument (how many times have you heard: “But that’s not fair!” or “So-So doesn’t have to do this”). Stay focused on what the issue is. The issue is not that you are unfair or a “slavedriver”, the issue is that the homework was supposed to be done by five o’clock. Repeat this rule (“Even if you think its unfair, the rule is no T.V. before your homework is done.” “You may have more chores than your sister, nevertheless, the rule is you must get them done.”)
- Absorb: If they still attempt provoking an argument, stay cool. Act like a sponge. Whatever is said, simply absorb it. You can do this through “Uh-huh,” “I see”, “Yes,”…but the decision stands. Do not attempt to be drawn into their provocations. If you lose control, you lose the power of the rule. Remember what the issue is. Remember it’s o.k. to become angry for both yourself and your child—you’re both only human. But do not take it personally or allow it to become a personal attack.
Sometimes parents worry that by doing this, they are not allowing their children to express themselves. You can validate their feelings by saying “I can tell you’re angry, but my decision stands.” Sometimes this can be prevented if all of the rules are expressed clearly before the situation arises. It helps if consequences are spelled out for specific actions. (“If your homework is not done by five o’clock, you will not go outside for the rest of the day.”) Some parents (and teachers) have even drawn up “contracts” with their children, spelling out the exact expectations for performance and behavior and the consequences/rewards for each. Make the child part of this progress and ask for their input on what these should be.
These are some suggestions that may help prevent arguments in the future. Many times families repeat the same arguments over and over, on an ongoing basis. While these suggestions are not guaranteed solutions, they may be a start in providing better communication with your family.
There is no such thing as a value unless there are people involved. A value is something that provides benefit or opens up the possibility of benefit for someone. Values do not hang like clouds in the air. The have to be attached to people. Values require a constant asking of questions.
- Who is going to be affected by this?
- Who is going to benefit?
- Who is going to be inconvenienced?
- What will the perceptions be?
- What are the immediate effects, both short and long term?
- Will this value be noticed, will people talk about it?
- Are there any special circumstances where the value will be different?
- Are there special people for whom this could be a value?
Every educator knows….or should know….that there is no “average” student. If there are characteristics of intelligence, discipline, laziness, energy, trouble making, or boredom, troubles at home, and so on, then an educator knows that every possible combination of these factors will be exhibited in an individual.
The trick is to recognize individuality as a source of value.
By Edward de Bono