I used both quantitative and qualitative data in my research. For my quantitative data I used a pretest and posttest. I used the scores from the previous week's comprehension test (without the treatment) and compared them to the comprehension test to a new story (with the treatment). This helped me determine if VoiceThread was useful in helping students comprehension level increase. Even though there was a small increase it was not significant enough to show that it helped their comprehension level. For Qualitative data I used a Self-Assessment survey and observation notes. I chose to do a self assessment survey based on time it was easier than interviewing 23 students. The self assessment survey was also better than written responses based on my grade level. Students were able to circle the smiley face based on how they felt about the question. There were five questions on the survey about VoiceThread and working as a group. The questions were:
1. How did you feel about using the digital tool to retell the story?
2. How did you feel about working in a group?
3. How do you feel this helped you remember the story?
4. How do you fell you and your group did on retelling the story?
5. How would you feel about doing this again?
Students were also given a choice to write a sentence or two about why they answered the way they did. Only eight students responded with a sentence (one was not legible). This helped me determine if students enjoyed the using the tool and working in groups, and how it affects their intrinsic motivation. Question number 5 showed that almost half of the students did not enjoy using the digital tool. I also took observations and noticed that one group did not like working together and this showed their disinterest in the project.
I cannot believe the first semester is coming to a close. I was really nervous about going back to school and a little skeptic about if I will learn anything new. Well no reason for either. I really enjoyed the first semester, even though it was stressful. I was able to play with new "toys" and expand my learning and my students learning. One of the tools that I used in this class I ended up using in my research project. Even though it did not work out as smoothly as I expected I still enjoyed trying something new with my students. Another tool I enjoyed trying out was Prezi. I have seen presenters use Prezi before but I have never created one myself. I feel this is something that I could use over and over again. Not only in my classroom, but in meetings too. Edutopia was another eye opener for me. I found so many videos about 21st century learning and teaching that just had me in awe. One thing I really enjoyed about this class was learning about what is 21st century learning. I have really taken a step back and challenged myself to let the students guide my teaching and have students work collaboratively. I was very comfortable with technology in the classroom and on my own, but I had no idea all of the tools that were out there. Also, creating a Screen cast for the last project had me searching through all of the Google Chrome "add ons." I am looking forward to learning about new tools for younger kids. Even though I loved using the tools myself I would love to see a little more geared towards kindergarten through third grade. Thank you all for a wonderful first trimester! I'm looking forward to growing even more this year!
Flipped teaching seems like a great idea. Having students front load at home before they even come to school so they can apply the learning and work on a project in class sounds ideal. I worry about the students who do not have access to technology. I know they said they can watch it at school, but doesn’t that single them out? This is something that has kept me from pushing more technology use in my homework assignments. I would like to start having students watch videos so they are being introduced to the lesson even before they come to class. And the students who miss class that day would not be left behind because they will have access to the teaching online. I think I need to get over the idea that students will not be able to access it, and jump in. I have learned that my students work better and are more interested when they are working collaboratively or working with technology. In one of the books about CBL it mentions that students put more time and energy into their work and teachers had more time to communicate problems and work together. This is something that I think is interesting. When students are not being lectured to and are putting their efforts into solving real world problems they try harder. I think also CBL helps students develop these 21st century skills that we have been learning about all trimester. Within my class we do Service learning projects and we put students to work to help raise money for the Suisun Wildlife Center. I feel I can use the CBL model within our project. I would like to research more ideas of CBL for lower elementary students. It seems this would work great with secondary and upper elementary.
The first article I found titled Building 21st Century literacies through digital animated storytelling, Lisa Gjedde did a study using digital storytelling with 7th and 8th grade students. One thing this article offered is that students were able to be more creative given the freedom of using the digital storytelling tool. They were also more engaged and on task using the tool. This informed my study because it shows that using digital tools and working in collaborative groups is more engaging to learners. The second article I found was Elva Duenez and Irene L. Chen's article called Greening School Curriculum with Technology: A Case Study. In this study I read that using technology in the classroom is only beneficial to the students if teachers are well trained in the technology. It also talks about how using technology is good for the environment because you are not using as much paper. This relates to my question because students will be using technology and reading how it is important to be trained in the tools that you will be using helps me to prepare my study. The last article I found by Shahrzad Vafa, Rita Richardson, and Charlene Murphree (2017) called Integrating Technology and Literacy: Creating an Interactive Storytelling Experience with Augmented Reality discussed how students felt a strong sense of pride in their work because they were given the freedom to be creative. I felt this helps my study because even though my students will not be creating a new story they still can be creative on how they retell the story that we read. I am hoping that this gives them intrinsic motivation to work hard on the project.
Gjedde, L. (2016). Building 21st. Century literacies through digital animated storytelling. In
Proceedings of E-Learn: World Conference on E-Learning in Corporate, Government, Healthcare, and Higher Education 2016 (pp. 163-166). Chesapeake, VA: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE).
Duenez, E. & Chen, I.L. (2017). Greening School Curriculum with Technology: A Case Inquiry.
In P. Resta & S. Smith (Eds.), Proceedings of Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference (pp. 835-839). Austin, TX, United States: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE). Retrieved from https://0-www.learntechlib.org.library.touro.edu/p/177360/.
Vafa, S.(., Richardson, R. & Murphree, C. (2017). Integrating Technology and Literacy: Creating an
Interactive Storytelling Experience with Augmented Reality. In J. Johnston (Ed.), Proceedings of EdMedia 2017 (pp. 1286-1291). Washington, DC: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE). Retrieved from https://0-www.learntechlib.org.library.touro.edu/p/178448/.
The videos were full of great information. Creativity is very hard to teach. Students need to be creative. In a couple of the videos it mentions that students need to fail and learn from their failures. If we let students fail they are actually learning to be creative because they are forced to try something new. Using technology is a way to spark creativity and curiosity.
Here are my thoughts on the videos:
For my study, my driving question is: Does using digital storytelling impact student achievement in reading? One seminal person researching in the area of my driving question is Joe Lambert. Joe Lambert founded The Center for Digital Storytelling in the 1990s. When he started he said he wanted to make expression on video the "typing" of the 21st century. He goes around the world teaching Digital Storytelling. Lambert feels that the world is starting to see the importance of creativity and digital storytelling is part of that. He believes that people should be telling the story of their lives to make them a complete person. Another person is Daniel Meadows. He was an English photographer and teacher. He turned his photos into digital stories. He taught a class called "Digital Storytelling and Photography." He has also lectured widely about digital storytelling. Both of these men are associated with the website: http://digitalstorytelling.coe.uh.edu/index.cfm. On their website they give example stories of Digital Storytelling, promote digital storytelling software, and give a step by step instructions on how to create digital stories. According to the website, Samantha Morra came up with these eight steps to create a digital story:
I feel these steps work with any program and give a good guide to digital storytelling. I will use these steps in my work with my driving question. This website gives a lot of good information especially for teachers who are interested in starting digital stories with their students. My students will be retelling a story using digital storytelling.
“What the best and wisest parent wants for his own child, that must we want for all children in the community. Any other ideal for our schools is narrow and unlovely; acted upon, it destroys our democracy”
Our educational system should be nothing but the best for the students. If it is not the highest quality then students are not going to be ready as an adult and might not contribute to society. Darling-Hammond spells out a great sample of how the educational system could change. She is looking at it to help the students. The students should be the focus of any educational program. If we are not teaching to our students needs then we are not helping the students learn. The state and federal governments need to set up grants and other ways to fund educational programs, including teacher and administrator professional development. If these things could be in place teachers would have a better platform for teaching the 21st century learners. We need to teach students how to think, everything is in the palm of their hands (they can just Google it). But we want students to be thinkers. We want to be able to teach them to ask questions and think outside of the box. As teachers we need to know how to teach beyond the basics. If we followed Darling-Hammond's plan we possible reach this goal of better educating our students to prepare them for the future.
According to the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) reading scores have not changed in fourth grade in 2015 compared to the 2013 scores. As opposed to the 8th grade scores which was two points lower in 2015 compared to 2013 scores (https://www.nationsreportcard.gov/reading_math_2015/#reading?grade=4). The 2017 CAASPP (California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress) English Language Arts results show that 43.90% of third graders met or exceeded the standard. This percentage is higher compared to the 38% of third graders who met or exceeded the standard in 2015. The overall percentage for grades 3rd-11th also increased from 44% in 2015 to 48% in 2017. But decreased from 49% to 48.56% from 2016 to 2017 (https://www.cde.ca.gov/nr/ne/yr17/yr17rel67a.asp).
Dr. Regina Royer and Dr. Patricia O. Richards did a study that "examines the effect that creating a digital story has on teachers' understanding of how digital storytelling can be used to increase reading comprehension" (Royer, Richards 2007). Their study concluded that digital story telling has uses in all subject areas and with certain guidelines can help improve reading skills. In order to get this success teachers have to create their own digital story. After reading this article, I will use the guidelines they listed, including using graphic organizers, and create my own digital story in order to see the potential of the lesson.
In other research, Therese Kulla-Abbott (2006) conducted a qualitative study to answer the question "How does creating a 'digital story' impact children's literacy skills?" The study was in three parts. First, they figured out the technological tools they were going to use along with developing a plan. Next, the students created stories based on personal narratives to "develop voice and include emotion" (Kulla-Abbott, 2006). Lastly, after they mastered the first two steps, they created another digital story with a different genre. By the end they realized students were able to "recognize the importance of organization, story, voice, emotion, pacing, economy of words, and value of re-writing while developing presentation skills" (Kulla-Abbott, 2006). Even though these students were older than mine, I feel my students can still develop story structure by using digital stories to retell our selection.
In a third research study, Cecilia Candreva (2011) investigated the effect of digital literacy on kindergarten students' engagement. Students learned how to use the digital tools and collaborated with other students. They also ended up planning out their stories. Candreva (2011) also concluded that students who had fine motor difficulties and English Learners were more engaged in the learning. This is insightful to see that the students were not limited by their language. I am curious to see how this will be with my English Learners.
The district in which I will be doing my research has been pushing technology for the last couple of years. Two years ago we received Chromebooks for each student (1:1 devices). The district has also been pushing for technology training. Each school now has a "Technology Specialist" to help with training staff and trouble shooting. At the school, we have a lot of access to technology. Within the classroom we have document cameras, Epson projectors, Smartboard Software, and 1:1 devices for our students. My principal is able to send some of the staff to CUE (Computer Using Educators) conferences. This helps us see more uses of the technology that we currently have. I feel I have not been utilizing the technology to its fullest. My students are not always interested in the stories that we are required to use within the curriculum and sometimes (especially the nonfiction) the students have trouble retelling the important details of the stories. I realized my students love using the computers and I thought by combing the story and digital storytelling maybe there will be more of an interest in the learning.
When I first started teaching I never thought anything about technology. I student taught in 2 schools that had a computer lab, document cameras, and a TV or projector. I have only been teaching six years and the changes of technology within the classroom is remarkable. Now, each one of my students has their own Chromebook, some classrooms are going paperless, and whiteboards are interactive. You would think that's enough, but now we are competing with other countries for jobs and our students are not thinking critically enough. How can we get students ready for jobs that do not even exist yet?
After reviewing the IRB I have to admit I am pretty overwhelmed. I understand the importance of protecting "human subjects" but there is a lot to remember. I am still trying to figure out my driving question. I go back and forth about either "technology improving student achievement in reading" OR "does building growth mind set in students improve student achievement?" I have a passion in technology and that's why I'm leaning towards that BUT I'm having trouble figuring out how to measure that. So to the question "How would you measure them?".... I don't know. As of right now I am looking at using their current comprehension scores vs. teaching them how to use digital story telling websites/apps and seeing if there is a growth in their scores. I found this website to help me with different websites (https://elearningindustry.com/18-free-digital-storytelling-tools-for-teachers-and-students ) to try out with my students. I am excited to introduce my students to digital storytelling and I am lucky enough to have 2 classes to do this with. My partner teaches 2nd grade also and her and I do a lot of switching. I will be using her class as well as mine to do my research. Now, as I start my research, I just need to make sure I am following the IRB rules and regulations to help protect the subjects involved in my research.