A Plan to Stimulate Discussions in Bible Study

After attending several bible studies where the interaction between members was scant, I had an urge to ask the pastor to see if we could make some minor modifications. Fortunately he thought the idea was good.  I created a plan for improving the discussion in Google Docs consisting of two drafts. Draft one was a comparative study to see what another group was doing. Draft two was a comparison of what was currently occurring and the proposed plan. Click the links below to view the documents in Google.

Draft #1 Bible Study Discussion

Draft #2 Bible Study Discussion

 

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Course Reorganization Idea in D2L

After reviewing the organization of the D2L Instructor Courses, an alternative design may prove to be beneficial. Instead of having three separate courses, one course divided into the major components Content, Grades, Quizzes, etc. could be used. Each topic would be like a multi-level course with conditions in-place to unlock higher level modules as learners move through the materials. At specific benchmarks, badges would be awarded and a certificate when they complete all components for that particular topic area. This will allow learners to direct their own learning based on their needs. For example if an instructor plans to use Discussions as a primary method for interactions and assessment, he or she may want to develop expertise with this tool and skip Quizzes entirely

This could be tested with one topic such as Content. A design document would be created to clarify the knowledge and skills, organize the modules, determine where to place the conditions and the type of badges to award.

Each module would also serve as a self-containing unit that can be used independently. This will allow custom courses to be created using modules as building blocks for specific individuals or groups after assessing their experience with D2L and determining their wants.

Click here to view the design document draft of the current organization of the modules on content.

Interactive Video Platforms

Interactive video platform refers synchronous lessons as mentioned in the article from eLearning Industries. They do have advantages as mentioned in the article and from my experience teaching online for four years but they put time constraints on the learner. I felt that my asynchronous graduate courses at Boise State provided plenty of interactions. This was usually done once a week through a discussion board but with many opportunities to view classmates’ comments and share thoughts. After participating for about a month you do get a sense of what that person is like. Sometimes VoiceThread was used instead of a dicussion board and I find this be an effective to personalize the discussion because it allows users to integrate images, audio, and video to communicate ideas.

If online learning is to occur on a global scale I don’t see how live interactions can support people living in different time zones. I see the future being based around asynchronous learning environments that includes different methods of interactions and a community established in their local area where they’ll have opportunities to connect with like-minded people in-person or through live video platforms, for example like an association.

 

Edtech 522 Module 3 Reflection

This week we learned about the symbiotic relationship in a community of inquiry and studied how online teaching tools can be used to support each of the roles within. Community of inquiry states that learning is achieved through a combination of instructor, social, and cognitive presence. The activities and interactions are set up to develop problem-based learning and critical thinking. To look at it from an instructional design perspective the module is a good example of effective learning in an asynchronous environment achieved through the way the module was organized and the application of community of inquiry. The module consisted of the following:

  1. Description of the topics to study and objectives to achieve. It included a YouTube video to introduce one of the topics. The video was a good way to add variation to a predominantly textual-based content.
  2. Reading content: chapters in the course textbook and supplemental journals that focused on online teaching tools. The selection was well thought out. The textbook provided an explanation on the contributing parts of community of inquiry and a chapter that explained using tools to facilitate the process. Journals provided additional examples of how tools were used in different learning situations, which could be further analyzed through the perspective of community of inquiry.
  3. Online tool presentation assignment to research a teaching tool and evaluate how well it could satisfy the community of inquiry and a sample lesson using the tool. The activity was interesting and effective. Each member could self-direct and choose a tool to learn based on preference and relevance. The activity added a social element by reviewing and commenting on each other’s works through VT. In essence we collaborated on the larger topic of online teaching tools but it felt like we were working on individual projects.
  4. Blogging to reflect on topics in a meaningful way.

I thought that using VoiceThread was an effective way to add variation to the discussion board. In the first two weeks, communication was done using text, but VT allowed users to add different forms of media to express their ideas. It added a personal connection, which is particularly beneficial for students studying at a distance. Both have advantages and disadvantages. I would say a discussion board is more efficient in having students interact, provide rich details, and develop high level of thinking.  VT provides a more pleasing presentation by stimulating the audio and visual channels, but may require more training and time to prepare in utilizing the other forms of media.

An experiment performed by the course professor and colleague talked about using a smartphone and Twitter to do microblogging. Students captured graphic design examples relative to their geographic locations and collaboratively critiqued their examples with classmates. The major of role of the instructor was to organize the activity and provide support when it was needed. The experiment brought up the idea of using mobile devices in an authentic context outside of class. The experiment showed that the power of mobile technology can have a strong influence in how learning is done. I feel that this is dependent on specific careers or activities that places emphasis on learning on the road. From a personal standpoint, I have used this method of learning when I took a trip a new area to use the map and learn about destination places and in general every day activities not related to work. In general when I consider myself to do serious type of learning, I prefer to be in one location, preferably my home using a laptop. It allows me to do deeper level of thinking due to less distractions. Also it’s more convenient to work on multiple applications and type ideas using a regular size keyboard mostly due to the nature of the job. I see the internet as the authentic environment in the future where people from different locations tap into it. There are advantages to contextualized learning and learning outside of class but some of those situations don’t require mobile technology. I see mobile technology primarily as a communication tool and organizer to collect bite size information.

Reference:

Hsu, Y.C & Ching, Y.H. (2012). Mobile Microblogging: Using Twitter and Mobile Devices in an Online Course to Promote Learning in Authentic Contexts. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 13(4).

Instruction: Marine Life Conservation Using Art

fish-bite-fish

Overview: The purpose of this lesson is to help students raise awareness about marine life conservation using art.

Objectives: In the lesson students will collect trash, discuss important themes in marine life conservation, utilize creativity, and techniques in art to create an art project.

Part 1

Introduce the topic using a video, images, or relevant reading passage. Stimulate a discussion with students to share thoughts on some of the central issues. Have students think outside the video and think of other issues relevant to marine conservation in the local area. Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YGBpHYLNtRA

Part 2

Explain to students the purpose of the project (protecting the environment and using debris in a positive manner). Students will take a trip to a local area to collect trash. Note: Equipment that they might need are rubber gloves, a bag or bucket; may also need to consider methods for cleanliness and disinfection.

Part 3

Introduce the word theme and explain what it means. Remind students of the video and discussion, and have them think about what some of the themes might be. Demonstrate examples of artwork created from trash. Consider the theme and critically analyze the work. Give students an assignment either in class or for homework, and have them select an artwork and critically analyze it. Provide a rubric for reference. Have them critique each other’s work.

rubbish-rainbow

Part 4

Students are ready to create their own project! Provide supplemental tools which would help with the process.

Resources:
Environmental education in Hawaii:
http://www.wildhawaii.org/education.html

Samples artwork: Google search: ocean trash into art

SREB online course checklist:
http://publications.sreb.org/2006/06T06_Checklist_for_Evaluating-Online-Courses.pdf

 

Instruction: Distinguishing Similar Sentences

Instruction to help second language learners understand the subtle differences between similar sentences. It’s a skill that students need to master in TOEFL reading passages.

Objective: Students will analyze the highlighted sentence, the choices of similar sentences, and choose the one with the same meaning.  Students will look at each sentence and simplify and identify the key messages and their relationship within the sentence and make notes to record their work. After analyzing all sentences students will choose the correct answer.

Environment: 1:1 online synchronous

Student: First year female university student; second language learner. The student uses the course to develop academic reading skills, not to take a TOEFL test. The student takes a separate English course in the university.

Book: TOEFL iBT Reading: High Intermediate, Publisher: LinguaForum

Step 1: Warm-up discussion: Agree or disagree with following statements.
Thoughts are impossible without language.
Thoughts were influenced by language.

Step 2: Have the student look at the highlighted sentence and do the following: extract the core idea in each part of the sentence and look at the connecting words. Jot these as notes. The student should look at the answer choices and repeat the process.

Highlighted Sentence: Whereas earlier linguists had claimed that thoughts are impossible without language and therefore controlled by language, Sapir and Whorf claimed that thoughts were merely influenced by language.

Example notes:
Simplified 1st part: linguist said no language, no thoughts
Simplified 2nd part: Sapir and Whorf said: you can have thoughts and they are influenced by language
Connecting word: Whereas

Answer choices simplified notes:

  1. linguist said thoughts impossible without language, S and W said they were not influenced by that idea
  2. S and W said language affects thoughts, they felt language and thinking impossible
  3. lingugist said thoughts and language not connected, SW the connection was not influential
  4. L said can have thoughts if you have language, SW said language helps to make thoughts

Step 3: After analyzing have students choose the correct answer. If the answer is correct continue to the next problem. If the answer is not correct, examine and explain where the mistake occurred. The correct choice is #4.

Supplemental Assessment: Have students write a reflection about the activity to get their personal thoughts. In particular students should think about the problems where mistakes occurred and explain what might have led to the mistake. Because these are second language learners, it may be more effective to have them write in their native language if the goal is to better understand the specifics of the problem. This can then be used as data to analyze and categorize to be used for developing future lessons.

BBQ Chx Sandwich Needs Analysis

Busan City Park has an international festival every May, which highlights performances, crafts, and foods from different countries. The smells caught my attention, but unfortunately the tastes didn’t match the smell. But it did give people an opportunity to sample foods from other countries. One tent represented America, and it was also a disappointment in what they offered. They had cheap hot dogs and hamburgers, which didn’t make sense because Korea already has many hamburger and hot dog franchises with products better than what was offered at the festival. Something fresh and different that represented America seemed to be more appropriate. I thought that if I was here next year I would put in an application to participate as a vendor.

The original idea that I had was a was a steak and cheese sandwich, but instead opted for a BBQ pork or chicken sandwich for several reasons. The first reason was price. I’ve lived in Korea for ten years and beef has always been expensive compared to pork and chicken. In addition, a good steak and cheese requires ribeye meat which would further drive up costs. Pork and chicken is not only cheaper, but the taste is familiar to Korean people. Throughout Korea there are many choices in fried chicken and BBQ restaurants. Thus a BBQ pork or chicken sandwich would be an easy transition. The main adjustment would be the unfamiliar spices and sauces, which could negatively affect its appeal. Pho (Vietnamese noodle soup) in Korea has this problem. The characteristics of the soup doesn’t match Korean people’s taste, and so these restaurants are not particularly popular. An American BBQ sandwich may face a similar rejection. (Note: The preparation would include making the sauce from scratch.) For this reason I wanted to do an evaluation to clarify if a market would support the product. If results were positive, it would then be worthwhile to continue this venture. To make the determination I needed answers to the following questions:

  • Is the BBQ sandwich agreeable to Korean people’s tastes?
  • What are some tips for improving the taste?
  • Would they be willing buy the sandwich at a fair and reasonable price?
  • What would be a fair and reasonable price?
  • What is the average age?
  • What is the gender distribution?

This process used to create the sandwich so that it could be tested for feedback was borrowed from websites that specialized in restaurant and food service. The first stage was to conceptualize the menu item. Second was to refine it and have it taste tested by a select number of individuals. In the third stage the sandwich would be further revised until it was ready to be reviewed by people using a survey. The survey was created using an online application accessible by a mobile device and using the link. https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/FYQVVK5

Data collected from the survey would most likely be from people that I know.  An article on statistics recommended a sample size of least 100 to get data that’s useful and accurate. I will probably skip this because of lack of time and resources such as costs for ingredients, equipment, and preparation times. If collecting data was needed to do a formal report, it would then make sense to use the festival as the venue to collect data. There would be many people from different parts of the city converging in one location, a similar reason as to why Orlando is coveted location for restaurant companies to do tests for product development.

References and notes:
http://wornick.com/knowledge/what-consumers-want/
Site talked about needs of consumers in reference to food: taste, freshness, nutrition, and value.

http://www.fastcasual.com/articles/menu-product-development-takes-patience-collaboration/
Article provides additional insight on development process of introducing a new menu item. It’s important to use systematic process; consumer feedback; are they willing buy product

http://www.theretailingmanagement.com/?p=1038
Explains how corporate introduces a new menu item: ideas start in the kitchen; either at corporate office or from franchise owner; sometimes they invite customers to share recipe ideas

http://ctb.ku.edu/en/table-of-contents/assessment/assessing-community-needs-and-resources/conducting-needs-assessment-surveys/main
Overview of a needs assessments:

Boulmetis, J & Dutwin, P. (2011). The ABCs of Evaluation: Timeless Techniques for Program and Project Managers. : Jossey-Bass.