Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Innovative use of ICT in schools

At Footscray City College, I have seen limited examples of ICT incorporated in the delivery of lessons. Teachers would use PowerPoint Presentation in their lessons as well as encourage students to perform assessment tasks using PowerPoint Presentation or using video to aide their oral assessment.

A few years ago, one computer savvy teacher used the College website for his year 9 science class to post their findings and process on certain experience. The students also use webcam to lodge their journal and process. This worked especially well in study groups because it enabled group members to work together as well as individually. If one group member was absent, the group could still continue with their process with the entries from that group member. Unfortunately, that teacher has transferred to another school.

It is understand why some schools are more technological advance than others. Limited resources and equipments have a lot to do with this. Footscray City College has four computer labs and a computer room in the library, this ratio of 100 computers to 1000 students means that not the students will be lucky to have access to a working computer once a week.

Links to educational blogs


This is a great site for teachers or people who are interested in educational issues. The site includes many links to educational blogs as well as providing educational news and analysis.


The Essential Blog provides educators with many useful links such as information on various teaching associations and events. It also equipped with teaching tools and activities. A useful site for graduate teachers.


More than 500 lessons and activities for teaching engineering content in P-12 science and math classes. Topics include oil and energy consumption, water and electricity, mass and volume, various energy sources, heat transfer, ...Need I say more?

The use of blogs in education

Like Podcast, wiki and other types of new technology, blogs can be use in classroom environment for diary entry; it also can be a useful tool to link communication between study groups within a class or other classes or even schools. If use effectively, blogs can create a learning environment that extend beyond the schoolyard.

Why should we use blogs in the classroom?

There are numerous educational benefits of blogs. Blogs are:
• Highly motivating to students, especially those who otherwise might not become participants in classrooms.
• Excellent opportunities for students to read and write.
• Effective forums for collaboration and discussion.
• Powerful tools to enable scaffolding learning or mentoring to occur.

How do we use blogs in education?

Blogs can serve at least four basic functions.

1. Classroom Management

Class blogs can serve as a portal to foster a community of learners. As they are easy to create and update efficiently, they can be used to inform students of class requirements, post handouts, notices, and homework assignments, or act as a question and answer board.

2. Collaboration

Blogs provide a space where teachers and students can work to further develop writing or other skills with the advantage of an instant audience. Teachers can offer instructional tips, and students can practice and benefit from peer review. They also make online mentoring possible. For example, a class of older students can help a class of younger students develop more confidence in their writing skills. Students can also participate in cooperative learning activities that require them to relay research findings, ideas, or suggestions.

3. Discussions

A class blog opens the opportunity for students to discuss topics outside of the classroom. With a blog, every person has an equal opportunity to share their thoughts and opinions. Students have time to be reactive to one another and reflective. Teachers can also bring together a group of knowledgeable individuals for a given unit of study for students to network and conference with on a blog.

4. Student Portfolios

Blogs present, organize, and protect student work as digital portfolios. As older entries are archived, developing skills and progress may be analyzed more conveniently. Additionally, as students realize their efforts will be published, they are typically more motivated to produce better writing. Teachers and peers may conference with a student individually on a developing work, and expert or peer mentoring advice can be easily kept for future reference.

What is a blog?

A blog which is short for weblog is a Web publishing tool that allows authors to publish text, artwork, links to other blogs or web sites. Blogs postings are often short and frequent updated. Posting are usually in form of text entries, similar to diary entry or journal. These are often include a posting date and may also include comments, photos, links,… by people who visit the site.