One of my focuses this semester has been using technology to engage my students into the assessment process. I want my students to experience learning in a way that may be new or different than their previous experiences. In my Health 9 class we have just finished creating some drug awareness posters using augmented reality. This is what our class projects looked like:
We created these posters using Pixir and a free app called Aurasma. We found Aurasma to be very intuitive and easy to use.
When I visited the Calgary Science School @DMcWilliam told me they were using some augmented reality for their student projects. I recently had some time to look a little more at CSS’s Connect Blog and figured that augmented reality would work very well with the posters we were going to make in Health.
Augmented reality allowed my students to tell a story with their posters. They were able to create a two part story reflective of the choice presented by drugs. Students were intrigued and proud of the final result to the point that other students were coming into my class throughout the day to see what their peers had created. Other teachers saw this project as well and there have been so many other ideas centered around augmented reality in a very short time.
“Frustration, although quite painful at times, is a very positive and essential part of success.”
– Bo Bennett
Okay so one thing I am really trying to focus on is student frustration. Taking an inquiry type approach produces some feelings and reactions that my students do not usually relate to learning. The frustration of having to try something only to have it not work is something my students are not used to. My students are accustomed to instant solutions and are really challenged when the problem tests both their understanding and patience. Experiencing frustration and successfully working through it is a valuable lesson and I think it can really help my students fall in love with learning.
I’ve been trying to learn as much as I can in order to help my students deal with their frustration. I think the thing that has worked the best is providing my students a forum to share what they are experiencing. At the start of the year, sitting down and spending five minutes talking about the challenges certain problems presented allowed my students to see that other students had the same frustrations. As the semester has progressed we have become better at dealing with our frustration individually. My students have been honest with me about their frustration, something that has helped them get accustomed to the process of working through it. Creating a community has allowed my students to not only be vocal with their frustrations but it has also allowed me to gain their trust.
Having to deal with frustration and experience how frustration is an important part of learning has helped my students and I really look at learning from a different perspective. I am loving the challenges that inquiry presents not only for my students, but myself as well.