SESSION 2: THE CLASSROOM PRODUCTIVITY CENTER Introduction Software Activities Web Activities Create Your Productivity Center Look Ahead

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1 Introduction Good teachers are always thinking about how they can make their classrooms a little better. When they try something new, they re always thinking about how to refine it, experiment with it, revise it, or try a different angle. They re always thinking about how they can make learning more meaningful to students and how to get students actively involved in learning. I think of computers as a tool to help them achieve this goal. Richard Bruno Overview In Session 1 of this course, you examined basic ways to implement a learning center in your classroom and reflected upon your vision for student use of your classroom computer. In Session 2, you will learn about the types of activities students can work on in a classroom productivity center and then plan and design a lesson to use in your classroom. Objectives By the end of this session, you will be able to: Explain and discuss how the use of technology in the classroom affects classroom management, use of instructional time, and student social behaviors. Identify software resources you have available for student use that can be used in a productivity center. Select and describe (in the discussion forum) a Web site that can be used by students in a classroom productivity center. Plan and design an activity for a classroom productivity center. If you haven t done so already, download and print the Assignment Checklist to keep track of your assignments for this course. Learning Center Categories The objective in setting up a learning station is to create an experience where individual and shared learning are taking place, based upon the learning needs of your students. As you discussed in Session 1, the management and organization of a computer learning station can lead to some challenging tasks for the classroom teacher. To help you with these tasks, you need to think about how to organize the activities at your center, whether by the genre of the software and Web resources, the goals of the activities, or even the curriculum subject areas to which your activities will relate. The articles you read in Session 1 talked about using the computer for enrichment, remediation, additional practice, and independent learning. They then went on to provide examples in lessons such as skill practice, inquiry questions, the writing process, and assessment. In this course, you will explore and develop activities for three types of centers: The Productivity Center, The Research Center, and The Enrichment Center. Utilizing the computer at each one of these types of centers can help you create highly

2 motivating environments with genuine learning experiences. Imagine the excitement in your classroom as students publish their own stories, reports, and creations! As you begin to think about developing activities for each one of these types of centers, think about your curriculum and the kinds of goals you have for your students.

3 Software Activities Using Software Tools Read about various activities in a productivity center. In the additional resources section at the bottom of this page, you will find information on obtaining free trial software and WalkThroughs. Think about the software resources available to you. Do you have access to any of the titles listed? When a computer is placed in a productivity center, students can use a variety of software tools and Web resources in order to create, compose, and develop. In the following video, "Learning About Communities, "one teacher describes how a map-making software program enhances her Social Studies curriculum. Although you see students using the computers in a lab setting, while you watch the video, think about how this same project could be used in a classroom containing a productivity center. Next, in the video The Student Productivity Center, listen to two teachers describe the kinds of lessons and activities they have their students use the computers for. Does your Software Inventory contain any types of software tools that could be used in the activities these teachers have described? Based on the articles you read in Session 1 and the videos you just viewed, go to the discussion forum to discuss the following quote with your online colleagues: Using the computer center throughout the day can be a fruitful way of enhancing classroom management, making use of instructional time and assisting positive social behaviors. Wilson, Jones, and Hail, 2003 Do your agree or disagree with this statement? Why? Use examples from the article or the videos to support your response. As you complete the rest of the assignments for this session, you should return to the discussion forum at least two or three times to continue this discussion. Refer to the discussion rubric to review some expectations for participating in online discussions in this course. Software Inventory Review Assignment Return to your Software Inventory form. Mark the software you could use in a Productivity Center, and then add any notes to describe these activities. Refer to the Software Inventory Assessment Rubric for expectations in completing this form.

4 Additional Resources (not required) Look through the following list of WalkThroughs that contain step-by-step directions for learning how to use each software application. Do you have any of these titles on your classroom computer? Try the ones you would like to learn more about. Even if you don't own these titles, information on where to receive free trial software is available for some. AppleWorks Slideshow WalkThrough (pdf) - Create a slideshow presentation. Graph Master Walkthroughs Create a graph containing collected data (pdf). Analyze data more in depth (pdf). For a free sample, click Product Demos. Inspiration WalkThrough (pdf) Create a visual K-W-L (What We Know, What We Want to Know, and What We ve Learned) web. To download free trial software, visit Inspiration Free Trial. Microsoft PowerPoint WalkThrough (pdf) Create a slide show presentation. QuizStar WalkThrough (pdf) Create a sample quiz on technology and student assessment. This is a free resource, hosted by HPRTEC and funded by the US Dept. of Ed. The WalkThrough provides a link to QuizStar. TimeLiner WalkThrough (pdf) Create a time line of the school year calendar and then view it as a slideshow. For a free sample, click Product Demos. Web Worksheet Wizard WalkThrough (pdf). Create a Web worksheet on exploring technology resources. This is a free resource, hosted by HPRTEC and funded by the US Dept. of Ed. The WalkThrough provides a link to Web Worksheet Wizard. Also, read the article "Magical Student Mentors" by Susan A. Silverman, on learning to utilize a great resource other students to assist your students in their use of the computer.

5 Web Activities Productivity Web Sites for Students There are lots of great Web sites for students to use in a learning center. By the end of this course, you will have a list of Web resources to refer to when developing your own center. Think about a Web site that you know of that could be used at a productivity center. If you cannot think of a Web site, select one of the resources provided in the articles from Session 1. Review the Web site and think about how you would have students use this resource. How can this Web site help to improve student learning and increase productivity? Go to the discussion forum titled "Productivity Web Sites" and post a message. Write the name of the Web site in the message subject heading. In the message content area, include the URL and then write a brief summary of how you have used the Web site or how you envision using the site at a learning center. Select a Web site posted by another learner, review the Web site, and comment upon it. Refer to the discussion rubric to review some expectations for participating in online discussions in this course.

6 Create Your Productivity Center Plan and Design a Lesson Assignment Plan and design a lesson in which students use the classroom computer as a productivity center. Think about the following when designing your lesson: What is the activity? What are the goals and objectives of the activity? How will the activity be structured? What opportunities for shared learning and collaboration does the activity provide? How is this activity related to your curriculum? What software and/or Web sites will you be using? What are the management issues? How many students will be working at the computer at one time? What additional materials and resources will need to be provided? What types of modifications will you need to make for the students in your classroom? Use the lesson plan template as a guide for creating your lesson plan. Then, go to the discussion forum to share your plan with other learners. After posting your lesson plan, provide feedback for two learners on their lesson plans. Try to provide feedback for individuals who have not yet received feedback from other learners. Refer to the Creating an Activity for the Classroom Learning Station Rubric and peer review guidelines to review the expectations for completing this activity. Use the rubric as a guide for creating your lesson plan and completing your peer review. Post your plan in the discussion forum for other learners to see and review. Note: During Sessions 2, 3, and 4, you will be planning and designing lessons for your classroom learning station. During Session 5, you will choose one of the lessons and implement it in your classroom. Make sure that you plan ahead so that you can implement this lesson during Session 5. Citation Bruno, R. from Dockterman, D. A. (2002). Weaving Technology Into Your Teaching. Watertown, MA: Tom Snyder Productions, Inc. Reference

7 Wilson, C. K., Jones, S. L., & Hail, J. M. (2003). "Independent Study: How to Transform One Classroom Computer into a Powerful Learning Tool, Part 3." Learning & Learning with Technology, 31 (3).

8 Look Remember that you will need to complete a final project in Session 6. Now is a good time to start thinking about ideas you might want to consider for this project. In Sessions 3 and 4, you will again be asked to plan learning center activities for your classroom. Again, addressing state and content standards will be important to your plan. During Session 5, you will be asked to implement one of your lessons it in your classroom. Make sure that you plan ahead for this and set time aside in your daily classroom schedule for students to use the classroom learning station. In Session 3 of this course, we will deal extensively with how to set up a classroom research center. 2004, PBS. All rights reserved.

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