I have been checking out blogs quite a bit lately. Since I don't get the paper here at home, and knowing the press here in the United States tends to be only one source of news I have made it a point to get my news via blogs. I think it is interesting that I can do this, and the fact that I can do it anywhere is nice too. I also frequently check a blog from a gentleman that has some of the same interests as I do about technology and education. He maintains blog with podcasts, which he creates on his drive home. Today while waiting for a class to start I quickly checked out his most recent post. He mentioned in the post digital streaming, Instantly I became intrigued. At work we have been working on creating our own streaming project and I had to pass along some general knowledge that I found while doing a little research on my own.
I am personally a huge proponent of using streaming in the classroom. It offers so many different options to students and teachers. One thing that I do feel strongly about is that companies are taking advantage of schools by selling them streaming. Schools whether they realize it or not already have all the basic infrastructures to create their own library of digital media. They have the technology available, the librarians who are experts in cataloging, curriculum experts, and usually the technology staff that can put the wheels in motion. The one thing they lack at this point is the ability to purchase media. How powerful could it be if schools worked together to achieve this. They can eliminate the middle man completely.
Streaming in the context of education can lead to a lot of positive outcomes. To often when a video is put into the VCR some students have probably already seen the movie, even if they haven't seen it in the context that the teacher hopes to create. These students may simply tune out since he has already seen this movie. Other students while watching the movie may not be able to hear what is being said. These students instead of moving to where they can hear the movie, or ask to have the volume turned up, simply doodle on their notebook. Then there is the possibility that you have a student who is engaged until they miss something and if they were watching it alone they would rewind the movie. Would the teacher be able to do this? Most of us probably wouldn't since that means that 20 or so other students would be interrupted. Streaming allows for a paradigm shift in the way that movies are viewed. Instead of simply using streaming to show the movie to the whole class now teachers could create individualized media experiences. They could either have students choose from a preselected list of movies or they could allow the students to search the catalog themselves, after some guidance on how to do this of course.
Technologies such as streaming media and other media delivered using Internet can be a powerful tool. Also within the context of the Internet students can become creators of media. More on that in the next post!
Please feel free to comment on these posts. I know that I don't post a lot, but one goal I have for this coming school year is to make at least one post a month.