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Hearing Voices

Page history last edited by Bill 16 years ago

Hearing Voices

One of the most valuable elements of the Digitally Speaking website can be found here, on the Hearing Voices page.  While it may sound comical, Bill Ferriter has started to record short segments of his presentations addressing specific questions that are asked frequently.  Those segments---as well as student interviews that Ferriter has collected over time---can be found posted below. 



Are Teachers Resistant?



A common mistake that many critics of teachers make is assuming that they are just plain resistant to new instructional strategies.  In this clip, Ferriter explains that resistance doesn't accurately describe the attitude that most teachers hold towards technology.



Blogs as Empowerment



To students, one of the most exciting things about digital conversations is the ability to be the intellectual equal of anyone---including adults.  Participants in digital conversations are not judged by who they are.  Instead, they're judged only by the quality of their ideas.  In this clip, two middle schoolers explain why that "digital equality" is motivating. 



Blogs v. Wikis



Two of the most common Web 2.0 tools used by teachers are Blogs and Wikis.  In this clip, Ferriter explains the different role that blogs and wikis play in his classroom and one of his students describes his favorite tool. 



Blogs as Writing Feedback



Few teachers would disagree with the idea that it is important for young writers to receive regular feedback about their writing.  In this clip, one of Ferriter's students explains why he greatly values writing for blogs because of the instant feedback provided by other readers. 



Digital Relationships are Real Relationships



One of the biggest challenges to seeing Web 2.0 tools embedded in classroom work is the skepticism shown by adults towards digital relationships.  We just don't seem to value social interactions unless they are face-to-face.  For the students in this clip, however, digital relationships are equally valuable and equally real. 



Digital Shorthand Language



Teachers are often critical of digital learning experiences, believing that students are learning poor grammar and writing habits from extensive instant messaging and emailing.  In this interesting clip, however, several middle school students demonstrate an understanding of the fact that different forums and audiences require different styles of writing.



Digital Tools and Poverty



Another incredibly common question asked by teachers at digital presentations is whether or not blogs and wikis can play an active part in communities where Internet access is not yet universal beyond the school building.  Here's Ferriter's response to that question.



Web 2.0 Tools and Journaling



An interesting rite of passage for many middle schoolers is keeping a journal.  Recording personal thoughts and emotions during the turbulent pre-teen years is incredibly common---But journaling is changing!  Listen to these middle schoolers explain how digital tools have changed journaling. 



Losing Technology



So what happens to students that move from a tech-driven world into a techless classroom?  Listen to these students explain their reactions to working in a world without technology. 



Monitoring Content



Many teachers are afraid of using Web 2.0 tools in the classroom because they are intimidated by the thought of monitoring the content that their students are creating.  Ferriter addresses the issue of monitoring content for all of his classroom projects in this clip. 



Motivation and Access

Motivation and Access.mp3


One of the more interesting exchanges in any digital presentation that Ferriter has given came when Stephen---an outspoken twelve year old---decided to tell a teacher that if her students weren't motivated, that it was obviously her fault!  Interested in hearing how that conversation shook out?  Then, check out this clip!



Technology and Training



One of the greatest fears that teachers have is that they might not have the skills to introduce technology to their students.  Ferriter explains in this clip that technology shouldn't be intimidating to teachers because their students are pros!



Testing and Technology



It's impossible to argue that standardized testing hasn't had profound impacts on the teaching and learning that happens in our schools.  In this clip, Ferriter explains how testing pressures are hindering his willingness to introduce digital tools to his students----and makes a confession:  His kids have the lowest test scores on his hallway. 



Time, Training and Documentation



Sometimes it's amazing to consider the number of barriers that prevent teachers from introducing digital tools into their instruction.  In this clip, Ferriter tackles three of the most common barriers:  Time, training and the inability to document the positive impact that digital tools have on student achievement. 



Why Digital Matters



Did you ever wonder exactly why digital projects are so motivating to students?  Then listen to this clip, where two middle schoolers explain why they are willing to do anything if it's presented digitally. 




Wiki Vandalism



Because wikis allow users to make edits at any time and without restriction, many teachers are afraid of wiki vandalism----Intentional destruction of content by users with malicious intent.  While wiki vandalism is a definite possibility, in this clip, Ferriter explains that it is less of a risk than you might think.



Wikis Give Audience



While many people recognize that blogs can provide students with an audience for their writing, wikis offer some of the same advantages.  Listen to Stephen---a middle schooler---describe how wikis have provided him with a wide audience for his writing. 



The Writing Forumla



Ferriter is incredibly proud of the digital opportunities that he gives his students to write.  He finds that his kids are writing far more than ever before---which is amazing, considering that none of the digital work that his students do are graded at all!  Unfortunately, this writing doesn't follow the formula that students must master in order to pass their state writing exam.  Listen to his comments about that challenging issue that you're likely to face too!










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