So for today’s portion of #12DaysofSketchnoting we have to describe Communication/Creative Communicators. This boggled my mind at first, but that happens at times, especially in the AM now that I drink half-caf coffee.
As a history teacher the first thing that popped into my head was President Reagan, due to his nickname “The Great Communicator.” Bizarre…yes, but par for what goes on inside my mind. Should I try and draw him, or an unfinished movie poster title such as “Bedtime for Bon…” with a partially drawn monkey. My drawing ability is not good enough to draw President Reagan and I was not sure if anyone would get the movie reference. The ideas were non-starters.
I had to do a hard reset and rethink how I could approach today’s topic. I decided to incorporate a blog post to explain my Sketchnote; it would be better explained in that context, than as a standalone image.
On to my Sketchnote:
I believe I can communicate well, for as non-linear as I think. I do lecture more than I should, but I try to make my classroom more of a discussion setting. While doing this, I try and relate issues to local/personal experiences, I have been known to be melodramatic, use various accents, and even act out and model situations. If nothing else, students can recall my bizarre actions, some can even recall the points I was trying to make.
Since communication is a two-way street, listening is a major component of communication. Actually, not just listening, but giving students a legitimate voice in their own educational experience. Listen to them, but put what they say to use, give them a sense of…on second thought, not even a sense, but actual ownership of their experience in your classroom.
The Sketchnote below is the mishmash of visuals bouncing around in my head as I thought about and typed this today.
Ah, two Saturday’s ago I was awake and in learning mode rather early so I jumped into a Twitter #satchat, a fantastic learning and networking opportunity each and every Saturday. The topic was based upon student listening skills and how we teach those skills.
I had to admit that I do not formally teach those skills in my class, I emphasize them throughout lessons, but do not actually formally assess student listening. As I thought more about the topic, I also realize that I need to improve upon my listening skills, in class and real world.
Often, especially in the classroom, I am multitasking as students are asking questions. This prevents me from giving my full attention to the student which is not only impolite, but it may cause miscommunication between those involved in the conversation. I am making a concerted effort to address this ASAP. Modeling skills we want students to use in our classroom is key, if we cannot meet the expectations we ask of our students, WHY should they.
Some other take aways I will implement in my classes are exit questions and peer to peer review time either at end or very beginning of my classes. This will allow students to reflect with a classmate and practice listening skills while reviewing course content. To keep this from being a full fledged chat and gossip session, I will have to float about the room and engage the students, which IS MY JOB. A quick student reply/summary of their peer to peer would allow for students to earn points for their efforts and hopefully give me insight to content with which they are comfortable or need further assistance.
I will post further as this endeavor moves forward.
In the meantime, if you get the chance and are awake by 7:30 AM on a Saturday, check out #Satchat.
Last night I sat in on a PAECT members only webinar about Sketchnoting, or visual notetaking with Sylvia Duckworth. I have read about this concept before and encouraged a number of my students to work with the concept over the last several years. I never practiced it due to a very basic level of drawing ability, my wheelhouse is writing.
A free refresher on the topic was too good to pass up, especially when presented by someone as well respected on the topic as Sylvia is. I was hoping to pick up some new ideas to pass on to my students, which I did. That being said I also gained a better understanding of of the overall concept. This came about by actually practicing or trying out the various strategies as Sylvia explained them. After the hour and a half webinar I can safely say that I am still far from a Skectchnoting expert. I can say, however that I am much more comfortable explaining the concept to others.
I also see how Sketchnoting can help me when the need arises to study. Going back to review my notes and sketching out a re-writing would benefit me the most out of the strategies discussed. I hope to have a Sketchnote to embed in this post shortly.
Here is a short video overview of the Sketchnoting concept.
This is my Sketchnote Review of the webinar.
Enlightening-The United States’ effort to explain and teach both citizens and soldiers how to handle the war effort was truly enlightening.
In the video “Cartoons Go To War”…five examples.
The article”When Dr. Seuss Went to War” states 3 supporting details.
One lingering question that has intrigued me during this lesson was Ted Geisel’s use of anti-Japanese imagery and how he adjusted after the war to become more inclusive and accepting of others.
Today one of my students said I looked like a baseball dad…I have no idea what that means or meant. When I inquired as to the meaning, the students who were sitting there whispered amongst themselves then replied, “We don’t know…like a dad who likes baseball.”
I have no idea if the comment was complimentary or not. It is dress down day, I have on jeans, my KTI Golf Shirt, tenna shoes (in my best Pittsburghese), and my $1.00 reading glasses on top of my head. No full selfie to go with the description, I thoroughly dislike the angle needed to show the entire pic, but here is part of me…
Later I overheard the term “Soccer Mom” being used by these same students. It was not directed at me, but knowing how many of these terms have both positive and negative connotations…I must expand my culturally aware vocabulary.
Until next time…
Freedoms are a tricky topic.
This post is currently under construction.
At this past February’s PETE and C in Hershey, PA, I learned more about a concept called Breakout.edu. The premise is that students or adults solves a series of puzzles and/or problems to achieve a predetermined learning goal. Breakout.edu allows for critical thinking, collaboration, and creativity.
These lessons can be either digital in nature or actual physical lock and puzzle boxes. There is a growing and strong support network for teachers online, with numerous resources, but that is a topic for another blog post.
I chose to work with a digital breakout to start, it is free and I have access to all of the necessary online resources.
This post is currently under construction.