Animation and Simulations - what can I say? I was a little disgusted by the dissection of a toad through the Internet. This may be because I have a phobia of frogs and toads and even looking at it made me sick. I can see however that using Animations and Simulations in the classroom would engage the students. “Explore Learning” is a website that promotes science and mathematical gizmos (animations and simulations). This technology fits in with Kearsley and Schneiderman’s Engagement Theory (1999) as the animations and simulations are specifically used to engage the students. Kearsley and Schneiderman (1999) state that Engagement theory is different from many older models of computer-based learning in which the emphasis was on individualized instruction and interactivity. Animations and Simulations allow students to explore and become involved in the activity.
Video is another excellent way to get students engaged in the lesson. I have used video before for many assessment pieces and also in the classroom. Video may be used at any part of the lesson but I think the best way to use a video within the classroom is to have students create the video themselves. I think that having the students create the video presents them with the best opportunity of fully understanding the functionality and capability of video technology.
I think both of these technology tools would be great to use within the classroom to engage the students. Again I must emphasise that they have to be used in the right way otherwise students won’t be involved in an authentic or engaging learning experience.
Kearsley, G & Schneiderman, B (1999) Engagement Theory - A framework for technology-based teaching and learning: Accessed August 4th 2009 http://home.sprynet.com/~gkearsley/engage.htm