The second example of distributed cognition that I have witnessed at Gesu, is during their reading time. Technology is used in two ways during reading time. First, it is used for students who struggle in reading and are allowed to use their Lenovo laptops to access the book they are currently reading. Students can search a book and use a program that allows them to follow along in their book, while also hearing the book read aloud to them. The benefit of using technology in this way, is from the program that actually lets the student see what word is being read due to it being highlighted as it is said.
Second, if students complete their required work during reading time, and still have time left over before the next subject starts, they are allowed to read quietly or log on to Spelling City. This website is a great tool for teachers because they have the ability to put the spelling words for the week on this program, and then hand select the games from the site that will be available to students when they log on. In addition, Ms. Barrett can assign activities for homework to complete on Spelling City, and then view the activity and success of each student. Martin states, “The feedback can also be used by a third party, such as a teacher, to assess a student’s progress” (95).
The program used to assist struggling readers and Spelling City, are both examples of effects with technology because students’ intellectual performance is being enhanced through both of these. However, I believe the progress being made through Spelling City is more notable. Spelling City is an example of effects with technology because as students play the games available to them, they are practicing their spelling words for the week. They are slowing gaining a deeper understanding of the words, and not simply memorizing the words for a test. Spelling City allows students to understand how the words are correctly used, while also making the process enjoyable from a gaming standpoint.
Martin, L. (2012). Connection, Translation, Off-Loading, and Monitoring: A Framework for Characterizing the Pedagogical Functions of Educational Technologies. Technology, Knowledge & Learning, 17(3), 87-107.Salomon, G. & Perkins, D. (2005)”Do Technologies Make Us Smarter? Intellectual Amplification With, Of and Through Technology.”In: Robert Sternberg and David Preiss (Eds.).Intelligence and Technology: The Impact of Tools on the Nature and Development of Human Abilities. Mahwah, NJ : Lawrence Erlbaum and Associates, Publishers. pp. 71-86.