My name Shuly and I come from the Davidson Institute of Science Education at The Weizmann Institute of Science, in Israel, I also teach Biology and medical science in Science and arts school . Before I describe the e-learning environments based on moodle I would like to introduce the Davidson Institute. Davidson institute is the educational wing of Weizmann institute, it is a non-profit organization which committed to promote the science and math education in Israel – within schools and among the public, and many projects are running students, teachers and adults. Some of them are online projects, for example, our interactive portal – Davidson Online – which contains many online activities such as scientific films and riddle forums in addition to YouTube channel and facebook.
בישראל 4.2 מיליון גולשים בגילאי 13+70% מהאוכלוסייה הבוגרת בישראל (18+) גולשים באינטרנט• כ־74% מכלל משקי הבית גולשים באינטרנט!• 48% גולשים למעלה מ־10 שעות בשבוע
האדם משחק רק בשעה שהוא אדם, במלוא משמעות המילה, והוא אדם שלם רק בשעה שהוא משחק פרידריך שילרLEARNING IS CONNECTING AND MANIPULATING FACTS AND DATA GIVING MEANING AND MAKING SENSE BY COMMUNICATING WITH OTHERSMan plays only when he is a man in every sense of the word, and he as a full sense of the word only when he plays Friedrich Schiller's Letters on the Aesthetic Education of Man in 1795
Using the computer to allow wide use of media:Videos, animations and simulations, to explain the concepts taughtGames will deal with ideas learnedVideo lectures by experts in the subject matterLinks updated information in real timeUseful linksCollaborative work with classmatesExams for immediate investigation of the level of knowledgeOnline text pieces highlighting and annotating itEdit search terms or events by keywordsUses educational needs:92% of respondents use the computer for homework and projects90% look for information on Wikipedia or other sites84% communicate with email and 62% with teachers84% write work tasks75% download summaries help It is designed and works66% of practice network before matriculation exams58% are looking for school information portal
The program combines laptops in the teaching and learning processes at classroom and at home while creating a progressive learning environment that contributes to theimprovement of the learning atmosphere at classroom and school. In this environment, the laptop is available to each and every student for studies and use. And for the teacher as an advanced aid for teaching, training and guidance. Katom helps design a flexible learning environment, stimulating internal motivation of independent learner and creates a variety of experience and opportunities for students.Essence of the change: integrating laptops in the process of teaching and learning changes the ratio of "number of students per computer" , in school ratio of about 5 students and more to a computer, the purpose is to date, the ratio of 1:1 (One on One). This Change, lets to implement educational innovation at its best - advanced teaching methods, active learning, learning by playing, learning I a rich, varied and fun way. The accessibility of student to computer has grown significantly beyond current frameworks. This accessibility is used as a lever to promote issues of values and educational partnership and collaboration and enables exposure to a wealth of information and knowledge, access to the treasures of culture and art, reconstruction and simulation of the experimental sciences, access to databases, encyclopedias - learning the latest and innovative all the time and almost everywhere, including accessibility outside the classroom and of course even at home. Emphasis on combining technology in education is in the pedagogical aspect to enrich the learning experience in the classroom, andto educate to an independent, thinking, curious and creative student. And emphasizing teaching on the basis of guidance, directionand counseling. By doing so we can build readiness to digital world in which we are.Partners and goals: The program is approved by the Ministry of Education, enabled junior high for three years starting from the seventh grade to graduation in ninth grade. To run it several bodies joined together. Administration of Science and Technology and the Ministry of Education of the relevant districts, local authorities which enabled the program, parents of students, school principals, teachers, and Davidson Institute
3 years ago we opened the distance learning program, and since then we developed over one hundred courses for school students with over 5000 students participating in them each year – such as Math and Science by Mail. All of our courses are designed within Moodle - a learning management system which is increasingly being adapted by schools and higher education around the world. Moodle is an open-source software, flexible for designing and In Israel we are among the leaders of using and developing the Moodle.
Math-by-Mail" (MBM) is one of the most prominent projects of the Davidson Institute of Science Education. The project was initiated 30 years ago targeting elementary school students who are high achievers in math, teaching them extracurricular math topics. The program was inaugurated as a correspondence project that connected students and mathematicians through a series of booklets sent to selected students through regular mail. In 2004, the program was transferred to the internet and correspondence was done via online forums. The booklets were available as PDF files which participants downloaded and then sent in via fax or mail. The Math-by-Mail staff reviewed the work done by the students and returned the marked booklets via regular mail. Lately, the program has undergone another major transformation by implementing the Moodle platform
In addition to the in depth topics, participants receive a weekly newsletter with additional riddles and challenges, the Mathletter. The Mathletter challenges and many other topics are discussed in the weekly chat with the MBM team - researchers at the Weizmann Institute of Science (see Figure 5). The chat is a unique opportunity for participants to have a conversation, share their ideas and get feedback from researchers in one of the world's leading science research institutions The Forums and especially the weekly chats eased the interaction with students in real-time and facilitated interaction on an even level allowing students to share their opinions and suggestions; as a learning community, it allowed students to share and discuss their knowledge and difficulties, and also help each other. We noticed that at the beginning of the school year there were few students who participated in the chat, over time the number of students who participated increased and more importantly there was an increase in the number of active students who asked questions and contributed to the discussion We note that the number of students using internet courses and booklets (such as "Math by Mail"), preferring them to hard copy assignments and booklets, increases over time, which suggest that students have interest in such E-Learning techniques. Last year when we implemented the program in Moodle only 50% of the participants used the internet course and booklets, while this year 90% are using the online booklets. Next school year we intend the program to be a fully online program without any hardcopy booklets. Overall, the perception of students of web-based homework testing was very positive. We implemented a similar Moodle course in Science, “Science by mail”, with similar results.
The evaluation was a short-term assessment conducted at the end of the period in July 2011. It was carried out in the course of the end of year participant conferences ("treasure hunts"). During the conference: 1 Questionnaires were distributed among the children (119 questionnaires were received from MBM participants). 2 16 parents were interviewed. 3 17 teachers were interviewed. 4 Focus groups were set up and conversations with children were conducted. Questionnaires were distributed to all the children we were able to reach, and most of them filled in and returned the questionnaires. Parents and teachers were selected at random – based on accessibility and the time we had available to us. It should be noted that the teachers and parents interviewed were among those who came to the conference and thus constitute a sample of parents who are involved in the program in some way or another. The findings derived from student questionnaires and from the interviews with parents and teachers. Student, parent and teacher satisfaction indicate a high level of satisfaction. The students liked the program and its contents to a very large extent. They liked the level of organization to a large extent. Children's satisfaction with the program found expression in their almost universal willingness to recommend the program to others and their almost universal willingness to remain enrolled in the program. Parents and teachers felt that the program is an enriching and innovative one and has a good reputation in general. Many of the teachers have been acquainted with the program for some years and have chosen to continue their involvement with it because of its quality. Teachers commented that the program provides a response to the needs of a unique group of children as shown in Figure 6a. The essence of the program as perceived by the children is shown in Figure 6b. The children experienced the program from two almost equal perspectives - they perceived it both as fun, and as educational and enriching - a combination of fun, information and interest in both programs. It seems that the program was able to combine a fun experience with the gaining of interesting knowledge. 6th grade MBM students said: "It is challenging because it is hard. It is not something mundane like 15 times 16… there are questions of a different sort- questions that are, let's say, surprising". Other children emphasized the innovative aspects of MBM and that the learning was meaningful rather than technical: "I learned about things that I did not even know existed. Had you asked me who Fibonacci was, I would have said he was an artist, I had no idea what operators were". "If someone were to just tell me to write up a list of Fibonacci numbers, I suppose I might not remember how to do that, but if I were to get the first four numbers in the series and told to continue the series, I'd remember what to do…"
“Science by Mail” (SBM) offers school-children in grades 3 to 9 a glimpse of the cutting edge research that is taking place at one of the world's leading research institute, The Weizmann Institute of Science. The program too, includes four in-depth topics, each from a different scientific field and based on the research conducted in a different laboratory at the Weizmann Institute. The in-depth topics are spread over the school-year and once the activities are uploaded, they can be accessed online anytime, at home or at school. The activities are based on simple experiments that can be performed at home, which lead even young participants to a much better understanding of complicated ideas and, equally important, to the process of scientific research and scientific thought. As in “MBM”, in addition to the in- depth topics, participants receive a weekly newsletter with additional experiments, riddles and challenges. The newsletter challenges and experiments are discussed and results compared in the weekly chat with the Science by Mail team, researchers at the Weizmann Institute of Science. The chat is a unique opportunity for participants to have a conversation, share their ideas and get feedback directly from researchers of science.
Another program we implemented in Moodle platform is “Beaver”. The program is engaged in solving challenging problems of interesting and intriguing in a variety of topics in computers. The purpose of the program is to create a foundation of basic understanding of computer science, development of personal abilities, better ability in solving problems and strategies selection. The program encourages computational thinking and creative and intelligent use of information technology. In the Beaver program a team of computer science teachers from middle and high school write the questions for the competitions. The participation in this program can be also as an independent participant or as a member of a class. The “Beaver” program is part of an international contest of informatics and computer fluency established by Prof. ValentinaDagiene The first Bebras contest was organized in Lithuania in 2004. Today there are students from 17 countries participating and another 6 countries, within them Israel, that are planning to participate. Last year we had two internal competitions with 800 participants all done in Moodle platform (see Figure 7). The first competition was a week long and was held in different schools. The second stage of the competition was at the Davidson Institute of Science Education. Next year we intent to encourage the participants in this program by adding a competition between schools and by adding practicing lessons within school classes supervised by computer –science teachers.
MOT-TEC includes an array of activities that combine higher-order skills with content in science and technology to middle school, emphasizing learning and thinking skills such as asking questions and exploration. The MOT-TEC environment has been developed together with teachers as an enhancement of face-to-face teaching. The content of the units were chosen by a team of science teachers (content which was difficult to teach) and various activities were built in collaboration with them. The uniqueness of these environments is the freedom of teachers who teach with them to add, change or use them as is, according to their needs. Additionally, we developed and fitted tools according to the teachers' needs for use in MOT-TEC based on Moodle. MOT-TEC consists of the following components: Visuals that combine short films, simulations, animations, and educational games related to the selected science topics. Interactive learning activities that support attaining high-order thinking and learning skills combined with scientific content. Feedback facilities that enable automated response regarding closed questions as well as teacher's reactions to open-ended tasks. Learning management system options that facilitate assessment of learning through questionnaires, statistics, and reports. Flexibility for teachers: they can adapt the activities to their needs or the needs of their students and according to class technological conditions. The first unit we developed in MOT-TEC emphasizes learning and thinking skills such as asking questions and exploration. These skills were incorporated on the subject of “water" in various aspects: water as a solvent with respect to macroscopic and microscopic material, detection of water by its properties, different water sources and the water cycle in nature (these aspects are part of the science and technology curriculum in junior high school). The students visually explore and experience water solubility phenomena of materials such as salt (NaCl), sand, and oil, as well as, their macroscopic explanations (in the case of NaCl). The computerized activities are structured, yet flexible, and lead to a variety of investigation-oriented activities through science films, games, and simulations as seen in Figure 8a. The teacher acts as a mediator and helps the students navigate according to their capabilities (Frailich et al 2011). MOT-TEC combines computerized applications, such as, simulations, images, videos and games within learning tasks to enhance the understanding of the studied subject in an enjoyable and stimulating manner through inquiry- and discovery-based learning. We fitted the quiz module so that it is shown in the same window as the simulation (Figure 8b). The learning task appears at the top, and the simulation at the bottom. The student can change the sizes of each part according to their needs. The student can advance the task at his/her own pace and answer the questions according to the various conditions and results in the simulation
The unit presented in this article deals with the development of the skills: “asking questions” and “scientific research and their application in material science" illustrated with regard to the topic: the different aspects of water (as described above).In May 2010 we ran a pilot program with teachers and students who used MOTEC as part of learning this topic in their material sciences lessons. The topic "solutions and solubility of materials" is usually studied in the last semester of 7th grade or at the beginning of 8th grade. We administered questionnaires to students who used our environment (3 classes, N=57) . The questionnaires included Likert-type items in evaluation scale of 1-4 (1- Not at all, 2 – Slightly, 3 – Much, 4 – Very much) as well as open-ended questions about the computerized simulations and the related activities.The purpose of the questionnaire is to examine students' attitudes toward the different dimensions of learning in the MOT-TEC environment: understanding, interest and enjoyment, with reference to computerized applications (applets), such as images, videos and games, and activities separately. The intention was to find out specifically and individually the students' attitudes toward various interactive simulations (similar to their favorite video games) and attitudes towards learning tasks that required work practice, thinking, and application of skills and content that were learned. Analysis of students' questionnaires indicated that both the computerized applications (such as simulations) and the adjusted activities helped students understand the particulate explanation of the macroscopic observations. Moreover, students reported that they enjoyed the activities and expressed a high level of interest and engagement
The analysis of the open-ended questions shows that most students think that MOT-TEC is an interesting learning environment and contributes to understanding and learning. A relatively low percentage of students expressed negative attitudes, mainly with regard to technical limitations (Student 4) that can be improved. Or the students were outstanding that understood the material well and learning via computerized environment did not contribute to them or boredom as a result of prior knowledge (student 5).After implementing the activities with their students, teachers reported that the system enabled them to watch students' performance online and to intervene and support their learning processes accordingly. They also indicated that their students were actively engaged in the visual computerized activities and showed a high level of interest. The level of students' understanding of the scientific contents was higher than before. Teachers indicated that they wanted to implement similar applications in the future. Here are some citations of teachers’ responses to the interview we conducted with them
My object today is to describe one project in Moodle for math learning - its designing rationale and its implementation - which we developed this year with and for teachers in middle school. Our goal in this course was to create a collaborative math learning environment. Here you see the open page of the course. Each title represents one math activity designing for a curricular middle school subject. We have activities in geometry, algebra statistics and moreArgument Skill: We need also to refer to the content aspect – what kind of tasks are we going to put in the forums. We found the inquiry-based tasks as appropriate for collaborative learning.
In order to achieve our goal we used a collaborative tool – the forum. But using the technology is not enough. We need an appropriate content – and we chose inquiry-based assignments. Each activity is organized around one situation – here, in Midsegment activity example of activityTo the situation we linked an appropriate applet, mostly with using the Geogebra - geometry dynamic free software. Here you can see the outer quadrilateral and the inner quadrilateral. And the user can change the outer and to see what happens. In addition he can measured different properties as sides' length and angles. Around this situation we composed 5 tasks. The first one is what will be the inner quadrilateral. Students inquire the problem, raise conjectures, and then have to justify them. therefore it is called an inquiry-based assignment. Such assignments with software are not so new, but what is innovative is the combination with the forum.
11 students in each group You see here 130 messages of students. It was done mostly during 5 days and after school time. Just think how many class hours we need in order to have such a productive discussions in class. The teacher and our intervention is only 12 messages, so what you see here is mostly students' work. And they didn't write non-sense. About 70% of the posts are math claims and justifications. some of the comments we translated to english. We want to highlight that we have not seen such projects in math using the Moodle or the forum, and it seems that it has much potential for collaborative learning. You can see that student uploaded geogebra files, this was on their own initiative. Here the student raises a conjecture and now she gives a proof. The GeoGebra file serves as a complementary explanation. Is in classroom there is much time for such detailed answer and feedback? You can see also that student worked collaboratively: they replied to each other, they asked peers to review their answers, agreed with others claims, (indicated other's answers as helpful in understanding the task, asked for further justifications and explanations, expanded other's claims and drew attentions to mistakes).Our experience shows that it possible to engage students in a meaningful math learning in such a technological and pedagogical design. How did it affect students? They expressed themselves extensively, some of them were opened in the forum in a way that afterwards made them more active in the class, some of them suddenly were detected as having mathematical competent, and even new friendships were formed and we talk here about a class that has worked together for 3 years before that. In the general feedback on math classes at the end of the year, all students indicated the forum as a meaningful activity. How did it affect teachers? Teachers saw their students under different light, and some of them changed their teaching attitude to more collaborative one and less authoritative one after the online activity
One of the major challenges in teacher PD is finding ways to overcome the gap between research-based approaches and the needs of practitioners (Luft, 2010). Research - based approaches are often viewed as disconnected from the teaching reality and teachers refrain from using them. Even after learning and experiencing new approaches during PD many teachers need assistance and guidance for their successful application in the classroom. When new technology is involved, and specifically in case of E-learning, the challenges are even more difficult, since teachers need to overcome technical difficulties and learn new skills in addition to new content. The need to apply these components in the classroom raises more difficulties and requires from teachers knowledge in three different areas – content, pedagogy and technology (referred to as TPCK by Mishra & Koehler, 2006).This paper describes a model which deals with these challenges. The model was developed during the construction and application of the online PD “Science-TEC” during 2011-2012.In this PD most of teacher’s learning is done online, and the teaching content is embedded in a computerized environment. The goals of this PD include content, pedagogy and technology components in addition to the major goal – successful application of the computerized environment “Science-TEC” in teaching practice.Several trends emerge from the data analysis regarding the significance of each of the PD stages to achieving the PD goals.Experience stageAt this stage teachers participated in a face-to-face meeting, in which they learnt about the content and technological tools used in the PD, and began to practice these tools. During the following month participants experienced activities in the computerized environment as students. In both cohorts of the PD about 25% of the participants dropped out at this stage, mainly due to technical difficulties and gaps between their expectations and reality regarding the level of engagement required in the PD. At this stage the main challenge for participants was related to technological aspects, and less to content or pedagogical ones. Data regarding the level of participation and activity performance is collected through the Moodle learning management system (LMS), which provides immediate feedback to closed questions. The PD team completed the assessment and feedback for open questions. Application stageAn integral part of the PD was implementation of one (or more) of the computerized interactive activities from the “Science-Tec” environment in the classroom, including planning and applying the lesson, comparing the planned and enacted activities, presenting the report and conducting a discussion about it in an online synchronic meeting, and reflecting on the experience in writing. It is important to note that all the teachers who completed the first stage (experiencing “Science-Tec” activities) continued to the next stages, participated in the final synchronic meetings, and completed all the PD assignments.Reflection stageThe final stage of the PD included two synchronic colleague-meetings, followed by the final assignment. At this stage teachers reflected on all the stages of the PD.In their written reflections teachers refer to two main issues: students’ reactions and their own feeling of a successful experience as teachers.
MBM and MOT-TEC are both models of E-Learning environments developed on the Moodle platform, which is one of the major points of similarity. Other points of similarity are enabling a teaching –learning experience by promoting curiosity, interest, and understanding of the subject. Development of MBM and MOT-TEC E-Learning environments on Moodle platform has led us to several important principles that need to be considered before developing additional environments: There is a huge need in E-learning environments based on curriculum content. The teachers do not have time to build them by themselves. It is important to base the environments according to teacher’s needs, content based or technology based. The environments should address the student diversity There should be emphasis on design and simplicity of the environment enabling easy and enjoyable use that leads to understanding and development of interest in subjects that are considered hard to learn. Comparing the essence of the two models, we noticed the following differences: 1 Educational goals - MBM program is an extracurricular program. Its goals are developing math thinking skills, curiosity and interest in the field of math. The program is not integrated into the curricular school learning. This is its uniqueness and the source of its success. Success in the grades in school is not a goal of the program. MOT-TEC, on the other hand, is part of the curricular program as an enhancement to face-to-face teaching and the opportunity to supply teachers with many interesting tools that can be used to improve the teaching– learning process and there is an importance for grades. 2 Different audiences – MBM focuses on elementary and junior high school students where MOT-TEC focuses mainly on junior high school students 3 Size of the different community - The purpose of MBM is to create an international community of learning science and mathematics in popular areas. MOT-TEC communities consist of a teacher and students in schools in Israel who are learning certain curricular topics. Overall, the perception of students of web-based homework testing was very positive. We plan to implement Moodle courses in additional subjects such as curricular chemistry and biology in order to improve and homogenize the basic knowledge of the students. We attend expanding the MBM by enabling communication between different schools in different countries and trying to develop a math learning communities .We intend to guide teachers using existing E-Learning environments and building independently new Moodle E-Learning environments for the benefit of their classroom learning.
Learning and teaching with Moodle-based E-learning environments, combining learning skills and content in the fields of Math and Science & Technology
91% of youth (17-13) surf the Internet 95% of children surf the internet to play 70%-77% of children do homework using the network 70% of children watch online videohttp://mcwtf.co.il/ McCann - Erickson guide to the world of advertising
Good-Morning School Brake School After-School Evening Good-night
% of % of Youth % of Adults Participants (ages 13-17) (ages 18+) Reading online newspaper or magazine 89.2 74.1 91.5 Viewing videos on the web 72.8 81.6 71.4 Downloading software or files 71.6 85.6 69.5 Banking operations or financial 64.1 12.7 72.0 Buying and ordering products and services 55.7 29.3 59.7 Correspondence with Instant Messaging software 53.3 83.0 51.1 Games 54.0 73.7 51.0 Listening to Radio Stations on the Internet 42.2 28.1 44.4 Participation in forums or discussion groups 35.6 42.5 34.6 Uploading photos or videos to share with others 34.4 46.4 32.5 Making voice calls, as with phone, via the Internet 33.3 25.4 34.5 Reading or writing blogs 26.3 35.3 25.4 Correspondence with others in chat software 25.4 27.9 25.1 For dating 15.1 17.5 14.7 Search for information or data in various fields 95.7 89.0 96.7 Expanding general knowledge, general information 83.5 71.1 85.3 Health information 54.1 20.4 58.8 Information about traveling 52.1 22.2 26.4 Financial data such as stocks, foreign exchange, etc. 36.3 6.8 40.5 Information about companies 35.2 23.5 36.8 Research data or statistics 28.5 14.5 30.5 Information on Sports 26.9 25.4 27.1 Information in other areas 54.6 59.5 53.9http://mcwtf.co.il/ McCann - Erickson guide to the world of advertising
http://data.isoc.org.il/data/158 Israel Internet Association survey of students attitudes toward onlinelearning
Design Pedagogic alLachmy, R., Amir, Y., Azmon, S., Elran, Y., & Kesner, M. (in press). Pythagoras school revived: collaborative learning of mathematics supported by learningmanagement systems in secondary school. Paper presented at the EduLearn12: the 4th annual International Conference on Education and New LearningTechnologies (July 2-4, 2012). Barcelona, Spain: International Association for Technology, Education and Development (IATED).
Students responses regarding their levels of interest, understanding, and enjoyment of learning with MOT-TEC
Quotes representing student attitudes regarding learning environment MOT-TECQuotes representing positive attitude (89%) Quotes representing negative attitude (11%)S1: I liked the computerized activities because S4: It was not fun, it was inconvenient to movethey were cool and interesting, and they from the simulation to the activity repeatedly. Itexposed us to new things and helped me would been comfortable if the questions andunderstand things I did not understand before the simulations were on the same pageS2: The activity helped me understand better S5: It was very easy and I understood without itthe subject, the simulations contributed to theinterest in the subject, and clarified the materialS3: It was fun and I would like to have morelessons using these computerized tools
Forums opening The fivemessage tasks Applet for activity
Distribution ofcomments *number of students who actively participated (11 students in a group)Content includes - 68% claims or justifications About 40 files initiated by students
Content Goals Teachers will improve their understanding and be able to teach: a. Selected topics: properties of matter, the particle model of matter, forces and motion. b. Inquiry, reasoning and scientific explanation skills relevant to the topics above.Pedagogical Goals Teachers will experience and be able to use teaching strategies including: individual learning, active learning, and collaborative learning.Technological Goals Teachers will experience and be able to use technological tools such as: simulations, forums, interactive activities and LMS in the Moodle computerized environment. The PD stages
Shulamit.email@example.com://Pegsus1.weizmann.ac.il/moodleUser name & password : demombm