Distributed Cognition Part 2

Above is the comic strip that I made about some observations I have made at Mercer Elementary School. One day, I was able to observe in a 1st grade classroom and the students were using their Chromebooks to practice their spelling words for the week. They were using a program online that they teacher shared with them using Google Classroom. I believe that the program was called Seesaw, I was not able to get a good look at is as I was walking around helping the teacher make sure the students were on task. I was able to chat with the teacher in this classroom and she said that this was a reward for the students because of good behavior, they do not always get to use technology in the classroom. I thought this was very interesting because of what I had previously observed in the 4th grade classroom. I think that this strategy used by the teacher is very beneficial for her students because oof their age. I think that teaching students to not rely heavily on technology at a young age is good because we need to know how to do things if it somehow goes away. I think that it also teaches her students to realize that technology can be seen as a reward or some sort of benefit to help them do something that they already know how to do. I also think that this helps kids learn that technology is an affordance and what that means to them and how it can help them further their knowledge, not just depend on it for everything. I really liked how the teacher was using the Seesaw spelling activity as a supplement to what she was teaching and not relying on it to teach her students something on its own. I think that by integrating technology this way students will actually be able to learn something. The students will have this prior knowledge in their head about their spelling words, and can then build upon that knowledge to fully understand the meaning and spelling of this specific word set for the week. I fully believe that through this integration of technology, students were able to learn something. According to one of the articles we had to read for class, “all cognition takes place in the context of activity”(Morgan,2006). This explanation of distributed cognition has helped me form my own. I think that distributed cognition is learning that is done through a variety of different ways of learning, and what I have observed is a good example of this. This activity that the students were doing was able to be monitored by the teacher on her computer, and she could get students off of sites that they were not supposed to be on. I am not sure how this would be assessed, because the program immediately tells students if they were right or wrong, I think it is simply just a review kind of activity for them. Overall, I loved the integration of technology in this 1st grade class and I hope to see it again.

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