Thursday, November 11, 2010

Is Your Data Clean?

You may know that I'm not a data queen. But...in order for me to do what I love ~teach~ in a way that I believe works for kids ~constructivism~ with engaging tools ~technology~ I am required to collect data for my district.

I have 2 Nooks in my classroom, getting 2 more, & hopefully a NOOK COLOR. In order for my students to use them I need to collect data on how that tool is effecting their academic growth. I have to admit ... I completely forgot I was supposed to do that. When I was reminded, I was angry at myself for forgetting & for having this type of stipulation (would this be required of base 10 blocks). Anyway, I've decided to pull my kiddoes into the data collection; incorporating 3rd grade math into it.

I also have to collect data on my professional goal. My professional goal is 21st Century Skills. This is more than tech, but I wrote it in such a way as to fold in cooperative learning, technology, & critical thinking. So now I'm collecting data on how social media impacts academic growth. (We are actually required to have a goal to increase scores on open-ended responses.)

I've already noticed a difference (anecdotal), but what most people won't say is that there are incredible variables that are not taken into consideration with educational data. The teaching that happens before, during, & after. The dialogue between students. The choices they are provided & have to make. So much goes into teaching. Can you truly collect clean data?
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