Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Bloom's Taxonomy with Interactive Online Content

I have had the privilege over the past five years of observing interactive whiteboards being used in hundreds of classrooms through the United States. Through my observations, by reading blog posts, by viewing interactive lessons shared on manufacturers’ sites, and by talking with teachers across the country, a shared question has emerged that needs to be addressed: How do I use this technology to encourage higher order thinking skills?  

Most of the interactive lessons I have observed and see on lesson sharing sites are basic skill building activities using matching, drag and drop, or multiple choice questions. Those activities do have a place in the classroom--particularly during center time when students are completing an activity that has been designed for independent practice or during guided practice when you are conducting a formative assessment to see which students require additional assistance.

I encounter interactive lessons that are built to encouraging higher order thinking skills much less frequently than their skill building counterparts. Part of the reason may be that at first glance, it seems more difficult and time consuming to plan an interactive lesson that encourages higher order thinking skills. But, it doesn’t have to be!

At StarrMatica, our mission is to provide teachers with a library of standards-aligned interactive content so they can spend less time searching for content or creating original lessons and more time planning how to integrate interactive content effectively into their daily classroom instruction. To that end, this is the first in a series of six posts that will be dedicated to Bloom’s Taxonomy: Teaching Higher Order Thinking Skills with Interactive Online Content.

Level One: Remember

This level includes the skills of listing, writing, telling, naming, describing, matching and labeling. These are the basic skill building types of activities that many teachers utilize on their interactive whiteboards. There are several benefits to using interactive online content at the remembering level.
  • It saves time. As a teacher, you don’t have to spend time creating an activity in your interactive whiteboard software.
  • An online activity can add colorful graphics, sound effects, and animations that will get the attention of your students and motivate them to participate.
  • Some online activities keep a score record so you can review results.
  • Some online activities provide several levels of difficulty, two player modes or competition versus students in other locations.
Here are two examples of online activities for remembering: 

K-2-- Bubble Burst
This activity encourages students to name odd numbers by quickly bursting bubbles labeled with the correct answers in a game environment.

3-6-- 2-D Shapes Evil Robots
This activity encourages students to identify 2-D shapes by placing them in the containers labeled with the correct names before being caught by the evil robots.

To learn about more activities for remembering and to discover resources for understanding, applying, analyzing, evaluating, and creating, sign up for StarrMatica’s free Webinars: Bloom’s Taxonomy for K-2 and Bloom’s Taxonomy for 3-6: CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

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