Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Exploring Problem Solving with Software, Apps and Games

Discussion Question:

How can teachers evaluate and use different types of educational software and apps available today?

One way can teachers can evaluate software is by using what Seymour Paperts thinks low quality software has three main features: 1. The computer dictates the activity, 2. Competition, stereotyping, or violence is presented, and 3. Quick reactions are favored over sustained thinking and problem solving. When you are a teacher looking for a software you want to ask yourself "will the child program the computer or will the computer program the child?" (Papert, 1996, p.56)

The other way teachers can evaluate software is by higher order thinking and lower order thinking. Lower order thinking is to compare and evaluate of theories and perspectives, higher order is processing information and solving problems in ways that promote new meanings and understandings. To successfully promote higher order thinking games have to have a score of 15 or higher and challenge the students every time they play as well as apps.

Tech tool 7.1
Scratch  is an electronic tool kit that enables students to make their own games, animated stories, and interactive art. I explored the website and the students can create their own or look at other students work that they have created. I think it would be awesome to do a whole lesson plan on this website were students read a story and make their own game or animated short story of they story we read in class. Definitely something I do not want to forget!

Chapter 7 summary

The first section talks about how technology generates problem solving and inquiry learning among students. Teaching methods use real world issues and situations to engage students. How to help students understand problem solving is using framework. 1. Make sure the student understands the problem. 2. Using solving strategies and check answers or results. The next section talks about how to identify standard and open source software applications that are available on most school computers. Software refers to the codes that tell the computers what functions to perform. Their are open source software that refer to programs that are open for anyone to copy use or modify. Teachers and students use a lot of the same programs in school like word PowerPoint the internet some games and YouTube as well. The next section talks about problem solving and inquiry learning software. The last two sections of the chapter talk about how to analyze education games which teachers can do one of two ways, they can ask themselves if the game is good for the students to play or if it is a lower thinking or higher thinking which most teachers would want to go with higher thinking to challenge the students. The last section talks about digital games for leaning for example Geogames which are geographical games for elementary school students. Chapter 7 is filled with a bunch of good information I really enjoyed this section because it talks about a bunch of ways teachers can explore problem solving with technology which every student with learn in their life!


1. Maloy, Robert W. "Exploring Problem Solving with Software, Apps, and Games." Transforming Learning with New Technologies. Boston: Pearson/Allyn and Bacon, 2011. 158-74. Print.

2. Scratch - Imagine, Program, Share." Scratch - Imagine, Program, Share. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Apr. 2014.

3."Using Apps for Higher Order Thinking in the Classroom." YouTube. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Apr. 2014

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