I never considered myself a blogger, or someone who takes the time to write out their thoughts in a journal or a diary. I have a short attention span, so every time I have tried to start something like that in the past, I have always given up in a matter of weeks or sometimes even days. Even though the last time I tried to start a blog was years ago, the little voice in my head was telling me that I have not changed since then and I still would not be able to keep it up. The truth (as hopefully we all know) is that people can change and I was limiting myself from growing as an individual by listening to that voice. I am not saying that now I am magically able to block out any condescending thoughts in my head, but recently I have been able to ignore them and allow myself to advance not only academically, but mentally. I find myself taking more risks in life and pushing myself further out of my comfort zone every day. I am setting personal, physical and academic goals and every day I try to accomplish something to get myself closer to achieving them. This blog is technically an assignment for my EDCI 336 class, but the amount of effort that I will be putting into it will be for my own benefit. I hope that this blog will help me achieve my long term goal of being the best educator I can possibly be for my future students. I want to set this blog up to increase my digital footprint in a positive way and create a space that I can show potential employers. I also hope that this blog will help me continue to set goals and find exactly who I want to be.
What is Prezi?
Prezi is a web-based application that allows users to work collaboratively to create a dynamic presentation. One of PC magazine’s top 100 websites and TIME’s top 50 websites, Prezi is adding “more than a million users a month” (Pack, 2014, p.38). Creating a Prezi is like creating a story for your students to read. In Shaadi Elswaifi’s article “On PowerPoints and Prezis”, he recommends thinking about “designing a movie” when creating a Prezi presentation. Instead of a typical PowerPoint where you go through slides linearly, the Prezi application allows you to present a bigger topic and then zoom in and out of different subtopics. This format is proven to make the content more memorable, which increases the retention of information (Prezi). It is also found to be “more organized, engaging, persuasive and effective than both PowerPoint and oral presentations” (Moulton et al., 2017, p. 31). With Prezi, you can present anywhere, online and offline. Prezi is also very user friendly with its clear instructions and how it offers multiple free Prezi templates. With Prezi the possibilities for creation are endless; you can show the life cycle of a salmon, the scale of the universe, or jazz up a math lesson!
Connections to Multimedia Learning Principles
As collaboration principle 2 states “multimedia should stimulate the effective and efficient distribution of thoughts and cognitive processes while members carry out tasks” (Kirschner et al., 2005, p. 553). Prezi allows multiple people to be working on different tasks in order to allow the concept of a presentation to be constructed collaboratively. It allows educators to use the personalization principle noting “people learn better when the words of a multimedia presentation are in conversational style rather than formal style” (Mayer, 2014). The learning through Prezi can be personal and presented as a conversation with the class over reading directly from slides. Additionally, the guided discovery principle states that “people learn better when guidance is incorporated into discovery-based multimedia environments” (Mayer, 2014). Prezi supports students getting started and offers multiple free templates to choose from.
For more connections to the Multimedia Learning Principles (such as the modality principle, signalling principle and redundancy principle) check out Erin Fletcher’s original evaluation on Prezi on her blog.
Why Choose Prezi?
Prezi is a great application to create a presentation because it includes many multimedia principles that are essential for student engagement and will enhance the overall presentation. Prezi offers a free option that gives you 100MB of storage space; “enough for a few Prezi’s” (Prezi). With the free option, all of your Prezi’s will be public. Only by paying a monthly or yearly subscription fee will you be allowed to create private Prezi’s. There are student/teacher discounts offered for as low as US$3/month. This subscription allows you to use premium images and icons, have privacy controls, PDF export and even import PowerPoint slides into your Prezi (Prezi).
While the classic PowerPoint uses a slide to slide linear model, “the major features of Prezi are an infinite canvas and a nonlinear presentation style” (Chou et al, p. 74).
This being said, “the nonlinear presentation style precisely depicts the essence of elaboration theory (i.e. one of instructional design principles), which provides detailed guidance for instructional sequences” (p. 74). Students have even noted that Prezi is an effective learning tool that lets them dive deeper into their learning. There are even “innovative features emphasized in Prezi that may arouse the learning interests of students, leading them to pay additional attention to learning materials” (p. 82).
Educators Experiences With Prezi
As an educator, you can create your educator account and easily teach your students to create student accounts. You can also add a Prezi video to Microsoft Teams, in order to keep students up to date.
To dive deeper into an educator’s experience with Prezi, we decided to interview Erin Pomphery, a TTOC with the Saanich School District. This interview by Ariana Kelly was very insightful and gave us lots to think about when exploring Prezi further. Below is the audio and a transcript to that interview.
Here is a video called “Teachers Using Prezi: Prezi Review”. It breaks-down what is beneficial about using Prezi as a teacher, and how it can be used in the classroom. This is a great video to highlight all of the amazing tools that you can access when using Prezi.
This page reviews and describes what Prezi is, as well as looking at the pro’s and con’s of Prezi for education purposes. Overall it is a great resource to look at because it is well put together, and includes real reviews from educators online.
Lastly, we included a teacher blog post about Prezi explaining how to create a video lesson using the application. Paul Tueske does a great job simplifying the information, so you understand and follow along as you work through his post. The blog post further illustrates how to prepare a Prezi video, and how to develop more customized templates. This illuminating blog post features numerous tutorial videos, showing educators how to record and share videos. Paul’s blog post is recommended for teachers who are providing remote learning opportunities for students during this uncertain time of COVID-19. We felt as though adding this blog post was very worthwhile at this time because it centers around how to create a Prezi to teach in the time of COVID-19. As Paul Tueske points out, Prezi is a great alternative to continue that connection with students in an online space.
Walk Through of Prezi
This video shows a walk through of a completed Prezi, and how it can look including many means of multimedia principles.
To learn more about Prezi check out the blog that they have on their website!
Chou, P., Chang, C., & Lu, P. (2015). Prezi versus PowerPoint: The effects of varied digital presentation tools on students’ learning performance. Computers & Education, 91, 73-82. https://www-sciencedirect-com.ezproxy.library.uvic.ca/science/article/pii/S0360131515300695?via%3Dihub
Elswaifi, S.F. (2016, May 4). On powerpoints and prezis: a case for considering prezi as an alternate in medical education. Medical Science Educator, 26, 397-401.
Fletcher, E. (2020, June 24) Prezi Example. Youtube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SXBehkOgZ_A
Kirschner, P. A., Kirschner, F., & Janssen, J., (2005). The collaboration principle in Multimedia Learning. In R. Mayer (Ed.), The Cambridge Handbook of Multimedia Learning (Cambridge Handbooks in Psychology, pp. 547-575). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Mayer, R. E. (2014). The Cambridge Handbook of Multimedia Learning. Introduction to Multimedia Learning. Cambridge University Press. Retrieved from https://doi-org.ezproxy.library.uvic.ca/10.1017/CBO9781139547369
Moulton, S. T., Selen Türkay, & Kosslyn, S. M. (2017). Does a presentation’s medium affect its message? PowerPoint, prezi, and oral presentations. PLoS One, 12(7), 1-39, doi:http://dx.doi.org.ezproxy.library.uvic.ca/10.1371/journal.pone.0178774
Pack, T. (2014, April). Create eye-catching presentations with prezi. Information Today, 31(3), 38.
Pricing plans and options. (n.d.). Prezi. Retrieved June 25, 2020 from https://prezi.com/upgrade/edu/next/.
Rogowski, M. (2019, June). Prezi Classic Review. Common Sense Education. https://www.commonsense.org/education/website/prezi-classic
Teachers Things That Work (2017, October 25) Teachers using Prezi: Prezi review. Youtube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EPO7e2or9fo
Teske, P. (n.d.). How to create a video lesson on Prezi Video and prepare for next year. Prezi Blog. Retrieved June 24, 2020 from https://blog.prezi.com/first-prezi-video-lesson/?fbclid=IwAR2DfzR_lJk8cq3xY87Js88PGq1W8DvlQmbrZBpGIU1yiDvTVcdvBlWjRK4
Written below is the remix of Chapter 23 “The Collaboration Principle in Multimedia Learning” in Mayer’s The Cambridge Handbook of Multimedia Learning. This remix was written by Erin Fletcher, Ariana Kelly, Alyssa Lloyd and Maeve Poulin.
Chapter 23 Remix
In this chapter, the collaboration principle was highlighted as a way of multimedia learning. There are three key points to consider to allow collaboration to be the most effective.
First, tasks need to be cognitively demanding through group collaboration, while effectively using collective working memory. Secondly, cognitive processes and details needed for understanding must be productively shared among group members. Finally, multimedia surroundings must support and give the needed tools to allow communication regarding work, in order to collectively work together to complete tasks in the least amount of time. Therefore, as the authors of this chapter state, “The goal of multimedia in collaborative learning is the optimization of the relationship between transaction costs and distribution benefits” (Kirschner et al., 2014, p. 548).
The Collaboration Principle 1
The Collaboration Principle 1 states “collaborative tasks in a multimedia learning environment should be cognitively demanding enough to necessitate working” (p. 548). As educators, we can not go “simply placing learners in a group and assigning them a task” (p. 549) and tasks need to be beneficial to group performance. Research shows having students work on tasks that are problem-solving as a group rather than recalling, lead to greater outcomes. Noted in an article, “three-person, four-person, and five-person groups had significantly fewer trials to solution… than the best of an equivalent number of individuals” (Laughlin et al. 2006, p. 649). Therefore, working in collaborative ways can allow learners to look past their own working memory and experience a collective working memory, in order to understand more. An implication of Principle 1 is the task may be too difficult for one learner, making them rely consistently on collaboration with others. It can also lead to students feeling they must become an expert in their part of group work in order to share with others. Educators need to see these implications and adapt learning environments to support all learners.
The Collaboration Principle 2
The Collaboration Principle 2 states “multimedia should stimulate effective and efficient distribution of thoughts and cognitive processes while members carry out tasks” (Kirschner et al., 2014, p. 553). For this to be achieved, there are a few things needed to be considered and implemented when individuals work collaboratively.
When individuals work together effectively, they end up investing less cognitive effort than those working alone since they are able to divide information across “a larger reservoir of cognitive capacity” (p. 553). Working in a group allows cognitive processing to work on both the individual and group levels. On the individual level, one learns by internalizing their thoughts. On the group level, one learns by externalizing their thoughts and communicating with others. Without the externalizing of one’s thoughts, collaboration cannot take place.
To collaborate most effectively, group members should have a common goal and focus, be aware of each other’s prior knowledge and ensure tasks are not divided among group members. Group members need to depend on each other to successfully complete a task. As Wageman states in her research, dividing tasks reduces interdependency and such groups “often run into disasters” (1995, p. 158). Educational Technology tools such as Personalized Annotation Management System (PAMS) and Knowledge Forum (KF) can also be used to help group members communicate and share resources with each other.
The Collaboration Principle 3
To create an effective multimedia environment for collaboration, it must include tools all group members have access to in order to engage students with their interactions. The third collaboration principle states “multimedia should facilitate effective and efficient communication and regulation of actions” (Kirschner et al., 2014, p. 561). Successful collaboration requires learners to interact in two dialogical spaces: the content space and the relational space of collaboration. The content space is to further develop the task domain. The relational space of collaboration is establishing a shared understanding. Learners often face challenges with successfully collaborating in multimedia environments; however, these facilities can offer “opportunities to facilitate transactional activities” (p. 562), which can play a valuable role in learning outcomes and understanding. Collaborative multimedia learning can be split into two relationships. The first is a complementary relationship where people or media have significantly different functions or characteristics and can compensate for each other’s limitations. The other is a supplementary relationship where people or media have many things in common. For learners to engage in effective and efficient collaboration, they need to share their knowledge and opinions. Multimedia can support this through representational guidance and by participating in communicative activities that support shared understanding to limit group challenges, such as free-riding and social loafing. An implication of principle 3 would be to make sure there are opportunities for effective communication to foster discussion, as well as coordinating the group’s background knowledge to provide a holistic approach.
Research & Implications for Future Research
The limitations of current research and implications for future research regarding the collaboration principle in multimedia learning are extensive. The first limitation would be creating an ideal group size for collaborative learning. Expanding a group would increase the collective working memory of the group, which would be beneficial, but the cognitive load that goes along with social factors of collaborating with peers would also increase. Another limitation would be how to breakdown and study the cognitive perspective on collaborative learning in multimedia learning environments. The success of the learner and learners, in this case, depends on the interactions between cognitive, motivational, and social factors.
In Practice Connections
Some of our favourite edtech applications for communicating and collaborating are google docs, google classroom and microsoft teams. Make sure if you are using a new application, you discuss it with your District Instructional Technology Coordinator first to ensure it has the proper privacy settings.
A resource that we have also included to get a sense of collaboration in the classroom is a Grade 3 cross-curricular lesson plan involving English Language Arts and Drama.
In the article “Teacher Competencies for the Implementation of Collaborative Learning in the Classroom: a Framework and Research Review” by Kaendler et al., the authors state the effectiveness of collaboration is largely dependent on the “quality of student interaction” (2014, p. 505). As educators, to ensure collaboration among students is successful, it is important to plan student interaction, monitor it, support it, and consolidate it and then reflect on it (p.505). One way to do this is by fostering a positive classroom community from the beginning of the year. Activities such as the ones outlined in this website can achieve this.
We highly recommend giving this article a read for more information on how to foster student interaction that is beneficial for learning.
BookWidgets. (2020, March, 25). How to set up school communication from a distance- 9 communication apps for teachers. [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jK7pt4TD-dk
Kaendler, C., Wiedmann, M., Rummel, N., & Hans, S., (2014). Teacher competencies for the implementation of collaborative learning in the classroom: a framework and research review. Educational Psychology Review, 27(3), p. 505-536. doi: 10.1007/s10648-014-9288-9.
Kirschner, P. A., Kirschner, F., & Janssen, J., (2005). The collaboration principle in Multimedia Learning. In R. Mayer (Ed.), The Cambridge Handbook of Multimedia Learning (Cambridge Handbooks in Psychology, pp. 547-575). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. doi:10.1017/CBO9780511816819.022.
Laughlin, P. R., Hatch, E. C., Silver, J. S., & Boh, L. (2006). Groups perform better than the best individuals on letters-to-numbers problems: Effects of group size. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 90(4), 644-651.
Plans, P. (n.d.) 5 ways to build classroom community. The Secondary English Coffee Shop. Retrieved from https://secondaryenglishcoffeeshop.blogspot.com/2017/02/building-classroom-community.html.
Wageman, R. (1995). Interdependence and group effectiveness. Administrative Science Quarterly, 40(1), 145–180. doi: 10.2307/2393703.
In our group, we looked at the apps “Flipgrid”, “Google Docs”, “Duolingo” and “Prezi”. After having a discussion on which app we wanted to research deeper, we chose Prezi. Prezi is an app that is not only accessible for teachers to use but also for students of all ages. It allows for a variety of ways to be both presented and created. It’s user friendly and allows for presentations to be 3D and interactive with the addition of pictures, words and videos.
Although Flipgrid is a great classroom tool, we decided against it because Prezi has more interesting elements that we can focus on. Since the group evaluation of the selected multimedia app assignment makes up such a large component of our final grade, we wanted to ensure that we had enough content to cover for the evaluation.
Another application we evaluated was Google Docs. As a whole, Google Docs is appealing because students can connect and collaborate on a platform with the ability for teachers to provide support throughout their learning. Although it’s a great application to use for students to collaborate with peers, it didn’t connect well with the multimedia principles without a set of criteria given by the teacher. For this reason, we chose Prezi because students are able to use this application more in-depth, and as a teacher, the design can connect many more principles than Google Docs.
The third Multimedia application we reviewed was Duolingo. As a whole, this application provides an engaging and interactive opportunity where information has been presented through a gamification method. However, we didn’t choose to spotlight it for our final evaluation of a Multimedia App. This platform is limiting because it’s solely for learning another language. It’s user-friendly but lacks the ability to allow users to interact with each other beyond a score. An educator can review statistics of how their students are doing but they cannot provide descriptive feedback via the application or share additional resources. A successful Multimedia App should touch upon most or all of the principles, however, Duolingo lacks prosperous cooperation of most of Multimedia Learning Principles.
Prezi touches on several Multimedia Learning principles. Some of these principles include modality, redundancy, signalling and collaboration. These principles were noted on the first app review blog post but will be explored more in our final detailed review of Prezi next week.
The web application that I decided to evaluate is called Flipgrid! Flipgrid is a video discussion platform for students of all ages. The application easily allows teachers to create grids (like a message board) that teachers can post questions to and students reply with a video answer (M. Bernardo, 2019).
Flipgrid is available to use on all platforms! This includes iOS, Android and the web. The application is 100% free and students, families and educators can access the content at any time.
Connection to Multimedia Learning Principles
Since the basis of Flipgrid is students giving video replies to a question, the application reflects many multimedia learning principles. For example, the voice principle states people learn better when words are spoken in a human voice (Mayer, 2014, p. 8). Since students give video replies on Flipgrid, they never have to listen to “robot voices”, only their peers! In addition, the segmenting principle states people learn better when they can learn at their own pace (ibid.). On Flipgrid, students can record their video replies and access their account at anytime and at any place.
Personally I found the Flipgrid application very user friendly! Students do not even need to create an account to use the application. Like “Kahoot!”, they just have to put in a code to access their teacher’s grid. I was able to create my free account in under 2 minutes and without any technical issues. Flipgrid provides you with a short tutorial after you make an account to easily get acquainted with the site. The tutorial also covers how to make your first grid! However, I would have liked the tutorial to be longer. I found that I had to do some of my own research to understand features such as “Disco Library” (shared topics created by the Flipgrid community) and how to add a topic. The help center on the website was able to answer all of my questions.
Once I figured out how to add a topic, I was very impressed with all the different options (below) you could include for your students to view when they accessed the grid.
I used this Multimedia Project Evaluation Rubric from R Campus to provide my final evaluation score for Flipgrid. I give the application a 5/5 for design and technological elements, a 4/5 for focus, a 3/5 for activities, a 4.5/5 for fundamental elements, a 4/5 for content elements and a 5/5 for effectiveness elements.
Flipgrid does not use your personal information or your students to market or advertise, nor do they permit third parties to do so. As well, the application has customization security settings that allow you to protect your students’ privacy.
However, when someone creates an account, they must provide their first name, last name, email address, password, instruction type, school name and country. All information posted on Flipgrid is stored in their “Service for purposes of providing the Service” (Flipgrid, 2019).
Want to Learn More?
For more information on Flipgrid I highly recommend this ebook by Sean Fahey, Karly Moura and Jennifer Sarrinen. These 3 “Flipgrid Heros” as they call themselves, have created an educator’s guide to Flipgrid and it is filled with helpful resources and tips to navigate the website. As well, Melchor Bernardo wrote an excellent blog post on “English Teaching 101” all about how he uses Flipgrid in his classroom.
Bernardo, M. (n.d.). What is flipgrid and what activities can you do with it? English Teaching 101. https://englishteaching101.com/what-activities-can-you-do-with-flipgrid/.
Evaluation of a multimedia/app or website. (2020). R Campus. Retrieved June 19, 2020, from https://www.rcampus.com/rubricshowc.cfm?code=KX35947&sp=yes&
Fahey, S., Moura, K., & Sarrinen, J. (2019) The educator’s guide to flipgrid. (n.p.).
No emails? Use student IDs! (2019). Flipgrid. Retrieved June 17, 2020, from https://help.flipgrid.com/hc/en-us/articles/360044758574-No-Emails-Use-Student-IDs-
Check out my last blog post in which I explained what multimedia learning is and briefly touched on how to incorporate it into the classroom. Today, I will delve a little deeper into how to effectively use multimedia design as an educator!
Effective Use of Multimedia Learning & Where to Start
There are many principles of multimedia learning that when used correctly, can produce an effective learning method. In Dr. Ray Pastore’s video “What is Multimedia Learning? What is Multimedia?”, he outlines 6 different multimedia learning principles to watch out for when designing a learning activity for your students. They are…
- Split Attention
- Spatial & Temporal Contiguity
- Interactivity Effect
The Principles in Detail
The Split Attention Principle states that it is more effective for learning if educators use words and pictures that are “physically and temporally integrated” (Mayer, 2014, p.8). This way your students don’t have to split their attention between multiple things.
The Redundancy Principle states that presenting information twice (as it is named) is REDUNDANT! Educators don’t need to use text on the screen that repeats what they are saying out loud.
The Coherence Principle states that irrelevant information can actually hurt learning, so educators should strive to keep their content to the point.
The Spatial and Temporal Contiguity Principle states that when corresponding texts and icons are closer together, people learn better,
The Signalling Principle states that if educators “signal” what’s important for learners to understand, they are more likely to remember that piece of information.
Finally, the Interactivity Principle states that students learn best when they are able to go at their own pace. An example would be incorporating “next” and “back” buttons into an online presentation for students to use.
If these principles aren’t incorporated into your lesson plan, you can drastically increase the cognitive load of what you are trying to teach!
Cognitive load is what you can store in your brain before you start forgetting things.
Image retrieved from http://www.neelabell.com
Examples of Principles of Multimedia Learning
When educators “signal” what’s important for learners to understand by putting a star beside the information or by underlining it, they are more likely to remember that piece of information.
Still lost on how to incorporate the Principles of Multimedia Learning into your classroom? Watch the video below for more information! Pay attention and see if the creator is following the Principles of Multimedia Learning or not…
Mayer, R. E. (2014). The cambridge handbook of multimedia learning: 2nd edition. Santa Barbara, CA: Cambridge University Press.
Ray Pastore, Ph.D.. (2018, August 16). What is multimedia learning? What is multimedia? [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-sknUVq1mk&feature=emb_title.
UNMC E-Learning. (2015, August 10). 2 minute teacher multimedia principle. [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sP98_CTjXNo.
Ariana I really enjoyed your blog post this week on multimedia and interactive learning! I strongly agree with your point on living in a technology based world. Due to this and the global pandemic that is currently effecting us, incorporating technology into the classroom is as important as ever. Most schools will remain partially online in the fall (and indefinitely) so I agree that the resources and information we will get from this class will greatly benefit us as educators.
I also want to work with younger students in the future, so I share your interest in learning how to use technology with that age group while keeping screen time low and parents happy. As much as I believe technology is important in the classroom, I would prefer to have my young students outside and interacting with each other. I hope that this class or you will show me how to find a balance of these two things.
Finally, I liked how you provided a short summary of each of the readings from this week. I think that if you continue to do this, it will benefit you greatly after this class is over. I have just been writing down the readings/websites we’ve read in my notes but you’ve inspired me to write blog posts about them now!
What a great read Erin! I really enjoyed your blog post on the importance and definitions of multimedia and interactive learning. You have a very clear voice when explaining these concepts in your blog post which made it both easy and interesting to read. I also liked how you connected what you learned to your prior experience on practicum when you read a picture book to your students. I thought that this made your reflection very strong and meaningful. I taught grade 6 on my last practicum, so I did not read a lot of picture books with them. However, I had a similar experience to the one that you did when I showed my students a YouTube video. They not only were more engaged, but actually remembered more than other single media teaching methods we used.
Moving forward, I’m interested to see how you would incorporate multimedia and interactive learning into your classroom. I know that you have many great ideas from working with you previously, so I hope to learn more from you soon.
What a great blog post! I really appreciate how honest you were when describing your fears for this class. I also find technology very intimidating but I believe your positive attitude going into this class will help you learn lots and succeed! It is important to stretch yourself out of your comfort zone and I am excited to see what you are able to produce during this class. I am also very excited to start this learning process with you as one of your learning pod members.
I liked how you explained the difference between technology-centered and learner-centered approaches to multimedia learning. When I read through Introduction to Multimedia Learning, I did not focus on this topic as much as others, so I found it interesting to read what you had to say about it. With your explanation, I have gained a broader understanding of it now! Personally, I think that I will be using more of the learner-centered approach to multimedia learning in the classroom, but I am interested to see what you think.
What is it?
Multimedia learning is as simple as it sounds. All it means is that students use words and pictures (or multiple forms of media) to learn new content! Educators are most likely already using multimedia instruction in their lesson plans without even realizing it. For example, whenever you use a video, an application, or a diagram, you are giving your students a multimedia learning experience.
Research on multimedia learning has primarily been conducted by Richard E. Mayer and published in The Cambridge Handbook of Multimedia Learning. I thoroughly enjoyed reading the first of 34 chapters in the second edition of his handbook. I especially liked the analogy that Mayer used to describe the importance of multimedia learning. First, Mayer explained how a bicycle tire pump works with just words. When asked a retention question, one could easily remember words from the definition they just heard, but they would most likely struggle to comprehend or apply the information they just learned. However, once pictures are added to the verbal explanation, one would find it much easier to comprehend exactly how a bicycle tire pump functions.
As well, Mayer perfectly explains why multimedia learning is effective since “presenting both [text and pictures] is like presenting the material twice – giving the learner twice as much exposure to the explanation” (2014). When I just read text, I find it difficult to fully understand a concept. Likewise, when I see a picture, if I don’t know the correct words to describe it I need a verbal explanation to help me understand. Presenting students with multiple ways to understand a topic just gives them more of a chance to succeed- and isn’t that all educators want?
Ways to Use Multimedia Learning in the Classroom
There are many ways to easily incorporate multimedia learning into your classroom. For example, one of my favourite methods is to use sketchnote! Sketchnoting is a form of note taking where students use words, sketches and other visuals to condense the information they are trying to retain. As explained on verbaltovisual.com, adding sketches to your notes “taps into parts of your brain that would lie dormant if you only use words to explore ideas” (Neill, 2017). I found sketchnoting very helpful when teaching a second language, such as French! Students could write out the vocabulary word in French, and then sketch a quick drawing of the word to understand its meaning in English.
For more information on sketch-noting, check out my blog post about it.
Mayer, R. E. (2014). The cambridge handbook of multimedia learning: 2nd edition. Santa Barbara, CA: Cambridge University Press.
Neill, D. (2017, August 21) What is sketchnoting? Verbal to Visual. https://www.verbaltovisual.com/what-is-sketchnoting/
I found the process of song writing to be a bit frustrating. I was constantly judging my work as not being good enough and I was unable to think of myself as a beginner. I wanted my song to sound as good as something you would hear on the radio and I did not think that it did. However, with time I was able to recognize the hard work that I put into my song and think of it as a starting point for the rest of my music filled life! I know that I want to continue with song writing and maybe one day I can write something that is good enough to be on the radio, but for now I am proud of the progress that I have made. I think that this is an important life lesson as a future educator to teach my students too. As they all say, practice makes perfect.
The criteria for my song was to write a chorus and 2 verses and for it to be 2-3 minutes long. I also wanted to stay on pitch and hold my ukulele properly. I am happy to say that I achieved all of these things.
At first, I started writing a song about my family but given the recent events with the COVID-19 virus, I decided that I wanted to change the direction of my song. The COVID-19 virus has taken over all of our lives and it’s been hard not to think about anything else. I am a very social person and I rarely spend time at home. Throughout the school year I usually work 4 different jobs and all of those have been cancelled. It has been difficult adjusting to this new routine and social distancing but writing this song has helped me express some of the emotions I have been feeling. I hope that this song will convince people how important it is to stay home and flatten the curve of this virus.
Here it is… Stay Home by Maeve Poulin
Strumming Pattern: DDUUDU
F (x2), Dm(x2), Bb(x2), Dm, C (DUD)
Schools out, doors closed, and we don’t know
Everything’s getting out of control
Once this is done, we’ll sing and dance all night
Right now, there’s time to make this right
Instead of going out all night
Spread love within your own 4 walls
Try something new to not stay blue
Like online yoga or clean your room
Everything you’ve put off you now have time to do
Make a new recipe to eat
Set a challenge for your friends to complete
One day we’ll miss all of this free time, cause…
Schools out, doors closed, and we don’t know
Everything’s getting out of control
Once this is done, we’ll sing and dance all night
Right now, there’s time to make this right
Instead of going out all night
Spread love within your own 4 walls
Support the people who need our help
Lock up and just stay in for them
Fill up the 6 feet with kindness and care
Keep going on we must stay strong
I know you can keep carrying on
F C F
Just know we’re all in this together as one