Technology Jigsaw

Technology Jigsaw Broadcasts: Gifted and Talented Team Reports Findings
Darren Akerman, EdD.

As we all know technology has become a significant part of our lives, particularly for young people who are often quite receptive to its influence. As part of an extended Gifted and Talented unit, students in Grades 5 through 8 conducted studies in collaborative teams to highlight various aspects of technology. Using a research-based approach the teams searched peer-reviewed articles, journals and other valid sources to address the following:
  1. How the Internet Changed the World
  2. The Perils and Promise of Big Data
  3. The Influence of Social Media on Our Society
  4. A Brave New World: the Dilemma of Smart Phones
News Studio DeskStudents learned the rigorous process of citing sources in APA 7 (American Psychological Association, version 7), which is standard format for doctoral research and constructed their scripts with relevant graphics. After studying reportorial techniques, they developed video broadcasts highlighting their findings. They learned, for example, that the average adult checks their smart phone seven times per hour, or that big data can present privacy issues. Mrs. Brayley helped with cameras, microphones, and a green screen to add a highly professional quality to the broadcasts.

The unit focused primarily on critical thinking skills and building awareness about technology in the 21st century. Since technology is so prevalent, we believe it is important to develop an understanding about its positive and negative effects in a balanced a rational approach.

Student looking at cameraStudents made startling discoveries about how technology impacts our world. Ana observed that “One in five children have a smart phone by age eight, and that the average human attention span has been reduced by 4.5% since 2000.” Madi noted that the world of big data is often measured in zetabytes. Phoenix added that “Reginald Fessenden was the first person to transmit a radio voice from one broadcast tower to another in 1906.”

The unit will introduce a forthcoming exploration of formal logic and debate with an emphasis on topical student choice and a thorough understanding of fallacies of relevance.

Please enjoy their video presentations below: