With access to technology, students of all ages can consume a wide range of content. But technology tools can also turn students into content creators.
When students make the shift from content consumption to content creation they employ a range of higher order thinking skills. They must problem solve, collaborate and produce something that serves a purpose. They demonstrate their understanding of a topic by creating a product that is shareable with a wide audience.
Students can create content for many purposes: to tell a story, demonstrate understanding or inform others, just to name a few. Your students could film a video with their smartphone, edit it in iMovie and upload it to a class blog. This could be a public service announcement connected to a current events issue you have studied in class. Content creation could also involve making a multimedia research report using an iPad app like Book Creator. Students could then share the iBook with fellow classmates to help them study for an upcoming exam.
Content creation can happen as part of a unit assessment, to check for student understanding, or as part of the activities embedded throughout your unit of study. This might take place in class everyday for a week or as an after-school project. It’s important that students have access to content creation tools like an iPad, digital camera or laptop computer.
Students can share content that they have created in a variety of ways. They might upload or share a link to their work on a class website or school twitter feed. Student work can also be shared with others as part of a district celebration of student creations. When students know that their work will be shared with others it gives a clear sense of purpose and established an audience.
The Common Core State Standards discusses expectations for students as content creators. This includes writing and publishing written work that incorporates digital tools and media. Students are also expected to incorporate digital content into presentations as speakers. View the Common Core State Standards for Writing and Speaking and Listening here.
Providing opportunities for content creation can inspire students to dive into course material. You can establish a clear context and audience for their work while they create a product that is shareable with a wide audience!
Monica Burns is an EdTech & Curriculum Consultant and Apple Distinguished Educator. Visit her site ClassTechTips.com for more ideas on how to become a tech-savvy teacher.