This morning I am in at Epsom Campus at the Faculty of Education, observing Dawn Garbett teaching her 614 course to fledgling science teachers. My job this morning is to observe in the "video camera" style - recording what I see, hear, notice and think during her lesson.
My particular focus is on pedagogical underpinnings, on and off task behaviour with devices, proficiency with devices, when students are most and least engaged, and anything that interests me.
This is part of a research project aimed to help all of us in the research group reflect on and improve our practice, particularly around the use of devices in class.
The main digital tool utilised in Dawn's very practical, excellent, investigatory (which chips are the crunchiest, which are the oiliest, design an investigation, GO!) lesson was gosoapbox.com; a site that I will investigate further later today as it has the fascinating feature of a confusion-meter for people to anonymously confess their confusion online!
Gosoapbox.com also has quiz, poll and discussion features, although the thread on the discussion board doesn't appear to allow people to respond to others' comments, unlike a blog or Google+, or numerous other tools.
As I sit here and make "critical friend" comments on my notes of Dawn's lesson I wonder how I can be more purposeful in my selection and use of tools, and the benefits they provide for my students.