Sparkchasers Episode 20 | Show Notes
Make Your Class Addicting with Media Arts
Have you found yourself wondering how to make your instruction more engaging this past year? That’s a common question I get asked almost on a daily basis. Partially because we’ve all experienced virtual learning and know that students tune out quickly. And also because we are getting tired of presenting lessons in the same old way.
So today I’m sharing a core set of ideas that help me make my classroom addicting to students. Whether it’s with a class of 2nd graders over Zoom or in our online conferences, the way I craft a learning experience is intentional and strategic.
Today we’re talking about how to leverage media arts to create engaging classrooms. One thing I do want to mention is that these strategies connect really well with STEAM. If that’s an approach you’re interested in, definitely check out our Designed to STEAM online course. It comes with 25 PD hours, accredited CEUs, and lifetime access. That combined with today’s episode will help you get well on your way to creating incredible learning opportunities for your students. Let’s dig in.
What Does Social Media Do?
Think about how social media keeps us online and coming back. Why do we spend so much time there? Because it’s sticky. Think about these big platforms and their “stickiness formula”:
- Facebook: Relationships + Curiosity + Entertainment
- Twitter: Fast Updates + Limited Character Count
- Instagram: Visual-Focus + FOMO
- Tik Tok: Video + Entertainment
- Clubhouse: Audio + FOMO
Making Learning Sticky
Social media is ONE form of media. So let’s start there and work backwards into ways we can use media as a whole to make learning sticky:
- Leverage the tools students use. Don’t be afraid of the apps, social media, or websites students are already using outside of school. Bring them in whenever possible and use them for your lessons.
- Do what Artists Do. Artists look at current conventions, think about what they can pull from the core idea, and then create something new with it. Use this same process for building sticky learning experiences.
- Don’t be afraid of innovation. Innovation is going to ruffle some feathers. It’s going to make you feel alone. That’s okay! You’re a trailblazer and that means it’s going to get uncomfortable. As I tell all of our certification students: you’ve got to get comfortable with being uncomfortable for a while. It’s the only way you’ll grow.
Leverage Media Arts with STEAM
So what’s a natural way to make this happen? Media Arts! The National Endowment for the Arts defines media arts as “all genres and forms that use electronic media, film and technology (analog and digital; old and new) as an artistic medium or a medium to broaden arts appreciation and awareness of any discipline. This includes projects presented via film, television, radio, audio, video, the Internet, interactive and mobile technologies, video games, immersive and multi-platform storytelling, and satellite streaming.”
We can easily connect media arts with STEM to provide both a sticky learning experience and a robust, inquiry-driven lesson. Here’s a few examples of how to do that:
- Build a Website
- Host an App Mashup Contest
This is just the tip of the iceberg for creating learning that is relevant, engaging, and meaningful. After all we’ve learned from the global pandemic, one this for certain: keeping students (and adults!) engaged online is a challenge. But it’s not one we’re trying to solve alone. Let’s use the work from all around us to build classrooms that reach beyond a set time and place. Learning is a constant!
I’d love to hear your thoughts and questions about this topic. Remember, you can use the ask me anything button below to share with me your ideas and what’s bubbling to the surface for you. And if you are enjoying the show and know someone who could benefit from our discussions, please share the podcast with them. Together, we can chase the spark of our ideas and make a brighter future for everyone. I’ll see you soon.
Have a Question?
Do you have a question about today’s episode or need help with something? Let me know using the button below and I’ll make sure to chat about it on an upcoming episode.