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The SHA Has it Right!

Saskatchewan Hockey Association
Saskatchewan Hockey Association
]This past weekend I took my hockey refereeing certification course. I haven’t been a referee since my younger days, but as a student I couldn’t think of a better part time job. I get to work when I want to, I get to participate in something I love, and the money is pretty good.

I know what you’re thinking: Kyle, what does this have to do with your blog relating to education, specifically technology? Everything, believe it or not. When I used to go to these officiating clinics back when I was in grade 7 or 8 it was a full day event. You would show up at nine in the morning and stay until somewhere around 4 or 5; a full day. Much to my surprise, things have changed significantly in the past few years. Before showing up to the clinic I was required to do online modules. The last thing I wanted to do was do online modules on top of the full day I thought I going to have to use to do the clinic.

So what did these modules include? They had slides on all the different topics: rules, penalties, procedures, expectations, and safety. Some topics even had excellent images and videos to complement the slides. This would come in very handy for someone who doesn’t quite understand what an offside or an icing is for example. After each set of slides or movies there was usually a quiz that you had to pass in order to move on. Someone who knows nothing about hockey or officiating the sport could quickly start to grasp the game and its confusing rules. And the best part was that the clinic was reduced to only four hours!

Screenshot of the Modules (click to enlarge)
Screenshot of the Modules (click to enlarge)
Whoever thought of doing this course this way is a genius! Not only did it save me half of a day of sitting in an uncomfortable desk, but I didn’t have to go anywhere. It could have only made sense for the Saskatchewan Hockey Association as well: They would have only had to pay their instructors half the hours and rent the classrooms for half of the time. It was really a win-win for both of us.

This clinic really got me wondering. Why don’t teachers take advantage of effective learning tools like online modules? Perhaps some do, but I sure never encountered one as a student. Why not have quick little modules or videos for our students to do as homework? Maybe even just some quick review tutorials on how to do some tasks. How handy would a quick video on how to do long division be for a student who is at home struggling with their long division homework? It would be an invaluable resource to students! I know there are some sites with videos like these kicking around, but what if your teacher is teaching you a different way than the video you stumbled across does? Having that reinforcement and help from a teacher while he/she isn’t their could be just as good as them being their helping with homework.

I think that the SHA has increased effectiveness with their clinics through this method. Why shouldn’t we be trying to increase our effectiveness in our every day lessons? With all the tools at our fingertips, it’s well within our reach.

On a sidenote, if anyone is interested in learning more about the rules of hockey, I believe anyone can take the modules here.

Opinions

  1. Post comment

    I agree with you. Having so many advancements in technology is a great thing, but teachers tend to not use them in the classroom. I think your idea or using the online modules is a good one, it saves the teacher time and if students need extra practice or help, it would be a great tool to use. I’m currently taking KHS 190 online and there are online modules to read, I’m not saying it’s the most exciting thing but it’s convenient. I can read it over whenever I have time and it’s always there if a can’t answer a question. You’ve got the right idea!

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  2. Post comment

    Great post. I need to learn more about hockey… love the game, but I didn’t grow up here. But I do know your post has everything to do with educational technology. You have a good eye for what matters. Consider a career in instructional design.

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  3. Post comment

    I have sat through many a coaching clinic and always thought, “I am sure this can be done faster.” Glad you enjoyed the course. Online modules help students learn at their own pace.

    Dave

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  4. Post comment

    Je suis intéressé but it looks like I need to be part of a regional hockey association to register and view the lessons. I used to drive a Zamboni. Does that count?

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    I think it makes perfect sense for a post about teaching to be inspired by a real life experience. It also suggests that you ‘get’ the art of teaching, something that is gained through a combination of teaching/life experience, mentorship and formal learning.

    Youtube is one of my favourite teaching resources. I love to show short videos to demonstrate, inspire or reinforce aspects of lessons. My plan this year is to have the students create their own content (a big step outside my comfort zone) and make their own demonstration videos. Good luck with teaching, it’s the best job there is.

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    I really want to try to make this work for me and my students. The two problems/roadblocks I see are: not all of my students have access to computers or reliable internet and the time involved in the creation and production of these modules.

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  7. Post comment

    Having been a Coach in minor hockey for several years, I find it suprising that they have even trained you guys…I thought for sure they gave refs an eye exam you were required to fail and then questioned you extensively about your knowledge of the game gained while competing for the Championship in floor hockey during grade three gym class! (LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)

    All kidding aside, I think you are right. Homework is usually nothing more than drill and practice. (And if you really want to set me off just try using “homework” as a major part of the report card mark). Why not post up a couple of links for kids to check out on their internet devices, to give kids a little background knowledge, something that tells them “Hey guys, this is what we are talking about in science tomorrow”. Who knows they might even “google” something that sparks their interest, and go beyond what is required! When is the last time a kid said they did six extra math problems because they were interested?

    Isn’t it amazing that minor sports organizations are making changes in education quicker than some educational institutions!

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    And to set the record straight, I appreciate the work referee’s in all sports do. People just need to remember that the referee’s job is to keep the game fair for the teams and safe for the players. 99.9% of all the hockey games I have seen in the last 15 years have been safe and fair. Keep up the good work. I can’t coach or watch my son (and others) play if you aren’t out there.

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  9. Post comment

    Kyle – you are right on in your thinking about ed. I would love to share your post if you don’t mind. You present such a vivid case for why and how the concept of homework needs be shaken up. And such a practical example of how that can reduce “seat time” in the classroom.

    Thank you for taking the time to make connections to the learning process. Thank you for being transparent in that thinking. Ed needs to hear more voices such as yours.

    Bravo. Please carry on.

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  10. Post comment

    Wow. I can’t believe the response this post has had. This must be that audience you’re talking about Dean! I’ll respond to everyone’s comments in this post, so forgive me, it may be long!

    Shelby- I wish some of my classes would have more of the technique your KHS class does. Sometimes the chalk and chalkboard don’t cut it and get the full message across!

    Dean- For some reason the video in the link didn’t work. But I read the content on the page and I think that idea is brilliant. I can’t count the times I wish I could have had a remote to rewind what my teacher had said. This idea definitely caters to student as an individual and could be incorporated into probably every learning style. Plus, what kid wouldn’t want to use thier iPod more? (I’ve got quite the post in the works on that one)

    Richard- If you have any questions about hockey feel free to contact me! I’ve played since a child and know so much about the game! I’d also love to hear more about the instructional design you’re talking about since I don’t know much about it! (I just added a Contact Me page)

    Dave- I hope SHA will also implement this into the coaching clinics if they haven’t already done so. I love that there IS a faster way to get these clinics done, especially if you’re volunteering your own time. Also, where have you coached in the past?

    Joe- It definitely should include Zamboni drivers! Without them, no one would ever get to play! I’m sorry I thought they would work for anyone. If you want any more information I’ll my best to help you out, just let me know.

    Errin- I hope I get this “art” of teaching. I’m finding myself in almost every situation looking for something that could apply to teaching or I could implement into my teaching in the future. I’d love to hear about those demonstration videos and maybe even see some if possible!

    Leigh- I think this would be a huge problem in a place where I grew up. Just read my “A Lacking Experience” post. I hope school boards begin to see how this kind of technology would not only be nice, but necessary in the near future. As far as the time needed to build them; it would no doubt be time consuming. But I think in the long run it will be so beneficial. As a student, I would love to spend less time listening to lectures, or at least go at my own pace. That way I can spend more time doing what I need to do to learn the concepts.

    Angus- How did you know about the testing process in such detail!? I actually passed the eye exam, so I’m not allowed to do any important games. Haha. If, as a student, I would have had videos to watch or some sort of interactive material to work with I would have been way more inclined to actually do my homework. I think asking kids to watch a quick video would be much more productive than asking them to read a 4 page handout. One of my goals as a teacher will be to spark students’ minds, and if this is one of the ways I can do it I’m more than up for the challenge. PS where do you coach? I’ll make sure not to put my contacts in if I ever ref your games 😛

    Monika- I would be delighted if you shared my post! Homework does need a make over! And with the video and media tools we have, why not do something about it? Why not make learning easier and our kids smarter? They deserve the best!

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  11. Post comment

    I have to agree with you, having been a PE teacher, and now interested in twenty first century learning i get so frustrated with many teachers who live in the past in terms of the technology. With flip cameras , digital still cameras, audio recorders we have so many things to use to enable pupils to enhance their learning both inside and outside the classroom. distance learning could become a reality if we can reach out and encourage teachers to grasp the technology.

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