Sunday, February 28, 2010

February 28, 2010

A teacher standing up in front of the class teaching with technology while students are at their desk using laptops

Richard Miller: This Is How We Dream Parts 1 and 2
Click Here to watch the videos

These two videos were very interesting. Richard Miller says that writing has changed from being in books and on paper to word processing, and that research can be found from libraries all over the world, that a student is not limited to their school or library anymore. One can now find information in a matter of seconds, and this should be taken advantage of. Writing exists in two forms, a "dual life" as Miller says, in a print based form and a web based form. The web based form has much more advantages primarily that one can share knowledge infinitely. To me, that statement has so much power behind it because of all the capabilities of learning and growing a person can encounter by having access to infinite knowledge. Technology allows so many benefits to collaborative work, one can now add visuals and sound to their text; allowing a better experience for an audience on the topic being discussed. There are so many entries to sounds and images that one can find over the Internet that can be put together in one unit to make a very solid presentation.

Richard Miller says that "we as educators must be into the idea of sharing information freely." I completely agree with him, when you share your knowledge of things, I think the world can only benefit from it. In regarding technology, he says to not only use it but produce it, see how it's being put together, produce alternate stories, distribute information freely. He states in regards to the limitations and restrictions of technology, we place them on ourselves, but he does recognize that access can be a problems. He wants writing to go beyond word processing, and to produce compositions that are beautiful with audio and pictures. He says that technology is a way to push ideas into culture, and that we need to be at the front edge of that. I haven't exactly thought of technology that way before, so I enjoyed the way he put that. He says in order for all this to happen, the education system needs resources and inspiring teachers, teachers who teach visual literacy. The main goal being not the technology itself, but what technology makes possible; sharing and articulating dreams.

I do not know if I am fully prepared to write with multimedia but I am definitely trying to learn how; hence the purpose of taking EDM310. I'm open to all possibilities of learning; anything that can benefit my students is definitely something I'm not opposed to trying. I think my students will be able to write using multimedia probably better than I will be able to, but I will help guide them along the way and teach them with the best of my abilities how to use the tools to succeed.

The Networked Student by Wendy Drexler
Click Here to watch The Networked Student

I love the simplicity of the visuals in this video, they were very effective in the overall message of this video. I believe that the main point as was stated, was connectivism. That the connections that are made and used with technology are more important than the technology itself. Teachers make students responsible for their own learning. A student can make a collection of websites or a Personal Learning Network, for a project or a subject. They can use Google Scholar to find respectable information to use and then blog to express their opinion. They can use iTunes U and have access to the best professors in the world, and then again share what they've learned with the world so others can turn around and learn from them. Students learn information management.

In this video, a question was asked and answered. "Why would a networked student need a teacher?" The answer, the teacher teaches students how to build a network and how to take advantage of learning opportunities. They provide guidance when a student gets stuck and needs help and they teach how to communicate properly. They also instruct how to distinguish between good and bad information, or useful and useless, and they can offer reassurance and make a student feel proud of themselves when they have accomplished a job well done. They also show a student how to be a scavenger of information and how to organize their information, all in hopes that a student will continue on what they have learned and put it to good use. A goal I believe of every good teacher; tech literate or not.

I am not quite sure if I'm ready to completely give in to try all these things with my students. Well, let me put it this way, I am willing to use and teach all of these resources and technology with my students, and I believe that teaching a student to teach themselves should always be encouraged and almost enforced, but I don't feel that it should replace an actual human teacher explaining a subject or topic. For myself at least, there's just something about a person actually talking and explaining something to me that helps me understand what they're trying to say better. So, I just don't feel like I will ever be able to tell my students, today we are going to be discussing the America psyche, figure out yourself what I'm talking about. Of course I do believe that my students could very well figure out for themselves what I'm talking about if I taught them how to use technology properly to do this or maybe even not, considering that the 21st century student can't imagine a world without computers, Google, and technology. If they listen better than read, they could listen to podcasts and if they're more visual they could watch a video or movie on the subject. I know that today's students do this all the time to learn about they're favorite actors or another topic that interests them, and that they could benefit very much from this approach of learning and therefore, teachers should not ignore the advantages of using technology to teach students. But again, for myself I learn very effectively when a teacher, in person, is teaching me, and I feel that I can not be alone on this method of learning. So basically, I don't feel that teachers should only teach students how to use technology to teach themselves the subject, but actually continue to teach students the subject. A teacher could finish a lesson and then pose a question to students and then have them research the answer for themselves. The student could blog about what they found, and use multiple different technological resources to make a project on the topic. A teacher could use technology in the classroom, in person, to teach students, and they are so many ways a teacher could use and should use technology to teach students. I just don't feel the teacher should be replaced with technology.

I don't feel that I am fully prepared to be a teacher of a networked student, but through this class and my PLN and my continuance of wanting to learn how, I believe I'm getting there.

Michael Wesch- Toward A New Future of Whatever
Go Here to watch this video

I am not quite sure what exactly to say in regarding how this video relates to my personal life, current experiences, and future professional work as a teacher, but I am glad that I watched it. I really don't use technology that much to make connections with people, the most I do is Facebook and Twitter; other than that I prefer a more personal method of communicating with people. But that's just me and I do realize that their are a great many of possibilities of connecting with people using technology, such as YouTube. I definitely believe I will use YouTube as a teaching tool in my classroom. Today's generation indifferent, narcissistic, self-absorbed.....never. (Hence, the sarcasm) Actually, I have mixed feelings on this topic. Although I feel that there are people whose priorities are being recognized and getting their five minutes of fame, and will do this at all costs like the parents that pretended their child was trapped in a balloon to be on t.v, and the millions of YouTube videos of people doing outrageous things hoping they will stand out and be recognized, I think there is some real genuine human connections between it all. I definitely agree that technology make a person more self-aware. Wesch says that these forms of communicating create less social anxieties, this I have to disagree with. Communicating through technology gives me more anxieties because I feel like I have one shot to show what I am made of, and since I am not exactly having a conversation I can't adjust myself and what I am saying based on the other person's reaction because I don't even know who exactly my audience is. It's also awkward talking to yourself and I definitely believe it creates "context collapse"

I know lots of people that post videos on YouTube and that use media as a number one way to communicate with others. Humans seek connection with other humans, its human nature to do so. I feel that technology makes this easier to do so, it forms communities of people that otherwise would most likely not have been formed and therefore without a doubt should be used in education.


  1. Excellent post.

    I want to especially applaud "...but I am definitely trying to learn...I am willing to use and teach all of these resources and technology with my students, and I believe that teaching a student to teach themselves should always be encouraged and almost enforced..."

  2. Like Dr. Strange, I also thought that your comment on how you are trying to learn was a GREAT point. There are always going to be new and more up-to-date software that is going to come out. The main thing is that as when you become a teacher that you make an effort to learn these resources, because this is what your students will need to be successful in the classroom and in life.