Monday, April 27, 2009

Integration and Engagement Using Technology

Being comfortable in what you are teaching is a plus, not that you have to know “EVERYTHING” but have a general knowledge of the technology being used. Today’s kids are way ahead of the adults in this area and are not afraid of making mistakes and they seem to be able to figure things out very easy. Their minds seem to be digitally wired. It is like the little kids on the ski slopes, they just know how to ski and have no fear.

The two things that I would like to expand on when I get into a classroom are movie maker and wiki’s. I would like to have kids bring in pictures of their family and of things that interest them, scan the pictures and have the kids make a movie using the pictures adding what every music they so desire. This could also be done as a school project. Take pictures throughout the year and put a movie together to show at the end of the year. Using the wiki, kids can give reviews of books that they have read, so that others can determine if they would like to read that book or not. This will bring awareness to the library and hopefully promote reading at the same time.

It is not where we start with technology, but just the fact that we start. With technology we are never finished, due to the fact that just when we learn how to use the software that is out a new and updated version comes out and we have to start all over.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Overcoming Technology fears

I would say that my worst fear is the not knowing. There is so much that I do not know about technology. Therefore it makes it hard to implement technology in to your lesson, if you yourself do not totally understand. Today’s kids seem to know how to do everything. They just get on the computer and go. Today’s kids have grown up in a technology world, where as I did not. With this class I feel that I have learned so much to help prepare me when I make that move into the classroom and the integration of technology. It is one thing being able to know how to do a power point, wikis, blogs, or using google sites, but being able to teach others how to do them. Knowing how and teaching are two different things.
I want to know more and learn more about technology. There is much more out there that would be fun to learn. The thing is I don’t know enough about technology to even ask to learn about them, so I just take any skill that I can get. I ask questions when I don’t know, even if it makes me look like a fool, but that is the only way that I am going to learn. The more classes that I take that requires the use of technology or is a technology class the better off I will be when I get in the classroom. The thing is I can’t quit learning because technology is not going to stop and the kids of our future are technology based.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Online Learning - The Student

Online Learning – The Student

I feel that I have been very successful so far at online learning. As I said in my other post, I feel that you get out of online learning what you put into it. I will say this about myself though, I do not manage myself very well. I tend to put off till I have to do the assignments. The only reason that this is getting done now and not Wednesday night is because Dr. Mac said we had to do them early. All students work different and at their own pace and that is what online learning can give them. Some have it done the day the assignment is assigned and others like me, will wait till the last night. But if I can pass and do quality work then it should not make a difference. Online courses can and are effective if the students put forth the effort to do the work!

I don’t agree but I can see how online or virtual classes might work in some situations for K-12. If we are talking about young kids taking classes that are all on line and have NO SOCIAL interaction with other kids then no way. Kids need social interaction. God I can’t believe I am saying that as much as I say every day to get your hands off of each other and to get quiet so I can give instructions and we can leave to go into the hall.  But they do need this. They also need to get away from MOM!!!! To me kids need to be hands on and to be able to ask questions and have answers NOW. They need that feeling that someone cares. If they were sent to school that had online learning as extra learning then that would be ok. I see kids with disabilities that might keep them from going to school using online learning. I see older kids taking online learning, and maybe working as well. I can see it working with older students. Boyd talks about students wanting freedom and with online classes this allows them that freedom. There are cases where I see online learning working in K-12 just not very many. I would not want my child to take all online classes and she would not do very well. She is a very social person.

I feel that the students can learn. Technology is changing and we have to change with it. I said above that I think it would work in some cases. I would like to see it in action with the K-2 students and see how it really does work and would it work with a school like mine. This is a hard one for me. I feel that in some cases that online learning would benefit kids K-12 and others it would be the worse thing for them. That is where face to face learning you get to know your students, where here you would not. I guess it would just depend on the student. But I do feel that having online learning or virtual learning for kids in a face to face would benefit them.

Post 6 Online Learning

Online Learning – Facilitating Interaction Online

All students learn differently and as an educator we have to address this. People take online classes for different reasons as well. Whether it is face to face or online you have to have content to be learned. That is the most important. The class was chosen for a reason. Some times you choose a class for the instructor, but most of the time you have to take the class no matter who is teaching it. Distance learning does have its disadvantages due to the fact that you are not all sitting in a classroom meeting face to face. If you have a question you can not just ask or ask your class mate sitting next to you. You do not get to know your class mates so it does have its disadvantages. But it has its advantages as well. If you are a person that can learn on your own and do not need that interaction with others and like doing things on your time then distance learning is for you.

Yes I have taken all my class but one online and have enjoyed them all. I think that you get out of them what you put into them. I have made friends through taking classes on line and have met some outside of class and still stay in touch with them. I have not walked away from a class yet that I have not learned something that I will be able to use. I also believe that if you are the type to sit back and not ask then the instructor is going to think everything is going ok with you. But that would be the same even if you were meeting face to face. You have to ask if you don’t understand and they will help.

How does this align with my educational technology philosophy, well you have to have all three types of interactions to be a successful teacher. In a classroom you have to be there for your students, you have to provide a good learning content for them to buy into and you have to have learning going on from each other. We can all learn from each other if we just take the time to listen.

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About Me

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I live in Rockwall, Tx. and have been teaching Physical Education for 15 years. I have taught in Mesquite for the last 9 years. I decided that I would get my Masters in Library Science so here I am going in a totaly different direction in my life. I have a daughter who is 12 going on 22, but who is the love of my life. She plays select soccer in Dallas and I spend all of my time carting her all over creation to games, practice and tournaments. My time is her "social life". Before soccer she showed horses and we were on the road to horse shows. She was very good at that as well, but had to make a choice between the two when she went select and so she chose soccer. Besides my daughter I have 5 dogs, 2 cats and 2 horses that I share my life with.