Saturday, May 2, 2009


The biggest impact on me was how differently I felt about sites such as ning, delicious, blogger, wetpaint(wiki). When I first got into the course I was a big believer that mostly people with no lives used blogger. I am so embarrassed to even utter these words but I want to be honest with you. I never said a word because I didn't want to lose the respect of my professor and my classmates from the beginning. You see, it wasn't until 6 months ago that I decided to get into the ETEC program and I had no idea what I was getting into. Yes, I took a look at the program and the course requirements and it sounded great to me. When I first saw Dr. Mc's syllabus and saw the word blogger....I lost it. "Oh my god...not another one of those." lol  lol

I was quick to judge and feel stupid about it. 

For as long as I can remember, I have always preached to never judge anyone. Well that's great, but what about what they do in order to help people. The means that they impart to other people in order to help them. That is what blogger is, and that is what Dr. Mc was using to help us interact in an educational environment. No, I do not judge people, but sometimes I do judge the ways that they go about their business. It feels silly to confess, but you just don't know just how much I hated blogger...and now I actually like it allot. To say that I have done a 180 is an understatement. I didn't just come out with a greater respect for people who use this technology to help other people, but I am even thinking of ways that I may be able to use it if I get to be an instructor one day. 

My hatred for ning and delicious was never really as much as blogger. I knew of delicious, thought it was a good idea but I just never used it. As far as ning, creating your own social networks so you can interact in privacy with your friends/organizations...not a bad idea either. My biggest aha moment was with blogger. It amazed me really, the feedback that I received from my classmates and my professor means a great deal to me. Most, if not all of my classmates were educators, so it felt great being in such company throughout the semester. 

I would love to use blogger in the future. As to how, I am not certain yet. I am thinking of making like a free for all for my students to just talk it up. Maybe tell them to use the site anonymously, and that if ANYONE abused the site, I would just stop it. It can be a way for them to vent out their complaints/frustrations, and a way for me to better the way I teach.   

Friday, April 17, 2009

Harnessing the force

First, I must practice what I have learned and make sure that it becomes second nature to me. Lets say with powerpoint, I can practice hyperlinking through the slideshow and also taking people to other web pages from the slideshow. Hyperlinking images and objects to have them do what I would like. Things like that, making sure that I know exactly what I am doing and barring any unforeseeable technological disasters, make sure everything goes smoothly. I will not be able to see into the future and make sure everything goes well, but I can have a positive attitude and a few backups just in case. I am confident enough to put together a little mini workshop and teach some people the basics of powerpoint. One day, maybe :):)  I mentioned in my video that I prefer windows moviemaker instead of powerpoint and I was a bit hasty in that statement. Moviemaker is a simple, picture or video moviemaking software that can make you look like a pro. However, it doesn't have the capabilities of powerpoint. You can embed a video of pictures, along with music (which you made with moviemaker) into the slideshow so you don't need to have a bunch of picture slides eating up your memory. In fact, you can teach the two softwares side by side if you wish to go in that direction. They are two excellent tools which educators can use to impart their wisdom ;)  

Bottom prepared, practice, have alternative ways of instruction for problems that may arise. As Dr. JAM said, be alone with your thoughts for a little while and relax and try not to be so nervous.  

Saturday, April 11, 2009


My vision is simple, and yes I do believe in it quite heavily. However, I mustn't be arrogant. I cannot go through trying to become an educator, all the while thinking that I can cure every fear and problem that people may have with technology. I WILL run into people that are just stubborn. I suppose...that is my fear. What will I do if--when I come across that one individual, that first time that doesn't really want to pick up what I am trying to teach? How can I react? What if I have to confront this person in front of classmates? How will I handle that? What should I say? What shouldn't I say? I will do my best to try and teach everyone, I know that is what every educator strives to accomplish. You have to keep in mind one thing, You must not, ever lose your sanity. Because the moment that happens, it will be a different, non-pleasurable experience for you. You have to get it in your head that some folks just do not want to learn that certain something. Maybe everything. What if you are teaching a 2nd, 6th, 8th, or 11th grade class? How will you teach your students? How will you know which ones like and find what you are teaching as interesting and enjoyable, versus the ones that just do not care? I remember my 12th grade computer applications teacher. I also remember my friends in that class, and most of us did not have a problem. He explained the assignments well and we had questions sometimes that he answered. Then there were the 3 or 4 students that just didn't want to put forth the effort. Saying that they were making his life miserable would be an understatement. At least that's what we thought, he was one cool educator. He just did what he had to do, and didn't care about anything else. He put in the effort at the beginning of the school year, and treated everyone like equals, even the troublemakers. After awhile, as long as they turned in their work, half done or not, he was fine. You have to draw a sanity line in your mind and be careful of students like that. Some will not give a second thought to what you are saying...and that is ok. It is their future and you have done what you can. The rest is up to a higher power...if you believe in that type of thing :) So, to answer ALL of the questions that I have asked myself in this post...I simply do not know. I will know when the situation presents itself. I believe that being prepared helps. Keep your cool, your sanity in check, and be calm and enthusiastic with your teaching. Not too much as though to show sarcasm, but enough to show that you like it.  

I can overcome these fears as the weeks/semesters/years roll on. I know that interacting with different types of personalities, be they warm or cold will help me with coping with my fears. I really would like to be an educator one day, and I want to be a warm, inviting one. I know that once I go through a few sessions with students, I can feel more at ease. I know it won't be easy, but it can be if I believe in what I teach.  

I can definitely use some of the TSD's that we have gone through to help with my lessons. It can make me feel more at ease knowing that I know this and can show it to some extent to students. I hope that I can help people overcome their fears. I hope that I can help take out of some peoples minds the notion that once you are over 25, you have no business learning anything. Just give up, make babies, have a family, and just wait for it all to end. I have come across people with that type of mindset, and I do not find it at all amusing. We have all taken different paths in our lives, as long as you are willing, and have patience and understanding, you learn anything. With a few helpful instructors along the way (which doesn't hurt...Dr Mac ;)   )  it can really boost your confidence. Regardless if you are 25 or 65 or 85, you can and will succeed.  

I for sure have to examine the way that I will teach. I have to keep it interesting, because now, in 2009 people have to be wowed to be motivated to learn. Teaching them how to upload videos to YouTube for the world/classmates to see. Teaching them how to make an interactive powerpoint will help them with a presentation. Teaching them sites like blogger, ning, google sites, delicious, they will se just how easy they can make their lives in advancing their knowledge about technology and the web. Imagine if you show someone how to go to their bank website, set up a payee address, and have their bank pay the bill via mail without you having to do anything. Wouldn't that help someone with time restrictions? Wouldn't that help someone who couldn't drive? I think so. Something so simple can change someone's life for ever.

I have to keep a mindset that nothing is too difficult. My continued research may uncover subjects and opinions that I do not agree with, and that is fine. Not every educator, especially in an Educational Technology field will agree with one another. You may have similar teaching styles, but your beliefs shall differ, and more often this is the case. Learning to co-exist with your co-workers will be another battle that will coincide with your teachings. You have to deal with it and see that it doesn't get in the way of your thinking about your lessons.     

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Online Learning

Not to sound to overly simplistic, or arrogant, but an online course is only as difficult as the learner makes it. It is true, that some educators dish out quite a few assignments due to the fact that it is an online course. More often this isn't that case, but you have to take it in stride. I believe that I am a good online student because I like working in the comfort of my own home. I also believe that I bide my time quite well and I see not time constrictions. It helps a bit being young, and working on your degrees one after the other without break while living with your helps a WHOLE LOT :):)
When tackling an online course, make an outline of what needs to be done. Visit the sites you will be working with the most. Register (become a member of) with the sites and write down all of your usernames and passwords. Become familiar with them and email your instructor in case of problem. If your course is so simple as just logging in, grabbing your assignments and going at it, then consider yourself lucky. With a technology course, you may find it overwhelming the amount of info that is presented to you. But please relax, it is...just info. Nothing that requires you to become a rocket scientist to absorb. Take a deep breath, read your material, then proceed. More often than not with a tech, ETEC course, you will be using different sites to post your findings (research) so don't stress. Perhaps some blogging to show your classmates how you feel about a certain subject, and even some critiquing of online articles to show your breaking down of thoughts. Whatever you do, do not FREAK out. You will be fine if you lay it all out, and work on your assignments a little every 1 to 3 days. 

Online learning for the k-12 students can be a wonderful idea. The up and coming generation is already on their cell-phones, on myspace, facebook, youtube, blogger, ning, and so many other sites. Introducing them to some online instruction via the methods they already use will more than likely work like a charm. The instructor however can not get too loose with the students because he/she can lose track of attention from the students. Keep all the blogging assignments separate, or perhaps as extra credit at the beginning to see how it works out. I think this can be an excellent way for classmates to interact with each other. Have them go to a class chatroom and be anonymous. Chat with your students, as an educator and see what is going on with them. This can be an excellent way for someone to overcome a problem, personal or other and can relieve the student of some burden. Talking to someone, even if you do not know exactly who they are, you know its your classmates and it makes you feel at ease. It can offer a different spin on educating students. Nowadays, learning just has to be fun for the students to pay attention. You can't fight fuel with fire ;)  :) 

As far as my philosophy tell me if it ties in to the k-12 environment. Anyone can learn any technologies regardless of AGE ;) With patience and understanding all is possible ;)  ;)  ;)

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Three types of Interaction

Upon finishing the read of Mr. Moore's article, I simply just couldn't agree more. He mentions distance, and how it's definition is used in a widely general sense. We use it to describe the separation between the learner and the instructor...and that's pretty much it. Too few users use the more specific meanings that should be discussed when we mention distance learning. The term distance is used to describe how we learn outside of a set education environment. You can have just as much interaction with the instructor of the course through distance learning, as you would if you were face to face. With email, phone, skype, IM (instant messaging) and blogging, you can really get all the help you need...without having to be in the classroom. There is another word that loses its meaning through a general view of it and it is interaction, as I mentioned earlier. For the majority, interaction is the face to face communication that people, or a group of people have. The year is 2009, and interaction has so many levels that many are not aware of. I mentioned email, phone, skype, IM and blogging earlier, and that is what makes up interaction along with a face to face format. There are so many definitions that take on a general meaning, and most of the times the sub-meanings get swept under. More often than not due to convenience, and without many definitions you have less of a complex outcome. That is what the majority of us believe, more definitions = more complexity. Little do we know, with the many sub-meanings, we have a better understanding of the word(s). 

As important as the instructor is to the classroom, nothing is as important as the content, and what it means to the learner. As Mr. Moore states, without the understanding of the content there is no education. The learner-instructor interaction can help you with better understanding the content however, the instructor can only put so much in someone's brain. We as learners have to take the initiative and try twice as hard if there is a subject matter that we cannot comprehend. The instructor is there to guide us through, and give us the knowledge that we need for the problems. 

The interaction between learner and learner for some isn't very helpful, and for some quite so. It's the way that one looks at the situation. You can be happy that someone else is there knowing the same thing, or be intimidated. You can also be happy that there is another learner there that does not know much; or you can be embarassed and not want help from either the instructor or the other learner. Some are not comfortable with learning together, and some are just fine with it. It's the way of the learners, how easy or how hard something is, is up to them.  

My philosophy/vision can easily be tied in with all of this because my vision/philosophy is simple and can be done by anyone. Anyone can learn any type of technology if they apply themselves, have patience and understanding. You get what you put in, you reap what you sow. Apply this philosophy either online, face to face or combined and you will be fine.   

Monday, March 9, 2009

Desktop Publishing/Movie Maker

How will you use these skills to empower you?

Imagine showing someone how to use a program...and they can actually see a video demonstration of it being used. The term a picture says a thousand words just blew out of proportions, how about a video? :) It can show your intended audience exactly how something is done, and that type of help is worth a thousand words. It can empower us by being helpful towards another person. Yes, it will make us feel good, and it will also help them feel good for being able to clear the hurdle of learning anything!

How do they align with your vision and definition for educational technology?

I like to help people. Being face to face is the ideal way to help people. However, it is a bit unrealistic because being face to face to with someone when we have a problem isn't a normal thing, it never was. It is 2009, and we must take advantage of the technologies that are to our disposal. Showing people how to do something, exactly what they need to do can help them feel at ease. It would be a joyous thing for me to be able to do that in the lives of people. To help them achieve a comfort that they could never achieve...thats the stuff!!:):)

Do you believe that the use of technologies like desktop publishing, movie maker, and other applications which incorporate the use of images is expanding?

Of course its expanding. All you have to do is go to ANY search engine and type Desktop publishing ir movie maker. You will find hundreds of tutorials on how to use these technologies. Along with the turorials, video tutorials, which is the thing now can be found on sites like youtube and can show you anything you want.

If so, why, and what are the implications for education?

The implications is an easier time for the students. Not easier in the way of receiving a grade, but easier in the fact that questions and problems can easily be erased with a click of the mouse.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Windows Movie MakerVid

This isn't great quality guys...sorry!!

Sunday, March 1, 2009


My wiki is a tad simplistic but I would like to believe that it serves a purpose. It is for everyone to just vent a little about anything.
Getting something off of your shoulders can help with stress, can help with keeping your mind sharp and free of clutter. Students can discuss their different subjects, you can vent about your problems, or even ask questions about various computer related problems. In the future, you may also find some simple tutorials on how to do things like resizing your pics in paint:) :)

How do you think Web 2.0 technologies will and/or should impact education?

I think web 2.0 technologies have impacted education, but not to a very helpful extent. The only thing I have seen lately, on the news, is teachers on the secondary school level using text messages to get answers from their students. I have to say that is very clever, but not very productive. Not only that, you are more than likely making some students feel like crap because they do not have cell-phones. We should not take for granted that everyone has a laptop, cellphone, PC, internet at home. We can however give our students opportunities, if they would like, to take part in the cell-phone game. The teacher can hand out a paper that has sites like blogglines and blogger, delicious, ning, that way the student, on his own can go and check this stuff out. In a university level course, I am pretty certain that it is safe to assume that any student can have access to a computer. If not at home, then definitely at the university. However, getting into educational technology below the college level isn't easy. Unless the districts are willing to buy the student laptops for the school year, or pay for the students cell phones and text message bundles. It isn't fair to just plain ask the students to do these things, you may be bruising some hearts. In certain areas of the country, as is with every country, you can probably assume that students can have some of these luxuries. Maybe I am being a little to sensitive, but I guess I am remembering the time when we first moved here when I was 12. I wanted to have a computer, but we couldn't afford it. My first PC at the US was when I was 16 years old. Then I understood what all the fuss was about. Email's, bloggs, and all that stuff. How we can all keep in touch with anyone, anywhere in the world without a hitch. These 2.0 technologies are awesome, and for those that can have access to them, they are another way to make your life a little easier. Imagine never having to remember a site ever again. Just delicious it, and you are set for a bookmark all over the world. I told that to my mother and she was crazy happy. She bookmarks allot of things everyday, and she HAS to be at her home computer to access these bookmarks. Not any more, she imported, around 267 bookmarks to delicious and can use them anywhere. That is what these site can do for us if we embrace them. Let them help us, instead of thinking of them as a nuisance.

I will post about my wiki in a few hours :) :)

Monday, February 23, 2009

Information Literacy

I found a couple of definitions of Information literacy and I swear that I laughed when I read them. I know it may not be very funny to anyone reading, but I have met so many people who are absolutely lazy and want to learn absolutely nothing with technology and or being active in a society...with people. My vision is anyone can learn regardless of age and with patience you can teach anyone. As a future educator, I know for a fact that I shouldn't even be thinking this way, but there are times, there are people out there that really just do not care. As patient of a person as I am, I admit I have just given up on one or two people when it came to showing them a few things around the computer. They wanted to learn, but they did not want to retain any information, nor did they really care for obtaining it in the first place. You have to pick your battles. The definitions I came across were: 

"Several conceptions and definitions of information literacy have become prevalent. For example, one conception defines information literacy in terms of a set of competencies that an informed citizen of an information society ought to possess to participate intelligently and actively in that society."

"The American Library Association's (ALA) Presidential Committee on Information Literacy, Final Report states, "To be information literate, a person must be able to recognize when information is needed and have the ability to locate, evaluate, and use effectively the needed information"

The two above definitions are the ones I like. There are several others, but all definitions encompass what Information Literacy should be for everyone. For me, it is common knowledge. Knowing how to act around people, in conversations with one or two or more. Knowing that the little thing next to the laptop is the mouse that moves the cursor on the screen. Or the touchpad on the keyboard that does the same thing. From the small to the large, there are certain things that people should know. It should be second nature for everyone when it comes to knowing how to act around people. Knowing how to be a decent member of society. Growing up with several cultures makes me feel very lucky, knowing how societies around the world interact has helped me be more patient, and more understanding towards peoples feelings. However, there will be times when I meet people as a future educator, and all of you as educators, when you just have to say..."I give up." With some people, you have to do that to keep your sanity, and keep your Information Literacy in high regards for yourself.