EDU 5352 Instructional Technology—Reflections

       I knew that I would be learning about using technology in the classr...
as I worked through the assignments of this course.

       The quick pace of the course prevented me from experiencing my...
to get to it and just push those buttons. Digital natives are driving the train, and I’m

getting on now.

       Blogs ca...
Edu 5352 Week 5 Blog Assignment
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Edu 5352 Week 5 Blog Assignment

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Edu 5352 Week 5 Blog Assignment

  1. 1. EDU 5352 Instructional Technology—Reflections I knew that I would be learning about using technology in the classroom. As an instructional leader in my school district, I have been on the front lines of the battles that go on between the Curriculum and Technology departments. It’s a symbiotic relationship, yet they often try to work independently of each other. I thought this course would provide future directions for both areas. It would give me some useful ideas about integration so that I can help move my district in the direction that will most appeal to students and teachers alike. Although this course was labor intensive, I benefited from completing the readings, creating the blog, activating the hyperlinks, and uploading the assignments, I also benefited from the lectures and the round table discussions. In completing the work, I improved my own technology skills, and I set some goals for working with our Technology Department. I feel that I have some research-based information to share with them, and that they will respond positively. So yes, this course aligned with the outcomes that I hoped that I would gain. As a tech mate on my campus, these outcomes are relevant to the work that I do at my campus. One of our campus plan goals is to integrate technology with instruction and to increase campus communication with students, parents, and our community. Learning about blogging, wikis, RSS feeds, Google docs, moodle and other discussion boards provide tools for collaboration, communication, and integration. These tools are familiar to our digital natives and can help them power up at school. I was truly a novice learner with most of these tools. My digital immigrant persona was alive and well
  2. 2. as I worked through the assignments of this course. The quick pace of the course prevented me from experiencing my new learning at a deeper level. I wanted more than a survey approach. Of course, I can return to the readings and technology tools after the conclusion of the course, and I will do that as I complete my work as a tech mate. My tech mate responsibilities require that I teach others what I have learned, and I want to become more skilled before I try. The course was limited to creating a blog. It would have been great to have created both a wiki and a discussion group too. I’m going to have to try these out on my own. Ideally, technology tools should be integrated into every course offered. It should not be a stand-alone course. Blogs, wikis, discussion boards and groups could be created in each and every course of the Educational Leadership masters program. Beginning this course during the Thanksgiving week holidays was a challenge. We traveled to New York and stayed through the weekend. In addition, the number of responses required on the Discussion Board were excessive. I can certainly understand responding to each article and responding to a classmate’s work, but 24 responses were too many. I feel that the quality of the responses waned, and the rush to get them completed left little opportunity for complete absorption. The discussion board requirements also took away from focusing on the assignments. I learned that the world of technology waits for no one. The train has left the station and you either get onboard or you get left behind. Regardless of the drawbacks, we must recognize the benefits and figure out how to make it safe, secure, and applicable to our classrooms and campuses. I am willing to jump in and I will stay with new learning until I master it. I learned that I’m pretty good at it. I certainly am not afraid
  3. 3. to get to it and just push those buttons. Digital natives are driving the train, and I’m getting on now. Blogs can be huge in education. They are the connection to a global and digital world. Traveling through blogs is open and unrestricted. We just have to think creatively about all the different possibilities for using them. They can bring professional development for teachers to the desktop, and they can open doors to students who may not have access any other way. They can be a great communication and learning tool. blog postings can be available to absent or distant students. They can connect students to experiences unrestricted by travel. They are wonderful tools for communication during a crisis, like the Swine flu. They can announce important events, Swine flu shots. They can provide information about rezoning meetings, a popular topic among parents. When districts or campuses are considering new initiatives, they can get feedback from blog postings. Steps should be taken to prepare and inform all bloggers about the risks and hazards that come right along with blogging. Personal information should never be provided. When students or teachers post online, they should be taught to protect their personal information. They should be taught cyber ethics, and they should be warned about cyberbullying. They should be provided with procedures to follow if they encounter any of these situations.

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