Sunday, September 11, 2011

Blog Assignment 3

        Peer review is something I have always had trouble with. People used to tell me that I would not be successful as a high school teacher because I am "too nice." I would simply respond and remind myself that it is different when you have to talk to children and tell them what they did wrong. Facing your peers is always scary at every age.
Green Dinosaur ripping up the words Peer Review
        I have always hated it when teachers had me switch papers with another student. I would either have the student that clearly did not even read my paper (because it was full of mistakes) and say "nice job" or I would have the exact opposite, the kind of student that wants to make your paper bleed when you know your original word choice fit perfectly. I can't say I was the perfect partner either. If I was not 100% sure that they made a mistake, I just would not mark it. I would only give compliments and correct the obvious mistakes, like double negatives or not putting a period. Watching these cute videos and slideshow helped me see that it is fine to correct a peer's paper if you do it in a smart way. Compliments, suggestions, and corrections are key.
      After watching all of these helpful things, I felt confident to go and critique my classmate's blog. However, when I went back and read her blog I had to search for errors. It is clear that she proofreads her blog posts. I had to search for mistakes. The only mistakes I could find were simple errors like saying "he discover" instead of "he discovered." A few comma misplaces and a comma splice was also found. It was obvious that she just overlooked these simple mistakes. I knew that these things were not "big enough" errors to correct her on. If she constantly used double negatives and used many more comma splices I would probably take the time to write her an email. I would not comment on her blog because this blog is public for everyone to read, including her future boss. I feel like pointing out mistakes publicly is unnecessary when there is other ways to comment. Thankfully, my classmate cares enough to proofread though.

"It's Not About Technology" by Kelly Hines
        After reading Kelly Hines' article, "It's Not About Technology," I felt happy she admitted it is not just about having computers in every classroom. It is more about how the teacher acts in order to have successful students. She gave her readers four things teachers should keep in mind. The first tip was that teachers must be learners. They must be willing to learn and explore in order to keep up with the fast growing technology. Teachers must also keep in mind that teaching and learning are two different  things.
        Teachers must see it as a successful day when students learn something new. Learning must be the goal of the day and it is important to remember that not all students learn the same. Another tip she gave was that technology is useless without good teaching. Learning is not about computers, but proper training for the teacher and an open mind that's ready to learn. Teachers must also remember that they can be a 21st Century teacher without technology; it all about willing and wanting to learn and share that knowledge with students.

Karl Fisch: Is It Okay To Be A Technologically Illiterate Teacher?
        I was surprised after reading Karl Fisch's blog, "Is It Okay To Be A Technologically Illiterate Teacher?" Fisch first starts off by reminding his readers that he was in a bad mood when he wrote this article back in 2006. He did not think it was the right time to publish the article, but he still stands by what he said.
        I have read many articles and seen many teachers talk about how important it is for teachers to learn more about technology; however, I have never read such a strong opinion. He stated, "If a teacher today is not technologically literate-and is unwilling to make the effort to learn more- it's equivalent to a teacher 30 years ago who didn't know how to read and write." Although I believe technology is important for teachers to learn, I did find this a little extreme.
Teachers have to know how to read and write in order to grade papers, teach students, and to communicate. In most of today's classrooms technology is not even used much. That does not mean that it should not be used; it just means that his statement was a little harsh. If he would have said in 10 years it would be equivalent then I may have agreed. He said "a teacher today" though. Most teachers are lucky if they have a dry erase board and not a chalkboard in their classrooms. They are blessed if they have a smart-board around. Many teachers do not care about technology because they do not have it in their classrooms.

Gary Hayes Social Media Count
        On Gary Hayes' Social Media Count website, he shows what is happening in real time. These facts worried me. They are happening so fast. It makes me wonder how people know all this and who keeps track of all this information. After the 165 seconds on the page, I paused the screen. Just during that short amount of time 1,918,977 items are being shared on Facebook. 5,756,941 videos are being watchied on YouTube. 3,837,963 searches are being made on Google. $11, 042 are being spent on virtual goods in the US. This one surprised me the most. I honestly thought a lot more money would be spent than that. The YouTube one also surprised me because I did not realize just how popular YouTube was.
Media in real time. Numbers shown after 165 seconds
      This is very important information for me to learn as a future teacher. It goes to show me that I am not the only one in the world that is on a computer right now. People from all over the world are doing things online that I do everyday as well. Without this technology we would not have the knowledge we have now. It is important to try to keep up as much as possible with the rest of the world so that I can succeed and help my students succeed in life.

Michael Wesch: A Vision of Students Today
        After watching Michael Wesch short YouTube video, "A Vision of Students Today," I had mixed emotions. A part of me felt selfish; another part of me felt hopeful. A big part of me thought, "Wow, college is worse than I thought." I am glad I am in school because I do feel like I learn something everyday. Many of my classes feel helpful for my future jobs. However, after viewing many of the signs the students were holding in the video, it pretty much made me depressed. Only 18% of teachers know your name. I honestly think it is less than that. I have only had a few teachers take the time to actually know I exist. Even in high school I started responding to Katherine or Caitlyn or even Sarah or Stephanie (my older sisters). I also agree with the statistic about only completing 49% of the readings assigned by teachers. Now that I am taking so many literature classes, I feel overwhelmed when each teacher assigns 100 pages to read a day. I become stressed and fall behind because of this. I blame this on me though, not the teachers. If I balanced out my time better I would not be so stressed.
Woman stressed cartoon
They said that with all the things students do everyday (7 hours of sleeping, talking on a cell phone for 2 hours, watching TV, online for 3 hours) the total would be over 26 hours a day. This is impossible considering there are only 24 hours in a day. Do many college teachers assign too much work to be done in one day? Yes. However, students do not have to spend 3 hours online every day and 2 hours on the phone or watching TV.
      I do agree we need to do something about buying hundred dollar textbooks that do not even get open. This is just awful. They should offer textbooks online for free or even a couple of dollars. There is no need to buy a book that will not even be open. Especially after the statistic that the college student will be 20,000 dollars in debt once she graduates. Sadly, since I am going to be a teacher I am going to have a hard time paying off these student loans. However, after seeing that over 1 billion people make less than a dollar a day I feel selfish for even dreading my future salary. This is crazy; that student's laptop in the video costs more than what many people make in over a year.
        "I did not create the problems, but they are my problems." This is true. Many believe technology can save us. I am not entirely sure how technology can fix everything, but it is a good start by teaching it in schools. By simply writing on a chalkboard, students do not get to experience pictures or videos or see anything interesting while learning. Having technology in the classroom could help students become interested in learning and teaching new ways.


  1. "I feel like pointing out mistakes publicly is unnecessary when there is other ways to comment." ...are other ways...

    You interject an interesting caveat: if there are other ways to comment.
    I am working on a post dealing with these issues.

    "If he would have said in 10 years it would be equivalent then I may have agreed." It's been 5 years since he wrote the post! Can we afford to wait any longer?

    "Many teachers do not care about technology because they do not have it in their classrooms." Is changing rapidly and certainly the vast majority have technologies - in their classrooms!

    "I am not entirely sure how technology can fix everything, but it is a good start by teaching it in schools." Technology can't fix everything. Nor can you. Another point: we have to use technology as a part of the learning process. Teaching technology is not so important.

  2. Dr. Strange,

    Thank you for your comment.

    You proved my point exactly right. Even after proofreading I mess up my subject-verb agreement. This is why I believe it is unnecessary to point out mistakes publicly; small grammatical errors mostly occur simply because they are overlooked. Pointing out errors publicly will only make students resent the class because the fear of embarrassment.

    I liked your point about how it is more important using technology in the classroom rather than teaching technology.

    I certainly hope more teachers start to receive and use more technology in their classroom.

  3. Technology can help us all... if we know how to use it effectively! :]