Sunday, November 13, 2011

Blog Assignment # 12

This is my EDM 310 assignments for Blog Assignment # 12.

Part 1. Watch the YouTube video, Engage Me. Write your thoughts about the video and how you will engage your students' learning. Be sure to proofread your paragraphs. (2:40)
Part 2. If you Google "anti-technology" and "negative effects of technology" you will see many different articles written by people who do not believe technology is important in society. Some blogs are so against technology that the people writing them use inappropriate words to describe their hate for this. My assignment for this is to think from their point of view. We have read and watched many things about the positive effects of technology, but try to think of what people may consider negative effects and what they would say. After listing the negative effects, think about you would say if a student's parent listed these concerns to you. How would you explain to the parent the benefits of using technology in your classroom?
        I chose the YouTube video Engage Me because it reminded me a lot of a YouTube video we watched earlier this semester,  A Vision of Students Today. Where both videos contained students holding up signs mentioning their life and technology, Engage Me showed the younger side of students. When most people think about using technology in the classrooms, they are probably thinking about high school students. Younger students need to be engaged and learn with items other than a paper and pencil too. This video is great because it shows that even though they are young, they use a computer every day. They also play educational games on their Nintendo, they instant message, they use a podcast, and they blog.
Screen shot image from video. Boy holding up two signs that say,
        My favorite part in the video is where a boy held up a sign that said, "I wrote a story in my book and my teacher read it." Then another boy held up a sign that said, "I posted a story online, 2000+ people read it." This really shows how great blogging can be. Yes, it is important for students to receive feedback on their writing from their teacher in order to make progress. However, having feedback from people across the globe and knowing thousands of people will read their post will probably make the student want to try harder in improving their writing skills. I also liked it when the students held up signs that said they want to "join in with other learners globally" and "enable me to be a global citizen." These are so true. Communicating with other people across the world will make students feel important and learn about different cultures.
        For part 2 of this assignment, I tried to think a little differently. Instead of watching a video or reading a blog about how great technology is, I wanted to assign the opposite. I think to fully believe in something, you have to see other sides of the belief and how others view it. This class has really made me want to use technology in my classroom. I honestly believe that the world is changing and so our education has to change too. However, I know in the future I will meet many people who disagree with me on this. This is why I made this an assignment. How are you going to respond when a parent or another teacher tells you all their negative thoughts about technology? This is something we need to think about now so we are ready to respond; we need to think "outside the box" and try to see from their eyes. I planned on assigning a blog to read about anti-technology, but I could not find a "clean" one. Most of the blogs contained words that I thought were inappropriate; I did not want to have a link on my website to such sites. This is why I only assigned to think about the negative side.
        In order to complete this assignment, I had to think back before I started taking this class. I admit, I was not supportive of technology in schools.
Cartoon picture of Carmen Sandiego
In fact, the thought of taking this class caused a few mental meltdowns. I knew how to do about 7 things on a computer: turn it on, get on Internet Explorer or AOL, sign into my mail, sign on Facebook, play Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?, type on Word, and turn the computer off. Yes, this is about it. Watching the videos of children doing podcasts, blogs, and using a SmartBoard made me realize how much I needed to learn. So when thinking about my life before August, I came up with a few reasons people probably are not wanting to get on "the technology train."
        The first thing, they are scared of technology. With movies like Terminator and Eagle Eye, we have every reason to be scared. When technology becomes smarter than us and decides to destroy humans, we can panic. However, how many robots do we actually see on a daily basis? We live in world where the terminator likes humans; he was even governor. "Scared" can mean two things here though. People may be scared of the machines taking over, or they may be scared of being overwhelmed and not being able to do it. It is understandable for somebody new to computers to stress out. It can be overwhelming with all the different websites and applications, but we need to just take it one step at a time. If a 5 year old can learn to use it, so can adults.
      Another reason people might not want technology in schools is because they believe it makes students lazy. People might say that students not writing with a pen and paper are becoming lazy. Anybody who actually believes this needs to take EDM310. This class is not for lazy students. In fact, this class has been more work than any of my other classes I have ever taken. The odd thing is, I have not used any paper or pens for this class. Being a (future) Language Arts teacher, I will make sure my students write with pens and on paper. However, I will also make sure they are able to type on their blog and create podcasts.
        We need to prepare our students for the future, and the future is all about technology. Everywhere we look we see technology. Television, computers, radios, iPods, phones, is everywhere and almost impossible to escape it. This is how we communicate with each other and get by in our day. Not letting our students use these things is not preparing them. Isn't our job as a teacher and an educator to prepare our students for their future?


  1. Kathleen,

    I really liked how much time you spent with your reflection on this assignment. Yet, if it reminded you of another video, why would we need to watch it? We want to have new and different assignments. This was so good, though!


    Rebekah Lloyd

  2. Rebekah,
    Thanks for your comment! Even though the video reminded me a lot of the other one, I wanted people to watch it because this video was about younger students. Like I stated in my blog post, most people only think technology can be used with older students. The other video showed college students; this one had elementary school students. I wanted to show that younger students also use technology everyday and it's important for them to use it in their schools.
    Thanks for reading my blog! :-)