Friday, 16 December 2011

Reflective Synopsis

Technology =  Life

Technology has become such an 'every day' part of life. Think about when you wake up in the morning, what is the first thing you do? Well for me it's check my mobile phone for messages or missed calls. Technology has become such a huge part of my life, I couldn't image my life without it. Even important documents are now sent through email instead of the post. For example my pay slips from work and my phone bills are all sent to me by email. What would happen if technology stopped?
During this course I have developed my technological skills immensely as my technological knowledge was only limited to the basic 'need to knows' to be able to survive high school and university. I have even learnt about things that I have never even heard of before. I guess that is the real definition of learning. Not knowing one thing one day and knowing heaps about it the next. I believe doing well at something is not necessarily 'getting a good mark' but how much you have learnt and how much you have developed and got out of it. What did you take away from that experience that will change your perspective of it, and what are you thinking about now that you have been exposed to that learning. Has it changed the way you see that topic or the world?

Technology is important in the classroom as it provides the students with active participation, in-depth knowledge, real-life work experience, increased motivation, technical skills, as well a fun and interesting way to learn (Buzzle, 2011). I would use the skills I have learnt during this course to improve my variation of teaching methods (refer to 'my interactions'). I believe incorporating technology into learning is essential as it is a way of life and keeps continuing to change, develop and enhance as time goes by. As educators we need to help our students be ready to understand technology that hasn't even been invented yet and technology we don't even completely understand ourselves. This is one of the many challenges of teaching.

Blogs are used in the classroom "to provide a communication space that teachers can utilise with students to develop writing, share ideas and to reflect on work" (Department of Education, 2011). Blogs have both advantages and disadvantages when it comes to developing, viewing and using them (refer to the PMI chart on blogs). PowerPoints are creative tools, especially when they are used within learning and lessons. PowerPoint presentations can be used by both teachers and students as they are a basic but effect technological tool (refer to PMI chart on PowerPoints).

The most important issue with students working on line is of course safety. Most schools will have a safety block on their computers which will unable students to access sites if they have inappropriate information or images on them. However this does not mean that things can't leak in, which may not be suitable for the students to see, hear or read. This is where it is important for teachers to make students aware of the dangers of the Internet and things which they think may not be appropriate for them to see. This also comes under what they should do if something unexpected were to leak through. This also helps the students for when they are on line at home, which may not have any Internet blocks at all! Refer to the blog posting on Internet safety for more information on how to keep safe while on line.

Learning styles and learning theories are also important to consider and use while teaching with technology. It is important to teach using visuals, auditory tools, as well as the student demonstration to make sure every students has taken in some kind of learning from each lesson. The learning theories behaviourism, constructivism and connectivism are also all important as they reflect the way students learn (refer to blog on learning theories).

Last but not least, wikis and digital imagery are both effective learning tools for students to explore and experience with. Digital imagery, especially is a great technological tool for students even at young ages to experience, as it is so basic and they can incorporate other visuals and texts into it as well (refer to PMI chart about wikis and digital image).

Overall my experience with blogs and wikis have been successful learning experiences for me. I am proud of my achievements and I am looking forward to taking my new found knowledge of technological tools and skills with me as I become a teacher of technology and life.


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