As an Elementary Education major I am always ready for new things to come my way. Education is always changing and always growing. Technology is a huge influence on education in the 21st century and this EDT400 class has been a huge influence on me, and my ideas are constantly changing and growing. I signed up for this course, honestly not knowing what I was getting into, and now I am happy to say that it is starting to make A LOT more sense to me and be an extremely helpful course. The things I have learned in this course are more relevant to my future than any other class I have taken so far.
I never knew how much potential I had in using technology to benefit my learning. I always knew there were possibilities out there to “help people do stuff” but I did not realize that there were so many tools that could help me become a great teacher. I have learned, in this course, how to really use tools to my advantage, investigate resources to find beneficial information and to think outside the box when it comes to planning what kind of teacher I want to become.
There are so many new tools that I have been introduced to over this semester such as twitter, WordPress blogs, diigo, evernote, elluminate, Netvibes, moodle, and the list seems endless! At the beginning of this course I had a very hard time keeping up with all of these and trying to remember what each one did, my login names and passwords, and it was just a huge mess in my head. After practicing with these tools and learning how they can be used to my advantage, I am finally getting the hang of it. I am currently using twitter more frequently, and posting blogs as often as possible. My schedule, as well as many other people’s im sure, is becoming very busy at this time of the year and I do not have as much free time as I would wish for. I believe that my strengths in this course are finally starting to show through my use of twitter and my blog, as well as an unseen tool diigo. Diigo is saving my life right now. There are so many pages on the internet that pertain to what I am trying to do for my final project and it is such a great tool for organization. I just started using diigo so I still have more to learn but I am off to a great start. I think that one of my strengths is also trying to stay involved with my classmates blog posts and learning from them as well as outside sources. Although I do not post on all of them, I read many of them and think about what they have to say! I definitely see my weaknesses in the area of going outside of our EDT400 community. I am learning so much from this small area, and I know there is so much more I could learn by reaching out and becoming more involved in other communities. By doing things such as reading blogs of people outside of this community, I could expand my horizons greatly. I have been working very hard to explore as much as possible but there is always room for improvement. I think my biggest weakness is my project. I have been finding and bookmarking many things that relate to my subject, but I have not put in the time I should in starting to create and put together my project into a displayable work. I need to get myself in gear and sit down, and organize everything into a manner that will work into mahara.
I think that some of my blog posts are definitely better than others and I think that their quality depends greatly on the amount of time I have available to work on them! I hope that my posts, although sometimes short, have valuable, worth reading, material in them though and hope that I continue to have readers. In class discussions I usually add in my point of view and try to always take in other people’s opinions. Discussions are very valuable to me as a learner. I always second guess my thoughts though and never know whether I should share them or not in fear of being wrong. I am working on this in all parts of my life and this class would be a great place to exercise that! I think that by taking more time, exploring more, and listening to my classmates and teacher I will be able to improve upon these weaknesses.
I think that my favorite part of this EDT course is blogging. I really enjoy sharing my thoughts on articles, videos, and anything else that is relevant. I also very much enjoy reading my classmates thoughts on these things. It is an awesome way to get my thoughts out there without worrying what the look on someone else’s face is going to be when they read it! I am free to express myself and have time to think about it. I have also really enjoyed stepping back and watching my progress over the semester and comparing my old ideas to my new. It is really exciting to me to be able to talk about these ideas with not only my classmates, but also my uncle who is the principle of the elementary school back home, and my friends and family. The world of education is changing, and education affects everyone, so we might as well spread as much new knowledge as we can.