It is hard to believe that it is already time to be REFLECTING on Edtech 501; it seems we just started the course!
While I consider the challenges and artifacts that I faced while taking 501, I cannot help but see a connect between the two. Although my summer has been full of professional develop and GAFE training, I am thankful that I took my first two courses from the Edtech master’s program during the summer when I did not have 150 students deserving my attention. The writing involved in keeping up my learning log, as well as the writing in each of the artifacts, took me more time than I expected. The time needed to research came with no surprise; however, the time needed to process, refine, and properly use citations was unexpected. I contribute this to the time span since my bachelor’s studies. Most of the writing since my graduation in 2009 has been more informal or short in its length.
With that being said, I can honestly say that I have enjoyed creating a blog to record my assignments and reflections on my artifacts. The thinking required to not only turn in an assignment, but also to analyze the process and consider the rationale of using a similar artifact or strategy in my classroom has stretched my thinking. In regards to the related challenge of using the APA format correctly, I was excited to see several software options to assist in managing sources and citations in my artifacts. The ease of receiving feedback from our instructor Anthony Saba in our Google Doc assignments was also very beneficial.
In choosing my best artifact, I would pick my Digital Divide Voicethread presentation. I took to heart the ideas of “Life after Death by Powerpoint”, and enjoyed the challenge of producing a quality multimedia presentation. Although recording my voice required me to overcome some insecurities, I was not horrified by the end results. I was also encouraged by the comments I received from my instructor and classmates regarding my school and the digital divide. It is always encouraging to hear that your school appears to be moving in the right direction from outsiders.
Stemming from my experience with the learning log, I will implement student blogs in my classrooms. I hope that my students can extend their learning by producing a quality collection of artifacts over the school year, and feel a greater buy-in because they will be published online. Furthermore, I will encourage my students to use tags and categories to allow them to study specific standards in their own material for exams.