Walden University – First Discussion – Final Class

I have just begun my final class towards gaining a master’s degree in integrating technology in the classroom. I believe educational blogs are a valuable tool that teachers can use to communicate their ideas to students, colleagues, and parents depending on the objectives you place on your blog. Therefore, for my final class, I plan to place each week’s discussion assignment in my blog, which will ensure that I begin blogging on a consistent basis. This weeks discussion concerns the importance of dealing with an ever-changing world, something we must teach our students to do.

One important change that has occurred for me in my practice recently involves my belief that educational blogs like the one I have started maintaining at https://teacherman79.wordpress.com/ and like the ones maintained by the teachers I have placed on a list in my blog provide an excellent forum for professional development. Through my journey to find Tek Zeno in our last class, I have met several cutting edge educators recently who have been maintaining educational blogs for a significant amount of time. Each of my new colleagues have told me of the value their blogs have in helping them develop as professional educators. I began reading their blogs on a consistent basis and realized what a valuable tool they can be. I decided that I should start a blog myself because of the value I saw in them, so I did. Blogs are very similar to the discussions we have each week in our classes at Walden university, and to me provide the same types of opportunities for learning, only they are free, just a little time-consuming at first.

Blogging has already made me a better teacher. I am more mindful of my beliefs with regards to technology in the classroom and also better equipped to defend my beliefs if the need arises. I believe there is a certain amount of resistance to the use of emerging technologies in the classroom. Maintaining a blog will better equip me to deal with that resistance if and when it occurs. And what is good for the teachers is good for the kids – see this link to find out about utilizing blogs in your classroom. Blogging encourages students to reflect about the work they are doing and also comment on the work that their peers are working on.  I plan to begin having my students begin a reflective process like this in the fall by having each class maintain a wiki in which they will periodically reflect upon classroom activity.  Any feedback you have for me would be greatly appreciated.

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7 Responses to “Walden University – First Discussion – Final Class”

  1. angelac1 Says:

    I agree about the amount of resistance in classrooms. However, I also find that I can understand some teachers being reluctant to try and fit something else in to the classroom program.

    Perhaps that is the clue – I wonder if teachers could look at replacing existing ways in which students produce their work? Could a student blog their research instead of producing a word document, for example?

  2. teacherman79 Says:

    I think if they did, their research would be looked upon by more than just the teacher’s eyes. It would give other students a chance to edit, review, and evaluate the work of their classmates.

  3. I do find it odd that when I was growing up – I had a computer of my own to mess around with and experiment on when I was 10. None of my friends had computers of their own growing up. Even when I was in college, I had 1 of the 2 computers on our dorm floor.
    Today, I look at my son who has a computer that I gave him, and he uses it only for games. He says none of his friends use the computer, they all have Xbox and Wiis. You would think that after 25 years, computers would be more a part of our kids lives.
    My chem teacher in high school had an apple II or something like that, but none of the others did. This was back in the mid 80s. My son’s teachers presently use a computer…but not actively. They dont all have one on their desk. None had a blog, one had a way to see homework but it wasnt up-to-date. With how fast technology has increased, the educating of these technologies doesnt seem to be keeping up to speed. Where are all the geeks??!?! Maybe they just arent in my area.
    I’d say, home ec and wood/metal shop should be replaced with web design and coding! or added as another 3rd choice.

    What a fun idea would that be, to have a class where you built your own computer for the first quarter, and then learned to use it and design blogs and websites for the other 3….and have it count towards your graduation. Like a 9th or 10th grade class.

  4. teacherman79 Says:

    I would love to teach that class…

  5. j9defteacher Says:

    I had a Texas Instruments computer back in the 80’s. Not one of my friends had one. My mom is a computer programmer and taught us LOGO. I remember downloading software applications to the computer from cassette tapes. The games were actually pretty cool. You could even play some of the popular arcade games on there too like Q-Bert.
    My son attends a supposedly “blue ribbon” school district, yet I like you never see the technology integration. I am trying to apply to some of these “blue ribbon” districts and really sell my knowledge of technology but it doesn’t seem as if it’s a selling point. Getting a job in a suburban district around here is about who you know, not what you know. It’s a shame. I think that my “geek” skills are an asset to any school.

  6. angelac1 Says:

    Is it possible that there is still not a critical mass of teachers who have grown up with computers as a used and integral part of their environment? Do we have to wait for administrators to also come from the group that have been described as ‘digital natives’?

  7. teacherman79 Says:

    I hope we do not have to wait. I really don’t know. Was that a rhetorical question…

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