Technology ReflEctions

One luddite's Journey towards 21st century learning

I was not technologically savvy at all when I began EDU 210. I had never used any social media (unless email counts), and had never even heard of an ePortfolio. I felt like I had walked into a classroom in a foreign country where everyone knew the language except me. I was definitely experiencing "Cognitive Overload" during the first couple of weeks of class. I had no idea how to navigate eClass, and could count on one hand the number of times I had opened my laptop, even though I had received it for Christmas nine months before. Thank goodness for the red chair sessions! Without the extra human support I received at EdTech Services, I would have been completely lost. As I walked through my ePortfolio set up with Monica that first week, I thought she was a magician! I had never heard of Google Sites, and only thought of Google as a search engine.

Reluctantly connected...

To say that I was a reluctant user of technology would probably be an understatement. I am also one of those parents whose children's access has been restricted. We do have a desktop computer at home, and now an iPad, and iPhones and I even have a laptop. But my oldest child didn't even know that the TV could turn on until he was almost 2 years old, and our family did not own a gaming system until he was in grade 6. We still only have that one system, and it's an XBOX Connect, so that we have to move in order to play it. I was not on any social media, and consider myself a fairly private person, so didn't see the need to be connected in that way, and honestly had no desire to do so.

Fast forward to today, and I am now linked in to a whole host of people through my Twitter account. I honestly thought that Twitter was some sort of celebrity website before this class. I had no idea that I would enjoy using it as a PLN (Professional Learning Network) so much. It has given me instant access to a whole host of experts on a variety of topics, whenever I want. If you want to link to my Twitter account, you can click on the button below.

Seeing is believing!

Yesterday afternoon I had the opportunity to visit Wild Rose School in St. Albert and actually see technology in action. It was truly brilliant to see the class sets of Chrome Books being put to good use. I was especially excited to see how seamlessly they were integrated during "The Daily Five" when the kids were focussing on self-directed reading and writing activities. They also had one classroom iPad that they were using with some spelling Apps where the kids typed in their spelling words, spoke the word into the iPad, and then they were given the spelling test in their own voice! How amazing is that?

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