Week 1 – Conclusion

So week 1 has drawn to a close, and I’m still taking some time to reflect on what I’ve studied over the course of the week.

Description of an experience
So this week I have been becoming familiar with the study desk for this course, and committed myself to posting as frequently as possible. The main things I have learnt this week revolve heavily around the types of ICT we will use in the course and also how many types of ICT there are when you look at the actual definition of ‘ICT.’
I have also looked into Piaget’s Schemas, Toolbelt Theory and re-evaluated my own beliefs with Gardners Multiple Intelligences and Learning Styles.

Personal Experience
I have already written a reflective piece for the theories in week 1, so for this part I’m going to focus on the actual course and it’s elements.
The fact that posting to my blog is important for the course is something I’m still getting use to – I’ve been working almost full time hours the last two weeks with work, so I’ve been trying to find a balance between studying this course and still fitting in the time to study for my other courses as well. I think as time goes on I’ll get the balance right – at least I hope to! I haven’t had time to actually post to my personal blog this week – so that means dedication to this course.
I found somewhere on the study desk that we only get full marks for journal entries if we are linking to websites as well as other EDC3100 students, and I’m putting in a really big amount of effort into writing these journals so I’ll be disappointed if I can’t find students to link with fairly soon. At this current point there is only my study group’s blogs and they don’t seem to have as much content as me.
I have also struggled using Diigo, mostly because I had other bookmarking sites like Pinterest and Weheartit set up to work with my browser so I had three different pinning options when I hovered over pictures. I also don’t think I’ve found much of use to other students yet but hopefully as time goes on that will also change.
I also don’t like the way the study desk is laid out as books, because whilst I’m quite happy to spend my days glued to the computer screen, I find reading important documents online to really strain my eyes and I wish I could have had modules, or PDF documents available to download and print. I think I might message David and see if there’s an option for that, because I really do find the books to just be distracting more from my learning and confusing me.
I am also worried that on the forums my link to the ‘cracked’ article might have been too much dark humour as I haven’t seen anyone reply to it yet. It’s going to be ironic if I got myself into hot water posting about how teachers shouldn’t get themselves in those situations online, lol.

Critical Analysis
In this section I’d like to focus more on joining everything from this week together and critically analysing everything I’ve taken from the content.
So firstly I read the article on Gardners Multiple Intelligences – actually written by Gardner and if I interpreted it correctly it was Gardner advising against teachers against using multiple intelligences as learning styles. I agreed with this, as outlined in an earlier post – though I do still believe that children are capable of learning skills they aren’t so good at through the areas they are competent in, though this could be because that’s how I learn new things.
In addition to the Multiple Intelligences and Learning Styles, I also wanted to add in Toolbelt Theory to my current list of things I want to use to underpin my pedagogical thinking. I do believe that all humans need their tools, and different people will need different tools to achieve things. I am going to keep myself aware of this when I’m out on prac and make it an aim of mine to actively seek ways for students to find their own tools.
Lastly there was actually reading the definition of ICT, and distinguishing it from simply IT – I never saw ICT to include communicating, cameras, videos etc and just thought it was the internet and websites. I now know this is not true, via watching the hello kitty video and writing about it.

Other perspectives
One of the biggest things I’ve found this week is that it’s laughably simple for me to complete the journal entries, browse through the websites given and generally just do what’s asked of me in the course. I know that this sounds arrogant, but It’s not my aim to come off that way. I know there are still things I personally need to learn by doing this course, but I am from the generation who grew up connected to the internet and on top of that I’ve done a cert III in multimedia and 6 months in a graphic design apprenticeship so actually accessing the tasks isn’t something I need to spend time working out which I am really, really happy about. It gives me more time to just focus on what is written on the websites, and what I am writing on my blog. In taking other perspectives into account, I’ve realized that there are people doing this course that don’t have it come as naturally to them to do all these things, especially if they haven’t grown up using that technology. I hope to never become one of those teachers mentioned in a previous article where I need PD to learn how to use technology and incorporate new things, and it is my aim to stay this familiar with what’s out there by researching for myself anything new that becomes available.

Outcome
So the outcome for week 1 is that already I have found myself accessing new content from different perspectives which is really engaging. I really enjoyed that article written by Gardner that gave me something new to think about, and I also liked learning about Toolbelt Theory this week.
Whilst I am competent in using ICT’s that are in this course, I am still struggling to know exactly what to write about in these entries, and how to use Diigo efficiently – everyone has their own things they need to improve upon. Already for week 1 I have found myself thinking about what I can use in the classroom, and how I can use it and I think that’s a really useful thing for me to be doing.
I would also like to include that whilst I think I’m fairly confident in using the internet and other ICTs, I need to remind myself that there is always new things to learn, and new ways to find information and it will be important for me to always be this confident in using technology – especially because I want to use it in the classroom.
I think the biggest things I want to figure out for week 1 is exactly what to be writing about in these journal entries, finding other students’ blogs to reference and I also want to undertake my own little research projects to find websites to link to that are not a part of the study desk.

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