Reflection on 541

This summer’s course on Integrating Technology has been one of the most rewarding courses I have taken. The projects created in this course are actual projects that I foresee myself and other co-workers using in class. While the assignments were often challenging, they were also very rewarding. Unlike just taking a test or writing a paper, when every module was completed, I believed that it had concretely improved myself as a teacher in how I will be able to integrate technology into my classroom.

By being forced to sit down with a concept and an area of technology and making them combine for a cohesive lesson, it opened my eyes to ways different types of technology can be used. The screen capture videos demonstrating how to use certain apps/software is definitely something I will be doing regularly this school year. In addition, I plan to grow a social media network around algebra. Of all the tools I have learned about, those are the two that will have the greatest immediate impact on my teaching.

When I received my teaching certificate in 2007, I was excited about the constructivist approach to teaching. I loved the ideas of collaboration, interactive learning by problem solving, etc. However, once I entered the classroom, I found reality strongly challenging my ideas of the constructivist classroom. After this summer (where I also took EdTech 504, Theory of EdTech), I find myself re-energized to rework my classes to bring the constructivist approach back. Much of the research into the theory that I did for 504, coincided with some of the more practical applications I was able to discover during 541. The study of the theories of educational technology really pushed me to try and use the assignments for this class as a way to increase interaction and discovery from my students.

While designing the various assignments, multiple levels of AECT Standards were addressed. For example, the final assignment on adaptive and assistive technology required us to choose use instructional strategies appropriate for individual learner needs. While creating most of of our assignments, were forced to consider who the learner was and how our use of technology would motivate them towards the particular goals. We also had to relate the content with the context, tasks, and motivation for using particular forms of technology.  This course gave us instruction on how to find technology to produce effective and efficient learning environments. The resource page and the multiple lessons created reflect that goal. We used web pages, software, and mobile apps to capture and share multiple levels of media.

Blogging Self-Evaluation
Content: I believe most of my posts were deep, detailed, on-task, and an honest evaluation of my experiences. In most cases, the blog made me realize something about what I had learned that was not originally at the surface. Score: 90

Readings and Resources: I did regularly reference and cite sources. However, I could have directly referred to the many of my resources more often. I definitely could have referenced specific readings from the course text more often. Score: 20

Timeliness: I made all of the required posts. However, many of them were not posted with enough time for their to be a conversation with other students about the entries as the posts usually made at the end of the week. Score: 15

Response to Others: I addressed at least two students every week. I made sure to offer comments on specific points from there blog. I wanted each comment to be something constructive and useful. Score: 30

Overall: 155/190

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