I'll admit, when I signed up for C & I 579 (Educational Technologies), I was scared! I'm okay with a basic computer and using Word, but all the extra technology is where I start to panic a little. My friends say I am still in the dark ages with technology as well since I don't have texting on my cell phone (AHHHH...I know!!). But, I'm going on week four of this class and I'm doing alright...no panicking yet! I've really started to change my attitude a little bit in regards to my fear of technology and I actually am beginning to feel pretty confident. At the beginning of this course I saw that we had to create a Voice Thread and I was freaking out, but after learning Diigo and Twitter with relatively few bumps, I think I can handle this Voice Thread. I'm actually getting really excited about using it because I am realizing that I can bring this back to my classroom and teach my students.
In this course we have had to create a PLN (personal learning network) by following ten educational blogs and ten educators on Twitter. I will admit Twitter is still a little much for me. There is just so much going on at one time, it's almost like I feel as if I'm in the mind of someone with ADD when I look at my Twitter account and I can only handle it in small amounts. But, it has gotten me to break out of my shell and post a couple things. I'm one of those types of people that was always taught to keep my life private and I rarely share anything about what I am doing, even on Facebook. After opening the Twitter account, though, I have tried to share more and I have also tried to get myself to share more on my Facebook account. I'm slowly trying to get that fear of the Internet out. Using the RSS feed for the blogs was really good for me, too, because I had used that once before a long time ago and kind of forgot about it. But, it is such a great thing to have because it brings the information to you and now I only have to check my email and I can see all these great posts without trying to remember a bunch of websites.
I have learned a lot so far in this class that I don't think I will forget tomorrow, such as RSS feeds, Twitter, and the importance of PLNs. The PLN information is probably the best thing I will take away from these first four weeks because I will be able to use that to become a better teacher. Before this class I would look up stuff on the internet to use in my classroom, but it was not a continual thing. Most of the professional information I got was from colleagues or professional development classes I would attend. With the Internet making information so easily accessible, though, I should be using it more. I will definitely continue building and utilizing my PLN to become a better teacher and to enhance my own learning.
Even though we are only halfway through this class I feel like I have learned so many new applications of technology and I am already so excited for school to start in the fall so I can apply them in my classroom (okay, maybe not excited for school to start again, but I am looking forward to using these new technologies in the classroom...if only I could do that without having to get up early. hmmm...).