EdTech 541: Final Reflection

Part 1: Course Reflection:

By taking this course I have learned a lot and will leave with numerous resources that I can begin using in my classroom right away! Before this course, I never imaged all the ways that technology could easily be integrated into education. I have learned the foundations of how to effectively integrate technology by using 21st century software, websites, and tools. In addition, I now know that creating cross-curricular lessons is doable and should be done to enhance learning!

Theories that I learned from reading Integrating Educational Technology into Teaching will go beyond the creation of the course assignments. I now have a clear understanding of how to not only incorporate technology into the classroom, but how to do it effectively. This book will be a great resource as I continue to evolve as an educator and look to utilize technology in education. By reading and learning about each module topic prior to the creation of the assignments, I was easily able to apply what was learned and emulate meaningful lessons to engage my students.

The coursework demonstrates the mastery of the AECT standards very well. Prior to each assignment, I read and learned about the theoretical foundations and completed research to learn more about each topic and explore resources. The assignments required me to create authentic work that will be used in my classroom. Content knowledge and relevant pedagogy was applied and allowed us to evaluate ourselves and our classmates as well. Finally, I reflected on my learning and believe this course will make me a better teacher and more thoughtful in how I use technology in the classroom.

I have grown as professional and as a teacher by becoming more mindful of how I used to use technology in the classroom and how I can improve by using the new resources to stay relevant in a digital age. I have realized that I was quite single-minded when it came to technology. I know have numerous resources and ideas that I can utilize in my classroom and am excited to continue to grow and learn about new technologies. The term life long learner has never seemed so relevant! As an educator, I plan to try to incorporate technology more in the classroom when it is relevant and provides meaningful experiences for my students. I really enjoyed this class and look forward to using the knowledge and resources gained from this course!

Part 2: Blog Performance:

For each blog post, I kept the blog grading rubric in mind. I did my best write thoughtful posts, provide connections to my current content area and real life situations. I referred to the course readings, found meaningful resources that related to each topic and provided further insights. I was careful to site all resources accurately in APA format. I tried to post early in the module, but struggled with this at times, combined with completing other assignments, however I never posted late! I received comments on most of my posts and was able to get thoughtful feedback from others. Finally, I always commented on two of my classmates posts, providing meaningful feedback, how it related to similar things that I experience, and asked questions when necessary. Overall, I think I did a nice job on my blog posts. See below for my self-assessment scores:

  • Content: 66/70
  • Readings & Resources: 19/20
  • Timeliness: 17/20
  • Responses to Other Students: 30/30
  • Overall: 132/140

EdTech 543: Final Reflection

Crazy that another semester in the EdTech program is coming to an end! I can remember when I was considering the EdTech program at Boise State and recall seeing this course as an elective option, thinking how awesome it would be to take a course such as this. I can honestly say that this has been one of my favorite courses in this program so far and have gotten so much out of it! Here are the key components that I have learned from this course and how I will apply them to my professional practice.

Social Media Interactions Set Up (Module 1): The basic set ups for this course helped me to realize that there are several platforms that can be used for classroom communication. I look forward to incorporating this into the courses that I teach, by using something such as Google Sites, a class Facebook page, or Edmodo to post announcements, assignments, and a place for collaboration.

PLE & PLN (Module 2): I now know what these acronyms stand for! I loved creating my PLE diagram and seeing the uniqueness of everyone else. I loved that we got to create our diagram using the platform of our choice. It was awesome to be able to develop a PLN within the course. This really helped with any questions that I had, I always knew that I would have people there to help. Our group ended up working very well together and I appreciate the team effort, as this is not always, especially in an online course. Developing a PLN within this course opened my eyes to see the importance of having a PLN not only where you work, but outside your school as well. There are so many people around the world that you can connect with and can benefit from. I am happy to say that I joined an amazing PLN group on Facebook of business educators that are willing to share ideas and resources with one another. I hope to stay in contact with Katie, Ben, and Jasmine, my amazing PLN members!

TweekDeck, Live PD, & Digital Footprints (Module 3): Before this course, I had no idea what a TweetDeck was. I have learned not only how to use this site, but also utilized it when participating in Twitter chats. The live PD was very beneficial as well. I especially enjoyed the Twitter chats. I was able to make new connections through these chats, gain numerous resources that I can use right away, and expand my PLN. I plan to not only use these resources, but participate in more Twitter chats in the future. I think live PD is an a different, yet rewarding way of learning through collaboration and interaction. I would definitely suggest this to others. The idea of digital footprints was also introduced in this module. I think this was a very important assignment and something that is quite relevant to the business and marketing courses that I teacg. I am excited to incorporate this into a lesson with my high school students and also use it to discuss brand and company images through the words and pictures that they post on social media and online.

Curation (Moduel 4): It took me awhile to understand what the word curation actually meant. I appreciated be able to explore this module with my PLN and I think our group did a great job of creating our curation criteria. I loved using my new resource ScoopIt, and look forward to using it in the future to curate content. In addition, I really benefited from examining my group’s curated data. It allowed me to explore new resources and ideas that I probably wouldn’t have otherwise learned about.

PLE Diagram (Module 5): This was an assignment that I thought I would struggle with to come up with something unique from everyone else, but it ended up being one of my favorite assignments! As mentioned, I loved the freedom to create your own interpretation of the assignment using the platform of you choice. Through assignments such as this, I was able to explore sites such as Piktochart and Canva. This assignment was one of my favorites because I was able to make it personal to me. Through this assignment, I realized the numerous parts that make up my personal learning environment, that it has really grown since the beginning of this course, and that it will only continue to expand!

Research & Social Media Policies (Module 6): The research assignment allowed me to explore how business and marketing teachers incorporate social media in their classrooms. I got so much out of this assignment and can’t wait to incorporate the resources that I acquired next semester! The other assignment had has look at different social media policies and then create our own. Again, I was able to use Piktochart to create my own set of social media policies that I will be able to use in my classes as guidelines for proper social media use.

Social Media Mini Unit (Module 7): This assignment allowed me to work with my awesome PLN once again. I think our group worked very well together and I realized how easily technology and social media can be incorporated into any subject. I look forward to enhancing my social media unit that I had last year for my Marketing II students, I know there is so much more that I can include from this course! I also enjoyed the peer review process through a screen cast. This was a great idea and allowed me to see what others did for their social media mini units. I would like to incorporate a peer-review process such as this in my classroom in the future.

It is obvious that I gained multiple resources and learned so much from this course! I am excited to transfer what I have learned through this course into my own classroom and know my students will greatly benefit. I give myself a 75/75 points on my blog posts because I was always very thorough in each post, made sure that I had everything included that was expected in the requirements, and was reflective throughout. Thank you all for an awesome semester, only 3 more classes to go! 🙂

 

EdTech504 Reflection

  1. What were the most important things I learned this semester?

The most important thing that I learned this semester was to take a step back and see the big picture of incorporating educational technology in the classroom. Prior to this course, I rarely thought about how learning theories could be applied in the classroom, especially in alignment with educational technology. I have discovered that it is important to understand how to best teach students before utilizing technology resources.

  1. How was my teaching (or thoughts about teaching) impacted by what I learned or experienced this semester?

I now think of not only educational technology, but teaching in general as a continuous learning process. From taking this course, it is obvious that there are aspects of my teaching that can be improved. Through this realization, my teaching will be impacted greatly. Rather than just trying a new lesson, idea, or type of technology in the classroom, I will be more mindful of the best way to deliver to the learners to benefit them most.

  1. Did I (or will I) use the projects, skills, or ideas from this course in my teaching, training, or professional practice? If so, how?

I will definitely use the projects, skills, and ideas from this course. Now, whenever I use technology in the classroom I will think back to the research that I completed. I will gradually implement various Web 2.0 technologies where fitting to enhance my curriculum and to diversify learning. In addition, I will incorporate technologies by using learning theories such as connectivism, constructivism, the activity theory, etc. By doing this, students will not only be learning new technologies, but will also be actively engaged in their learning through collaboration and exploration.

  1. Select three of the projects/assignments you created/wrote in this class and read the description of the related AECT standard. Then answer this question: How do these projects/assignments demonstrate my mastery of the AECT standards?

The three assignments I chose were the Learning Theories Paper (assignment #2), the Annotated Bibliography (assignment #4), and the Final Synthesis Paper (assignment #7). All three required extensive research, which involved “exploration, evaluation, synthesizing, and applying methods to enhance learning” (AECT Standard 5 – Research). These assignments demonstrate my mastery of AECT standards by learning not only how to find information, but also how to apply the learning theories explored to a classroom setting. I now have a better understanding of how to incorporate technology through the use of multiple learning theories, something that I hadn’t gave much thought to prior to this course. As much as I would like to say I have “mastered” all of the AECT standards, I know I have not. However, through the completion of the assignments for this course, I am confident that I have challenged myself through creating, using, assessing/evaluating, managing, ethics, and diversity of learners. I hope that through my remaining educational technology courses, I can grow to apply each standard not only in my courses, but in my classroom.

EdTech506: Final Project/Reflection

Graphic Design for Learning has been one of my favorite classes so far in the EdTech program! I really enjoyed learning about and how to use different graphic design principles. The final project was intense, but I am pleased with the final result. I chose to create a lesson that was about The World of Marketing. For this lesson, I used several images that I created throughout the semester and also incorporated similar assignments for my students. I now have a better understanding of how to use Adobe Fireworks and Piktochart. For my lesson, I chose to use the website generator Wix. This was a very easy interface to use and I plan to use this site to make a class webpage in the future. Click here to see The World of Marketing lesson plan!

EdTech 502 Reflection

This course was quite challenging, but I ended up getting so much out of it! I learned how to create web pages using HTML code. I learned so many new terms such as HTML, CSS, tags, divs, the list could go on forever!  The instructor was always helpful and encouraging. My favorite assignments were creating the interactive concept map page, the EdTech homepage, and the virtual tour page. What I loved about this class was that it was a build up of learning and everything that was learned was applied to future assignments. The instructional videos were an interactive way of learning that allowed you to “learn as you go.” I did struggle with the course at times and it was frustrating when I couldn’t quite figure something out or was unable to validate certain pages due to errors. Hours upon hours were spent on this course, but in the end I truly learned a lot. Having basic computer programming knowledge and skills is important and I think more people should take the time to learn! Overall, I really enjoyed using templates to create the pages at the end of the semester, and hope to create my own webpage for my classes next year! Check out the pages here.

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EdTech 501 Reflection

Wow. I feel like I have come a long way from 7 weeks ago. I remember that I felt pretty good about assignment #1 (making the blog) and then assignment #2 I immediately began to panic. Many thoughts ran through my mind…”What I am doing? I haven’t written a paper in 2 years! Is this really how I want to spend my last 7 weeks of summer? Am I doing this right? What the heck is this RSS thing? WHY APA!?” etc. I questioned whether I was in way over my head and if I could really handle this class…let alone the whole program. The challenges that I faced were related to the initial “I haven’t used this tool before or am unaware of this type of technology…so I probably won’t do well.” This was my mindset in the beginning and I was not as confident with technology as I was when I signed up for the course.

I believe the turning points was during the RSS in Education assignment. I remember exploring Feedly and thinking how cool it was! I even texted some of my friends about it and shared my “how to use Feedly” video! At that point I began to relax a little and really see the big picture. I was learning new technology and could use this stuff right away in my classroom!

I found it was quite easy to communicate with our instructor Anthony Saba (thank you!), and also our classmates. Many times a question that I had was already posted by someone else. This was a great way to overcome the challenges that I faced. By communicating through Google + I received timely and quality feedback and assistance with the questions that I had.

Not only was this a great way to overcome the challenges, but it was a great way to just communicate with one another. I believe that this collaboration is rare, especially in an online class. I think we were very lucky to have this open communication. In the beginning, we were “required” to comment and give feedback to a certain number of people. As the class progressed, it became natural. I found myself getting excited to see other peoples’ posts and ideas! It was also encouraging to receive feedback from others on my own assignments. I really hope to work with some of these classmates in the rest of my EdTech courses!

The artifact that I feel was my best was my EdTech Graphic. When I saw this assignment I was super excited to begin (weird, I know). I took my laptop to Panera and sat there for a solid 3 hours making it “as cool as I could.” I probably could have thrown something together in less than half the time, but I love making artifacts that allow you to be visually creative. While doing so, I got to explore a new tool (Piktochart) and share it with my classmates! I am excited to (eventually) make this a poster in my own classroom!

In my school, I plan to show students and staff members how to use Piktochart, share my new knowledge of Google Docs, Feedly, Voice Thread, etc. I have learned about several new tools and ways to use technology. I am very excited to use the tech tool that I explored, Kahoot! in my classroom this year as well. I have already shared some of my knowledge. A friend of mine is student teaching this semester and is working to flip a computer technology class. I was able to help and let him know of the site Screencast-O-Matic that was used!

Finally, I thought I would give a little advice for future students taking this course. Please keep in mind that this was the first EdTech Course that I took so I was a little overwhelmed from the start!

  1. Start early and stay organized! Even if it is just reading through the plan for the week, it is good to know what is ahead and many of the assignments are VERY time consuming (maybe it was just me…)
  2. Collaborate! Use your instructor and classmates as resources. Everyone is willing to help!
  3. Read all module steps and assignment rubrics carefully! There are many parts to each assignment and the rubric is very detailed, letting you know  exactly what you need to do to get the most out of the assignment and receive a good score as well!
  4. Don’t get too discouraged or give up. We have all been there! Stick with it!
  5. You may think you are very tech savvy in the beginning, but there is SO much more to learn! Embrace it!

I really enjoyed this class and am looking forward to the rest of my classes in this program! Thanks to everyone who was along for the ride! Here is a nice summer smiley pic because I am one grad class down and have one more week left before I have students!

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