Saturday, 26 March 2011

My thoughts about my e-learning journey so far

·         I’m enjoying the Reflect and Connect Course (an accredited unit - CHCORG428A Reflect On and Improve Own Professional Practice) through YNH Services Inc, Yarrawonga. The course is delivered on line every Monday evening where participants and facilitators get together in a virtual classroom – Elluminate. Participants also engage in a discussion forum and submit assignments through Moodle.  

·         I am interested in using the latest technology, but I’m also nervous. So, I’m so glad I’m doing the Reflect and Connect Course – it is making me experiment with tools I was not aware of or I may have heard at conferences and then they have remained in the folders.

·         BUT now I have used Mindomo for the mind mapping assignment on wiki and for the tree diagram on folders and sub folders for the e-portfolio.  I had never used these earlier so when I finished I felt a sense of achievement. I wanted to share this with my family. While I was describing it, my 15 year old said to me – “O that, we do it all the time at school mum!” The younger generation of today is more technologically savvy, and I may not know as much as them, but I’m glad I have an urge to know more.

·         I have also set up a blog, but regular blogging is not yet a part of me. I also have a Twitter account as part of another assignment, which I would’ve never created! I felt Twitter was for discussing inane things. I use Face book though - with 3 students in my class (the others don’t have a computer yet as they are newly arrived migrants). Last week a student was absent for 4 days so I kept her posted of what we had done each day (via messages).

·         I also got lost in the many Web 2.0 tools – I knew some, but some were new - and was glad when we had to explore one Web 2.0 tool as part of Team B. We decided to evaluate the use of a Wiki and our team leader, Liz did a fantastic job of leading the discussions, reminding us to post our thoughts on the forum throughout the week, holding an Elluminate session so we could share our thoughts (which unfortunately I could not attend) and also putting all the contributions together and posting a summary on the forum. “Hail the wondrous wiki” indeed! What a fantastic tool for teachers. I would love to use it as an intranet for our staff at Glenroy Neighbourhood Learning Centre and as a bank of centralised online resources.

·         Social Bookmarking Website was new for me too - Still trying to work out how Delicious, but Diigo is easy. However, have to still import all my bookmarks in Diigo– when I get a bit of time.

·         Developing my e- portfolio in the Mahara has been slow, but the idea of a digital portfolio and its social networking features is fascinating.  

Sunday, 20 March 2011

Week 3

End of Week 3 -How do I feel? Exhausted and frustrated, but still excited. I am struggling to complete all my assignments (juggling between work and family and the Course). BUT the thought of learning new things pushes me and above all the participants have been so encouraging and supportive. Thank you all - sincerely :-)

Friday, 18 March 2011

My e-learning journey so far

Have joined Diigo and E-liberation - exciting!

My e-learning journey so far

·         Does not require special technological knowledge – (assuming that Ss have basic computer skills and know how to use the internet)
·         Is very collaborative – Ss are contributors and editors
·         Is unlike Blogs where you cannot change a comment or a post – wikis have a more open structure
·         Promotes Bloom’s Taxonomy – Use of Synthesis and Evaluation when Ss work on a wiki
·         Encourages creativity and engagement in Ss – build, build and build – no end   
·         Develops team work and problem solving skills (employability skills)
·         Improves writing skills (no automatic spell checkers built in)
o   BUT – have to be careful about posting Ss personal information and names – seek their permission
o   Have to beware of vandalism and ‘accidental changes’
o   Must cite everything used properly - Creative Commons – special copyright agreement, “share, remix, reuse – legally”

Sunday, 13 March 2011

My Personal Learning Goal

My Personal Learning Goal:
To e-learn as much as I can by participating in Reflect and Connect and then keep learning, exploring, and passing on this passion to others – my colleagues and students.

My Story - I did not know a thing about computers when I migrated to Australia in 2002 (from Uganda – I lived there for 8 years). When I started my Dip Ed and was told that I will have to submit the assignments electronically I wanted to run away somewhere, but I have a wonderful husband who supported me and challenged me – “Of course you can do it”. So I did – took little steps at a time. I even used Web CT!!

I love computers and the new technological world now – I have conquered some of my fears, I think. I use it in my teaching practice– writing my Teaching Plan, Teaching Record, worksheets for students, and as the Resources Coordinator I am constantly researching for free ESL resources which I save on our central network drive so that it is easily accessible to all the teachers. I also use the iPod on my iPhone 4 in class and Facebook for social networking. I have a lot of independence at work and have wonderful colleagues, but our resources are limited. So this will be a constant challenge – of how to incorporate the new world with what we have.

I am now a member of the ACE e-learning network and hope to get a lot of ideas, but I also need to manage my time well so that I can be a part of more CsoP.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

"Moving from the one-room schoolhouse to the one-world schoolhouse is now a reality."
Cisco Systems