Fergus1s’s Weblog
I hope this blog is somewhat educational.

Response to Online Conference

I listened as closely as I possibly could to three of the presentations regarding the online conference that we had to look into last week. Mostly I found these presentations thought provoking and creative when it came to initiating technology into the classroom environment. I listened with genuine intent to the Why’s and Wherefores by Brian Crosby. I really liked his emphasis on applying the concept of technology to his classroom in a cross disciplinary way. He really put an emphasis on balancing the human aspects of the classroom with technological elements.

Brian talks about using technology to include one of his students in the learning of the classroom, while she is ill and cannot attend class directly. I thought this application of technology in the classroom was very practical, and also a very good example of how we can be benefited as teachers, to keep our minds open, in case our students’ needs shift and change. He also emphasized the idea of community projects and video: his award winning presentation entitled “Don’t Laugh At Me” was a really good idea, as it addresses bullying, something which is being taken very seriously these days in the classrooms. My only complaint regarding the video was that I wasn’t too keen on the aesthetic quality of the singer’s voice. Sorry, Arts Ed part of me coming out here!

I listened to the Audio of “Creating A Paradigm Shift in Technology” by Shawn Nutting as well. I was attracted to the title, as I feel that Technology does create an exciting paradigm shift in the classroom. Mr Nutting has a great sense of humor, and still retains a high degree of professionalism in his discussion. I loved his idea of asking the staff and students what they need, technologically speaking,  rather than just assuming that good computers and computer access are all that is required for technological advancement in the schools.

I finished off my listening experience with a blurb about Cell Phones as Learning Tools in the classroom. This subject was interesting, as well as a tad controversial. I do believe, however, in incorporating as many learning tools and opportunities into the classroom as possible. I do find the concept of incorporating cell phones into the classroom as utopic, because they do represent an element of power and control, traditionally. We are supposed to turn phones off while in discussion, and students like to text their friends during classes, so it might be hard to change what a cell phone signifies to students. However, it could be a hit in the right context, particularly for picture taking or video making in my art classroom, so I feel it would work for my particular subject.

The online conference idea is great. I learned a great deal, and plan on going over more of the presentations when I have the time over reading week.


2 Responses to “Response to Online Conference”

  1. Hey!
    Reading all these blogs about cell phones in the classroom has made me decide to do my next blog on that! You make some excellent points, like what cell phones still represent to students. Is allowing them in the classroom going to cross some of the boundaries that students have been told not to cross over and over again? Or has it changed that much since we have been in school that this would be a beneficial way of learning?

    I also liked your comment about how teachers can keep contact with students while they are ill by means of the internet. This would help getting them caught up, and also help the teacher distribute his/her time when the child does come back into class. They will be more caught up and more of the teacher’s time can be focused on other learning aspects.

  2. I think that is really great how Brian put an emphasis on balancing the human aspects of technology. Because I think that allot of people worry about our society becoming to dependent on technology and leaving out human communication.

    I also listened to Shawn Nuttings persentation and loved how he asked them to. I would have loved if someone would have asked me what I wanted in my class when I went to school!!

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