Friday, June 22, 2012

Blog Post #7

Classroom of the future

The Networked Student

Well, after watching the Networked Student, let's just say, I don't have the same warm and fuzzy feeling I had after watching Steve Pausch or the optimistic "Go get 'em" attitude after watching Flipping the Classroom. I'm kind of wondering how in the world I'm going to pay off all of these student loans if there are not going to be too many teachers in the classroom. If many schools will be able to utilize fewer teachers through Network learning, will I have a job? I believe that we are to walk away from this assignment understanding that if we want to obtain and keep a job, we will have to maintain strong technology skills for the remainder of our careers.  

It's my opinion that this video is partially used with the "If you're not a good person you're going to hell" ideology; if you're not a technology literate teacher you'll go through hell because you will not have a job. Dr. Strange is wise to make us aware of the reality which we must face as future educators. We must all take the application of technology in education very seriously and not just consider it for one semester as we complete this course. The world is changing in many aspects; communication, banking, and shopping are just a few examples. When you consider the conveniences and differences of these examples now and 20 years ago, it makes it easier to accept the fact that education is also changing.  

I really enjoyed previous videos like "Flipping the Classroom" and "Classroom Disruption" because it had a happy medium. A technological parallel that created an environment where teachers and technology worked together to lead students to enlightenment. I learned through this video that teachers should not only teach by using technology, but teachers should be prepared to lead students as they teach them to learn and research independently using technology.

Students who use technology to research and learn independently still require direction. The video showed how students were taught to conduct proper research from credible sources and sites, bookmark their research in sites like Delicious, and network through blogs to obtain and share information. Students in EDM 310 have been learning these same skills during the Summer 2012 Semester, and we have a teacher. While we may not have a lot of classroom instruction time, we have a computer lab with Dr. Strange and qualified, knowledgeable, and friendly Teacher's Assistants working regular hours who are always happy to help. We also have a network of help options including email, cell phones, messaging, facebook, and Twitter. Somebody has to plan, teach, implement, and be in charge of all of that. Maybe I won't have to worry about having a long as I'm technology literate.

Scarlet O'hara

As God As My Witness, I'll never be without a PLN again!

O.k., so I have just been explaining the inappropriateness of eye rolling and sighing when my daughter doesn't like what I say, even though she knows I'm correct. I am a 40 year old, Southern to the bone, show good manners at all times no matter what, kind of lady. I demand it from my children and will expect it from my students. It's important ! Imagine my surprise when I first watch "The Networked Student" and try to contain my composure, keep a lady-like attitude ,then  as I calculate my Student Loan Debt and how much further I have to go, my eyes begin to roll and I sigh. I think, worse things have happened, take the Burning of Atlanta for example. I remained positive and thought like Scarlett "I'll think about it tomorrow. Everything will be fine when I get to Tara. I'll even ask Ashley for the money." (Picture me smiling as I begin to rip drapes from the windows to begin putting together a spectacular dress using a pattern I just found online. Peace returns to the world...

Now, I'm sitting here in heavy, green velvet. Pins are sticking me EVERYWHERE and Dr. Strange wants me to watch this glorious, little 7th grade child share her PLE with me. First of all, I'm thinking PLE, Fiddle-De-De! I don't know nothin' 'bout no PLE Dr. Strange. As I watch this brilliant young girl show how she has designed her computer using a program called Symbaloo, saves all of her research, interactive learning apps, bookmarks them, and they are always there. She even has a section for private, fun, personal things and a section for her school work. She has the freedom to study and complete assignments in any order she wishes. 
I realize, I'm supposed to have a plan for this now! The Yankees might as well be burning down Atlanta and taking Ma's silver because I don't have a plan. 

I rush back to Tara to log onto the computer only the Yankees have taken it. I see "Old George" at the boilin' pot and ask if he knows where Ashley is. I tell him I need money to buy an I Pad. He tells me" Mr. Ashley aint got no money, and I can ask, but "Askin' Aint Gettin'!" Ashley didn't have a cotton-pickin' dime, but Rhett had heard of my dilemma. Instead of a new Red Silk Petticoat , he had gotten me a an I Pad in Savannah! As I sigh, I log onto the gadget and within mere minutes I have created a proper PLN.. It might not be quite as much as the 7th grade girl has, but I'm remaining positive. "Tomorrow is another day! And as God as my witness! I'll never go without technology or a PLN again"

And you know, I just heard about this 12 year old boy named Thomas Suarez? I wonder if he's from New Orleans? Anyway, I might just see if that Mr. Frank Kennedy will buy some stock in this young boy's ideas. Word is he will be the next Steve Jobs. 'What most people don't seem to realize is that there is just as much money to be made out of the wreckage of a civilization as from the upbuilding of one.' "If the old ways are going away and Technology is building up, someone has to be here to make money from it. After all, Tomorrow is another day!

Thomas SuarezThomas Suarez

This amazing young man, Thomas Suarez,  is incredibly focused. He loves what he does, researches, looks up to examples of mentors like Steve Jobs, and has the support of teachers and family. He has already learned enough to begin writing apps which can be accessed at the I store. He will be creating apps which would be free to local school systems, and sell to other school systems. All money raised will go back into his local school system. This young man has already found a passion for life and way to give back and encourage others. Sounds kind of like Randy Pausch. 

Dr. Strange asked, "What does this video have in common with the others you've just watched?" Well, for one thing, I expected one more video filmed in front of the green screen with Dr. Strange playing Daddy Warbucks and Liz playing the part of Annie with a production of "Anything you can do, I can do better."
Annie and Daddy WarbucksAll three videos have shown that these students are light years ahead of teachers in their uses of technology. We are going to have to become life long learners, dedicated to assisting these students in their pursuit of an education in the next generation. 


  1. Just about the most creative and awe-inspiring post I have read in a while! Well done! I love Gone With the Wind very much too, and loved the hyperbole, so GREAT job. Be very proud of the time, effort, wit, and personality that went into this post. Sassiness and creativity are two things that you, young lady, are in no short supply of; and they are definitely well appreciated!
    Good for you, Christie :D

    1. Thanks Carly! I did not expect to enjoy this class so much! I am a firm believer of producing serious quality work, but sometimes you just have to have a little fun and let your personality shine through! I'm glad you liked it and I LOVE that you called me young lady! :)

  2. Wow! You've made a valid point. Will there be more jobs for teachers if our work will be based on technology is a good question. It's funny how that never crossed my mind. I mean these are important questions we have to start asking ourselves. I think your right about the need for more teachers who are skilled in using technology in the classroom. I enjoyed reading your work, great job.

  3. Thanks Shaniqua! I think that Dr. Strange has assigned these projects to help us learn ways to utilize practical technology in the classroom, but I think there has been a deep, underlying meaning to each project also. Things seem to be changing in the direction of teachers who will be required to know this to have a job or keep one. Think about the ladies who worked for the phone company plugging in extensions to connect calls or ladies who worked in offices typing forms on typewriters with carbon paper in between to make a copy. When computers came along they had to hurry up and get with the program learning new skills or be replaced by someone who already knew them. Something we should probably keep in the back of our minds, even after we graduate. Have a great weekend and good luck with the rest of the semester!

  4. Christina,

    Too funny! Your posts are fantastic. And you know just how to flatter a lady. "qualified, knowledgeable, and friendly Teacher's Assistants working regular hours who are always happy to help."
    I'm blushing. Ha! :)

    1. Thanks Bailey! You guys were all of those things and more! I don't know what I would have done without any of you. It's easy to get discouraged and give up if you don't have support. All of you were always there with just enough support and encouragement to keep us going. I think the new computer lab motto should be "Help will always be given(at Hogwarts) in the computer lab to those who ask for it." Ha! Thanks for everything!!