Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Are They Tears of Sadness or Excitement?

While many students are sad the semester has come to an end, I am honestly ecstatic. This has been an extremely long semester; make that an extremely long year. Not in a bad way, it has actually been a great year, but just extensive and demanding. This semester in particular seemed to go on and on, like a bad movie that would not end.  In EME 2040 I learned way more than I thought I was going to learn.  At the beginning of the class I thought for sure this was an easy A. Come on, a once a week class, no tests, a few trivial projects, basically all I had to do was show up. Oh boy was I wrong! In the syllabus where it says for every hour in class, spend two to three hours outside of class working. Wow, that could not be truer for this class.  The work we did in this class was valuable and important, but it was also extremely time-consuming and often maddening.  I found myself time after time re-doing work I had already done because I forgot to save, or I accidently deleted it.  In the end, the hard work was rewarding and now I have an arsenal of helpful teaching tools and new technologies.

This class has been fantastic as well as extremely frustrating.   The group projects like the collaborative lesson plan almost killed me.  Not because the work was difficult but because it was a group project.  I am all for teamwork, however if part of the team doesn’t work, it difficult to get the project done.  The WebQuest was an amazing project.  I had a ton of fun with it, even though it took me eight hours, I could see myself using it as a teacher.  The projects like the Pecha Kucha just made me laugh, the name, the idea, ultimately everything about it gave me the giggles.  That project brought an obscene about of stress.  The combination of presenting and using a new type of formatting was just over the top.  On the flip side of that, the PowerPoint was fun, and it was very interesting observe my fellow classmates presentations.  In the end I cannot see myself using it in a classroom, but it was still entertaining.  The blog and discussion posts were a new concept for me.  I enjoyed going back and reading the responses my classmates left on the discussions posts. Reflecting on my blog, I think it would have been beneficial to have classmates input on my blog.  Other projects like the instructional wiki or the in class assignment digital storytelling were not just a silly projects but are beneficial tools I am walking away with. 

At the beginning of the semester I was not sold on the idea about technology and classrooms together.  In fact, I was sort of against the whole idea.  I felt like if we brought technology into the classrooms it would ruin the magic of learning.  It would take away from the art projects or hands on learning.  But what I have learned over the course of the semester, is that it does not take away from the hands on learning, but in truth technology enhances learning.  Personally the magic of learning was the art projects but for the new generation, the magic is technology.  Students in today’s society have grown up with technology in their hands. The question was asked as teachers why do we want to take that away from them?  Professor Coleman has opened my eyes to reality, and made me use critical thinking about this matter. In the end, it did not make much sense to take away technology, because really that is what the students want.   This class was a lot more than I expected.  Hands down it was way more work than I thought nevertheless it was also a whole lot more learning.

In honor of the end of class and the semester I found this video extremely fitting.  I am glad I took this class.  Thank you very much Professor Coleman! 




1 comment:

  1. Celebrate your learning, Olivia! It has been a hard-earned semester, but I think you will find that the most rewarding things in life involve both hard work, invested time, and even struggle. It has been absolutely delightful to watch your learning in this class and though I know you are not totally sold on the entire concept of learning with technology, I love that you used the word, "magical" often in your description as to what it can do in the classroom. Your perspectives as a younger person who really has not known the world without technology are also invaluable, as many adults have narrow perceptions about how young people view technology. Enjoy your summer, but do keep reflecting on all of your learning - it is an ongoing process!