YouTube Started What?

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I have mentioned before that I am not very resourceful or knowledgeable when it comes to technology. However, when it comes to YouTube, I am not only addicted, but I have learned a lot about the platform for over a decade. It all began when I was eleven years old and my mom had just let me buy my first piece of makeup, an eyeliner. I was scared to use it, and my mom certainly did not have the teaching skills to translate to an eleven year old how to put on eyeliner properly.¬† So, I turned to YouTube to search if someone else could teach me. I has no idea if YouTube would have any content of the sort, but to my surprise there were about two or three videos on “How-to Apply Eyeliner for Beginners” . I was amazed that through this website I was able to get the help that I needed from a complete stranger. Now, the YouTube beauty community, as well as so many other categories have endless videos that connect humans from around the world for common purposes. It is almost impossible to not find what you are looking for.

Watching the video “An Anthropological Introduction to YouTube”, Michael Wesch explains the beginnings of YouTube as platform for people to share content and the expansion of it into a means of “mediating human relationships”. As I watched this video I not only recalled my first true encounter with the internet and the means in how it has developed (as explained through my own narrative above), but I also thought about how this has impacted me throughout my journey in becoming a teacher and how it will impact me as I move into a role of a teacher.

Technology has already become a huge part in teaching our students. It impacts their lives daily as a larger portion of their day is spent staring at a screen in and out of the classroom. Many view this as negative and that cellphones and different forms of technology being distractions. However, it is important to realize that these forms of technology are part of our life now and are only becoming a larger portion of human connection as we move towards the future. Therefor teachers need to keep up with the changes being made and continue to incorporate the use of technology so we can establish a positive practice and mean to use it so it has an appropriate and beneficial impact on students.

By incorporating the use of technology within classrooms and exposing to students the benefits it has in “mediating human relationships” and what we can learn, we push technology into a positive light as we simply have to accept it is such a huge part of everyone’s lives now. I think the best way to create an open network where students want to participate is not only giving students the resources so they know how to use certain types of platforms, but also giving them the reason WHY it is important to know how to use and the benefits behind the use. If we simply present students with a platform to use and say “use it” they will not see any need to do so. We need to find websites and forms of technology that the students find useful and WANT to use in their everyday lives. When we, as educators can present them with something they can have fun with and learn at the same time, that is easy to use, that is where technology become beneficial in connecting knowledge and creating relationships.

 

I think we also need to educate our students on the negative effects of technology and social media. Being transparent in the dangers of the internet and the lack of privacy that can come from interacting online needs to be outlined. In order for students to be successful, they need to understand both the benefits and the cons to what they are learning and how they will learn it. I have always had this idea of doing a project where students find an article about the dangers of the use of internet where they get to read a narrative of someone who may have run into some trouble or suffered from social media or some media platform. They would tell their narrative and then investigate a means to try and prevent that from happening for future students. Whether it be a presentation to outline the simple steps within a program to secure a personal account or perhaps re creating whatever the narrative was trying to achieve, but finding a program that could do it in a more safe manner. Or they could simply find new platforms to use within the classroom and outline the benefits and cons to it.

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I love “50 Ideas to..” articles or websites and through my internship I always looked up ways to incorporate technology within the classroom. One website I constantly referred to was “50 Ways to Integrate Technology in Your Classroom TOMORROW”. They have a plethora of ideas that you can find here: https://sites.google.com/site/anchortechnologytomorrow/home/50-ways-to-anchor-technology

 

There are many things to consider when talking about technology and how it allows us to build and connect with people from around the world to share knowledge, but the biggest factor is simply that technology continues to grow and expand. As educators, we know our students are changing with the technology as its influence is extremely hefty in their lives. Therefore it is our job to change with the progress that is being made and utilize it in a positive manner to teach our students appropriate, beneficial and safe ways to utilize it.

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Dipping My Toes Into an #Edchat

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Yesterday evening I experienced my first #edchat on twitter. All types of emotions were running through me. I was excited, nervous and confused. I was unsure of how this chat would take place, if I could keep up, how to follow the chat and if I would have anything valuable to add. It was run by @ShiftParadigm and his guidance and responses to the chat were impeccable (I immediately followed him).

My favorite part about the chat was sending out a response I thought was valuable and having it be confirmed by not only my classmates, but people form around the world. Specifically when we got onto the topic of grading, I became really excited. I am a very big fan of Alfie Kohn and his theories towards grades and intrinsic and extrinsic motivations. I recently wrote an essay about the detriment of grading to students, and I used a point of mine from that paper and responded to a participant of the #edchat. Responding to @TamraExcell made me all types of nervous inside as all of her contributions to the night’s chat were impeccable inspiring. However, I did it. To my surprise there was so much response and support from people liking my tweet, to retweeting, to responding to me and creating a chat of our own from it! It was such a success and made me feel like I was talking to people who cared about the same things I do in education. Ill insert some pictures below of the tweet I posted!

The only thing I found  challenging with my first #edchat, was that I could not keep up! There was no real order in which it went on (perhaps its the beauty of this chaos that makes it so successful). There were so many conversations at once, I did not know who to respond to and at what appropriate time. Also, when people link articles, are we supposed to read them immediately and then respond, I certainly do not read fast enough to do that. The pace is quick, and perhaps it is because I am new at technology that I just need to practice to catch up. Did anyone else seem like they were jogging behind all the sprinters?

 

Feedly Feeds My Soul

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Feedly is amazing! Not only am I able to find resources for almost anything I search, but I am able to connect with other teachers from around the world. The ease of being able to search has certainly taken the weight off of my shoulders when looking into have other blogs that I can gain insight from as opposed to just casting out a net on the interweb and hoping I get a bite!

I found one blog which I have been hooked on for the past two weeks. It is called “Dangerously Irrelevant” by the blogger Scott Mcleod. His blog focuses on technology, leadership and the future of schools. One of his latest posts “The real reason we ban cell phones”, hones in on the importance of why teachers think of cell phones as a negative towards their lack of attention arising. I then goes on to outline the reasons in which why cellphones are important and provides some links to articles that support these arguments.

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The benefits behind Feedly are plenty, however I find it takes a long time to load and you do need to be more specific in searching. If you search with too broad of a topic, your results become to heavy and too wide of a range so finding resources becomes tougher.

I find many of my teaching views align with Mcleod. I am glad to have connected with a blog I find enjoyment in reading. Feedly has led me to other great blogs and some that I believe will come in had for my learning project which I will post about very soon!