Do we really need teachers?

Our EDTC 400 debate was on whether or not subjects that can be searched online be taught or not. This was a very tough topic for me. As an aspiring teacher, I could potentially be out of a job if students were made to learn materials online because, let’s face it, you can learn almost anything online. However, I am not against learning materials online over learning it from a teacher. I had taken a class where the teacher was not very efficient at teaching. The more I tried to understand him, the more confused I would be. Instead of going to his class, I skipped and learned from online sources. This allowed me to learn at my own convenience (because his class was too early for me), and I was given the option of learning from someone that I could understand. Although I had understood it better from sources online, the teacher had a specific way he had wanted us to do the questions and I have been docked marks off because I did not do it his way.

The materials given to us by Aurora and Sydney gave me some new perspectives. This Ted talk has taught me that Google can interfere with people’s searches if they wish to. While I did approve of when they did it for Michelle Obama and not for the terrorist, it is still frightening that for a search engine that almost everybody uses and believes the search outcomes, they have the power to manipulate the searches.

This article talks about how “have a romantic attachment to skills from the past”.

Which I do agree, partly. I talked about in my last blog post about how students are slowly becoming uncomfortable with face-to-face interactions. Is human interaction nota skill from the past that younger generations still need?

I also mentioned in my last blog post that the technology had stopped our ability to think for ourselves and this article shares the same concern.

So, what is my conclusion? I think it matters on the teacher who is teaching the subject. Like this article states, the teachers need to motivate the student. How can a teacher do that? The teacher needs to be passionate about what he/she is teaching, need to be knowledgeable on the subject, and also understands that every student has different mental abilities on learning that varies from subject to subject. The right teacher will eliminate the need for students to turn for online sources to learn a subject.

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Should it stay or should it go?

In this week’s debate, the topic was whether or not technology would be beneficial in the classroom or not. I have no doubt in my mind that technology would greatly help students in their learning IF AND ONLY IF it is used correctly. Here the the pros and cons list:

Pro

-It can help students in their learning.

-The younger generation are more skilled in the use of technology according to George Couros, so why not use that skill to help the younger generation learn in an environment they are comfortable with?

-More ease of finding materials for research, essay, ideas, learning, and even personal reading materials.

-Almost every student has a smart phone now/technology becoming more accessable.

-If class lecture is recorded, students may rewatch or watch it on their own time if they missed the class.

 

Cons

-Expensive. It is expensive to buy and maintain. It had not occured to me the cost of maintenance until Matthew Lynch had noted it.

-Teachers may be inexperienced to how the new technology work. Trying to keep teachers up to date about the technology and how to use it costs even more money, as note by Matthew Lynch again. Some teachers may outright hate implementing technology in to their classroom, which would cause the misuse of technology. Teachers who hate technology uses in classrooms may cut corners on important subjects such as digital identity.

-Not all teachers need technology to teach their classroom. Teachers such as gym teachers do not need technology to teach their class, they need equipment. Would it be fair for other teachers to get expensive technology for the class while the phys ed teachers are short funded because of how expensive the technology are?

-The younger generation are become more and more uncomfortable with face-to-face interactions. At the 1 minute point of this video shown to us by Ashlee, the student says herself that students lack that skill. I understand that the teacher just wants a way to connect with her students, but isn’t she enabling students to keep avoiding face-to-face interactions with adults? What if the students need to attend an interview for a job, but does not get the job simply because they were nervous and had messed up?

-There is no equality when it comes to technology. As I mentioned before, it is expensive. Students may not have access to it at home and are behind in their technological skills compared to classmates. Schools in less developed commuities will have difficulties with slow or unstable internet connections.

-Lastly, for the cons I want to state that with technology advancing and becoming a huge part of everyone’s lives, the old methods are becoming lost. Skill such as writing, how to find books in the library, and most importantly, how to think for ourselves. What I mean by think for ourselves is that we don’t take a moment to ponder what something behaves a certain way or question why certain animals behave a certain way. If a question like, do bananas grow stem side up or down? (By stem I mean the part in the red circle. Delicious looking I know)

Everyone with a smarthphone would just google the answer without thinking about it, without thinking about what would be the logical answer using our own personal experiences and knowledge. We, as a whole, have lost our sense or wonderment.

 

While I believe technology can be beneficial in the classroom, I am staying neutral on whether or not it should be used in classrooms. There are so many hurdles that needs to be overcome that I just do not know if it is worth the risk of potential harming the students’ chances at improving their learning and their life skills.

Technological companionship

During our class, we talked about what our blog and Twitter say about yourself. I had talked about how since both my blog and my twitter were made for the use of in school, they are mostly professional. If a potential employer were to see either one, I believe they will be able to see me as a professional. My Facebook, however, is a little less professional. It contains all the idiotic ramblings of a teenager. It is less professional but it does show better who I am as a person, not a professional. I believe I need to work on trying to have more of “me” in blogs and tweets and be more professional on Facebook. I want people to know that I am a professional but I am not without a personality. I wish to be seen as a person, not a personality-less robot made for teaching.

After listening to the Ted Talk given by Sherry Turkle, one quote struck out at me.

“Being alone feels like a problem that needs to be solved.”

I don’t use social media all that much nowadays, nor do I have the obsessive need to talk to people through my device. Literally, the latest post on my Facebook page is from October 18, 2018 and it wasn’t even by me. 

The latest post I made was on October 9, 2018, celebrating 8 years of Facebook friendship with one of my best friends.

Since I do not constantly try to connect to people on social media or texts, I believed that this quote does not relate to me. However, I remembered that when I am doing a task alone, let’s say a homework assignment, I like to have “background noise” playing while I do it. The type of “background noise” I play are usually shows that I have already watched or am able to not pay close attention to. This may be because I want the sense of feeling that people around me when I am alone. This is kind of ironic because when I’m at school the only thing I want is for there to be fewer people, like a lot less. I had not considered myself to get lonely easily because I often prefer to spend my nights by myself doing what I want to do. The fact that I play a show that has people talking in it may be a coping mechanism to counter my loneliness, even though I was the one who wanted to be alone. This sparks the question, how can we as educators teach students to handle being alone? Is it possible for teachers to teach it to students? We will almost always see students in an environment where there are several people around us. If we educators can’t teach them, how can we guide our students to be okay with being alone?

 

My Digital Identity

For this week we were asked to look through our social media and to see what they say about ourselves. First I looked through my Facebook profile. While I have no pictures of me drinking alcohol or doing anything that could jeopardize my career as a teacher. However, there were some posts that may raise some red flags.

While they aren’t necessarily bad posts, they may be seen as unprofessional. These posts were made when I was still in high school and I think it is safe to say that almost everyone has made some childish posts on social media when they were in their younger years. I am no exception. These kinds of posts will definitely be better off being deleted than kept on where people can see. However, I do not wish to delete them. My sense of humor has not strayed that far from when I was younger and I find these posts to be hilarious. It shows what kind of person I am and what I will be like in the classroom. In my ECS 210 seminar, the class was discussing what makes a “good teacher”. One of the things was a sense of humor. This is my sense of humor. I am obviously a big fan of poop jokes.

While there are some posts where my language is a bit crude, I believe I will be relatively secure from people other than my friends. My account can only be viewed by my friends and if people try to search me, then they will have a lot of trouble finding me. Since my name is so generic, it is pretty much impossible to search for my facebook account unless we have common friends.   I guess I’m a soccer player! If I look up “Daniel Lee”…..

I become a Film director! How exciting!

The only other social media I use is Instagram and my Instagram page is quite boring. It’s mostly just selfies and cat pics.

For the time being, I believe my digital identity is acceptable for a person pursuing to be a teacher. There are some parts where I will need to tidy up but for the time being, I am satisfied with how I am being represented digitally.

On a side note, I saw this link while lurking on my Facebook. Sadly the page is no longer available but just wanted to show everyone!

Intro to me!

Hello fellow classmates! I am Daniel Lee currently in the secondary education program. I am living in Regina. I know this may seem like an obvious thing to say, but when I took EDTC 300 there was a classmate from the Yukon! Technology is so cool. That being said, I am pretty terrible when it comes to technology. I can go on Facebook or Instagram and just browse through posts, but I can’t do much past that. Also, I don’t go on social media all that much so trying to tweet every day was a real struggle for me. Fingers crossed that I am better this class.

One thing about me is that I am a huge cat person. My friends always say you’re such a cat to me because I can be aloof at times but very needy at other times. Here is my cat Noname Junior.

My whole family is into cats so at one time we had 4 cats in the house. Furs….Everywhere….But totally worth it! I enjoy seeing cats during our Zoom sessions so please let your kitties learn with us.

From EDTC 400 I strive to learn……

  1. How to use social media as a means to network with people. I mainly use social media to just lurk around and pass time but I know that it can be used in a professional manner as well. However, I do not regularly post on my social media so I hope to be better on that aspect as well.
  2. Time management. I am a procrastinator. Like, to the extreme. However, this class does not allow me to procrastinate because I need to do weekly blogs posts and be on Twitter *cough cough* shameless plugin *cough cough* every day to do well in this course. I managed in EDTC 300 but there was a semester in between the 300 and the 400 courses so I will probably have to get back into the habit again. Sad face.
  3. Discover useful tools or apps. In EDTC 300, Katia showed us many useful apps and tools we could use for our future or current classes. Sadly I forgot all of them. Except for the adblocker app! This is super useful! I hope to discover (or rediscover) many useful apps and tools from this course!

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