Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Project Reflection

One last post it is then. Alright, so I must confess that the most important thing that I’ve learned through my final project has little to do with technology and teaching.

As soon as I heard Lloyd’s presentation earlier in the semester I knew that I had to sign up for this project. Cortland has done so much for me, so I wanted to give back; Karen was right when she identified this as being something that I cared about.

As many of you know, initially, things didn’t go as smoothly as I had planned. There was the issue of no one being in charge; I did not have the wherewithal to be able to manipulate the HTML to integrate the blog right onto Lloyd’s page; the thought of posting twice a week on content I couldn’t identify (at that time) was terrifying; Not to mention that this was my first class at the graduate level and I didn’t know what to expect (and what was to be expected of me).

Now that I’m sitting here looking back at these things in hindsight I realize that what I accomplished was pretty impressive. I was able to make myself in charge. I was able to find a way to get the blog up in an acceptable fashion (thanks Sarah, again) and I was able to produce more than two posts a week. So I guess what I learned (which coincides with what we are learning in this class) is that I when I’m faced with a problem I will be able to do what it takes to find a solution. Real life, here I come!

There are many things that I would like to investigate more thoroughly. First off, I’m hoping that gaining some teaching experience will finally solidify my transformation in to the M.A.T. program and a life of teaching. I owe a lot to this class, thanks to everyone… But, as for the technology, I am still curious to see how a blog would truly function in a classroom. Chris had mentioned how he is “torn” and I’m curious to see how I would truly feel if I had a classroom blog.

I think the pedagogical applications that blogging has in a classroom have been exhausted by the discussions that we’ve had throughout this semester. But, I don’t know if anyone would be able to convince me that a blog is a bad idea; actually I feel that a blog would be crucial to a classroom that I was in charge of, but, again, I have no experience. The benefits of blogging seem to be limitless from what I’ve witnessed this semester. I can identify some risks, also.

You asked what I would do differently if I were to continue this project… Well, I am going to continue working on the Downtown Cortland Blog. I enjoy writing, specifically blogging, and I feel that it is good for both Cortland and me. So, if anyone is still around and isn’t’ too busy—keep checkin’ it out. Some things are going to change, though. There will be another writer besides myself (I think) so the description and pictures will have to change. I will also be adding a culture section. But besides that I think things will run pretty similar as to what they are now. But, if there are any suggestions please let me know.

I’ve said this before, but I am really proud of how the Downtown Cortland Project turned out. Thanks to everyone who read and commented on the blog! Keep on reading, folks! Cheers.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Spreading The Word

I’ve always enjoyed bloggin’. But, to be honest, it has never really worked out for me. A couple of years back I set up and maintained a LiveJournal blog. I really enjoyed the writing and publishing, but I was upset that I never received any significant amount of feedback. So, my blogging, at that point, was short lived. I truly enjoyed our blog requirement for 506, and I’m guessing this is because of the constant feedback that I received.

A big concern that I’ve had recently focuses around the question of whether I will enjoy continuing to blog. I’ve made another blogger blog so that I can rant about pointless things; although, I’m concerned if it’s going to be a long-living construction or not. This fact got me thinking… is there a way to network my blog so that I can get more feedback? Low and behold – there is!

I’ve signed up for blogexplosion. This is a site where you can register your blog(s) so that a mass of people will be exposed to it, and what you have to say. I’ve only signed up today, but I’m excited to see the outcome.

I would guess that this site would be something that high school students would not be able to participate in, right? My first impression would be that there would be enough feedback in the class blog without this application. But, I could also imagine how happy I would be, as an 11th grader, to see someone outside of the class comment on my class blog. Maybe it would even be someone of significance (like Will Richardson’s comment on Dave’s blog).

I haven’t had much time in a classroom, and I’m not sure of what the regulations would be. Any ideas?