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Sunday, August 23, 2009

Reflective Synopsis

Throughout this journey I have been involved in a number of different technologies and have learnt how to use these new tools in order to increase my learning abilities. I was already familiar with some of these technologies although this journey has helped expand my knowledge and understanding of how they work and the most effective way in which to use these tools.

All through my journey I have learned about the engagement theory, RSS Aggregators, WIKIS, E Portfolios, Voki Avatars, PowerPoint, Flickr, Class maker, Google earth, Picnik, You tube, podcasting, webquest, slideshow and then voice threads.

My favourite technology I have learned to use in my journey would be both picnik and Google earth. I found picnic very interesting as since I am digital native I am continuously using technology including taking lots and lots of photos. These photos can me of me or my friends and family, now that I am aware of how to properly use picnik I will be able to continue fixing and editing my photos. I enjoyed Google earth so much as I am very interested in the world and plan on spending some time traveling when I am able. I liked how Google earth showed such a precise and clear picture of the town or address you selected.

Although these would be my favourite two new technology internet tools I found all of these programs very interesting and helpful. Using different frameworks as a basis for examining and analysing the different tools also increased my own higher order thinking. These tools would be very useful in class rooms today as they would dramatically improve students learning by engaging them and keeping them interested in what they are learning.

Today's technology allows students to participate in learning experiences that involve active cognitive processes, such as creating, problem-solving, reasoning, decision-making and evaluating (Kearsley, & Shneiderman, 1999). All these technologies can be included into general classroom lessons rather than separate subjects and therefore can help all students.

Technology is continuing to expand and evolve and it is up to us to make sure we keep up with the ever changing tools used. Lucky for me I am known as a digital native which means that I have been born into technology and grown up with it, therefore understanding it better then what perhaps a digital native might, who has had to try and adapt to the new technologies around today (Prensky, 2004).

I have really enjoyed this class and assignment and will continue to use these new tools ive learnt in the future.

Kearsley, G.,& Shneiderman, B. (1999) Engagement theory: a framework for technology-based teaching and learning. Retrieved 1 August 2009 from, http://home.sprynet.com/~gkearsley/engage.htm

Prensky, M (2001) Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants. Downloaded July 2009 from http://www.marcprensky.com/writing/Prensky%20-%20Digital%20Natives,%20Digital%20Immigrants%20-%

Voice thread

I found Voice thread to be very interesting and loved the easy way it is set up which allows students to fully understand what it is they must do. There are 5 ways you can communicate while using Voice Thread, these are Microphone, text, telephone, webcam and file upload.I firstly created an account with voice thread then proceeded to upload photos of my kitten. I then added titles to my photos and shared them on the site.

Slide Share

Slide Share and File Storage both share the commonality of storing and sharing documents on the Internet. My learning about all of these activities that can be done on the internet I have realized that the internet really does play a huge roll in the world today.

I made my account at the slide share website, however was unable to upload any power point presentations. i did however take a look at other people slideshare accounts and admired there power points. I believe it is important to grasp an good understanding of how to create a decent power point. This could be an excellent way for students to research Powerpoints and gather information for assessments.

Web Quests

WebQuests are a learning tool used to leverage the power of the Web with sharp learning design in order to create exceptional results in all learners involved. Majority of WebQuests involve small teams of students relating to a messy problem task, investigating the issues then sharing what team members have learned from their individual research and apply this knowledge to the problem.

I find Webquests to be a important and fun activity that encourages students to develop higher investigating and critical thinking skills. Students creating their own Webquests can be incorporated into a school environment well as students can create their own Webquest involving something with their schools such as sun smart or recycling then allow other students to try and fix the problem.

i tunes and Podcasting

A podcast is an audio file that can be played in MP3 format, therefore it means that is can be played on a computer, mobile phone, mp3 devices and ipods. I downloaded i Tunes off the the site www.itunes.com. It took a while to download but once it was done you could use i tunes as a RSS Aggregator and download and share podcasts with everyone.

Podcasts can play a very educational role in the class room as students can enjoy and learn from creating their own podcast as well as the teacher gaining a great tool which can be used to provide revision material as well as voice recordings, making music.

You tube and teacher tube

You Tube and teacher Tube are internet sites which allow you to search for different songs, movies, funny clips, bloopers, sporting events and even part of tv shows. It is also used by people to share their opinions as there is the option to upload your own you tube video. I have had experience over the years with you tube mostly just to watch movies or listen to music.

YouTube can also be used for educational purposes by students or teachers. It is a quick and easy way to find video footage of an event, movie or song. There are many different educational videos to be found on you tube, such as if you type in "Triangles" then it shows approximately 50 000 videos on triangles. Therefore You Tube provides an essay way to get information for free and it is great as its in visual form which can be much more intriguing.


Picnik is a website which allows you to upload photos from your computer and edit them. It offers many different tools such as auto fix, crop, rotate, colours, resize, sharpen, exposure and red eye. It also has the option for you to add effects such as black and white, sepia or even to add text, stickers and or frames.

I took this photo of my best friend’s son a few months ago, I then edited it using auto fix then added the museum matte frame. I then wrote in the text of his name and rotated and re sized it to fit. Lastly I decided to add some sticker to my photo for a bit of a creative and personalized touch.