EC&I 834

Blended – A new adventure in Moffatt’s Pre-AP ELA 20!

On days like today when it is minus a million outside and I don’t want to leave my house, the idea of teaching an online course is very appealing.

Why do I live here?

As I thought over the last few weeks about what I would like to design for my project for this class, one of my AP students came to mind.  Facing a variety of health issues, this student has missed quite a number of classes in the last few months.  In a class as rigorous as AP ELA, it is a huge gap of learning that has been missed.  If my classes had access to materials and learning resources online, their worlds would be a lot more awesome.  These are students who are bright, talented, self-motivated, and hard working – the perfect audience for my first attempt at a blended learning environment.  I originally wanted to design something for the second semester of Pre-AP ELA 20, a locally developed course, but there was a last minute hiccup with the Ministry approval and we are now teaching a different course for second semester while we work to perfect our own course.  Hence, I’ve chosen to design my course prototype for Pre-AP ELA 20.  I have the privilege of teaching this course every year in the first semester, so this will give me lots of time to keep going on the course even after EC&I 834 ends!

 

PRE-AP ELA 20 Blended Course

Target Student Population: 

The course will be designed for Pre-AP ELA 20 students.  The students are in grade 11, usually 16-17 years of age.

 

Course Format:

Blended.  Students will attend face to face classes and will access some resources and curricular documents online (assignments, assessments, lessons).

 

Purpose of Course:

AP students are keen learners and are working towards taking the AP international exam in May of their grade 12 year.  At our school, the vertical AP team works together to enhance the regular SK ELA curriculum with AP literature, strategies, and methodology to provide students the tools they require to be successful in writing the AP exam.  Students who obtain a specific rubric mark on the AP exam are exempt from taking the first year ELA course(s) at their chosen post-secondary institution.  The specific rubric level required varies by post secondary institution.

In order to enhance our regular curricula, our vertical team has designed a locally developed course that our AP students take in second semester of grade 11 as an elective course.  In developing a blended learning environment for our Pre-AP 20 students, I hope to provide students with the ability to explore AP specific topics, connect to resources that will supplement the learning they are doing in class, and to become proficient in using the internet and online resources to enhance the learning of content.

By using a blended approach time spent together in person can be used for creative projects, group discussions, and practicing analysis skills for literature.

 

Course Toolset: 

Platform – The course will be available to students through OneNote or Blackboard – I’m still trying to determine which format will be most useful for what I am designing.  These tools are the ones that we will be able to access through our school division.  I’d prefer to try a different platform such as Canvas since it is a bit more familiar to me, but I am going to attempt to use the other(s) so that my school division will provide tech support if needed.

Instructional tools – A variety of online videos that teach or reinforce the content of the face to face class lessons will be utilized.  EdPuzzle is one site I will use for these, as there are some assessment capabilities built into this.  I also want to provide links to various online resources to supplement the curriculum with special consideration given to AP resources.

Communication tools – besides school approved email, each student will develop a blog for writing responses to posed questions and as a way to interact in a meaningful way with their classmates.  We will use WordPress for their blogs, since it is the format with which I am most familiar.  Students also have access to their own personal “notebooks” in OneNote which we can utilize for submitting assignments – the notebooks can only be accessed by me as their teacher.

Assessment tools – I plan to use Classmarker for their practice multiple choice tests they complete for the literature we study.  I will also continue using Kahoot for their “Wordy Wednesday” competitions, and may possibly try out Plickers to see if I like it better than Kahoot!

 

Consideration for Common Concerns:

Low bandwidth – hopefully our school division bandwidth can keep up to the students using the resources while in our building.  The tech geniuses assure me it can! 🙂  Being able to access the course at home will depend on their own internet provider.

 

Student Access to Devices:

Since computers are a limited commodity in our building, I will do my best to be fair to other teachers while still accessing the technology when my students need it.  I will encourage students to bring their own devices (laptop preferably, but tablets/phones will also be welcomed), especially if they want to be able to access the online content everyday.  The public library is an option for those who don’t have online access at home.

 

EAL Learners:

Though I don’t normally encounter many EAL learners who require additional supports in my AP classes (the ones who take AP are proficient), provisions will be made for those who may need to use translation apps or need additional support to read or write the required material.  Read and Write for Google Chrome is one of the tools we use.

 

Attendance Concerns:

One of the benefits to having a blended class is the ability of students to work remotely if they are unable to attend school in person.  The ability to access class work will help prevent students from falling behind if they do have to miss school.

 

Other Considerations:

As an ELA department, we try to be as inclusive as we possibly can with regards to choosing resources that will portray a wide variety of cultures.  We are cognizant of the cultural diversity within our school and community and strive to provide literature that is of appropriate literary merit while remaining diverse and relevant to our students.

 

Learning Objectives:

In addition to the SK ELA outcomes required, student learning will focus on:

  • Reading and discussing works of imaginative literature
  • Utilizing Formalist/New Critical close-reading strategies
  • Applying rhetorical theory and stylistic analysis to oral and visual texts
  • Producing written and representative texts that focus on critical analysis of literature
  • Composing literary commentary
  • Composing expository texts to practice rhetorical strategies
  • Presenting oral arguments supported with multimedia

 

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EC&I 834

Learning Outside the Box

In my very first year of university (which was LAST CENTURY!), I took Religious Studies 100.  Since I was taking my first year courses in Weyburn at the local community college, the course was televised from the U of R campus.

Image result for 1997 television model
This is very similar to the television which broadcasted our class!

There were three of us in the Weyburn location taking the course, so at least we had some human interaction for discussion and group work.  We were provided with a telephone line so that we had access to the professor, but often by the time we called and got through with a question, the class had moved on.  We tended to problem solve on our own or ask each other questions, or we would email the prof after class for questions we couldn’t find the answers to on our own.  Not the best setup for learning, but it was a start.  I definitely appreciated being able to take the course in Weyburn since my daughter was only two at the time.  I also was very glad that there were two other people experiencing it with me as there were times where it was difficult to hear or understand and the three of us got pretty good at helping each other decipher what was happening.

Image result for telephone 1997
This is a fair representation of the phone we were provided to keep in contact with our professor – no joke!

My oldest daughter had to take ELA B30 online in her grade 12 year (2013) in order to get all her prerequisite classes for the program she wanted to take in University.  The class was delivered through Blackboard and there was a teacher overseeing the course progress.  The course was divided into modules.  There were a few instructional videos, but there was no method for interaction with a peer group.  Everything she did – assignments and the like – was through written or video submissions.   She did fine with this class, but she wished that there were classmates to discuss things with.  I agreed with her.  Imagine having to read Hamlet and learn about it without classmates!  Her teacher was available through email or phone, but not a lot of 17 year old students are going to call their teacher to discuss what they’ve read.  She was thankful to have me to explain the things or bounce ideas off of when she was struggling with the course.  Her classmates at school also studied Hamlet around the same time in their ELA class, so she was able to discuss it a bit with them (much better than talking to her mom about it).

Image result for Hamlet
Learning Hamlet in isolation …

 

Fast forward to now.  My experience with online courses has been a vast improvement in my grad studies compared to my first distance learning experience.  Now we can meet virtually and see our classmates while interacting in real time, both as a large group and in breakout rooms on Zoom.  We are connected through our course space on Slack, work off of a Google Doc for our course outline, contribute to our own and each other’s learning via our blogs and microblogging with Twitter, and collaborate in various online spaces for group work.  With the vast array of ed tech at our disposal, it is easier than ever to learn in an online environment.

Technology integration has been forced upon me throughout my career.  At first, I was reluctant.  There was so much to learn and so little time to learn it.  I make use of the projector frequently – low tech, but it’s tech!  The internet has been very valuable to teaching and learning… provided that we are also being especially aware and teaching about digital citizenship.  I also love my sound field – it helps students focus and it saves my voice.  As for any technology that could be used to take my classroom outside the school… nothing really has been done on my part except for helping students finish a course via email or something of that nature.  I will admit, the thought of doing anything more was daunting.  I knew very little about technology and how it could be a benefit to me or to them.  To make a long story short, I have not had many opportunities to use blended learning in my career.  However, it is an area of ever increasing interest to me based on the student interactions I’ve had over the last several years as well as becoming more comfortable with an online environment thanks to my grad classes.

“‘[B]lended learning’ can mean minimal rethinking or redesign of classroom teaching, such as the use of classroom aids, or complete redesign as in flexibly designed courses, which aim to identify the unique pedagogical characteristics of face-to-face teaching, with online learning providing flexible access for the rest of the learning.  source  This quote from one of our readings this week really got me questioning how my courses are designed.  I currently have three students who are medically unable to attend school… and final exams start tomorrow! With a blended approach, their experience this semester likely would have been much more positive with regards to assignment completion as well as not missing large chunks of instruction.  In anticipation of our project for EC&I 834, I have been thinking about how I could improve the learning experience for my students and how I could tweak my current practice so that I am using a more blended approach.  This requires a lot of outside the box thinking, as I was taught in a very old fashioned way and tend to gravitate towards what I am comfortable with.  As my comfort level with technology is rising, so is my interest in how I can start to become a blended educator.

Image result for online learning
What does online education look like?

For my students who cannot physically attend school a blended learning environment would be ideal.  It also would have been preferable to me in my undergrad class and for my daughter in her online class.  The opportunities for interaction in real time, the ability to interact with the course instructor and classmates in a multimodal manner… this would be a huge benefit for all students, even if they are in a face-to-face class.  The more connected students can be – to their learning, to ‘experts’ in the area of study, to classmates near and far who are studying the same topics – the more they will learn.  The ability to transfer learning to a real-world situation enhances the application of knowledge and leads to enduring understanding.  source

The task may be daunting and the process may be difficult, but I am looking forward to exploring how to take my teaching outside the box and create a blended classroom.

EC&I 834

Hello! My Name is ______________

Our introductory blog prompt immediately brought to mind the “Hello My Name is” badges that I’ve had to wear over the years and dredged up those feelings I had (and somewhat still do!) when confronted by those blank little stickers.  GAH!  I’m going to meet a bunch of people I don’t know.  Will they judge my writing when I write my name on this sticker?  Will they be able to read my writing?  Will they think I have a weird name?  Will they be able to pronounce my name correctly?  Where do I place the sticker?  Will it peel off?  They don’t have my favourite colour marker – now what? What am I doing here?  Will anyone notice if I leave?  How soon until I can go home? 

Hello name tag with hot chili pepper

 

Maybe you can tell from my strong reaction to name tags that I worry about silly things and that my mind usually has a lot of “tabs” open at any given time.  Maybe you can tell I’m a bit of a procrastinator on top of being a perfectionist.  Don’t get me wrong – I don’t put a lot of stock into what other people think about me.  That’s their issue and I try not to let other people’s issues affect me.  I do enjoy meeting new people.  I enter new situations with an open mind, wondering what new things I might learn or new people I might get to know, or what a situation or event will be able to teach me.

But I digress.  I’m supposed to tell you a little bit about who I am.  I am a small town girl at heart and grew up in a small village called Colgate south of Weyburn.  I wanted to be a teacher before I even started school.  I corrected my mom’s grammar from the age of three and told her when she skipped words when she was reading to me… so she made me read to myself.  School was (and still is!) my happy place.  Grade one literally got me hooked on phonics; I loved those workbooks.  They made so much sense to me.  I began university at 22 with a young daughter, and worked hard to complete my Education degree.  Today I am a wife, mom, teacher, coach, and student so time is always of the essence to me.  I don’t like the word “busy” … but I spend quite a few of my waking hours and a few of the supposed-to-be-sleeping hours completing tasks or managing my responsibilities to keep all of the balls that I’m juggling in the air.

I chose to pursue my Master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction because I believe curriculum design is vitally important in our ever-changing educational climate.  Having been involved in the committee that redesigned the SK ELA 21 curriculum, I know the process is lengthy and takes collaboration, dedication, and commitment from those involved.  After curricula development froze a few years ago, we found ourselves having to make decisions within our school and our humanities department about what we needed to include for our students and what was outdated and did not make sense for our students.  This is where my interest in curriculum design began and what got me set on pursuing my Master’s.

What lead me to enrolling in this class?  My journey started with choosing a class to take for Winter 2018.  To begin with, I kinda really sucked at technology.  I took a Computers in Ed class in my undergrad degree (from Alec Couros, of course!) and did decently.  But that was many, many moons ago.  Technology has evolved at lightning speed over the last decade or so since I completed my Bachelor’s degree.  I was having trouble keeping up.  The students definitely knew more than I did and that was frustrating!  Thankfully I had a great admin team and a fantastic, supportive ELA department who patiently helped me navigate the digital waters.  I wish educational technology came as easily to me as those phonics workbooks of yesteryear did!

That lead to my decision to take a class from Alec – EC& I 832.  Double bonus – I would learn about Digital Citizenship and Media Literacy while NOT having to drive to the city for class!  EC&I 832 was beneficial to me in so many ways.  The learning curve was huge but I hung on and ended up loving the class by the time it wrapped up.  I liked it so much in fact that I knew I wanted to learn more!  I signed up for EC& I 833, which focuses on the Foundations of Educational Technology including History, Theory and Practice.  I was feeling so much more confident with technology that I even signed up for a workshop through the Saskatchewan Professional Development Unit (SPDU) to learn about Embedding Technology in the Secondary ELA classroom.  I had a fabulous fall 2018 semester and learned to embrace technology and what it can do for me and my students.

That leads me to this class – EC&I 834.  Knowing the trends in education and watching the struggles some of my own students are facing, learning about designing blended and online learning environments really intrigues me.  My goals for the class are:

  1.  Learn about creating an online classroom by looking at examples and analyzing how I could most effectively design an environment that would suit my strengths while still being a great learning experience for kids.
  2.  Determine what elements of a traditional classroom could be incorporated in an online environment and try to recreate some of the best components of face-to-face learning in that online environment.
  3.  Research and explore LMS (learning management systems) and determine what would be the most effective LMS for the type of online classroom I’d like to create.
  4. Continue my growth and learning in the realm of educational technology.

Though I know it will be a fair amount of work, I am looking forward to the challenge!

EC&I 833

Summary of Learning

Ahhh, the end.  I am posting this with a bit of sadness.  I am FINALLY getting the hang of technology and using ed tech more effectively and I don’t want the semester to end.  With the wonderful opportunities for MOOCs and other learning that exists online, I know this is really just the beginning of my journey to grow as an educator.

Completing my Summary of Learning was so much fun!  I tried some brand new tools – AdobeSpark and Bitmoji – to create the video, with the help of my trusty Snipping tool and Google Images.  What on earth would we do without the internet??

https://spark.adobe.com/video/ivSy8h5EPcE9w/embed

I have had a great learning journey in EC&I 833.  Thanks for following along!

EC&I 833

Getting some assistance with Assistive Technology

“What are your experiences with assistive technology, and what are some of the limitations?”  When I read the blog prompt for this week, I thought “I have no experience with Assistive Technology – this oughta be fun!”  However, after watching Channing, Kelsey, Jill, and Haiming’s presentation last week and doing some readings, I realized that I have more experience than I originally thought but there is still a vast world of AT out there that is waiting to be explored.  Universal Design for Learning benefits not only students with specific needs – it benefits all learners.  “The ultimate goal is to create a flexible instructional environment that works for all students.”  (source)   Where to begin?  Well, if I’ve learned anything in my grad classes the last three semesters, it is that often the best people to provide answers to a question are the classmates who are living it with you.  So I sat down with some popcorn and read my classmates’ blog posts to see what they are using and what they recommend.

Image result for eating popcorn

 

source

Daniel’s post on his experiences being colour blind was fascinating.  Just think of the implications of colour blindness – the resiliency and tenacity that it takes to function in our society is inspiring.  Daniel’s descriptions of some of the frustrations he faced as a student and that he faces as a teacher made me think of something that happened to me during high school.  I spent many days locked in a dark room during my adolescence not knowing what was going on and why the light hurt my eyes.  At first the doctor thought it might be migraines.  It wasn’t.  Since I could go all summer without an “episode” and within a week of returning to school the headaches were recurring, we started taking a closer look at my school environment.  The culprit?  Fluorescent lighting – coupled with mostly white paper in my notebooks, handouts, and resources – resulted in wicked headaches.  Low tech AT fix?  Coloured transparencies to put over handouts or books while reading.  As a result of these experiences, I am more aware of the conditions in my classroom.  We never have the lights on full bright – having a dimmer switch is a bit of a necessary luxury for me!  The lights in my classroom were recently changed out for a different kind and boy oh boy – it’s like being on the sun!  Even on the dimmest setting the room was far brighter than my students and I were used to.  A quick email off to the principal and the electrician was there within hours to adjust the lights.  Little things such as the brightness of the room can affect students.  I always ensure I ask students what brightness they prefer when working on different learning tasks.  Most often, the answer is the same as mine.  The more dim it is, the better!

Evil headache inducing tubes of ridiculousness!

 

The one stumbling block for implementation of any technology in the classroom is time.  As Sider and Maich point out in “Assistive Technology Tools: Supporting Literacy Learning for All Learners in the Inclusive Classroom,” “Assistive technology tools are only helpful if efforts are made to implement them effectively for student use.  There are numerous barriers to this, including limited training for students and teachers and limited access to technical support.”  This is so true.  There are many tools at our disposal as teachers, but the trick is to find the time to learn how to use them in order to tap into their potential.  I feel this way about One Note.  I know it can be effective – I’ve seen colleagues use it effectively – but it feels so foreign to me.  Trying to find the time to wade through and try it is daunting and I end up pushing it aside as something to do “when I have time’… which, in teacher terms, likely means during the summer.

Microsoft OneNote
Have you used One Note?

 

 

Some assistive technology that I think is/could be especially useful for me and for my students:

Translation / Language Learning Apps

Having students who are learning English as an additional language in mainstream ELA classes is a challenge, especially when they have recently arrived from other countries.  My classmate, Kyle, mentioned translation apps in his blog post.  I would love to see more translation apps for our newly arrived students from other language speaking areas.  One tool that students could use is called HelloTalk – students can select what language they are wanting to learn and will be partnered with a native speaker of that language who wants to learn their language in return.  This partnership and meaningful dialogue can be especially useful in attaining new language skills, as both users have a vested interest in making the relationship work.

Image result for hellotalk

source

Read & Write

Google Read & Write virtues were extolled by Joe in his blog and by Scott in his blog. Some of my colleagues use this daily for their students (especially those who are on personalized learning plans).  I’ve used it as well, but not often.  It is a tool that I plan to incorporate more fully in my teaching to enhance learning for all students and not just those who have a particular need for the tools.

Image result for read & write

source

Sound Field / FM systems

The single piece of AT that I use on a daily basis is my Sound Field.  I have students who need it for hearing disabilities but it truly does help all listeners with their ability to hear and focus on the lesson.

redcat access
The speaker that amplifies sound in my classroom.

By wearing the portable microphone, I can speak in a normal voice and my students have no trouble hearing me.  It also saves my voice from strain which makes me a happy camper!  Since I only have tiny computer speakers in my classroom, I use the mike to amplify sound when watching videos as well.  I just place the microphone in front of the speakers for a more audible experience for my students.

redmike microphone
It doesn’t make me feel like a rock star like a headset microphone would, but it is a useful and stylish accessory for a teacher!

 

What are your must-have assistive technologies?

EC&I 833

I found a piece of my EdPuzzle!

Our challenge this week was to choose an assessment technology and use it in our classroom/teaching this week. This is timely, considering that many of my classes are currently working on viewing and listening assignments – an area I struggle to incorporate beyond the boring watch/listen and then discuss or answer questions.  Yeah, it checks off the outcome, but how is this interesting or engaging for students?  It’s not.  This challenge prompted me to reach outside of my comfort zone, and I was inspired by the SPDU workshop about Embedding technology in the Secondary ELA classroom that I recently attended.   Using video or audio in the classroom can be fun!  Watch and see:

 

 

With the goal of creating an interactive video that would be more engaging for students, I chose EdPuzzle as the tool I wanted to explore this week.  EdPuzzle allows teachers to crop, customize, and remix online videos for use in their classrooms.  It is free to use and did not require me to watch a bunch of tutorials or attend a whole day PD on how to use and incorporate it – it is very intuitive and user friendly!  I was quickly able to search for a video relevant to the curricular outcome and topic I wanted to cover – in my case, an introduction to the play Bad Seed which we study in ELA 20.  The title of the video is “Narcissist, Psychopath, or Sociopath: How to Spot the Difference.”

 

Using EdPuzzle, I was able to edit the video, crop the length, and build in questions that students must answer while they watch.  Though I did not use the voiceover tool, the option is available for teachers as well as the ability to comment, include resources, and create quizzes.  The best part is that teachers can use EdPuzzle with any existing online video to create an interactive experience for students.  Here is the  link to a brief Screencastify showing the teacher view of the screen while editing and how the questions are tagged in the video:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1jAaDt1gy0LZNRh3N9jT4DlrZVqBTRf3o/view

 

The biggest challenge I had in creating this was simply the time to sit and play with the tool – starting from scratch with a video was not an option for me this week.  3 Way Conferences, a full PD day, and a full weekend of coaching left me very little time to play around to any extent.  If this is an issue for you as well, fear not!  There are a vast array of videos that are ready to use on the EdPuzzle site with some of the work already done.  I accessed a copy of the video I wanted to use which already had questions developed from another user.  Then I previewed the video, cropped it for time and relevance, changed the questions to better suit my students’ needs, and DONE!  Ready to use viewing activity for my classroom.

Since I am not currently teaching a regular ELA 20 class until next semester, where I would use this video as a pre-teaching tool or formative assessment, I decided to test out the video on my Pre-AP ELA 20 students.  The students appreciated that they could access the video themselves and answer the questions at their own pace.  I used the video as a stand-alone activity for my Pre-AP class but many of them were able to draw connections to characters in some of the literature we are reading.

This EdPuzzle Review states that “while it will meet many needs, Edpuzzle could use more features to annotate and remix videos, especially the ability to combine multiple videos.”  Regardless of this deficit, I found this tool simple and easy to use while still being effective for engaging my students.  Many of the viewing assignments I’ve used thus far in my career are a bit lackluster to say the least.  They only required lower-level thinking skills.  EdPuzzle gives me options to encourage interaction with the video which increases the desire to learn the material.  Adding supplemental resources and links would further enhance this.  Students can also use EdPuzzle to research, create, and share their own video lessons – it could prove very useful for them as a learning tool.

EdPuzzle is a tool that I will continue to use — check it out and see for yourself how fun and easy it is to create interesting and engaging content for your students!

 

EC&I 833

Weathering the storm of Web 3.0 and its implications for Education

 

Web 1.0.  Web 2.0.  Web 3.0.  No, these aren’t Spiderman movies.  It is the terminology used to describe the evolution of the World Wide Web.  For those who need a quick overview, here’s a video:

Interesting to think that all of this has happened in a relatively short amount of time.  Have we as educators helped our students to embrace what the web has to offer and taught them how to most effectively navigate this awesome tool they have at their fingertips?  I can say, for me, the answer is probably a resounding “NO” – not because I resist the use of technology, but because I myself haven’t always had access to the tools or the knowledge on how to best support students and teach them to use the tools.  There are so many avenues to explore when it comes to using the web, all while trying to instill good digital citizenship and develop social responsibility in students and in ourselves as educators.

In one article I read this week, I found these lines:  “Using Web 2.0 tools offers the perfect opportunity to introduce students to good computing practices from how to safely share information to how to engage in civil discourse. If students do not have the chance to try out these tools, they will be left somewhat defenseless when they encounter them outside the classroom.”  This is something that the ELA teachers in our school have discussed and tried to incorporate into our planning and teaching.  Modeling how to be effective online citizens is an important part of teaching our students how to use technology effectively and appropriately.  This knowledge is going to become increasingly important with the development of Web 3.0.

What in the world is Web 3.0?  Essentially, it will change the internet from a searchable tool to a tool that can predict user needs.  This Techopedia article said “Web 3.0 can be likened to an artificial intelligence assistant that understands its user and personalizes everything.”

 

 

If we let it, Web 3.0 can have a significant impact on education and on our students’ learning.  Students could potentially gather a wide variety of relevant information about the topic they are researching, cutting research time down and allowing more time to sift through the information and organize it in whatever way they deem necessary for understanding.   That’s just a tip of the iceberg, I’m sure.  Just as I couldn’t have imagined the world we live in right now, I’m sure the advancements of the web will also bring an increase in applications that we are not even aware of yet.  As my classmate Melanie said in her post, “What worries me is that, by the time our school systems embrace the fact that technology is here to stay and admit that the way we ‘do’ education is strongly affected by the advancements in technology (and, as a consequence, education will need to be subjected to some major changes), we will be ‘too behind’ to be able to implement all the expected changes.”  Not only will implementation be a struggle, but equal access to resources may also prove to be an issue.  Those who have access to technology would be the privileged while those who live in poverty may be disadvantaged due to lack of access.  But as our presenting group pointed out last week, there are ways that we can help eliminate some of those barriers.  There are more free wi-fi zones in various places throughout most communities and public libraries offer not only wi-fi access but access to computers as well for those who may not have access to technology in their homes.

My classmate Sage in her blog post this week eloquently summarized the key features of each version of the Web and corresponding educational approaches.  Check it out!  What scares and excites me at the same time when thinking about Web 3.0 and how it will affect education, is the barriers to technology and the lack of PD in this area.  In our group presentation last week, there was a comparison made between the cost of two textbooks and the cost of a Chromebook.  Think about that.  Two textbooks costs about as much a a Chromebook.  Which would you say would be most useful for your overall learning?

Gerstein said “The Web, Internet, Social Media, and the evolving, emerging technologies have created a perfect storm or convergence of resources, tools, open and free information access.”   My question to you is this – will you weather the storm or will you hide from it?