Let’s Use Technology and NOT Let Technology Use Us!

An interesting article that I read from ELearn magazine, Learning 2.0:  How digital networks are changing the rules, talks about how possibly “Web 2.0 is turning our brains to mush.”  They claim that daily exposure is altering the brain circuitry.

It seems that we are fully engaged, but only are paying attention with part of our brains.  We, then, do not remember things long term.  We are not using all parts of brain even though we are constantly looking and scanning for things online.  They believe that this is why many times people feel fatigued, irritable, and distracted.  While this seems to be a negative side, they also believe that it improves our ability to process large amounts of information and be able to quickly know what is important or not.

I think that this is something to really think about.  We need to use computer technology to enhance who we are and not to take over who we are.  Let’s not forget to be human.

Using Facebook as a class assignment!

Check out the following website that I visited — it is a very cool project to try in one of your classes!

Facebook Summit 2011

The instructions are to choose a leader/thinker from any time in history and design a Facebook campaign in an attempt to help them become the newly appointed World Leader.

This is an amazing idea for a classroom project.  Teenagers love Facebook and what better way to get them engaged and be creative.  This idea could be tweaked in order to be used for a variety of different classes.


Google Apps — A Great Place to Visit

You really need to check out the following site — excellent:

32 Ways to Use Google Apps in the Classroom (https://docs.google.com/present/view?id=0AV_Pgq_ZxwvSZGR3d3FxNnRfMjJnN3Jtc2pnaw&hl=en&ndplr=1)

What a great presentation this is of Google Apps.  Watch it.  Is there anything you can’t do within this environment?  What a great place to go and teach students to learn to use this!

As a teacher, I can create documents for my own personal use, or for classes, or for items to send to parents or administration.  Better yet, I can create documents and share them instantly with others.  They can even be a part of creating the document with me.  I can create surveys, inventories, observations, almost anything.

This is also a great place to carry on a chat through instant messaging or through the use of a video.  I can use this a place to have a speaker to my class without the person actually driving here (that’s a great plus when you deal with a long wintry snow season).

In my school we have GMail accounts for all students and all parents.  What a great way to get information out to any or all instantly!

The use of the calendars is fabulous.  I can have my own calendar, while still being a part of a school calendar or a community calendar.

A blog can be set up with Blogger – no need to go elsewhere.

Oh, did I forget to mention that Google is it’s own browser to search for any type of information I might want to find?