Topic 9b: Digital confessions

I was very happy to discover that my last post, which I had added ‘just for fun’ because the topic is working towards my flexible learning plan, can actually count as a post for topic 9: technologies for flexible learning.

I have a problem with honesty though – or more to the point, a HUGE guilty conscience. I once wrote a note to apologise for a small dent I made in a car door when my own door flipped open in the wind one morning and hit the neighbouring car. I looked around to see if anyone had seen me, walked away, sighed, and then went back and left a note on the windscreen with my phone number. Maybe the car owner was so surprised that I would leave my number over such a minor dent, but they never called to claim damages. My parents shook their heads. I was amused – now as an adult I’m in trouble for being too truthful? :)

I’ve been exploring a lot of design blogs recently as I’ve been building Pinterest boards to use in my classes. I stumbled across several posts on different sites entitled “Things I’m afraid to tell you”. Apparently posting on this topic has become a movement in the ‘blogosphere’- bloggers posting their own, imperfect self truths, called by some a reaction to the overly designed and perfect image portrayed by design and lifestyle blogs. Jess Constable was the original blogger, who talked about wanting to be more ‘real’ so people can connect to the person behind the computer screen. Its generation from one post into a movement came through twitter and the social media collective.

So I thought I would amend my last post, now that I have actually viewed the resources for the topic. And I have lots to confess. I’m feeling completely overwhelmed here. I used to think I was relatively computer savvy. Hey, I teach Photoshop. But now I realise that I am WAY BEHIND. I use Facebook, but I think Tweeting is somehow fluffy, probably because a lot of what I was seeing it used for was Kim Kardashian’s latest musings on hair colour. I don’t have a smart phone, so I’m a novice at apps. QR codes are a mystery. I can’t get the photos I take with my phone off the phone, so I still use a digital camera – when I remember to bring it. My doesn’t hold music, and although I have an iPod nano, I’ve never taken a movie with it.  I only really started using YouTube a year ago, because I was a bit scared of it, confusing ‘streaming’ with ‘downloading’, and I was wary of internet viruses. When I come home, I want to do something with my hands – for me, the computer still means ‘work’.  However, I’ve been using an iPad recently, and that is a whole other experience – much more about browsing for pleasure, because you can do it in whatever sitting position you choose, or even in bed.

I get annoyed with the beeps and bings emanating from my students as I’m to lead a class discussion. It used to drive me wild to see the blue screen of Facebook every time I turned my back in a digital skills class. I wonder what their reaction would be if I took a phone call or answered a text mid lecture? But I’m also excited about the potential of all this technology, some of which I understand more that others. I was proud of my foray into Pinterest, and building more exciting Moodle shells. But I can see that I have a long way to go.

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One Comment on “Topic 9b: Digital confessions”

  1. bronwyn says:

    what a lovely honest post! If you are having trouble ” I can’t get the photos I take with my phone off the phone”. Ah yes the ole – I can’t find my download wire dilemma. Try sending them to Picassa or Flickr via email – you just need to set up the email on the website when you set up an account and then load it in your contacts. You can also send images to a blog so students could do this with the course blog. Is it a good thing or a bad thing to “see the blue screen of Facebook every time I turned my back in a digital skills class”?

    Research has shown that even if students regularly use facebook – they don’t necessarily know how to use these technologies for learning – it is the teacher’s role to help them with this. At least they know how to ‘play’ with technologies and this is the first step to developing confidence. I know some Schools at OP are using Facebook but I am still dubious about mixing social spaces with social learning spaces. What are your thoughts about this? This article might help you decide: Facebook as a Functional Tool & Critical Resource by Mark Lipton

    “The blue haze of Facebook reflected in students’ faces is usually considered a distraction from the sage on the stage, not an educational opportunity, driving many professors to ask students to “close their laptops.””

    This is a very interesting article about a university lecturer’s approach to using a facebook group with students.


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