Michael C. Warren

Technology and Education

Knowledge Gained

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Self Discovery

“When many adults think back to what shaped their learning about a given issue, they cite some field trip they went on or competition they participated in” (Bacon, 2010).  I believe this is true for any of us, whether as a student or an adult. Usually the most important things that help us learn are participating in an event. As Mark Twain wrote in Innocents Abroad, “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime” (Twain, 1966). This statement by Mark Twain is a good example of what our current educational system cannot offer and how we can use technology to improve this situation.  Until recently, our educational system has promoted the concept of learning from “one little corner of the earth,” even if books about other people and places are available. The books that schools select for classrooms and libraries have typically guided students; they were not encouraged to think outside of those parameters.

Students now live in a world where this style of education can be reversed. Students can use technology to bypass a physical school building, be part of what they are learning by traveling, participating in work study environments, interactive field trips and other events that are held outside the school building.  Some students may have the opportunity to focus on extracurricular activities and have their education presented to them in alternative methods.  Students can learn from wherever they are, and continue to learn with their online groups to provide a global learning environment.

For many years since I left web development prior to the dot com bust, I have been wondering what was going to drive me next. This course itself has helped me discover that I want to help organizations develop a better ability to train or work from any place in the world. This self-discovery in a way has been growing inside me. For many years I have felt that mobile devices would be the next big push; however, the use of the devices for true functioning tools is the bigger goal. Mobile tools for education can offer a large number of opportunities for global education, as well as financial opportunities for educational organizations to offer online courses.  This concept of learning outside the “box” for students will lead to many workers who have the opportunity to work away from a corporate building.

In order for me to promote this in schools I need to work on improving my ability to present in front of others.  Throughout this course I have not had problems leading when it came to producing technical work or deciding on how to complete a project; my weakness in leading comes when I have to present or talk in front of others.  While I understand the content, I stammer over words or hesitate in my answers of questions when in front of a group of my peers.  In order to grow in this area, I need to continue to give presentations and group training sessions. This program has given me the tools to make sure I can provide better assessments and in return feel more confident when talking to others.  One of the tools I gained in this program was how to research better, how to dig deeper to find better information that will help promote the use of newer technologies in educational or cooperative environments.

References

Bacon, N. (n.d.). How Out-of-School Programs Enrich Student Learning. New Horizons for Learning. Retrieved from http://www.newhorizons.org/strategies/character/bacon.htm

Twain, M. (1966). Innocents Abroad (Signet Classics). New York: Signet Classics.


Examination of Educational Technology Leadership (Assignment 3-2)

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October 6th, 2010 at 11:05 am

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