Check out this short video about teachers changing the idea of teaching and learning in the 21st century classroom. 

 

Web 2.0

02/24/2009

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The Read Write Web, affectionately known as Web 2.0, has changed my educational life in so many positive ways.  First of all, I have a variety of tools to choose from when I am working on a project.  I have many favorite tools like Diigo, TeacherTube, and Slideshare but one of my top favorites is Zoho.  From Zoho, I can create documents, presentations, spreadsheets, and many other types of interactive documents.  The best part about Zoho is the ability to share my online documents with other people.  Together, we have the ability to synchronously communicate and edit the same project.  If the group cannot make a decision on something, you can use Zoho Polls.  Create a poll, vote and determine which choice is the winner. It is user-friendly, and best of all, it is free!

Another favorite Web 2.0 tool is Twitter.  I enjoy communicating with other professionals around the world.  With Twitter, I look for people who have similar interests as mine and begin to follow their posts or “tweets”.  It has proven to be a useful tool for academic purposes.  If I have a question about my web site creation or some technology project, I send out a message (tweet) and within a few minutes, I will receive an answer.  The best part about Twitter is the ability to learn and share information with IDT professionals.  I would highly recommend Twitter to anyone…especially a fellow student. 

With the creation of Web 2.0 tools, problems are going to arise.  It is very aggravating when an application is not working properly.  Weebly is one example a web-based application that I have been experiencing difficulties.  Weebly allows users to create free websites and blogs.  It is very user-friendly however the system tends to stall and not import some of my current changes.  This can be very frustrating when you spend a lot of time waiting around for Weebly to load.  One way I have found to combat this problem is to be connected to two different computers at the same time.  When one computer is loading, I will work on something else from the other computer.  Twitter is also experiencing problems.  The infamous ‘fail whale’ appears anytime Twitter is dysfunctional (scroll down and look to the right for the fail whale graphic).  

My Web 2.0 experience will have a huge impact on my coursework and teaching.  I am able to implement web applications in my course projects such as a digital video on Google Video and a slide show on SlideShare.  As a teacher, it will play a large role in the way I teach and how students learn.  In my classroom and coursework, my students and I will be able to publish, share and collaborate via the Internet.   The collaborative opportunities are never ending however, the more opportunities there are, the more problems that can occur in regard to student safety.  In order to ensure safety, I have to be conscious of the school district’s Internet policy and ensure my students know the proper rules and procedures for Internet use.  It is vital that I provide my students with a structured lesson and detailed publishing instructions.  Continual monitoring of student’s progress is vital.  

The movement from Web 1.0 (receiving or taking in web information) to Web 2.0 (taking in and giving out web information) has created an environment that is expanding learning to a larger audience.  Incorporating new technological applications in my classroom will increase student’s knowledge, refine concepts, and promote creativity.  As part of my reflection, I developed three lesson ideas for how I could integrate Web 2.0 technologies in my curriculum.