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Week Seven: 11.04

Schools have now been given the opportunity to communicate to the wider community through the use of new technologies. With greater access to computers and the internet, schools, teachers and students are able to gain and deliver information more readily than in previous times. 

The Interactive Whiteboard (IWB), even though I am not the biggest fan, can assist teachers in gaining and delivering more and more information, which will ultimately assist the student in learning. 

In April 2011, the NSW Government announced that they would send 4300 new Interactive Whiteboards into NSW classrooms. This has allowed for many students to have access to the excellent opportunities that come with having an IWB. 
Video Conferencing is one aspect in which was discussed in our class. After using various sites and listening to various ideas from my peers, I can see the benefit of this tool. An example that was given about the excellent use of video conferencing was that of author Morris Gleitzman, who visited Chipping Norton Primary School and conducted a video conference with Stage 3 students within that school and twelve others!!!! When I read this, as you may as well, I was shocked that this is possible. I would definitely see this as a positive for school communication as the students are able to contact, listen to and ask questions to  people without travelling to the site in which these people are in, such as that of Gleitzman’s visit to Chipping Norton P.S.

Web-Cam’s were also another aspect that grabbed my attention. Through looking at given sites and then finding my own, I was able to see how amazing web-cams can be!! I have used them in the past to look at the weather and surf in various areas across New South Wales, but after this class, I can see that web-cams can be used for more educational purposes!!! I would use this in my future classroom, as it allows students to access areas around the globe that they may never be able to access in person. The virtual world makes it possible. The National Geographic website gives links to Live Web-cams, such as the ‘Watch Live Polar Bears. Students may never see a Polar Bear in it’s natural habitat, so this site give students an opportunity to do so. 

I thoroughly enjoyed the concept of ‘Class Homepages’. Classes have created these pages to inform parents and the students on class activities, homework as well as class values and morals. I would say, from reading two class homepages, that they are similar to a class blog. However, I found that the teachers created these ones. Oldfield Brow Primary School, in the United Kingdom, has class homepages. I found that this would be an excellent communication devise for teachers to contact parents. This site gives parents information about the class, how and what they are learning as well as reward systems to allow the parents of the students to be more involved in their child’s learning process. I would definitely use this communication devise as a teacher, but I would try and follow the lead of Mr. Cummings’ class homepage. He involves his students more than Class F at Oldfield Brow, which I believe is an extremely important aspect of learning; involving the students in all aspects. 

Communication within and between schools has changed significantly, and I believe that it is mostly for the best. As I have stated before, I do not believe in using technology for all aspects of teaching, however, with this new information about various ways to show students the world and communicate with them and the school community, I believe that it should be available to all classrooms to enhance overall learning. But, is it worth the $158million that the NSW Government has invested in new learning technologies for schools? That is another topic of debate!


1 Comment»

  A Digital Excursion? Why not? « pe3amcg wrote @

[…] being that of video conferencing and digital excursions. This relates so closely to my Week Seven Post. This article supports all learning that I have participated regarding new technologies in the […]

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