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Twitter & Flickr in 5 Minutes

February 25th, 2009 by Cristina Costa

I thoroughly enjoyed today’s session as part of Buth’s workshop. There were very though provoking questions there! It is great to connect to new people all the time…it’s just brilliant to be challenged by people’s ideas and experiences. It makes me think, it helps me reflect, and most important it helps me see things from someone else’s eyes.
Now that is what I call a great learning experience.

I have been thinking about what someone in the room said. I have written about this before too and I do understand where she (sorry didn’t get the participant’s name! ) was coming from.
We, the enthusiastic about everything that involves pushing a button, has a plug and enables interaction, sometimes come across as evangelists, or at least as people who think technology is the answer for all our problems, when, in matter a fact, that is not what we think and neither what we believe in.
But the fact is that there was, there has been, and probably there will always be really good and also really bad teaching. [my best teacher was my 3rd grade teacher…in such a poor school that we didn’t even have a phone… wonder if that would be possible today…?].

But as I was saying… Technology is not everything…it’s not even that much to be honest, but it can be something that can help us reach out to a wider world, simultaneously widen the classroom and make it closer to the world…
Technology is about bridging connections, open new communication channels, enable collaboration at a larger scale and situate the learning activity in environments and spaces as never possible before.

For me, technology is only useful if it enables me to enable my students with the opportunity to efficiently and effectively learn in a more realistic context. After all, learning has never been limited to the classroom walls…how many of us have not advised our students to travel in order to get closer to the reality, the culture and the language they are studying? How many of us haven’t made meaningful experiences outside the official learning place and schedule? And how many of us didn’t wish we had more opportunities to do so? Oh well… technology provide us with new ways of traveling, of making new experiences, and of transforming our practice and approach at the push of a button. Of course, it is not the push of the button that really matters, but rather where we allow that button (that channel) to take us to…

Times are changing, and the change changes us too.
Like I once said, my grandfather used to ride a donkey, my father had a motorbike, but soon realized that a car was better for him. These days I spend a lot of hours on airplanes to reach the places where I have to be. We live in a changing world! We need to adapt to continue to be relevant, to provide students with more opportunities… I wonder what the future awaits us, but I am sure my offspring will be experiencing many different channels I haven’t dreamed of yet… maybe because they are still not part of my reality, hence embedded in my habits and part of my needs.

Here is the presentation I attempted to give yesterday. It was developed in collaboration with Carla Arena

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