This class has definitely been an eye opener for me. My outlook toward online classes from the beginning of this class through now is like night and day… total opposite. When I was first signed up for this class, I was extremely nervous because I had never taken an online class before, and I had no idea how it was going to work or even how I was going to handle it. I am a procrastinate at heart, and I do my best work under the pressure of a fast approaching timeline. After having a few online meetings, doing a complete project without any face-to-face interaction, and learning completely new lessons without ever meeting my teacher or sitting in a lecture, I am confidant that my fears of this online class were completely preposterous.
I have learned quite a bit from this class. I learned much more than I ever expected. The technology that is out there for teachers and students is overwhelming. I know I didn’t learn everything that is in existence that could be facilitated in a classroom setting because that would entail a daily class for the rest of my life with how quickly things change and new things are developed. Not only did I learn about the numerous technological advances that I can benefit from as well as my students, I learned abounding details about myself. There is so much I will be walking away with from this class that was probably never intended.
Just simply being scared to death to take an online class was enough to start me out with several weaknesses. However, my innate nature to help others proved to be a strength when we worked on our Google group project. My procrastination and late night study habits aided in this as well. Not having preexisting knowledge to most of the technology and techniques I’ve learned about made it helpful for me to follow the directions and absorb the information.
The interaction between me and my peers was mostly sparse which made the Google group project a little difficult. The convenience of an online class is the flexibility you have around the things already going on in your life. However, when you have a group project to work on, not everyone is working on the same schedule. This tasks proved difficult but not impossible. I am proud to say that the group I am in came together and helped each other out. My interaction with my instructor has been great. I’ve never had a question that couldn’t be answered or an issue that couldn’t be solved. Outside of group projects and instructor, the only communications with my other classmates has been through the blog postings. It’s been great to read their comments.
The communication tools used in this class were a variety of sorts. Google drive was widely used to share our various projects, and email was the most common use of one on one communication on my part. Google drive was a great advantage because you were in control of who your files are shared with and the ease of which they were shared. I prefer my Gmail account because it is actually linked to my phone and no matter where I was, I could answer or ask a question. I often forgot that the BlackBoard email option was there, but it is the form of communication I used most often with my instructor. The disadvantage there was I wouldn’t know when a response came. Our blogs were a good form of expressing ideas to our peers on their ideas and projects. The advantage here was that you could see the different perspectives classmates had on the lesson, and who had similar issues.
This was my first experience with a blogfolio. I really liked it and have found some really good uses through this resource. I like the personalization aspect of it. There are several themes and options to choose from. When I first picked my theme, I then realized someone else in class had the same thing. Just to change it up a bit I discovered there were even options in the one theme I selected. I enjoyed learning how to hyperlink in my blogs and the insertion of images. I really hadn’t used text wrap with images much before this class. So even from the very beginning of class, I was learning. I have always enjoyed writing and I keep a daily journal of life events, and such. I’ve often been told it would be so much easier if I kept a blog. I think I just enjoy the aspect of the pen scrolling across the paper too much.