It’s Magic Time!

….No, actually, I lied.  There is no magic here – it’s just me.  But you were excited for a second there, weren’t you?

So, down to business.  My name is Deborah Nikkel. I’m originally from Weyburn, SK, but I’m in Regina for school.  I have two sisters, one brother, a dog, and a cat (at home, obviously, because residence does not allow pets and someone would probably notice if I stuffed a sibling in my wardrobe).  I like reading, writing, drawing, karate, and kayaks, my favourite author is Terry Pratchett, and The Dream is to one day become a high school art teacher.  I also have an unhealthy love for brackets and semi-colons, for which my English Lit. professor is probably ashamed of me.  (Also, I started a sentence up there with ‘but’.  I don’t know if I will ever be forgiven.)  That’s probably as much about me as anyone needs to know, to start off with.

Now, this blog has initially been set up for the purposes of one of my classes, #ecmp355 (or Intro to Computers in the Classroom, for those who don’t know).  For that reason, I must take a few minutes out to talk about computers and technology in education.  I imagine I’ve had a moderate number of experiences with technology in the classroom.  When I was in school we used computers to do research, type up assignments, occasionally throw together a powerpoint, and, for a few blazingly exciting days in junior high, inflict some rather pitiful photomanipulations on the world.  There are a lot of benefits to computing technology in the classroom: the internet provides semi-infinite resources, allows us to connect with people all over the world, and it’s a medium that most students today are familiar with and find interesting.  On the other hand, the internet contains at least as much inaccurate, inappropriate, distracting, non-educational material as it does good.  Most teachers don’t have a lot of training on how to properly integrate technology into their classrooms, so they use it ineffectively.  Personally, I feel that unless teachers are able to use computing technology with skill, they should keep its use to a minimum.  After all, If the teacher doesn’t know what’s going on, then the likelihood of the students actually learning anything is very low.

I’m not sure what to expect from #ecmp355.  I have some experience with computers, but all in all my attitude towards them as a teacher is…not as someone who would use them extensively in the classroom.  At this point I lack the skills.  All I can really hope for is that this will change as the semester continues.  There are a lot of a amazing things out there on the internet, and I think it would be wonderful to be able to pass the knowledge of those things on to my students, if I can.

I’m looking forward to learning with all of you.  Farewell!

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