11 weeks have gone by and the digital technologies module has sadly finished. After visiting the various technologies over the last few weeks, I am going to give an overall reflection surrounding the module, my own skills and what I wish to take from the module as a whole.
In the introductory class to the module, we were given a self-assessment success wheel which we were to pinpoint our levels of knowledge before researching any of the digital technologies. Now in week 11, I have decided to revisit this wheel and fill in where I think I have made progress.
As you can see in the image above, I have made progress in all but one section of the wheel. For ActiveInspire, I have gone from very little knowledge to having a good knowledge of the programme. There is definitely further reading and practice required before I can say that I have excellent knowledge. I know I need to practice with ActivInspire as it was probably the section of digital technologies I had the most difficulties with. I think it’s a good programme for the classroom so I will defiantly be changing my level of knowledge. For me, I only feel confident saying I have excellent knowledge of programmable toys and the iPads. The module let me explore the world of programmable toys further and I am now successfully able to plan using the experiences and outcomes of CFE as well as being able to create my own resources. I already have many ideas of how I will use these toys within my future classroom. As for the iPads, I have had the realisation of the number of activities that can be planned within the classroom using the technology. The possibilities are endless and I look forward to exploring it further in my own classroom. In terms of games based learning, outdoor learning, glow, coding and easy speak microphones, I feel that yes I did see some progress in these sections however I haven’t reached the potential of my knowledge. I know that this is because I just need more practice with the technology involved and I will gain these experiences in future placements and in my teaching career. I do feel however that I could use all of the technologies mentioned successfully and confidently in the classroom and I am quite excited to be able to test out this technology with children but also explore further technologies which may not be relevant in this day and age.
A section which we explored which wasn’t mentioned in the above wheel was animation. I just want to say that my idea of animation has changed and I can see where it would be relevant in the modern day classroom. I definitely think I need practice in this area before teaching it in the future as I am still having flashbacks to that lecture! I think this leads me on to a further reflection I have made over the past few weeks and that is teamwork. I usually would say that I am a good team player and that I work well in a team but this module made it evident to me that I prefer to work in teams with 3 people rather than a larger group because I felt it was harder to take everyone’s ideas into consideration and also voice my own opinions as I can be quite a quiet character at times. However, I think I need to mention my levels of confidence which have dramatically changed throughout this module. I have surprised myself at how much I have been able to talk out in front of the class and give answers as I usually keep my opinions to myself. I also was able to present in my group and has made me realise that preparation is key as I stumbled through that presentation and with the help of a plan, it could be made better.
As I wrote these reflections, I thought about Scotlands Digital Learning and Teaching Strategy (Scottish Government, 2016) and where I could see connections being made. The aims of this strategy are:
- Develop the skills and confidence of educators in the appropriate and effective use of digital technology to support learning and teaching.
- Improve access to digital technology for all learners.
- Ensure that digital technology is a central consideration in all areas of curriculum and assessment delivery.
- Empower leaders of change to drive innovation and investment in digital technology for learning and teaching.
I would say that through the use of technology, I was able to develop my skills and my confidence and with this new knowledge I would be able to improve the access to the “digitally native” classroom in my future career (Prensky, 2001). I also think this module helped me to see how technology can be used in a cross-curricular context and how technologies could become the central aim of teaching. I also think that by using the technology the last few weeks, it has empowered me to want to teach it but to also have the ability to one day being able to teach it successfully and innovate it within the classroom.
There is definitely a lot that I am going to take from studying this module. This module has emphasised to me the importance of technology within a primary school classroom and why it is vital for us to open up the opportunities created by technology to all members of the class. It has also allowed me to think creatively about what I could do within my own classroom in the near future. I cannot wait to use the Beebots again as well as programmes like Scratch to allow growth not only in the children’s digital skills but also in all other curricular levels. I also think this module has proven to me the importance of critical thinking and reflections. By reflecting and critically thinking, I have been able to see what I need to improve on but also give my own opinion not influenced by others thoughts and feelings. These are skills which I will take into my teaching career are it is important for teachers to think critically and also reflect on their lessons.
To conclude, the digital technologies module provided me with practice and examples of the technology used within today’s classrooms. It also showed me the importance of reflection and allowed me to see where my skills need improvement for the future. It also allowed me to further my learning of Scotlands policies and allowed me insight on others professional opinions of technology being used in the classroom. I have enjoyed this module and will take all that I’ve learned into my own career.
References used within this blog:
Prensky, M. (2001) Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants MCB University Press.
Scottish Government (2016) A Digital Learning and Teaching Strategy for Scotland. Edinburgh: Scottish Government [Online] Available at: http://www.gov.scot/Resource/0050/00505855.pdf [Accessed: 30 March 2019].