Over the last two weeks we have been investigating Digital Inequality and I have found it to be both fascinating and enlightening. By creating a presentation in a way I have never done before I have been really challenged and outside my comfort zone. I am usually a confident and comfortable speaker, I have spoken in front of many people many times but tonight I realized that it has been a long time since I listened to myself! It was a challenge to get my recording on VoiceThreads exactly the way I wanted it.
In trying to apply what I learned about presentations, I really focused on keeping my slides clean and tried to include minimal writing on the screen. I thought far more about word placement and images than ever before. I wanted the message to be carried in what I said and not just in what I put on the screen. I stayed well clear of special effects and transitions, which was something which I read before I began. I did try to add some tonality to my voice and make sure I didn’t sound too monotone. It was hard. I focused on keeping the images to a minimum – they were really only used to fill white space and provide simple visual links to what I was talking about. I used an online flat icon generator to make the pictures specific to my purpose. http://flaticons.net
I learned about the difference between Digital Divide and Digital Inequality and I am fascinated to see what happens next… We are at a point in time when the pace of change is so significant that it is almost impossible to predict what will happen. Will the ‘have nots’ catch up and eliminate the digital divide, or will digital inequality become more significant? I think they way people learn is changing and my hope is that those who have access will drive themselves and their own learning .
As I think about what I have learned, I know that I can impact the learning that takes place in our school. I hope that I can address the issues which were identified by staff in a timely manner. Knowledge is important but how I apply it is more important. Yesterday I send out invites to all staff to participate in a skills audit and attend a drop in session next week on Diigo and Glogster.
Someone once described a ‘good’ teacher to me as someone who is constantly dissatisfied with their own performance. I hope that makes me a good teacher. I am never really happy with what I create or make. In this case, I think my presentation slides were better than the accompanying voiceover. I wrote notes and a script but not enough of a script. Next time I would write significantly more and rehearse in front of some captive listener, not just myself. When recording a voiceover, a script is good. A good script is even better.
I also submitted my presentation without checking that I had made reference to the AECT code of ethics. An oversight down to bad planning. I believe that a number of aspects of the code are being infringed in our school, in particular Section 1.2, 1.3 and 1.7.
Overall, I am happy because I helped to identify real issues and thought of real solutions which will hopefully help to move our school forward.
Here is a link to my VoiceThread presentation.