3240 Journal assignment
The first three chapters in Jose Bowens Teaching Naked explains the progression of media and technology over the past years, how much its grown as common place and ways that it is utilised in the classroom. There seems to be a demand as online learning for corporations is big business. After reading statistics and figures about this I seemed to have zeroed in on these two excerpts:
1)“As technologies create new types of virtual classrooms and new ways for students to work and play together, new definitions of social proximity will change the norms of human interaction.” (pg 47)
2) “Getting the balance of humanity and technology right is everyone’s new mission, but we often want both and we want it now. This drive for both simultaneously and customised information may be a defining characteristic of human expectation in the next century.” (pg49)
Jose Bowen explains the how embracing e-communications makes us more connected to our students. We have to “connect” using Facebook, You Tube, Twitter, email etc, If not it makes us “uncool”. (pg30) I don’t necessarily agree with that statement. A teacher can connect with their students without having to use social media. I agree that it’s good to have an understanding of what media they are using but it’s about keeping it professional and relevant to what we are trying to accomplish as educators.
This makes me ponder the repercussions of our developing addiction to devices and social media and the impact it has on what our new sense of what community is.
Reading these two excerpts, I feel proves a challenge and creates awareness of bringing certain media into the classroom and how it’s changing how we socialize and interact. But is this something new? This article provides interesting facts dating back to 1947 the News Paper isolation effect, seems somewhat parallel to what we are experiencing now.
This topic really struck a chord with me being that I am of the generation of seeing how quickly technology has evolved and is continuing to revolutionize every aspect of our lives. Are we losing the ability to communicate with someone sitting right across from us? I enjoy and take part of many technological advances but find it essential to keep human contact a priority. Especially in my profession. Bringing technology into my classroom is great but my students have to be able to communicate one on one with their patients. The demand is there for media driven education but where do we find this balance to accommodate our students need for technology intergrated education and keep them in touch with humanity?
Part of me is curious and adventurous to learn new media but the other side is resistant, why? It’s hard to accept change, especially with our electronic era moving forward so quickly and changing so fast. Gone are the days of sitting with a group of people having coffee chatting. Now it’s a group of people sitting together texting, checking on Facebook or answering e-mails. Our younger generation has become accustom to this environment, are we losing them to a ‘Virtual Reality”? I see this allot in my dental practice, children and young adults unable to make eye contact or carry a conversation with me due to lack of social skills. But yet typing frantically to whoever or whatever they feel they need to stay connected with. I find this unacceptable and it creates a very insulated world for them.
So what are the implications of this new “Social Proximity”? From the reading and research I have done I found these two great articles:
One outlines how technology is destroying human interaction, and the other is making reference to the good the bad and the ugly of social media.
I cannot dispute the fact there are many great advantages to accessing social media for sharing, discussing and delivering information which can influence and improve our teaching. In my classroom I can use some of these aspects of social media. But I still need to keep that personal connection with my students due to the nature of our profession. Even though dentistry is becoming more technology based, there is still the need for human interaction and developing relationships with our patients. This is a skill that cannot be learned through social media. One can have 300 friends on Facebook and be a part of that endless community but it does not teach face to face interaction. You cannot see the person’s expressions or feel the energy they exude from expressed emotions. This virtual reality can be easily falsified and contrived.
The one positive aspect is that in each referenced article is the awareness of what too much media and social networking can do. I don’t have the need to implement as much media as what is outlined in this reading. It’s almost overwhelming how much can be used and for some downright intimidating. But what I think is important for me in my classroom and teaching the profession that I am in is to keep “human” connection relevant. I aim to be aware of my students needs for technology driven information and keep in mind the demographic of my class to customise what would be suitable for their best interest in learning. I plan to utilise some games to aid in teaching and learning. I also see a benefit to creating an online discussion board while the students are out on practicum to keep in touch. They can discuss experiences or issues they may be having working in the real world of dentistry after being in class for so many months. It would also be a way for me to stay in touch and address any concerns. But, this is not to be a replacement for the essential information delivered in class person to person. I feel somewhat old school in my thinking about teaching. So it may take some time to become accustom to integrate appropriate technology in my classroom. I will step off my soap box now!
Teaching Naked, Jose Antonio Bowen, Copyright 2012 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Published by Josey-Bass