EDTECH 521 Reflection Journal

EDTECH 521 Reflection Journal

Quotes from Readings and Class Tasks and Activities Thoughts/Learning/Questions

Chapter 4

Pg. 73 “The movement to an online classroom means that long-standing teaching traditions must be adapted to fit an environment that is more flexible, not bound by strict time schedules, and collaborative in nature.”

“…as the learning environment moves from a traditional teacher-directed approach to one that is more supportive of learner-centeredness.”

Pg. 76 “Your ability and confidence in using technology to deliver and develop lessons for online delivery will influence your amount of direct instruction with your students.”

“In this role [instructor], you will manage communication protocols, due dates, assignment submissions, attendance records, communication logs, and the grade book.”

“…remember, responsible adults have important experience and expertise, too.”

Pg. 77 “As an online teacher, you will be responsible for facilitation all of the processes directed at creating and maintaining functional and effective group efforts to promote community in your classroom.”

Pg. 91 “The primary difference is t hat online activities usually take longer, so you should expect your initial icebreaker activity to take the better part of one week, instead of one day.”

Pg. 94 “You can make the transition as smooth as possible by taking proactive steps, such as preparing activities and interventions in advance.

I am learning that there is a much larger difference between face-to-face teaching and online teaching than I originally thought. I have always thought online teaching would be so much easier because you wouldn’t have to deal with as many discipline issues, and you could do everything on your own time. I am quickly learning this is not the case. Online teachers have to be very organized and prepared for many different scenarios in their courses. There may not be as many discipline issues in the traditional sense, but it takes a lot of work and planning to build a community classroom environment online.
Chapter 5

Pg. 100 “Even though community formation is somewhat intuitive in face-to-face classrooms, in online settings, it takes a concerted and consistent effort to provide the same opportunities.”

Pg. 103 “It may seem obvious, but community does not happen on its own. You will need to work consciously and consistently to develop and maintain it throughout your course.”

Pg. 108 “In addition, best practice would suggest that focusing on the tool is not the best way to approach instruction. Effective instruction always begins with an examination of the curricular goals and the lesson objectives.”


Building a sense of community in the online environment is very different from that of the traditional classroom, and I believe it takes a lot more conscious effort on the part of the instructor. It is important to be mindful of the types of activities we use for student collaboration
Chapter 3

Pg. 48 “The tools you will use for delivering instruction online are limited only by your imagination, your skill level in using the tools, and their availability within particular teaching situations.”





As I read this chapter, I became aware of just how many different varieties of tools are available that can be used for online teaching. I think it is very important for an online instructor to take the time to explore different tools and find out which tools would be the most beneficial in helping students achieve the objectives. It is also extremely important for instructors to become familiar with and develop the skills necessary to use different tools in order to provide students with guidance and be able to help them solve any problems they may encounter.

 Chapter 6

Pg. 141 “As with any online activity, it is important to spend some time thinking about where a discussion will be conducted and why a discussion is chosen and the instructional strategy versus another strategy.”

Pg. 143 “Purpose and relevance are two key factors in determining the success of discussion forums…”

Pg. 144 “If we expect learners to engage with each other, with us, and with the content, we must provide them with something worth engaging about.”

Pg. 164 “The use of thoughtful prompts, effective facilitation, and visible assessment criteria will greatly improve your chances for success.”

There is a lot more involved with discussion boards in the online environment than I previously thought. It takes a lot more time and effort on the part of the instructor than I realized. It is extremely important to make discussions meaningful and worth students time. This chapter is very helpful in guiding an instructor on how to conduct a discussion in the online setting and is one to remember and access again later.
 Chapter 7

Pg. 168 “When you move online, your focus may be less on content and more on devising strategies to facilitate student engagement with the content.”

Pg. 169 “When learning moves online, this issue becomes even more challenging, because you do not have any control over distractions. Lessons, activities, and assignments must be designed to create a sense of engagement and motivation for learners, if you hope to maintain their interest.”

Pg. 170 “A common mistake when discussing technology-enabled teaching is to focus on the tools first. Good online instruction, like all good teaching, begins with setting course goals and objectives, followed by identifying the instructional strategies that will assist learners in reaching those goals.”

Pg. 202 “Designing online courses and lessons is a time-intensive process that requires knowledge of good teaching and effective instructional strategies and skill in using technology.”

Pg. 203 “It also requires a great deal of flexibility, adaptability, and creativity, and a willingness to engage in conscious reflection about your teaching practice. Advanced preparation and anticipation of student needs are both essential.”

I found it interesting that the text mentioned you can’t really “wing it” in the online classroom as you can in the traditional classroom. This is something I hadn’t really thought much about, but I can see how true it is. I am gaining more of an appreciation for the instructors I have had throughout the many online courses I have taken.
 Chapter 8

Pg. 224 “Although not a law or statute, the Universal Design for Learning guidelines have been recognized as an effective means of improving the accessibility of instructional materials for learners with special needs.”

Pg. 233 “One thing we do know is that preparation is the key to success. Other significant guidelines are to be proactive in identifying struggling students early in the learning process and flexible in how you deliver instruction.”

As a teacher, I am familiar with the laws concerning students with special needs. I did not know much about the Universal Design for Learning guidelines until this course. I think these guidelines are very useful in helping students with special needs, especially in the online environment. There are many assistive technologies available to help differentiate instruction.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s