My least favorite assignments were actually tied between the blackout poetry and the twitter fiction. I have had a lot of time to think about those two projects and I have tried to see them in a positive way, but to be completely honest I can't. Both of them shared something that I despised, being that they limited my creativity. Now you will not even see close to my best work on this blog or on twitter, I was not committed to them at the start of the course. The difference is that the blog changed my mind, twitter did not. I now want to make better use of my blog, twitter is something I never want to use again.
The blackout poetry was a creative idea, but stop to think about it, in school poetry is one of the hardest things for students to understand in English. Now lets get them to write three poems about the same topic, but wait, now lets limit their vocabulary so that every time they may think they have a good idea they must first search the page to instigate it. That is what bothered me about twitter as well, making a limit of characters when you are writing and putting together a short story is aggravating, you have to break every thing up and limit yourself again. Now I see how this could be productive, twitter is a very popular web site and it gets students out there, but for me I believe the negatives out weighed the positives. Do not have a student write a long story and then limit the amount they can put out at the same time.
I greatly enjoy reading, so it was always a special treat to have a full class to read. Reading is something that I do a large amount of on my own, and I would on occasion get scolded for not putting my book down. That is why having a care free day just for reading made me feel very relaxed.The Monday reading response was a an enormous help with looking at the ideas, motives and purpose behind a story. This was a way for students to learn not only what to look for in a story but also what they should be putting down if they ever make their own.
The WRN was used at first but as the course progressed I began neglecting it more and more. To be clear I was not trying to pass off work, we were just doing so much online work that I just didn't think of it anymore. The WRN was useful and has notes that I would like to review though, so I will be hanging onto it, if I ever want reference for my writing.
The blogging first started out pretty slow and I did not really get into it, but now looking back on my performance I wish that I had put more effort on my work. I eventually made up my mind that I liked certain things about the blog, well actually I like most of the work we did on it, the one thing that I think could have been improved was the amount of personal posts we had to add. Realistically an actual blogger would only add 2-3 posts a week, but I believe the number requested declined throughout the semester, so all is well that ends well. Other than that I think the work we did on our blogs was quite productive and necessary for the future.
Twitter was something I despised from the get go, the course only made me hate it more. Everything but the reading response was an aggravation to me on twitter, I cannot stand the limited amount of characters or the idea of followers. I am aware that it is those characteristics that make twitter unique and popular, but honestly, the only reason I would use twitter is for the community, not for academics. I may just be captious here, but after this class my feelings towards twitter are even more negative than before.
The integration of technology into the course was fun and enjoyable, it made me more involved, and caused me to no longer just be a consumer a of the Internet, but a entrepreneur of my own ideas. Being able to add your own voice is a great way to get yourself out there and noticed by the world, because that is just how vast the Internet is, you can share with everyone.
I did not learn much in a sense of becoming a better reader and writer, the skills I have learned were more just reintroduced. Although there were a couple new things, it was not much because I have previously had these subjects in past English classes. Saying that it is still helpful to review the material.
I do believe you are doing a good thing instigating students to go out into a larger community, having them share their thoughts with more then just their classmates. However like I mentioned before twitter is not something that I would ever advise a teacher to have her students work with. I think that you should still give your students the option of using a WRN even if it is not that popular.
Tell miss McLauchlan that twitter is not to be used to write short stories, if she insists on using twitter create a different project to use it with.