Saturday, December 30, 2006

Looking back at 2006




At long last, my lonely struggle as Greece’s premier - (read only) edublogger has paid off. Yep, I’ve been awarded Time magazine’s person of the year award. I know, it came as a shock to me as well, I didn’t even know I was even in the running.

Just kidding, It seems “you”, faithful blog reader have also been given the same honour, so let’s congratulate you on this unexpected recognition of your valiant efforts.

Actually, this has been my year as far as the internet is concerned. Even though I’ve been using the web on and off for nearly a decade, it has only been over the last year or so that I’ve really felt that it is a tool I can use actively, an area in which I can express myself and contribute.

Blogging is the most obvious expression of this new found confidence, however, I have also been posting things on YouTube, Flickr and Wiki. All in all, I feel that the claims I have heard repeated so many times over the last decades about the potential of computers has finally come true. Finally, science fiction is becoming everyday reality.

For me the most amazing thing about all this for me, personally is the fact that that blogs, videos and photos and wikispaces I’ve posted have had 30,000 visits during 2006. Not a large number for those who regularly get those kinds of visits in a week or a day, but for me it is a mind blowing number as I never in my wildest dreams thought that so many people would be interested in what I had to say or show.

This year I think I’ve learnt more than at any other time in the last ten years, not since I finished my masters in teaching have I been exposed to so many new ideas. As far as teaching is concerned I’ve seen an acceleration in my application of new ideas and approaches in the classroom.

I feel that this just the beginning and that in the next couple of years I’ll throw off the shackles of my old style teaching practice in order to really make the web 2.0 tools available really work to their best advantage. That means seeing the internet tools such as blogging, vlogging, podcasts, wiki and the like not merely as away of enriching course books but a way of completely changing our teaching approaches.

I haven’t got there yet as I’m still learning - it’s a pretty steep learning curve- but also because I’m waiting for Greece’s internet infrastructure to catch up with my ambitions. Broadband still remains a novelty and prices for simple dial - up connections high. Hopefully, that will change in the next couple of years and so I’ll be able to rely on students having access to fast connections at home. Who knows, the school may even buy some PCs so enabling me to show students in more detail how to use the internet more effectively.

So here’s looking forward to a great 2007.

4 comments:

bcinfrance said...

Hi from another expat ESL teacher, this one an American living in France. I'll try to come back to your blog, but there are so darn many to follow!

Happy New Year!

teacher dude said...

And Happy New Year to you as well, BC. I look forward to checking out your blog in 2007.

Claudia Ceraso said...

Craig,

To be honest, I was not expecting this Time magazine cover page either!!

You talk about the situation in Greece and you seem to be describing my own place here in Buenos Aires. Broadband and dial-up are still a bit expensive -which does not seem to be a drawback for bloggers but students need it at home.

This long learning curve has definitely been the best 2006 has offered me. Perhaps we will see the full potential of all this learning in years to come when web 2.0 tools become as natural as course books in the classroom.

We'll be well equipped, joined by our projects and aims by then, no doubt.

Wish you a successful 2007 on and offline.

Claudia

teacher dude said...

I look forward to seeing more on your great blog in 2007.

I'm hoping that in the next couple of years broadband will be standard here, then I'll be able to do interesting things with my students.