Out on a Limb

I skyped into the TeachMeet Nashville conference to present on glogs/glogging.  The presentation is shown over the four glogs below.



I tried to approach this presentation with one thought as my central focus: what did I wish I knew when I started.  They are a good instructional tool, regardless of your pedagogical philosophy, as it puts the student at the center of the learning process.  These digital posters are a blank canvas, so, each student gets to express themselves and have a bit of fun.  Any image, video, or audio file on the web, copyrights permitting, can be utilized; and you can create links to any URL.  The limitation is flash/java as you can’t embed items on a glog like you can on a website.  As an example, you can’t place glogs on other glogs — you have to do a screenshot and create a link.  I even included a modified rubric I stole from someone (Thanks!) to give a starting place for grading.

The reason for this post though, is this is by far one of the scariest things I’ve done to date. (Yes, I probably don’t get out enough.) It wasn’t like I was there in person, didn’t really know a soul (except of course Adam Taylor), and was completely unaware of anyone’s expectations of me.  There’s just something about presenting in front of my colleagues and peers that fills me with fear.  The fear is easily defined and categorized – fear of falling on my face in front of those same colleagues and peers. We all want to gain the respect of intelligent people, not open our mouths and remove all doubt about being a fool.  O wad some Power the giftie gie us, to see oursels as ithers see us!

In any case, I think there are a couple of things I’d add next time.  First, a quick poll to know subjects people might want to use these in as well as fears about implementing glogs (Poll Everywhere, Socratic?).  I think I could tailor the informal delivery to address some of the concerns teachers have to help them feel comfortable about jumping in and trying it as well as show the lack of limitations, subject-wise.  I would hope this would help teachers feel comfortable enough to start playing.  If a teacher is comfortable playing, I think this would transfer to the students.  Plus, the teacher then has the experience necessary to troubleshoot.  Second, collecting questions through the course of the presentation (maybe a backchannel through TodaysMeet?); something to allow people to share what hits them in the moment.

Maybe, I’ll have to find some unwitting colleagues to harass with this and see what else needs to be tweaked because, scary though it was, it was really a great experience.


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