Sunday, September 9, 2012

Blog Assignment #2

Did You Know? 3.0 - A John Strange 2012 Version

Did You Know? A video originally by Karl Fisch and Scott McLeod
In the video, "Did You Know? 3.0 - A John Strange 2012 Version" by John Strange, it provided information of our progression compared to the past in technology, education, language and more! This video is a revised version of the original "Did you Know?" by Karl Fisch and Scott McLeod. Much of the information provided such as the amount of SMS sent, people watching YouTube and using Google did not astonish me as much as other information. Because we are constantly developing new technology and advancing in this world, the usage of these technology is normal. When SMS first existed, only selected carriers and phones have this option. As we add SMS into more and more phones, more carriers will have it. The older phones, ones without SMS, are not made anymore. Today, even with the free phones you get to select when opening a new cell phone account, it has the SMS function. Because SMS is available to everyone, it is likely that there is an increase of people texting compared to 5 years ago. SMS also goes nationwide and internationally. It's much cheaper than buying a plane ticket or spending hours on the computer just to talk to someone. As good as SMS is, it is also bad that we rely so much on this one feature to communicate. The growth in usage of any technology will always increase unless something just goes wrong!

What amazed me was the amount of Chinese people who will speak English will exceed the amount of native English speakers in the world!! I understand that China has a population of 1.3 billion but did not know more are learning to speak English than ever before! I am Chinese-born-American and my parents were born in China. Back in their days, not many people taught English and/or did not have the money to afford it. Life was rough and they rather work on the farm to make a living than to go to school. I am glad that there are more doors open for the newer generations for more opportunities.

These were very informative videos and provided information that none of us would have known unless we had to research it. I am glad I watched it and will look for more on YouTube with the other millions of people around the world!

Mr. Winkle Wakes

A video called
Mathew Needleman is an independent film creator and a literacy coach at Los Angeles Unified School District. He also owns many education websites that provides open resources. The short clip, "Mr. Winkle Wakes" by Mathew Needleman, was a very interesting one and went straight to the point that everything around us changes except for a few such as our education. Mr. Winkle woke up from a 100 year slumber into a an era of technology! He learned about the printers, video chat, and machines he has never seen before! He did not like the change and went to the hospital. There, he learned about the technology used to keep people alive. He was upset about that too. Like Mr. Winkles, our parents or grandparents are typically the same way. They did not have the advanced technology we have now. They did not text, talk online, video chat, use a printer and etc. At one point in history, none of these existed! It is only normal for people like Mr. Winkles or those who are from an older generation to prefer the old ways of living. That is what they are use to. They typed on an old movable typewriter, communicated by meeting each other for lunch, took pictures with a film camera, and etc.

Even though everything is changing, education never really changed. Education is still required and are held in an environment where electronics are usually not allowed in classrooms. In a school setting, children are not showered by the technology but are focusing on their learning. However I think this is changing. The video "Mr. Winkle Wakes" was created in 2008. It may only be 4 years but I'm sure a lot have changed. As I grew up, electronics were strictly prohibited in a classroom but these days we have teachers using their laptops and smart boards to teach. I am required to learn the smart board to teach. I don't have anything against it. I just prefer the traditional way, especially for an elementary classroom. Students are allowed to carry their cell phones into the classroom but it has to be on silent. Students are starting to text during class session without the teacher noticing. Students don't take notes as much either. They rely on their laptops or smart phones. Less and less people "write". Sadly, I think Mr. Winkle will be upset about the current classrooms. :(

Sir Ken Robinson: The Importance of Creativity

Sir Ken Robinson speaks about the importance of creativity on TED talks
Sir Ken Robinson is a very entertaining, has led the British government advisory committee on creative and cultural education in 1998, knighted and an English author. He focuses on creativity and speaks about it on TED. I have watched the TED-talk "Sir Ken Robinson: The Importance of Creativity" before and I had fun watching it too. He implements humor into his talks and his creativity in his humor is key. He talks about how public schools or any school squeezes out the creativity out of children. He claims that is the case due to the education system that they have built based on their own preference or what they think the child should learn in order to succeed in the future. Like he says, no one teaches dance like how they teach math. Dance is not something that is deemed "useful" or can "make a living out of" compared to mathematics. The level of importance of math is higher than dance. It is the same with any type of art. He says that it should all be treated with equal importance. He says we actually grow out of creativity or be educated out of creativity. Everyone is born with their own creativity but as we grow up, we have the influences of our parents and the education system. We are taught what are deemed important to help us find a career. We are molded into what they want us to do. Because of that, our creativity has no room to be anywhere.

My parents came from China to the U.S. and I was born. As first generation in America, they hoped for me to become a lawyer or doctor because they make the most money and career seeking is easier. I hated both. My passion is in art. They discouraged me from it because they believe I couldn't make a living out of it. My creativity was shut. Right now, my younger brother is going through the same thing but the school doesn't really squeeze the creativity out as much. He has gone to all the top public schools and now in high school. What are his interests? What is he creative at? He doesn't even know himself. Our father wants all of us to be doctors and discourage every other subjects he deems useless such as art, dance, music and even the technology fields such as computer science and engineer. My dad only knows that lawyers and doctors are successful because he's been around them. I have to agree with Sir Ken Robinson and I hope that people, especially children, are able to express their creativity and be allowed to chase their dreams without interference! I hope people continue promoting this idea. We are not robots, we are human. Creativity makes us who we are. Creativity is what allowed us to advance in the world!

A Future with GLASS

After watching "A Day Made of Glass 2" and "Project Glass: Live Demo at Google", I am blown away! The fact that we can develop such thing is phenomenal! As for the current Google Project Glass, I think it's cool but I am not sure how it will be in an educational setting. Project Glass is developed by Google and it's a pair of glasses that shows augmented reality display. They are also developing these as contact lenses. How well would it work for people who prefer to wear their glasses? If they have glasses, how well would glasses on glasses work? I think this project is more for interaction than fit for an educational setting. You do not see what the user is doing during a classroom session. A student can sit in a classroom but not learn because they are looking at something else in their glasses. This raises the questions, are teachers able to control that during sessions? I don't think Mr. Winkle approves of this one!

I prefer Corning's vision of Glass in educational settings. I think Corning's expanded vision for Glass is amazing but there's a little bit of it I wouldn't like. I am sure Mr. Winkles might agree. The technology of Glass is energy efficient, money efficient, powerful and can provide more information than a person can. Like in the video where children were learning about colors, the technology of Glass allowed them to combine colors off a single table and show images that relate to that color. Instead of buying thousands of materials for students, they just need this technology. It also allows students to learn more than what we can provide today. The usage of 2d and 3d dimensions to allow students to visual see and interact with history is amazing. It is different from looking at a picture in a book. As much as I like this, I think Mr. Winkles would be pretty upset about technology advancing into classrooms but not too much. Students will still have the same focus and are always eager to learn. Glass also makes the learning environment fun and hands-on. Besides benefiting education, it will help advance the medical and science field. The part where a surgeon or doctor can interact internationally with another to figure out a problem is amazing. There's no need to wait for a plane ride over another country! Just simply make a call and a visual pops up. It's pretty neat how data can be transferred from Glass to Glass in an instant. This will remove all the messy files and paperwork of our day! I am just blown away that I can't even express all my opinions about it. This is truly phenomenal and I look forward to it!


  1. Anna this post was very well written and I can clearly see that you did learn very much. I think you misunderstood slightly Mr. Winkle Wakes is to show that the classroom needs to change with the environment around it. Mr. Winkle should have gone into the classroom and learn about the technology in the world outside, not found it looking the same as 100 years ago. I did like your post though it is easy to see you what videos you watched and that you spent time writing this post. Good job.

    1. Hi Melissa,

      Thank you for critiquing my blog post! I think I may have misunderstood the "Mr. Winkle Wakes" video. Thanks for clarifying!!


  2. Anna I am commenting on your blog because the person I am supposed to comment on didn't do their post. I too thought your blog was very well written and that you did a great job of illustrating it with not just one image but three. Your blog is complete as far as I can tell and I did not find a whole lot to critique. You do have a few grammatical errors that a simple proof read should catch. For example the old man's name is Mr. Winkle not Mr. Winkles. All in all you did a very good job on this blog! Keep up the good work!


    1. Paul, you don't have to start a comment with "...I am commenting on your blog because the person I am supposed to comment on didn't do their post." You can just jump right into the actual comment. Where is your picture?

    2. Paul, thank you for critiquing my blog post! I will take note of my grammar. I did proof read it but only once. I guess a second and third time doesn't hurt!

  3. This post looks great. Do you understand the point of Mr. Winkle, now?

    1. Thank you Jacey-Blaire! Yes, I do understand the point of Mr. Winkle now!