My name is Nicole Stewart. I’m from Vernon, BC. I am a week late to the game, but I’m here and doing my best to remember all the technology skills and strategies I learned in my previous 4 courses in the Online Teacher and Learner certificate from Thomson Rivers University to access my WordPress site and make this post! I can’t say that it’s coming back quickly which might not bode well for me… This will be my fifth, and final university course for some time and I’m looking forward to getting it done! I really enjoyed working with Keith and my classmates in two of the previous four courses I completed last year and hope to make this my most successful course yet. I was scared off technology after my last go round – 4 online courses in less than a year while working full-time as a school based resource teachers/new online teacher, parenting two teenage boys, staying fit and connected to my family and friends, where I experienced a full-blown burn out and am now easing back in to what partly contributed to my overwhelm. I’m beginning this course with some angst and fear about the effects of re-engaging more with the “online world”. The way technology is influencing our society and community worries me, and I am grappling with the pros and cons with regards to my own well being and that of my children and family.
I do work in an online context as well, in a distributed learning school that is an alternate program for students ranging from k-12 in my school district who need something different. My challenge, as a resource teacher, is to create a program to suit my students special needs and then guide them toward learning the curriculum and skills necessary to grow and develop at their individual rates. I work in a blended context where I see my students face to face once a week in a whole group setting for two hours, and then again another day of the week in a small group where we target special needs. Often my students need to be WITH other students, not in a more isolated space such as that which is created in the online world, and I strive to BE WITH them as much as possible. For me the online world is tricky because I believe in the importance of relationships, and community, which is much harder to experience authentically in an online way, and time spent online is time disconnected from real people surrounding us.
My goal for this course is to better understand specific tools in my work environment that I can use to better support my students and their academic needs.
If you’d like to connect via email I can be reached at nicstew9[at]icloud[dot]com
I look forward to connecting with you all tonight at 7!