Saturday, May 21, 2011


What is a Blog: A blog (short for weblog) is a personal online journal that is frequently updated and intended for general public consumption. Blogs are defined by their format: a series of entries posted to a single page in reverse-chronological order.Blogs generally represent the personality of the author or reflect the purpose of the Web site that hosts the blog. Topics sometimes include brief philosophical musings, commentary on Internet and other social issues, and links to other sites the author favors, especially those that support a point being made on a post.

The author of a blog is often referred to as a blogger. Many blogs syndicate their content to subscribers using RSS, a popular content distribution tool.
For more information, see weblog.

Why Blogging?:

At first I had to admit I knew nothing about blogging and its benefits. I still feel I do need to learn more but as time passes, I have to confess I have been literally "captured" by "it", and surprinsingly, forseen the endless possibilities  it will offer..... to the World? Yes!, but most importantly to me; "A Teacher."
The idea of being able to interact with my students, current and past, in an interactive way, where not only I would be granted the gift of teaching, but I would be most privilegd to learn as well from students, is something beyond my dreams.
I still have to learn more but, I´m finally feeling part of the Web Generation and consequently part of the evolving world.
Here a some of the Blogs I like using:


Erben,T,Ban R, Catañeda,M.(2009). Teaching English Learner through Tecnology.Routledge.New York and London. (133-134)
Richarson,W.(2006). Blogs,wikis,podcasts, and other powerful web tools for classrooms.Thousand Oaks,Ca

Friday, May 20, 2011

Week 3 - WEB Generations

Different type of webs
   WEB 1.0
The first implementation of the web represents the Web 1.0, which, according to Berners-Lee, could be considered the "read-only web." In other words, the early web allowed us to search for information and read it. There was very little in the way of user interaction or content contribution. However, this is exactly what most website owners wanted: Their goal for a website was to establish an online presence and make their information available to anyone at any time. I like to call this "brick-and-mortar thinking applied to the web," and the web as a whole hasn't moved much beyond this stage yet.
This web is still being used by some companies and organizations.The down side of it is that it doesn't allow any interaction among the owner and the users.

WEB 2.0
The term Web 2.0 is associated with web applications that facilitate participatory information sharing, interoperability, user-centered design, and collaboration on the World Wide Web. A Web 2.0 site allows users to interact and collaborate with each other in a social media dialogue as creators (prosumers) of user-generated content in a virtual community, in contrast to websites where users (consumers) are limited to the passive viewing of content that was created for them. Examples of Web 2.0 include social networking sites, blogs, wikis, video sharing sites, hosted services, web applications, mashups and folksonomies (Berners-Lee 2000).
This web facilitates communication.Users are able to interact with the owner of the web site. Users are now able to contribute by adding information,posting commets etc.

WEB 3.0
The Semantic Web is a "web of data" that enables machines to understand the semantics, or meaning, of information on the World Wide Web. It extends the network of hyperlinked human-readable web pages by inserting machine-readable metadata about pages and how they are related to each other, enabling automated agents to access the Web more intelligently and perform tasks on behalf of users. The term was coined by Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web and director of the World Wide Web Consortium, which oversees the development of proposed Semantic Web standards. He defines the Semantic Web as "a web of data that can be processed directly and indirectly by machines.
The main purpose of the Semantic Web is driving the evolution of the current Web by allowing users to use it to its full potential, thus allowing them to find, share, and combine information more easily. Humans are capable of using the Web to carry out.(Technet Summit , November 2006).
In this web, communication is facilitated by an avatar, which can simulate real life enviroments, like in second life, greatly used for educational purposes.

WEB 4.0
The Symbiotic web, once the metadata are prearranged like it did on web 3.0, Human mind & Machines (Binary language) can interact in Symbiosis using this Web 4.0 technology concept.
In simple words, A machine can also be clever on reading the contents and animations, and react in the form of executing and deciding what to execute first to load the website fast with superior quality and performance and build more commanding interfaces.
The Web 4.0 is still a subversive thought in progress. Clear definition of the Web 4.0 is not into the internet till now. But we hope, it will not take more days. We are very close to the future web technology called as “Web 4.0”.
This web is considered by some people and researchers as the artificial intelligence generation by having on -line agents that speak, think, and communicate like human beings.

Finally it should be said that all Web generations have contributed and keep contributing to all fields.
As teachers we should consider ourselves fortunate, for we are able to enjoy their benefits.
The Web evolution has opened new horizons of endless possibilities that as responsible, interested and thoughtful professionals we ought to explore and take advantage of.


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Week 2 - Basic Concepts of ICT used in Education

E- Learning was first called "Internet Based trainning","Web Based Training". "E- learning basi-cally boils down to learning that is facilitated and supported via information and communications technology (ICT)".

According to The American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) "E- learning is a broad set of applications and processes which include web-based learning, computer-based learning, virtual classrooms, and digital, delivered via Internet."(Alonso,F et al (2005)
The Southern Assosiation of Colleges and Schools define Distance Education as "A formal educational process in which the majority of the instrucction occurs when a student and instructor are not in the same place.It may employ correspondence study, audio, video or computer technologies
Juan R. Pimentel (1999) defines a "virtual learning environment" as follows:
. . . we define a virtual learning environment as one that allows learners to perceive the environment, assess situations and performance, perform actions and proceed through experiences and lessons that will allow them to perform better with more experience on repetition on the same task in similar circumstances. This definition of a virtual learning environment emphasizes the importance of learning. Learners in a virtual environment are expected to make use of and include examples, observations, experiences, situations, rules, concepts and techniques in a continuous (e.g., day by day or week by week), permanent (i.e., committing knowledge into memory) fashion to improve the performance of the execution of tasks. (pp. 75-76 [print]; section IV, ¶ 3 [electronic])
According to Michael Orey: "The definition of blended learning depends upon perspective. I have chosen to look at three of the primary perspectives in a learning setting: the learner, the designer/teacher, and administrator perspective.
Learner Perspective - Blended Learning the ability to choose among ALL available facilities, technology, media and materials matching those that apply to my prior knowledge and style of learning as I deem appropriate to achieve an instructional goal (the salad bar metaphor).
Designer/Teacher Perspective - Blended Learning the organization and distribution of ALL available facilities, technology, media and materials to achieve an instructional goal even when many of these things may overlap.
Administrator Perspective - Blended Learning the organization and distribution of as many cost effective facilities, technology, media and materials as econonmically viable to achieve an instructional goal even when many of these things may overlap.
Some of the various facilities, technology, media and materials include books, computers, groups, teachers, classrooms, virtual classrooms, non-traditional classrooms, tutorials, etc.

Current Situation in my Local Context:
My local contex is the school where I am teaching, which is Mater Salvatoris in Caracas. I teach students of 1st year of highschool, who are between 13 and 14 years old.This school has a very poor situation in terms on ICTs. The school provides students with computer classes, but the students as well as the teacher, do not have the possibility of an Internet connection. This makes impossible the using and teaching of  any digital competence. The school has a computer lab, with 20  pentiums 4 computers, and although it would be extremly easy to have the Internet access, the Institution has not been really interested so far in doing so. As a consequence of this, the students at school, are not able to explore any of the incredible possibilities the Web, wisely used, can provide.
The school has two videobeams, which have to be reserved in advance, and which can not be removed from the rooms they are located in.I must say that I have never used them so far. There is only one Computer Teacher who, although being prepared to teach the students the current trends in technology, is not allowed to do so, because of school policies, that don't allow so. There is only one technician, who comes once a month to maintain the equipment, but who is not available on any other moment. 
As for my students ICT background knowledge, I wouldn´t be sure of it . I know, because of informal information they have provided me, that they are familiar with some web 2.0 tools, such as facebook, twitter, youtube. These are the ones they use most out of the school enviroment. As for blogs, wikis, glogs, e- portfolios, they know basically nothing, as I have confirmed upon asking them. Nevertheless when offered them the oportunity to learn new web tools, they sound incredibly thrilled by the prospect, as well as when told about using such artifacts, in their English class they show an enormous interest. I believe there is hope.
Unfortunately, there are still many closed minded persons and institutions, that seem to be against progress and evolution, and are opposed to the new concepts in education, and therefore stuck in the past. I truly hope this changes, for it would be incredible to be able to connect with our students, and present them with new innovative ways of teaching and learning.

    In the darkness of the unknown, teachers are the stars that illuminate with knowlege. A knowledge that can not rest,which can not be subdued by the storms of the constant challenges of our changing times.As travellers of time and space we are daily faced with the mission of blending into new worlds and renewing our knowledge by not only increasing our wisdom, but traspassing the frontiers of our student's space. Technology has opened new opportunities and we have been granted the gift of it by being offered the possibility of distant learning,a marvellous e-learning concept, a most miraculous virtual learning and a blessed blended learning. As guiding stars, it is our responsability to embrace this gifts and lead the steps of the endless journey through the magnificent learning-teaching process.


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Week 1 - Digital Literacy

Digital Literacy has become one of the main competences of the 21st century.According to Martin 2006
"it is the awareness, attitude and ability of individuals to appropiately use digital tools and facilities to identify access,manage,integrate,evaluate,analyse and synthesize digital resources,construct knowledge, create media expressions, and communicate with others in the context of specific life situations, in order to enable constructive social action; and to reflect upon this process."
As Glister,1197,p1states: "digital literacy is the ability to undesrtand and use information in multiple formats from a wide range of sources when presented via computers." 
Technology is having a great impact on every level in people's life. It is almost impossible to find nowadays any field that has not been permeated or influenced by it. Big companies, industries, small businesses, banks, offices and even schools are not an exception to this. Everyday the influence of this powerful tool is being observed in most educational enviroments. Not only our students are getting more and more proficient in its use, but also teachers.

Teachers have found that the use and the applications of the internet has empowered and provided them with invaluable and unlimited resources, which will not only facilitate their jobs, but also will help them keep connected with their students. In sum teachers have been urged to become digital literates, to learn the terminology, concepts, uses and application in order to keep up, the pace of an on growing society that demands more and more each passing day. The incorporation of technology within the classrooms result in various ilimitate advantages to teachers and students. Furthermore it encourages students to learn in a more enthusiatic way, to be more creative, innovative and self-sufficient and specially concerned in their own learning process.

List of Digital competences a XXI century EFL teacher should have: Blogs, Wikis, Podcastings, Virtual Worlds,Wiziq,Social Networks, Instant messaqges,Voicethread.



Hello world:

It feels weird but at the same time wonderful to be opening my mind to the new frontiers this web world has to offer.
I am Maite Sangroniz, a self devoted and intuitively led teacher, who enjoys the miracle teaching and learning brings to people's life. 
Seeing the flicker of light on any student's eyes when they "get it", makes me feel proud of the super powers God granted me with, by making me able to teach, as well as the never ending capacity to be constantly open to learn from those around me, specially from my students and colleges.

So I welcome you all to my new adventure, through the ICTs world and Maite's way!