domingo, 20 de noviembre de 2011

Reflections on week 6: Web 2.0

I’ve been hearing about Web 2.0 for a long time and I knew very little about this term before but now I’ve got a clearer idea of what it is. As stated by Paul Anderson, Web 2.0 is more than a set of cool and new technologies and services; it has at its heart, a set of some powerful ideas that are changing the way people interact. We can actually perceive how powerful the World Wide Web has become. People have changed the way they use the Web in both a personal and a business sense. Web 2.0 is a change in how we use the Internet nowadays; it is no longer a space to obtain information; it is a space to interact and communicate with others worldwide.
I started to use some of these Web 2.0 tools for my class a couple of years ago. The first tool was Skype. It is fantastic to see how Skype has overcome barriers such as distance, time, and money. Calls are free from Skype to Skype. There are no boundaries with Skype. After this, I started to use  in my classes Twitter, Facebook, Gmail, Google maps, Diigo and more recently Blogger and Prezi; but there are actually other Web 2.0 tools that I am going to start using in my classes very soon.
Sometimes with Web 2.0 I feel like a traveller who doesn’t know where to go next; there are so many tools that we can use for our classes that we don’t really know which one to go first but I guess it is a matter of time and practice to see which one works best for each one of us.

sábado, 19 de noviembre de 2011

Reflections on week 4

Hello folks, I am back with some reflections on week 4. In module 7 there was an important issue regarding Internet safety and the possible abuse of technology for bullying. It's important to know how to stay safe when we're using the Internet. We should never give out any personal information when we're online, no matter who we think we're talking to. There are many sites online that allow you to talk to other people on the Web. Chat rooms give you the chance to have a conversation with other people anywhere in the world. Online social networking sites such as Facebook, MySpace, Twitter and Bebo allow people to stay in touch online with friends worldwide as well as making new national and international connections. I use some of these social network sites in my classes; I try to engage students to interact in English/Spanish/ French (depending on the language I am teaching) with other people, organisations worldwide. However, there’s a downside to this use of the Internet and that is cyber-criminals. Cybercrime is defined by British police as the use of any computer network for crime and the high-tech criminals of the digital age have not been slow to spot the opportunities. For young people in particular social networking sites can mix several of the risks related with being online; online bullying, disclosure of private information, cyber-stalking, access to age-inappropriate content and, at the most extreme, online grooming and child abuse. There are also risks for adults, for instance, loss of privacy and identity theft
All this doesn’t mean that we should stop using the Internet; we just have to avoid these risks following a few sensible guidelines as provided in Sorted for example. In addition, we should teach our young students and children how to use the Internet in a SMART way.