When I look back over this semester, and see all of the progress that my mentees have made, all that I can say is, “wow!”
If you’re not sure what I’m talking about, let me explain. Over the course of the semester, as part of an assignment in EDTC 400, I was to mentor three students from EDTC 300. Each week I read a few of their blog posts and commented on their work. Although a bit intimidating at first (I am no pro when it comes to tech), it turned out to be a really great experience! My mentees were Kennedy, Megan, and Andrea.
It was evident that Kennedy was not new to the blogging scene. She had a blog from a previous class in which she had learned a thing or two about being a blogger. Through EDTC 300 she was able to amp up her already successful blog by adding more to her menu, changing up the colour scheme, and adding a more personalized header image. Through the progression of the course, she began using more and more photos and hyperlink in her posts which amped up her blog even more. For her Learning Project, she chose to learn to play the guitar. Although I am fairly mediocre at it, I too know how to play the guitar and am familiar with the challenges that come with it. It was great seeing Kennedy overcome those challenges and become a guitarist! If you’re looking to learn to play the guitar, Kennedy’s blog offers some great tips and resources and that are sure to help you get started!
It is quite likely that Megan was far more experienced in tech than I was (or possibly will ever be). From day one her blog was personalized with photos, an introduction, and even a logo! Her posts followed blogger’s etiquette and were filled with photos and links. Really top notch stuff! For her Learning Project she chose to become a DnD Dungeon Master. At first, I assumed that DnD was something like a board game and a Dungeon Master was a type of player or character or something. It was not long before I realized that it was far more than that. Each week I learned a little bit more about it and its complexity never failed to impress me. I am truly impressed by Megan’s dedication to DnD because it was certainly no walk in the park. If you’re interested in DnD or want to better understand what it is, then I highly recommend checking out her blog!
When Andrea began EDTC 300, her first blog post explained that her experience with technology was little. Although she had previously made a blog, she was not familiar with its ins and outs and knew little about editing, nonetheless, she accepted the challenge and it wasn’t long before progress was being made. By comparing Andrea’s first posts to her most recent posts, her success is evident. Throughout the course, Andrea began using more hyperlinks, images, videos, and recordings to enhance her posts. Her Learning Project posts were especially successful as she often used recordings along with writing to demonstrate her progress. For her Learning Project she chose to learn the ukulele! Not only did she learn to play the ukulele, but by the end of the semester she was singing and playing at the same time. So awesome! If you’re interested in playing the ukulele, or are curious as to how long it takes to learn, then definitely check out Andrea’s blog. She is truthful about her challenges but is an excellent example of what it takes to become a great player!
Getting to follow each of these future educators on their journeys through the tech world was one of the highlights of my semester. It reminded me very much of my internship and watching as my students learned and grew in their work. Observing their progress and the challenges they faced, and offering them words of advice or encouragement was all very similar to that of teaching. I would imagine that teaching an online class would take on quite a similar approach (with the addition of actually teaching of course). After being a mentor I think teaching an online class would be really nice, however, there is just something about being face to face with someone that adds to the teacher-student relationship. Not being able to meet my mentees in person was the only downside to this experience. I felt disconnected from them and I think that teaching an online course would have the same affect. Nonetheless, it was still a great experience and without it I might not have realized just how significant teacher-student relationships are! I am happy to have had this opportunity and excited to use all that I have learned in my future classroom!
Thank you to my mentees for being awesome and choosing cool Learning Projects. You made being your mentor easy!
Lastly, my mentoring log can be found here.