Reflection Week 5 — Reflecting on the many tools available for using technology in online learning


Reflection for Week 5


by Aleta May

for EDTE674 with Dr. Lee Graham

As I read Tammy’s blog, I found that my idea in the beginning was to “embed tools within each module that are appropriate to the content and activities” (Tammy, Blog 5, 2014).  A week or so ago, when I mentioned doing something with Harrison Bergeron, another group member said to me that this was another group member’s idea, and that we should leave that to her.  In my thinking, I thought I had communicated previously that my part would be to find tools to adapt readings to meet the needs of students who struggle with reading and comprehending, It is refreshing to me that Tammy stated that tools would be embedded.  This further reminded me that communicating online, whether through emails or blogs, needs to take into consideration that I may or may not be getting my message out there as clearly as I had thought.  This is why meeting in Skype improved communication some.  I believe adding in the voice added intonation.  Communication is so multifaceted!  Tammy brought out how different it is to develop an online class than it is to develop a traditional class in the classroom.

I believe I contributed to Tammy’s thinking about how user friendly many online tools are becoming.  She reflected on how much time she spent, years ago, using much trial and error, to create websites on DreamWeaver; then she compared that to current day Weebly.  Although I have not created a website on either, I learned of a great example of “user friendly.”

Jon mentioned in his reply to me that we can use a screencast tool for talking about a PowerPoint presentation:  “I don’t think PowerPoint has the capability to record your spoken audio, but you can use a screencasting website or app to record yourself speaking over the presentation and have it automatically turned into a video file (PowerPoint visual, spoken audio)” (Jon, Blog 5, 2014).  This is not something I have done before that I think would be very useful for creating short presentations for our American Literature recovery class.   I wonder along with Jon whether we could add closed captioning?  I just visited screencast-o-matic so I will be reviewing how to use this.  In our text, two screen recording programs are mentioned:  Adobe Captivate and Techsmith Camtasia (Moore & Kearsley, 2012).  When I reviewed these sites, I can see that the capabilities look very wonderful.  Economically speaking, Techsmith Camtasia is much more inexpensive than Adobe Captivate.  I would have to explore more to understand why.  However, screencast-o-matic is free with an upgrade option of $15.  I believe this program will suite my needs for now, especially since we have Blackboard as a platform for the online recovery class.

I contributed a list of links to short readings, some authentic readings, an inspiring video clip reading of poetry, etc.  I tried to list the tools/links in an order that made sense.  One has a place for compare and contrast writing between a two men who served time in prison/jail over the same issue, Civil Rights, but in two different countries—and though there may be some overlap in their lives in terms of years, one brings us to current day:  Martin Luther King, Jr. and Nelson Mandela.  This will be posted below as an appendix.  Since the blog posting, I have located the Birmingham Letter online.

In summary, the ideas for bringing technology into the content are developing exponentially, especially when teachers collaborate.  During this module, I created an outline that can be used as part of our proposal for this online class.  To formalize this, specific alignment to standards and written instructions for students will be next.  Then, rubric designing for written activities will be added.


Moore, M. G., Kearsley, G. (2012).  Distance education:  A systems view of  online learning.  Belmont, CA:  Wadsworth Cengage Learning.

Online References

Adobe Captivate

Techsmith Camtasia


Outline of Readings Including Writing

Brief transcripts to build background knowledge as to what led up to why Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote The Birmingham Letters:
John F. Kennedy and Civil Rights
Lyndon Johnson and Civil Rights

2’ 37” Martin Luther King’s Last Speech: “I’ve Been To The Mountaintop” (4-3-1968 at the Mason Temple in Memphis, Tennessee. The next day, King was assassinated.

How the Caged Bird poem by Maya Angelou printed version–which I believe can be legally posted to our site:

might be used to speak to the way repression felt to the African American during the Civil Rights Movement days

That leads us to a modern day connection–using free style poetry there is a video clip of Maya Angelou reciting her poem tribute on behalf of the American people to Nelson Mandela–this is an excellent example of how students could be encouraged to write their own freestyle poem and create a video to go with it “His Day is Done”:

Actual clip:

retrieved from:
Watch Maya Angelou’s taped message of remembrance at Democracy Now!

Actual clip:
(includes a line about his 27 years in prison)

Birmingham Letter for here to compare and contrast prison life for the cause of freedom.

Then a 2′ 30″ clip that is a piece of Martin Luther King’s Last Speech: “I’ve Been To The Mountaintop”

YouTube 2’ 37” Martin Luther King’s Last Speech: “I’ve Been To The Mountaintop” (4-3-1968 at the Mason Temple in Memphis, Tennessee. The next day, King was assassinated.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s