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My Life So Far


At 10 PM August 28th.1961 I arrived in the world almost two weeks late. I was a very shy, introverted child and it didn’t help that my family moved frequently. You see, my dad was a soldier and was posted across Canada where he was needed. He even spent 2 tours as a Peacekeeper in Egypt and Cyprus. I have 5 brothers and 1 sister,and we are very different people. I wanted to be a barber when I grew up, as my dad’s cousin cut our hair and I really admired him. I was a very average student through elementary and high school, and decided to become a chef after graduation. I worked in various restaurants and cafeterias, until one day I made the decision to return to college and earn my Registered Nurse Diploma. It was the best idea I ever had. I have seen and learned so much, and in 2001 I attended UBC to attain my Baccalaureate in Nursing. I then travelled to Palo Alto California and spent 3 years nursing Cancer patients. I returned to Canada in 2005 and worked for 3and a half years caring for patients in an Extended Care facility. In 2009 I applied for and was accepted to teach Licensed Practical Nursing students, a job I remain employed at the current date. In order to become a better educator I am taking advantage of my company’s tuition reimbursement policy to achieve my Provincial Instructor’s Diploma.

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Social Media assignment #1

Objective:  Clay Shirkly’s video on entitled “How Social Media Can Make History” discusses how in his opinion social media has changed the landscape of media distribution forever. He discusses a bit of the growth of this medium and its history using two recent high profile news stories. In the first case, a devastating earthquake occurred in China in May 2012 and was reported by Chinese citizens using Twitter before their own and other government were aware.  In the second situation, Barack Obama’s stance on an intelligence bill was widely followed and debated leaving the presidential candidate no choice but to respond to his detractors. These incidents are signs of the growth of the personal production and dissemination of information using social media.

Reflective:  The message in this video was fascinating, eye-opening, and left this reader shaking his head. While social media has some positive benefits such as focusing the world’s eyes on social injustices such as China’s human rights, it seems more focused on the individual activities of its producers and their resulting celebrity status. Until beginning this course social media was not a part of my life, and now I must plan positive uses to enable me to reach out and connect with my students.

Interpretive:  Twenty years ago the Internet was a poorly connected tool used by a small portion of the world. As home computing increased, so did the                          Internet until it wrapped around the globe becoming the World-Wide Web. Social media grew in leaps and bounds until Facebook and Twitter arrived on the scene and this medium exploded.  Privacy, copyright law and celebrity have all been re-defined by this medium and will continue well into the 21st century.  For better or worse, social media is here to stay and the implications of its effects will be an ongoing source of debate and discussion for all of us.

Decisional:  Website developer and author S. Robison (2012) stated “Those that do not embrace change will not flourish in our changing world”. Social media has become an integral part of our society’s perpetually evolving identity, and we must be on board or be left behind.  As an educator whose students’ lives are inter-connected with this medium I must put aside my biases and fears and be a positive producer of media information.  The future of society depends on it.

References:  Robison, S. (2012).  Embracing Change – A World in Peace.  Createspace Publishing Platform.

Shirky, C. (2009). How Social Media Can Make History [Video]. Retrieved on October 3rd, 2012 from

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Trends and Technology

Technology and Trends in Education Assignment 3240 PIDP Donald Berry The goal of this assignment is to find two articles related to social media’s new role in education and one Web 2. 0 tool that can be used for education.

Article # 1 Social Media in Education:  The Power of Facebook In this article, the author discusses how Facebook can be more than just a social networking tool. Until recently the author herself was new to using Facebook and Twitter, and became a fast convert to the power of social media.  She posits that Facebook can be an excellent tool and opportunity to teach students to advocate and be heard.  Using two very different issues the author makes a compelling case. In her first anecdote the author explains how a Tucson science teacher’s attempt to get his students get involved in community issues ignited their flame of advocacy. The students created a Facebook page and posted a rap song on YouTube to stimulate public awareness. In the second anecdote the author details how a single teacher’s Facebook page became a tool for educational reform that has reached all the way to the White House itself. Instead of his lone voice, that teacher now has 2000 voices speaking with him. As a teacher herself, the author sees a positive role for social media in this era.

Article #2 Why Social Media Can and Is Changing Education The author in this article discusses how he has seen the potential of social media for educational purposes and reasons why he feels it should be embraced by all schools. . He breaks his argument into five topics and attempts to build his case. The author’s first point is that social media is essentially free so everyone can participate regardless of their financial status. Teachers must be creative with the funds they have available. Secondly, the author uses a small school as an example for his next point that social media connects us to the world at large and reduces isolation. For his third point, social media promotes understanding and tolerance of other cultures by allowing us not only to experience them and talk to them as well. For his fourth point the author states social media “amplifies passion”. By this he means stimulating connections between those of like minds and opinions. In his final point the author discusses how he feels social media builds relationships by providing a deeper level of connection and transparency between academics and the general public. Web 2.0 Education tool I found an excellent Web 2.0 educational tool called Quizlet. As an instructor one of the biggest challenges for me and my students has been teaching students how to study for exams. Quizlet is amazing and allows students to study using electronic flash cards they can access from their laptop or phone. Students and teachers alike can create and customize their own study tools. Quizlet is available for elementary and high school subjects as well as a growing number of college and university subjects.

References: Couros, G. (2012) Why Social Media Can and Is Changing Education. Retrieved from on October 10, 2012. Wolpert-Gawron, H. (2010) Social Media in Education:  The Power of Facebook. Retrieved from on October 9, 2012.

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