Mediated Works

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Mediated Writing Project

Creating this presentation has been a tad stressful due to the fact that I want to present a quality product. The more I learn about digital media the higher the bar I seem to set for myself. I have seen several amazing presentations thus far on this platform and I hoped to make a memorable piece. I believe this is a great medium for incorporating an interactive presentation that is more engaging and interesting. I think if you chose the right images and selections from the writing the presentation can avoid losing some of the “meat” of the paper. As an active audience member I prefer multisensory experiences that engage multiple of my interests. I realized as I began putting this project together that the images, video, and links needed to correlate with the writing in order for the project to make sense and flow for the audience.

I went back and forth in deciding what piece of writing I wanted to mediate. My original plan was to base my project on my current autoethnography in process which didn’t turn out the way I had planned. I had some great photos of my ancestors that didn’t scan well which is the largest reason I decided to change my topic. Since my question this quarter was to learn about raising media rich children, I decided to focus my project on that. I could have created a fifty page presentation as there is so much information out there! I decided I made my point and gained experience with the platform and am eager to use it again. It was fun!

Digital Wellness.

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Photo by Joana Rojadigitial quiltz

Many of us don’t even realize how much we can be emotionally and physically affected by immersing ourselves into the digital world. The popular #firstworldproblems comes to mind when I think about this whole deal, it is SO real though! The fear of missing out or FOMO is a real thing among with many other social issues that correlate with being online. As part of expanding my learning network about my topic as well as becoming more digitally literate I began following Dr. Josie Alqhuist on twitter. Dr. Alqhuist has recently given lectures about digital wellness and has a great short blog that presents this video about how to be checking in on your usage and how it may be affecting you. The message is directed towards college students specifically, maybe that is why it resonated with me. I also know some people who could greatly benefit from this information.

I also discovered several informative and useful videos that illustrate messages about digital wellness. It seems to me that I found a strong researcher in the digital network taht I am still creating. I recommend checking out Dr. Alqhuist’s page as well! It seems that there is another class doing similar things out there under the guidance of Dr. Alquist, I have followed their chat on twitter and seen many of their posts that have been very similar to ours. Again, remixing and we are NOT alone in this world! ha.

Caution, blogging with children present.

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IMG_2106Here it is, almost the end of the quarter and I am still somewhat shy about blogging and tweeting. Yes, I said shy! For those of you who know me it may seem like that is impossible as I am generally not the shy wallflower that I may seem to be online. My audience is my peers and once I put myself out there on Facebook and twitter I realized how much more connected I could become and how much wider my network can be. I am cautious about doing this as I don’t feel super confident in this process.

My original question for the quarter was to learn ways to raise media rich children in this digital world. While I have found some amazing resources and ways to stay connected with the current trends of digital media that is most popular among youth I still seem to be struggling with the juggling it takes to be an active member in a network and be the active parent that I like to be. Throughout my learning I have considered the importance of being one step ahead when it comes to social media. In order to be actively present as Rheingold mentioned to me personally in a tweet (woot woot), I must be informed about how things work, who has access, and what limits I should be setting with my children. This takes time, practice, and research as things are changing so quickly.

As a mother my children are at the very top of this list when it comes to my priorities. One of the reasons I have pursued my education is to show them the importance of perseverance and hard work! I also know the more educated I am the more likely they are to be educated as well. Being a full time student with children has something that has always required a juggling act on my part. When I began my academic career I was working full time, school full time, and had a Kindergartner. It was an adjustment although I don’t remember it being that tough as the assignments were especially challenging for me, my job was fairly flexible, and my kindergartner could easily entertain himself. That was community college where my coursework was easy and came naturally to me. Yes, I remember being challenge at times and having to stay up late to meet deadlines but, truthfully I could have done much of that work in my sleep. Not really, but it was pretty easy. I didn’t need much support to juggle my roles until I went to CWU.

Being a student at the university level was different because the work was much more challenging, it was a higher level of expectation. I worked on campus and had countless hours to complete homework as my job was basically to make sure students had what they needed and nobody took school property. Having the uninterrupted time to study and do homework while getting paid was probably how I ended up doing so well in the program. Towards the end of my degree program for my undergrad I was pregnant with my second child and gave birth a few days before my last final. I had already completed the majority of the work and my instructors were very accommodating. Since the work at CWU was more challenging and time consuming I needed more support to accommodate my son’s needs and my household responsibilities.

Flash forward to today and my current experiences in Graduate school at UWB. The amount of course work, the required readings, and the expectation to provide graduate level projects has taken on a toll on my being (it’s still worth it!). The content of the material I have been learning has touched me deeply and enriched my perception about the world. I have made outstanding connections with readings, my peers, and my amazing professors. The trouble I am having is juggling my now six grader, my two hear year old, and all of the other responsibilities that have grown since I began my time at community college many years before. Some of my classmates have asked me how I do it all with raising a family and I have wondered the same things about how they do it while working full time?! The amount of time it has taken me to start and restart this blog is ridiculous. Each time I get in the zone I get interrupted by a scream or request for something. While it is my intention to be present in my network and actively engaging it has been a struggle for me to keep active and present.  I realize the importance of providing quality work and how much time is required for me to create products that I can be proud of.

I don’t want to be one of those parents that is always on my phone, laptop, or even online. I want to be actively present with my children as I read about at the beginning of the quarter in Networked and Netsmart. I have realized through the readings that I often use my devices for double screening and researching things such as sales, how to’s, and advice about the common childhood illnesses. While I enjoy reading blogs and being online it consumes a lot of time and I consider it the rabbit hole of the digital world! It can go on and on forever. One link can take you to another and another and before you know it your blog hasn’t been written on time and your house is a mess. Ha! I have found that the blogs I enjoy reading are generally parenting blogs such as the ones listed on this site. I appreciate you taking time to read my blog. 🙂

 

Learning remixed.

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static1.squarespace.comI absolutely enjoyed the documentary-ish series, Everything is a Remix,  four short films regarding how ideas, things, creations evolve through remixing. The link is here. Kirby Ferguson is a New York based filmmaker who has presented at many big companies, workshops, and lecture. This concept and the vivid imagery throughout the series is intensely informative. There is evidence that almost everything has been remixed such as most of Led Zeppelins music, they were ripoff’s! Ferguson provides us with a large variety of examples of different ways in which creation can begin with one simple idea. Comparisons to illustrate the remixes gave me a sense of deeper understanding of what it means to create thousands of ideas from one simple idea. I wasn’t surprised by this concept because it does seem tough to be original with so many people creating things. I was surprised at how closely many of the Hollywood mega hits were comprised by movies that came before them. Ferguson’s voice (I am assuming) tells us that many things are copied, transformed, and combined which makes so much sense.

Ferguson shares that we learn by copying-emulation, and that when we take ordinary rules of thought to existing material we create. A quote that stood out to me in addition to the last sentence was that we must be fluent in language of our domain. Ferguson introduced me to LUCA-last universal common ancestor, and the idea that the best adapted life forms prosper by copying, transforming, and combing. In other words even through evolution we were remixing! It is highly likely that many people are working on the same ideas all over the place and it is through combination of ideas that many scientific breakthroughs have been created. The basic elements of creation in their simplest form: copy, transform, combine.The more I think about everything around me it seems that all have been produced in by the basic elements!

Are Meme’s really having an impact on social evolution as Ferguson’s suggests? As we discuss more in class I believe that Meme’s and many other forms of digital media have and will continue to shape our social spaces. Considering the original purpose of copyright was only supposed  to inspire creation and last a short time it would seem that the systems of laws doesn’t identify with many of the legality’s of ownership of intellectual property. Another piece that stands out to me is when Ferguson’s states that “Public domain was robust and the core belief was for the common good.” Over time things have changed and there is less diversion. There is more focus on loss rather than gain.

Towards the end of the series we learned about the trolls of the copyright and patent industry. People swoop in on others ideas and or products and profit by legalizing claiming things are “theirs” essentially. I have heard of this before, not sure where but, I still found it so sad that there are people capitalizing on other peoples blood,sweat, and tears. Overall I just wanted to share that I found this to be excellent. I am now following Kirby Ferguson on twitter and look forward to watching his TED talks. I admire his tenacity to illustrate this insightful concept and appreciate the quality of his digital presentation.

 

 

Participatory Culture

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Participatory Culture
In the article, Can public schools exist with participatory culture? by Elizabeth Losh and Henry Jenkins, there are SO many great points that address digital learning in schools. School libraries are a common place where many students are introduced to using digital media which lead me to think that it is an ideal place for students to learn safety as well as how to use the tools appropriately. By working alongside classmates students are creating a culture of their own in their own classroom which could be extremely positive. Losh & Jenkins believe that the spaces online for young people to connect with one another about their common interest’s can perpetuate and create participatory cultures. Online learning, gaming, and multimedia art are all ways in which many young people have used the web. So many people have this idea that the online interfaces are all scary and out to hurt young people. Knowing how to use the resources available and making them accessible can allow students fro every background to enjoy these opportunists. Which is why I think they should increase the usage and training’s in the school libraries. A quote that I really liked from the article:
“Young people certainly don’t need adults snooping over their back but they certainly need adults watching their back”
Another important thing that this article reminds us is that using digital media is an important tool to use while teaching that can model appropriate behavior for students. The students are influenced heavily by the social culture that is taking place around them at the quickest of speeds. How can we not expect them to want to be apart of it? By safely incorporating the usage of digital literacy, schools and educators are preparing the future for what they need to know about being mindful online and in the virtual world. This is a great article that I really enjoyed, I will put the link here. Can public schools exist with participatory culture?

Networking anew.

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Networking anew.

The more I think about what to write in my blogs and tweets the more I get somewhat lost in my own mind. I am a gregarious person, not usually shy to make friends but this whole experience of digital learning, tracking it, and connecting to reading is harder than I thought it would be. As I mature I realize that I want to be intentional about what I say and how I present myself to others which for me is harder in real life. Online I have more time to think and reflect about how I may be portrayed or perceived. I recently added a link to my facebook page about my blog and had the most hits ever! I even had a few people text me and say, “Cool blog!” Of course that is reaffirming but also nerve racking knowing that all parts of my life may collide. I like having a network and being able to access so many people in one sitting. BUT, the further I get in putting myself out there the more unsure I am about what to say. At the beginning of the quarter much of the readings were about blogging for yourself or about something you have a passion for. Still seeking my niche. Still exploring others blogs, some well known and some not. Maybe I will continue on.