Sunday, February 3, 2013

Blog Assigment #3

Peer Editing

Peer editing can often be a difficult task to carry out properly. I have found it troubling in the past to critique a fellow peer's hard work in such a way as to not offend them. Luckily, a previous EDM 310 student gave us her thoughts on a few assignments to make this task a little simpler. Paige Ellis came up with a few resources that clarify how to make peer editing less stressful and unoffensive in her blog post Blog Assignment #12. Between three of the four sources she quoted, they seemed to agree on three basic steps for successful peer editing. The focus remained on three steps: compliments, suggestions, and corrections. The video Peer Editing gives some examples how to execute these three steps properly. Tutorial Peer Editing is another source in Paige's blog used the same information, but presented it in a different way.

There are many different approaches to being a successful peer editor. This creative video, Writing Peer Review Top 10 Mistakes, by a group of fourth and fifth graders shows the many wrong ways to go about peer reviewing. No one wants to be a Picky Patty or a Jean the Generalizer. As a personal tip, try to think of how you would want someone to critique your own work, and get an idea how far may be too far. Keep an open mind and always try to remember that peer editing is only making you a better writer.

Assistive Technology

Many people in the world, myself included, truly cannot fathom living life with any sort of disability. Unfortunately, millions of children and adults in the world are not as lucky, and they are forced to cope with obstacles daily. Today, one of my co-workers was telling me about a friend's son that was born blind in his left eye. Honestly, there is nothing in this world that breaks my heart more than seeing or hearing about a child born with some disability, especially blindness. Could you imagine not being able to see the natural beauty of the world? How about never knowing what the velvet petals of a rose look like or watching dolphins breach while the tide crashes on the shore as the sun sinks below the horizon?

In Assistive Technologies for Vision and Hearing Impaired Children, we are given an idea of how far technology is coming to provide children with some hope for their future despite the brick walls they face along their journey. Computers and devices like The Mountbatten provide blind students with the ability to type in braille while receiving audio playback that can send and receive files from a computer.

Other technology allows blind students the opportunity to carry out mathematic processes in the proper form, as seen in Teaching Math to the Blind. It is truly amazing to see such technology come to life to give children and adults with disabilities education and resources that allow them to tread a little closer to the line of "normal life", if there is such a thing. A long time ago someone asked me what the definition of "perfect" was. Perplexed, I sat there for a moment trying to think of a proper way to define such a broad adjective, but after a while I began to realize their point. Is there really a concrete definition of "perfect" or "normal", or is it really based on every individual being? What may be perfect to me could differ drastically to what you may view as perfect. This also leads me to wonder, are these people who live with disabilities actually that unfortunate? Or do they possess a view of how precious life is that some of us could never come close to understanding? These are our angels on Earth, and its heartwarming to see the world coming together to find ways for them to live every day a little happier and stronger.

Digital Generation

In a previous assignment, I found a link to a very interesting blog by Vicki Davis, a teacher with an interest in providing her students the ability to discover the new world of technology at their fingertips. In the video, Harness Your Students' Digital Smarts, Mrs. Davis explains that she wants her students to have access and knowledge to the available technology so that they can broaden their individual capabilities. She believes that, "children have trouble when you only have paper, and you only have pencil". I thoroughly enjoy how firmly she stands that there are many ways for students to learn that go beyond conventional education.

How can we expect the future generations to show their intelligence if we cannot provide them with the skills to look outside the box and search for the unknown? Every person learns differently, and as future educators, we must take a step forward and broaden education past textbooks and exams.


  1. Leah, your post on peer editing is very thorough and informative. One aspect I really like are your personal tips. "try to think of how you would want someone to critique your own work, and get an idea how far may be too far. Keep an open mind and always try to remember that peer editing is only making you a better writer." These statements sum up the attitude one should have while peer editing regardless of whose work they are editing. The statement in your Assistive Technologies section on perfection is one that really challenged me to think on. The thought of those with disabilities having a view of the world that most of us cannot understand is one that I have always wondered as well. I believe that most of them have a strong feeling of being glad to be alive, while the rest of us "normal" or people without those disabilities, only take the lives we have for granted. It is hard to try not to complain about what I feel is a burden or inconvenience in my life, but thinking about those living with disabilities really make it easier for me to do. I also agree with the statement " as future educators, we must take a step forward and broaden education past textbooks and exams." That is definitely one thing EDM310 has already made me realize, and we are only in week 4! I enjoyed reading this post and look forward to your future posts.