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Week 9 readings (i don't think it's week 12) [01 Nov 2005|08:32pm]
[ mood | relieved ]

Video conferencing with preschool children: Mass communication media in music instruction by Peter Gouzouasis
I found this article extremely interesting because of how technology has advanced tremendously. Not too long ago, picture messaging over the cell phones was introduced and people wanted to buy these phones because it’s “new”. Nowadays, going along with what the article was talking about, it is possible to connect individuals from one country to another through video conferencing. Sure, people might argue that it’s similar to webcams, however, I get the impression that video conferencing would be more beneficial to use for instructional/educational purposes. Also, using video conferencing allows the person (or people) to move around more freely than if they were to use a webcam. In the section titled “The efficacy of the teaching segments”, when it was talking about how some children were not able to follow the chants or patterns, I automatically thought to myself that the problem might be relating to the technology and not to the children’s inability to do such tasks. Reading along further, the article actually says that on the Australia end, the volume was too low or the beginning of the chant was cut off, and the children in Canada had trouble seeing the movements because the video was slow at parts.
I feel that with some tweaking to video conferencing, it can potentially work out to be extremely beneficial for educators to get their children in contact with children half-way around the world. Since it is almost impossible for all the children to travel to another part of the world, it would be nice to introduce them to other cultures in some other way, such as video conferencing. Expanding on video conferencing and music, I think that it would be a great experience for children in Canada to video conference with children from other cultures to share each other’s music.

Metaportal for megatrend: New Visualization Lab is up and running by Lynda Lester
There are two things that learned while reading this article. First, I have heard of the term AccessGrid before, but never really knew what it meant. Now I know that it’s “an ensemble of network, computing, and other resources that supports group-to-group human interactions” (Lester, 2002). Secondly, I found it really interesting that the South Pole has an AccessGrid as well. I wonder what it would be like to connect children in Canada to children in the South Pole (if there are any that live there).
Of course it is better for people to have face-to-face interaction but if it is not possible, having video conferences seems like a really good substitute. For business networks that are located in various parts of the world, using an AccessGrid can help them move from talking over the phone where neither person can see each other, to a more meaningful interaction among people. I know from personal experience that when you communicate with someone over email or even sometimes over telephone, it is hard to see how the person really feels about what you are talking to them about. For example, if someone sent me an email that says something jokingly, it is really hard to tell that it is a joke (even if you add a smiley face beside it). Some people can misunderstand what others say and take it offensively. Sure, on the phone you can tell the tone of their voice, but again, I know people that can act really happy just for “image management” purposes. Through an AccessGrid, you are able to see a full body image of the person you are talking to and their mannerisms as you are engaging in the conversations.

Children as Photographers: an Analysis of Children’s Photographic Behaviour and Intentions at Three Age Levels by Sharples, Davison, Thomas, & Rudman
After reading this article, I’m really excited to do our photography lab. I am curious to see the types of pictures that my child will take and if it falls into similar categories that the researchers in this study found. This study looked at boys and girls at the age of 5, 11, and 15 and discussed the differences of their view on photography in each age group. The differences that were mentioned about the types of pictures that 5 year olds take compared to 11 year olds or 15 year olds can be due primarily to age. Not age such that older children don’t look at their family as often or are as close, but age in the way that younger children are less likely to be able to roam around freely to take pictures of their choice. At the age of 15, most people are in high school and more freedom is given to children at that age.
Many parents refuse to give their children cameras to take pictures with because they feel that their child will waste the film or break the camera (if it is an expensive one). As the article points out, children, even at a young age, are not film wasters. It is understandable that parents would not want their child using their $500 camera. However, there are many disposable cameras or child-friendly cameras that don’t cost very much. If the pictures get developed and placed in a photo album, it would be really interesting for the child to look back at the pictures they took when they were much younger. In my opinion, children who get the opportunity to take pictures learn about what is important to them and what is not that important – they learn to construct themselves.

give a thought

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