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Welcome to the TexEdEx website! Over time this website will have tidbits of information that may be useful to someone scouring the web for answers. Until then, please bear with me.
The EDUCAUSE conference was exciting! I attended a pre-conference seminar titled Meeting the Challenge: Designing Engaging and Active Online Courses. It was presented by Dr. Patricia Mcgee of UT San Antonio and Dr. Leah Wickersham of Texas A&M Commerce.

The Wicked Problems of Online Course Design and Delivery were introduced and the top ten were presented. The discussion revolved on how to avoid these problems.

An e-learning tool box was presented as well. It is located on the web at http://elearningtools.wetpaint.com/.  In this toolbox are resources for educators.

The opening remarks were presented by Dr. Darcy Hardy, Director of the UT Telecampus. Her presentation was titled The Forever Changing Role of IT in Online Education. She spoke as a user of technology and explored how IT and academics should work together to solve problems with innovative solutions.

Oh, and to make the week even more special an airplane flew into a building in my district and I found myself and the rest of my fire company on the scene for approximately seven hours!

I will add the new links to the side bar.

The EDUCAUSE Southwest Regional Conference 2010
is only one week away! Follow the link above to my blog for more information!

My son and I watched a Frontline episode titled Digital Nation on PBS.org. It seemed appropriate that we played the show on a laptop computer connected to the Internet wirelessly while sitting on the couch in the living room.

He is a digital native (running through the forest naked grunting native) and I am a Digital Immigrant (arrived via airplane not ship). Both of us think we're tech savvy. It is possible that he may be more so than me. I said it is possible, but since I am the Dad it is not likely. ;-)

Back to the show. During and after the program we had really good discussions. I am coming from the "go play in the backyard" childhood and he is living the "have a Macbook, iPhone, Adobe CS4 suite" childhood. Because of our differing childhoods (he is 14+) it was easy for each of us to relate to those people and ideas that represented our beliefs.

I will always be a believer that everything changes and evolves. Change isn't free. There is always a cost associated with it. As we barrel deeper into the 21st Century the changes seem to be coming at us ever quicker and the losses appear to be great.

Often times technology is portrayed as being the demon that is stealing our minds. There are some who will cite that the young people of tomorrow are not reading books, loosing the ability to write cursive, do not have the ability to write whole sentences, have a short attention span, and addicted to technology. Maybe it is really an issue of responsible uses of technology.

Perhaps it is our responsibility, both individually and collectively, to make good decisions. For instance, in my youth reading books was all I wanted to do. I would read one book after another. I was a chain-reader. In fact, according to my mother I would not get enough sleep at night because of this addiction.

I had to learn, as all humans do, to back away from the books! Really, I had to learn to stop reading when it was time to retire for the night. It wasn't the reading that caused my problems, it was the poor decision-making. "Put down the book and go to sleep" can be updated to "turn off the computer and go to sleep!"

So the conversation my son and I had revolved around personal responsibility and good decision-making skills. As a parent it is my responsibility to teach him sound decision-making skills and to take responsibility for them. Those skills apply to all facets of life, not just tech gadget use. We teach our kids to eat healthy, don't smoke, don't drive too fast, do homework before play, and on and on. The common thread in all these themes is to make good decisions.

But what do I know? Watch the program and draw your own conclusions and have your own discussions.

Frontline - Digital Nation on PBS.org

Instructional Technology Internship!
If you are looking for real life experience in the Instructional Design field take a look at KeelWorks.
KeelWorks is a non-profit organization that teaches life skills via the Internet to children of all ages and economic backgrounds.
As an intern you will be part of a design team. The design team takes a project from start to finish, giving the intern valuable real life experience.
In return for completing an inernship, KeelWorks will be a job reference giving the intern a distinct advantage over many other college graduates seeking a job. 
Take a look at what KeelWorks has to offer at www.KeelWorks.org.

Technology Summer Camps for Kids!
If you are looking for technology summer camps for the kids here are links to two residential camps at St Edward's University and the University of Texas at Austin and the third link is to a free online camp offered by FreshBrain.
I am a graduate student working on a Master's in Educational Technology. I will share insights learned during my academic journey.
Visit my e-Portfolio and get a taste of what a graduate degree in Educational Technology offers.
Welcome and have a fun visit!
To learn more about the Master of Education in Education Technology click here!
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