Personal Technology Timeline

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  • Giant Elementary School Pencils

    (+) EVERYONE has used one. The very first communication tool that I remember having an emotional response to would have to be those big fat elementary school pencils. I can still remember sitting there at the tables --- scratching out my name at the top of the page. The smell of the freshly sharpened wood-- the happiness I felt as the lead scraped across the paper. It was a powerfulfeeling when I looked at my writing in comparison to the other kids-- I love fat pencils to this day.
  • Books!

    (+) I have always LOVED books. I remember my 5th grade teacher reading us some of the Little HouseBooks -- which I loved. She read to us after lunch, and I loved listening to her voice. Some books I really formed a connection with... I have always loved to read. As a child I wrote and illustrated my own stories and I got a lot of creative praise with that. I have used a Kindle but will probably always prefer the feeling of a book in my hands.
  • Electric Typewriter

    (+)/(-) Government class... and my big report on "Three Mile Island." We had an electric typewriter by then, which was WAY fancy -- not everyone had one. I remember the feeling of sweat as I combined bits from my notes -- too many corrections would mean typing the page over. It was a HUGE report and a lot was at stake; I had tiny white correction papers to fix my mistakes. It was a step up in communicating, but WAY tedious for a teenager... a great feeling of relief when it was done.
  • Super 8 Movie Camera

    (+) This was a BIG purchase at Sears when we started our family. Easy to use and SO FUN to get the movies back... silent and old-timey, but in color! We had pricelss memories of our kids growing up; we've watched them many times over the years. It was state of the art then and the best way to capture/communicate/create the moments you wanted to keep. I can still hear the film clicking away inside of the camera... now considered "old school" !!!
  • Cordless Phone

    (+) The freedom! I remember standing in the aisle at Target... debating whether we should purchase one. It seemed like such a luxury... but it was WONDERFUL to follow the kids into the backyard and throughout the house. It allowed me to conduct business and move through my day -- not be pulled away from my family; it let the kids do the things that interested them. The phone itself had more options like caller ID and call waiting -- a helpful communication in some instances.
  • Mini Walkie-Talkies

    (+) A much anticipated purchase before heading to Disneyland. The boys were old enough to head out on their own -- but it was WONDERFUL to have immediate contact with them. We had 2 channels we always checked; it was hilarious listening to other families/kids while waiting for our chance to get on. It was great to stay connected while NOT standing in that Space Mountain line (for the 4th x)... we were able to give that little bit of freedom.
  • Digital Cameras

    (+) We've had some great digital cameras and I love the sharing of pictures/feeling of connectedness they have created. Although I am not particularly slick with our present camera, I have saved/passed on many images that have been appreciated by others. Being able to shoot/keep/delete/improve/save/share/post photos has been a lot of fun for our family and a great creative/communication technology. Seeing the photos as part of a slide show or photo book never gets old.
  • Photo Memory Books

    (+) Just for fun, a relative created a photo memory book after a trip our families took. It was an instant hit. We began to chronicle special family trips in the same way. Everyone enjoyed choosing perfect photos and text that captured the special moments; we still store photos in other ways, but the books have been a lot of fun. As time passes, it is very sweet to see what we have valued as a family and the closeness that has been shared.
  • Learned to Text - For Real!

    (+) After many stops and starts, I learn how to REALLY text! After many embarrassing miscues/ help from my kids, I set my mind to master it. On a long drive up I-5 (riding shotgun) I sent so many texts to my son that I finally got it. Many mistakes along the way -- but so many attempts that I had the time to figure it all out. We joke about it still. I was at a point where I felt I had to do it... a (-) that became a total (+). I loved the instant response and the connectedness -- still do.
  • Skyping

    (+) My son took a job in Florida for two years and we got pretty good at skype. We gave all the kids a camera for their computers and it really helped our family communicate and feel connected. We had trouble with it from time to time, but it was a thrill to be able to SEE each other. Through the extended separation it was a real help. We even did 3-way SKYPE- turning computer screens toward each other. It was an amazing and inexpensive technology.
  • ELMO Document Camera/Projector

    (+) I have a document camera in my classroom and it has really improved communication during lessons. I like the ability to connect to a laptop, project images to the entire class, and zoom in/focus for science lessons. Used on a whiteboard I can mark/emphasize what is projected -- students can come up to do the same. It's a poor man's Smart Board... the kids love it. I feel that it has encreased engagement from just the overhead projector method.
  • Apple Laptop

    (+) The entire RVUSD district got one -- with the expectation that we would use them on a daily basis. It's a little different than a PC, but I am getting better with it -- pretty anxious at first. Others already knew the Apple format, which was annoying -- but made me determined. Inservices have been okay, but not great. I had to figure out a lot on my own, but I love having it now. It has been a really great and unexpected plus for me in communication. Initially a (-)...
  • My Android Phone

    (+) I didn't want it, but my family got it for me. It has a big, beautiful screen and internet access--GPS too. Very slick. I feel like I'm with the "in" crowd, now. I text a lot with it and send/receive photos. I love the feeling of being connected to my family when I have it with me -- out on the road, running errands-- it has been a real timesaver. It is amazing to have all that capability (plus others I haven't yet used) in a phone.
  • EVO Las Vegas

    (+) Wow! We have followed and attended the huge online gaming community of Evolution Gaming Capcom/Marvel this past year. Our son is filming a documentary-- our family has received an education! Our boys always played the arcade game and I never thought much of it. I never would have dreamed -- the strategy/dedication/communication involved. I have a new appreciation for the gaming community. The international finals were on webcast live and viewed by millions worldwide. EVO... I get it now.
  • SSU Moodle

    (-)/(+) I was forced quickly to learn/participate in this format during summer school. During class (SSU lab) there were lots of problems and I had no one to really ask for help-- without looking/feeling really lame. Struggled along for a few days then figured it out at home. I liked participating in the online format-- but did NOT like communicating with it at first. I like reading other peoples' posts/commenting/getting feedback; it does feel like a community of learners to me.