18 March, 2012

Online Enlightenment !

The year 2011 was a remarkable turning point in my professional and social life.
Before 2011 started, I had been attending Shapingthe way we teach English webinars which were held twice a month (Nov-March).Through them, I got acquainted to Adobe connect and learnt about some good strategies in teaching EFL. It also introduced me to a ning for the first time where I could manage my own page, start discussions with other members, follow and participate in other discussion threads. It was my first certified online course.
At the very beginning of January 2011, I joined Baw, one of EVO online sessions. It's a 5 weeks course held from Jan 9 to Feb 12 . When I joined Baw, I thought it will be just a basic course of how to use the internet in teaching. I thought I might find something which I have missed learning about !!! It seems I was a complete newbie, who would have missed a lot if I hadn't joined Baw 11 !!!
I've always been interested in using the internet to develop my teaching practice, but it was only downloading worksheets, some games, cards, ideas to use in class. But I have always felt there are lots more to learn and explore !! I couldn't know where and how to get to these hidden places on the internet !!

I was like in a closed house but some rays of the sun got in through the small openings in the closed windows, but I couldn't open the windows, yet I feel little warmth of the sun outside. Baw 11 opened for me all the doors and windows of that house. During the course, I was like amazed of all the windows being opened to me, getting more sun light and warmth into my place but still I couldn't go out a lot. I was enjoying the warmth of the sun, but still not confident enough to go out and explore the outside world more by myself.
After finishing Baw, I thought I would lose this company and thus lose all the warmth and sun light I have been enjoying and learning from, so I decided to get out in that world and explore what I learnt from Baw and even discover new places (web 2.0 tools) and at the same time enjoy the warmth of the sun (support of many online friends). When I had to take this first step by myself , I thought I would get lost alone in such a world or lose interest after some time being alone. But I found my self surrounded by my Baw friends and many other online friends, getting closer to me and helping me learn and enjoy it much more.
After some time, Baw coordinators  even invited me to be one of the Baw 2012 team of moderators !! WOW !!! I'm getting ready to open some windows for others sitting in closed places to help them enjoy the wonders and warmth of the 2.0 world !!


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