In the syllabus, the purpose of the blog project was to use and strengthen critical thinking skills, metacognitive skills, communication skills, and technology skills. I believe that I improved and used some of my skills while creating the blog. My technological skills were improved by learning how to use Latex symbols. I have never even heard of latex symbols until I took this class. I had fun writing the blog where I wrote a tutorial on how to put random latex symbols together to make cute smiley faces. My favorite face I mad would have to be the mustache smiley. Check out my smiley blog here! I already knew how to use computers pretty well considering I was in yearbook during high school and I am employed in the computer labs at Texas State. Learning latex symbols is now another computer skill I can add to my list.
I do not think I used my critical thinking or metacognitive skills very well in my blog. Most of my blogs were just simply reviewing of the notes we took in class. Although these blogs were easy to write, I liked writing them because it allowed for me and gave me a reason to reread over my notes. I think rewriting and reading over my notes helped me remember key concepts and definitions. The blog was used as a study tool for me. Click here for one of my blogs that was strictly memorization notes for class.
I am very bad at communicating concepts or teaching people. I am a person that understands things in my own personal way and when I try to explain certain things to people, they get even more confused. The blog helped me and challenged me to try to communicate better. I was challenged to make a blog that everyone would understand. I had to make sure to include every detail about a subject or someone might get lost in my blog and have no idea what I was trying to say. The blog that challenged me the most in this aspect was my blog about Flatland. This book I read a long time ago, so explaining it was difficult. Click here to read my Flatland blog. English is my worst subject. I am very bad at writing papers; therefore explaining subjects to people in writing was an obstacle I faced. The blog helped me improve my writing and communication skills.
Another goal of the blog project was to help us think creatively and have fun with the material. It was supposed to challenge us to have an adventurous outlook. I think the blog project did this very well. When I had no idea what to write, I found myself on Google searching random subjects about calculus. Many ideas would come to my head about what I should do in my blog. It not only made me want to think creatively, but it also allowed me to stumble upon interesting subjects about calculus I never would have found, if I wasn’t doing the blog. I found this video online that helped all of the students that are biology majors in the class.
The aspect in my blog that I think I excelled in the most was that I contributed to a community of learners. I think I did this the best because about 80% of all of my blogs were about the lessons we were learning in class. I would rewrite the notes we took in class and post them for everyone to see. This would also help students in my class who missed that day because they were able to look at my blog and get all the notes. Like I said earlier, rewriting the notes also helped me review and study the information. I think it helped me on my test and quizzes. I found some awesome videos that helped me and other readers of my blog on how to perform problems. My blog was good for all different types of learners because I had visual aids and helpful information. My blog was more geared to finding helpful ways to excel in the class than find interesting and mind challenging subjects about calculus. Here is a great blog I did over curve sketching to help students in my class.
Overall, the blog project was a mediocre assignment. I feel like I would have been able to do just as good in the class without the blog because I would have been able to find other methods of studying the material. My understanding of calculus was not improved or harmed through this project, but my post could have helped someones else’s grade in the class which makes doing the blog worth it.