Monday, October 29, 2007

Making Web 2.0 applications meaningful for Developement

Extermely true!
At the Web2forDev conference,web 2.0 tools were discussed as tools which "have changed traditional patterns of communication and knowledge sharing." However, the audience were warned not to focus on Web 2.0 tools only. Web 2.0 tools are valuable for bringing people together, but it is also important to think further than the web. "When we think about participatory web, it’s not about laptops and high bandwidth… it’s about mobile phones. There are 3 billion handsets worldwide, and it is estimated that 80-90% of people in the developing world can access a mobile phone if they need to. This is a level of penetration of technology that changes the rules of the game. We need to broaden our thinking beyond the Web."

They reached a conclusion that more exploration of the use of these tools is a must."On the one hand Web 2.0 offers us five key tools - blogs, wikis, tags, feeds and mash-ups – but on the other hand, in order to make the application of the tools meaningful for development, we also have to overcome five key challenges: we need to think about how we involve the right people; if the people we are trying to reach have access in terms of connectivity, infrastructure and language; if people actually will participate; how we structure and organize content; and finally, how we will measure the changes we have made. It is only when we use the afore-mentioned new tools with an approach to overcome the five challenges listed above that we will be able to further enhance development activities.’Chris Addison.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Rational Future to Choose from!

I always try not to be like one of my students, who always write about dark sides in Sudan. But, when I lay my eyes on Downes words:
“And I don't see technology as inevitable, I see the
future as the result of choices, not progress, and there is
no one purely rational future to choose from.”

When I watch a video like this one entitled "A Vision of Students Today" for Micheal Wesch,It just bring all the negative emotions up the surface.
Students in my country DON’T HAVE CHOICES!!
Did you feel this before? Not being able to choose your future? I am not talking about destiny, no, and I can never do that. I am just talking about choosing a better life, work hard to achieve it, even it takes you 40 years to reach your long term goal.
Students here, ( or maybe my people too!) stopped to dream. They stopped to plan, Oh!, we are actually not raised to be researchers or planners, but one day we were the bravest people in the Arab world, who were born as fighters, always fight for their our own rights.
I am not describing my own situation, thank God, but I am reflecting a situation of 90% of students in the country. Maybe my kids will be one of them, one day!!:-((

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Nigeria e-Learning Conference 200

I received an invitation from a friend, Lawan Dalha, from Nigeria to present my presentation at Nigeria e-Learning Conference 200 .Not bad,ha?I was hesitant at first, but he encouraged me saying teachers in Nigeria do need an "opening eye" to know about Web 2.0 tools and how useful they are in the ELT field.I sent an abstract and I am waiting for a response.
Viva Africa!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Project-Based Learning

Interesting article!
Interesting article, and a relieving one too! This is explains my wondering about the marks of the trainee I worked with lately.The marks for the grammar, reading and study skills were fine and anticipated. The ones of writing, after all the corrected emails and extensive work using online tools, were not!
I am going to copy and paste this part:
What can a computer do that a pencil cannot do?
•It can open the walls of the classroom and connect people from distant locations.
•It makes collaboration anytime and anywhere simple and affordable.
•It can keep track of data when it gets too much for a person to write or to think about and help to analyze that data which provides for some deeper thinking.
•It can make the editing process feel successful rather than frustrating.
•It can even the playing field for students with disabilities

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Launching SudaELtech

I will do my best to send invitations for joining SudaELTech YG before Eid.
Yesterday, I attended David Warlick,PRE CONFERENCE KEYNOTE,
“Inventing the New Boundaries” on K-12 Online Conference..Will Richardson writes about it saying:
The entire conference will be delivered as downloadable digital media via the Internet with over 40 sessions presented in four strands: Classroom 2.0, New Tools, Professional Learning Networks, and Obstacles to Opportunities.

Although many of the topics and themes could not be of an interest to teachers here in Sudan, I felt a qualm of not being able to have a platform to notify them of these kind of events.The funniest thing happened with me when I was playing with Elluminate tools.I put my photo there and couldn't take it off!!!In front of 77 people, whom I know only Jeff and
More screenshots are saved Here.

Saturday, October 06, 2007


I think all teachers in Sudan should listen to this song.
We always need to be reminded of the "hero" inside us!!
Thank you Vileta for reminding me of this video!

Thursday, October 04, 2007

I Have a Dream!

My dream is to be courageous enough for starting a pilot course/workshop for EFL teachers in Khartoum, or even in other parts of our mini continent, Sudan.
It will be about how to use the Internet for their professional development. It will be like going through an attempt to convince them of the advantages of the free web 2.0 tools. It worth spending time and more energy, but where can I have the courage? Do you have some to lent me??:-)
"Success is never final.Failure is never fatal.It is courage that counts." ~Winston Churchill

"How to attract students who reject ICT"

For the last two months, I was teaching English to fresh graduates of engineers who work for a petroleum company in Khartoum. On coming to the course, some didn’t have emails and never touched a keyboard before!!
When I started working with computers with them, they never showed reluctance or fear from using ICT. On the contrary, they were very excited about the idea and showed “more” enthusiasm and motivation than those who have already an idea about how to use commuters or the Internet.
This was exactly the case when I worked with my first year students in Computer Sciences College.
I believe, for all tyes of learners,if they are aware of the range of choices open to them and how this could can make a difference in any working/studying field, they will NEVER be resistant to the use of ICT.
So, again, and again, it is US who are responsible of leading the way to show that ICT is fundamental to shaping what is happening now, and in the future. It is OUR job to tell them that they are already using ICT, from mobile phones to iPods, MP3 players etc.
The above was a reply to a discusson on Aberedeen, iatefl, about "How to attract students who reject ICT"