Lots of problems with technology in the classroom today. Today I dislike technology. It feels like it is making life more difficult rather than easier. And I'm not...at the moment...feeling the payoffs. Right now I'm blogging along with my ENG105 class. We are doing this in lieu of in-class freewriting. For the first section I actually followed along with the prompt I gave them and posted by freewrite over at expos-i-story.
The main problem today has been with laptop users who downloaded Flock on Tuesday and at the time subscribed to the blogs of their peers. Today, however, I had at least four users so far whose feeds only gave them an error message. None of the feeds were working properly!!! It slowed class down tremendously, as the only way I could get it to work was to have them clear out all of the feeds; save the OPML file for their class to their desktop and import the feeds to Flock. They're working now, but I fear it will happen again.
In the first section I was really into demonstrating the "magic" that is RSS, but after they all posted their in-class writing, many of them couldn't get their reader to update, so they couldn't see the new articles magically load. That was a frustrating disappointment as well. And they kept asking me when will it update, when will it update. For PocketFlock users we tried closing out of PocketFlock and going back in again. That worked to an extent, but many of the blogs still hadn't updated. For Flock users I told them to hit refresh, but it only worked for one person. I can't make sense of any of this.
Two minutes to post time.... Back into teaching mode.