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minecraft day 4

Struggle: I got stuck in a cave for a little while because I went too far into it and then I couldn't see anything at all and couldn't figure out how to get out because there was no light. Eventually I got out by just randomly moving my cursor, and pressing w and the space bar.

Accomplishment: I accidentally jumped off of a pretty high cliff which placed me at the bottom of the mountain. This was a problem becasue my crafting table and chest were at the top of the mountain. I explored around a little bit but I couldn't see an easy way to get back up to the top because it was more of a cliff than a hill with different levels to jump up onto. So, I realized that I could break the blocks to form a stair type of thing on the side of the mountain so I could reach the top. And I did! And I found my supplies again!

Observation: It started raining while I was playing today! I am not exactly sure what happens when you get wet, but I am assuming that it is probably better to be dry than to be wet so I went into a cave that I knew was nearby for shelter and waited there until the rain passed.

Question: My next step is to figure out how to build a house. So, my question is... how do you build a house?

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minecraft day 3

Today I was able to access the multiplayer game and finally interact in that world. I began the game with a few resources in my inventory and started to collect a few other things, but it was a little hard to find any worthwhile resources since we spawn in a place where there is just a lot of desert and there are not really any trees left. So, I went on a search for trees! It took a while to find some and I have to travel across lakes and up and down mountains until I finally found them. (Luckily I also found some pigs and cows along the way so I didn't starve.) I had been making pretty good progress and collecting more resources when I sadly fell straight off a cliff and to my death! :-( I was obviously really upset! I didn't even know that was possible! And of course, I lost all of the things that I had just been collecting and had to start all over again from the spawning point. But, I knew I couldn't give up, so I started out into the "world" again. I traveled for what seemed like a while, including swimming through rivers and climbing up mountains again, but I found an area with tons of animals and lots of trees, so I began collecting both items. I was able to finally make a table and a chest. I was a little bit concerned about just putting these down where I was because I knew that if I was killed again there would be absolutely NO way I would find them. However, I figured that if I die I will lose all of my supplies anyways, so I just did it anyways.

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Mine Craft - day 1

Struggle: I was unable to connect to the multiplayer network because, as a Haverford student, I can only connect to the Bryn Mawr guest network and that does not connect with the Minecraft network, apparently. This was a prime example of how issues with wireless or insufficient connections can REALLY affect the access that people can have to various online tools or systems.

Accomplishment: Luckily one of my classmates was kind enough to let me work with her in exploring Minecraft because she was able to get into the class's network. It was really helpful to go through it with someone else because we were able to share ideas and figure things out together. It was also fun to get to know one of my classmates that I haven't really interacted with very much before that! :-)

Observation: It was pretty clear that some people were "naturals" at Minecraft and were learning how to do various things very quickly, while others were struggling pretty badly. Especially in the beginning of the period, before I had joined with my classmate, I found myself to be in the second group. As it seemed like my classmates were getting farther and farther ahead, I began to feel worse and worse about my Minecraft abilities. I can definitely understand how people who do not have access to technology or do not use technology feel as though they are outsiders to the exclusive club of the tech-saavy.

Question: I still have so many questions, I don't even know where to begin!

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Field Placement Reflection (week 1)

            Last week my group had a Skype meeting with the co-director of Arise, to try to get a basic understanding of what our goals are for working with Arise.  It is a relatively new program and their website did not provide us with a significant amount of information about the formal structure or clear programs, goals, plans, and objectives of the company. So, we were hoping that talking with Mr. B. would provide us with that clarity that we were seeking. Some members of our group seemed to feel as though not much progress was made during the Skype call since he did not really provide us with any specific tasks or actions he wanted us to perform for him. However, I felt like this was an indicator in its own form; we are going to have to put just as much thought into generating projects and collaboration activities as Mr. B and his partner are. One of the things that we were able to get out of the Skype call was the importance of story telling in Ghanaian culture. So, we took this and ran with it when looking forwards and attempting to create a plan for our engagement in this exchange. We began brainstorming ways that we could use technology as a form of story telling and we played with the idea of that being the theme for one of Arise’s workshops. An idea that arose in Alice’s facebook conversation with Mr. B was the creation of introductory videos that could be shared between the participants in the workshops and us.

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the end of the beginning

I have been pleasantly surprised by the amount of time we have dedicated to discussing the "social justice" issues that technology raises. I don't think I was anticipating this being as much of a part of the class as it is, but I find it really fascinating and important to discuss these issues of technology and education, especially when we consider the process of lifelong learning. I have always thought about the place of technology in formal school institutions, but I think that considering the role of technology in other, less formal, but equally as important settings, and what we can do, both as teachers and as members of society, to use technology as a tool for bettering the opportunities that all individuals have access to, is incredibly inspiring.

One thing that I would like to do more of, is to experiment more with different forms of technology and online resources and tools.

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