Technology and My Teaching Career

I got married with technology a little bit earlier than I met my girlfriend.

The first time I came across something that can be considered as technology was apple, the white machines with green display. Actually I was there for display only. This was the only computer lab the university owned back in the year of 1991, which was donated by the World Bank. The World Bank came to check how we were using the loan and the equipment donated to our school, the school authority found some students of English Major to pretend to be learning in that lab. That was why I was there.

I was there the whole morning playing word learning programs. The Apple PC was so primitive that it was not even a multimedia one. It could only produce very poor beeps from a shabby built-in speaker. Every time you made a right or wrong choice, it will beep and display something like “Good job”, “What a pity” and the things like. Simple as it was, I had fun all the morning, I never felt a bit tired of that word game.

In 1993, I got myself enrolled in a computer class, which cost me RMB 200 ($ 30) — nearly four months of my living expense at that time.  The computer I used was IBM 386, much advanced than Apple ones, which can be easily told from a color display. The OS running was mainly MS DOS, as well as some other DOSes in Chinese language. In leaning to use computer, I did go through thick and thin. I remembered once we were blocked by a sudden summer storm on the way back to school dorm after the computer class. I arrived at my dorm at almost mid night. Fortunately, I was the only who succeeded in finishing the course and fulfilled the goal we had set up. That was a good enlightenment of computer literacy.

Computer was first used as a word processing tool in my teaching career. I was the only one who could skillfully use a computer to edit and print very beautiful test papers. Later, as the computer technology developed very fast, I was using computer to teach since the year of 1995. I could fully use the multimedia function of the computer and created multimedia courseware with different authoring tools. In the year of 1998, I won the first prize of “Multimedia Courseware Competition” of Shenyang Normal University,  which was a mile stone of my road of using technology to facilitate English teaching.