Yeah, it’s been a while since I last posted. And who knows how long it will be before another but….
I’m not sure teachers have to do cool stuff with technology. What I mean is if you are teacher with second graders and you are comfortable teaching them to use PowerPoint – that’s okay, I’ll take it! The kids have to start somewhere and if teaching them to use some basic software is what the teacher can do – Go for it! Just please, please, please, teach them to only use one transition.
Now, is that what I want teachers to do? Not really. Would I like them to podcast and create digital portfolios and Skype with other classrooms? Of course! But even then, when do the kids get the basic skills? I wonder if in the push to get “21 century” skills into the classroom we are missing opportunities. If teachers got props for just getting the kids onto the machines would attitudes toward using technology change? Would they be more likely or willing to take it to the next level?
What if tech timid teachers worked in the lower grades and their commitment was just to get the kids to learn password security and basics (like word processing)? I am not saying the “oh your finished early print it up” is the way to go, not at all. I still think teaching how to use technology should be explicitly taught not just busy work. Of course that’s another whole topic! But what if the lower elementary grades were a tech basic training? Just like learning the math facts or phonics. I know the kids could do it and would probably welcome it.
My thinking is that many teachers are intimidated and don’t teach ANYTHING where the students use computers other than running a program. When the students move up the grades later teachers have a HUGE curve to get the kids caught up and do the cool projects.
There is also all the UN-learning that needs to be done; log off EVERY time, only use YOUR password, don’t SHARE your password, etc.
Just some thoughts that have been bumping around in my head. With a little time I off it feels good to get them posted.