I had the incredible opportunity to spend the day working with a colleague from our school, Jill Worthington, as well as one of my mentors and a huge inspiration to me as an educator, George Courous.
This was such an amazing day of learning and growth for me. It gave me the opportunity to not only learn new things about using technology with our students, but also the opportunity to really reflect on some of the big questions surrounding the use of technology in our schools. We started out the morning going over what we are currently doing, both personally as well as in our classrooms with technology, and what we wanted to get out of our time yesterday. That discussion evolved into an in-depth conversation about so many critical pieces of the puzzle when we are trying to incorporate this incredible tool into our classrooms. By the end of the day, I was mentally exhausted, while at the same time very excited, because we have a clear focus for where we need to go, and just what we are capable of accomplishing at our little school! I think we sometimes tend to underestimate the opportunity that we have to achieve greatness because we are small!
Some of the biggest “take-aways” from this discussion for me were:
- How can I use technology effectively in my classroom and what does that even mean?
- Why are we using technology?
- What are we doing in our classrooms to make learning relevant to our students?
- What is relevant to our students?
- How can we use technology as a tool to encourage growth in all areas of education?
- Start with the teachers…
- Wabamun’s potential as a learning community to be a leader…
- What are some of the things that are holding us back from reaching our full potential?
- What are we afraid of?
- What are we doing well?
- How do we shift our thinking about technology from it being something that we have to learn about to something that we can use (a tool) to share our learning?
- The potential to use blogging to open up windows into our classrooms, to share ideas and to challenge each other to take our learning to the next level!
After really processing this discussion, I am extremely excited to make blogging a big part of my weekly routine, both personally and in my classroom. You can expect to be seeing a lot more from our grade 4 & 5 class in the coming months! I know that I’m not alone in this excitement. The students are thrilled with the idea! The posts will start coming as soon as this week with our first big blogging project, “Blogger of the Week”, as well as our “Blogging Buddies” project that will hopefully continue through to the end of this school year (a blogging version of “pen-pals”)!
One more thing… another big “take-away” … No blogging project would be complete without some reader feedback, so I encourage you to check out what we are doing and respond to student questions. I will be encouraging our “Blogger of the Week” to end each post with a question for parents, teachers, or peers. In addition to this, after reading this post, I encourage you to tell me what you think about using technology in our classroom? Is there something that you would like to learn more about as a parent supporting your child?