On a scale of 1 to 10, how techie would you say you are as a teacher? Personally, I’m pretty tech-savvy. I use Google for a lot more than questions, I handle Adobe like a boss, and at this point, Siri might know more about me than any actual human being!! But, technology in my classroom? Well, let’s just say that it’s not nearly as advanced as I think it should be!!
Now, it’s not for lack of technology! My school is super tech-immersed! We have access to lots of computers, laptops, iPads, etc. whenever we need them. We also have a great technology teacher in the building and helpful tech support throughout the district. So, why so little digital happenings in my room? Yup, you guessed it! TIME!!!! The time it takes to put together tech-dependent lessons is unreal and frankly, nonexistent!!
(Why, oh why, is TIME always such an issue? I was recently reading an article (on my iPhone!) about how “busyness” is a sickness. So true, right!? I suffer from chronic busyness. All day long, I run from one thing to the next, cram as many tasks into a minute as I can, make and make and make “To Do” lists just so I don’t forget to do all.the.things! And at the end of the day, when I collapse on my couch
literally as soon as my kids go to bed in the evening, do I really have all that much to show for my relentless “doing?” Ugh!)
Anyway… for the last two weeks, my classroom has been the super tech-savviest!! We have been participated in literature discussion via SKYPE!! We’ve teamed up with another 6th grade from a whole state away, and every few days the kids meet up for discussion about the book Maniac Magee.
So far, the kids have loved it! The first day, we had the students do a getting-to-know-you activity. After they were finished, my students were all abuzz about their conversations. The biggest revelations: the students in the other school get to go on field trips (our district does not have field trips), BUT they don’t have dances (they have to wait until they are in 7th grade to attend school dances, whereas my students have a 6th grade dance once a month).
At the end of class the day of our first meeting, one of my students came up to me and said, “The kid in my group plays soccer! I play soccer, too! I never though I’d have so much in common with a kid from Pennsylvania!” (It’s that the cutest!?!)
Anyway, we’ve had two meetings so far and are hoping for two more before the end of the year. It’s really been the best experience… the kind of experience that I’d plan all the time if only I had more TIME!! (The only reason this has worked so well is because the teacher of the other class is my best friend, so we were able to coordinate it through a series of late night phone calls and text messages!)
So, how techie are you? If your classroom is not where you’d like it to be, why is that? Lack of resources? Lack of confidence? Lack of time? I’d love to hear from you!
Congrats to all those who are finished (or almost finished) your school year! We still have about three weeks to go!
To all those still at it, Happy Teaching!!