I am writing this post at the beginning of this course – well to be honest, at the beginning of the second week. The reason for this blog post is twofold, one I want to get my thoughts out on paper where I can see them and actually work through them and two, I want to see how my thoughts and answers to the two questions will move and change over the next five weeks. I wish I had started this blog sooner, but now is as good a time as any...
First, when I am looking at emerging technologies that fit with my philosophy of education, I cannot simply look at a list and pick and choose. It is not that simple. That would be like ‘choosing a book by its cover’ so to speak and not finding out enough to make an informed decision. For any informed selection to take place, I need to at the very minimum look into descriptions of certain technologies and in a perfect world I would have time to explore what is being done with them currently and use them myself for a short period of time to get to know the ins and outs of it. I am a very hands on learner so for someone to simply say “this is what is does” only does so much for me, I need to do it for myself.
I think something else that needs to be considered when selecting technologies to use with your students, having a backup would be advisable. We are constantly learning that each student is unique and does things and learns things in their own unique way. What will work for some students, may not work for others. If we are talking about different forms of technology, what works for some students, may not be available to others in all honesty and sometimes you will come to a point where permissions are not granted to use what you want to use so having a plan B is a good idea.
As for the inspire, initiate and implement sustainable integration of emerging technologies in my own practice and the practice of others is something that I am still trying to figure out. For now I know that telling others about it, and showing what I have been able to do will open some doors and start conversations about it. Once the conversations have started that’s when I feel people are engaged and they will listen more intently about what you are talking about. I have learned that the more I show enthusiasm about what I am learning and I am willing to share with others – the more I am asked questions about it and asked to share it with my colleagues.
I want to leave you with this thought: Be excited about what you are learning and how you are teaching, others will see your enthusiasm and it will be contagious.