An argument our group made in defending WHY technology does enhance learning was that it helps move from teacher-centred learning to student-centred. This Tedx Talk, by Joe Ruhl, discusses the essential 21st century skills we must be instilling in our classroom and students: choice, collaboration, communication, critical thinking, and creativity! Ruhl is definitely an experienced teacher (37 years!), thus has had the time and knowledge to build activities that are 100% there to enhance the students learning. He shows how technology isn’t necessarily always computer based, although can include it as well. A key take-away, which I agree with wholeheartedly is to give students the option of how to present their learning. For a student that might consist of pencil & paper or a computer program…both options are in fact technologies. At our Monday night debate one thing I believe we all agreed on was that it all depended on the teacher. We cannot forget how important relationships are with students, because without them there can rarely be meaningful learning, and solid relationships allows the chance for growth both academically and personally. We MUST teach our students with the help of their families to instil positive digital citizens!
It is funny how often students say to me “you’re a young teacher how don’t you know” in regards to technology. I have never been huge into learning a lot about technology or about using it in the classroom. When there are issues with computers or devices in the classroom I typically text one of my go to coworkers and they tell me how to fix it (embarrassing I know). In the past I have used Remind101 with students, and at Miller we have a Phys. Ed. Instagram account to share updates on what we have been up to with students and parents. Other than that I really haven’t incorporated technology in other ways. I have attempted having a Weebly, although found it frustrating at times. All in all I have essentially given up in that department. I think the biggest reason I have given up at times is because I find it seems to change so quickly. Even today when setting up my blog, the YouTube intro video doesn’t look the same as WordPress anymore. Thus, by time I get the hang of something, it typically updates and changes and then I feel like I am back at square one. My goal for the end of this course is to feel more competent in using at least one different form of technology and will realistically use it moving forward. I recently made a google account for the first time, and our FlipGrid for this class was my first video I have ever uploaded of myself….so big steps have been taken already! I am a bit overwhelmed at the prospect of so many things to learn, but at the same time I am excited to step out of my comfort zone and try to commit to incorporating technology into my life, especially my professional life.