Thing 4: Sparks Flying
On an earlier blog, I mentioned that the magic of learning does not come through a wire, but is generated within the student. Lest I seem to be closed-minded, I agree that technology and the internet can certainly spark interest in students who need to be more motivated. Furthermore, using all kinds of internet tools and tricks increases the chance that an individual student’s interest will catch fire. The fact that our access to all kinds of information is made extremely easy through the internet has been a major factor in my life as a teacher and lifelong learner. I constantly use teaching resources from the internet for my classroom. I am following the advice posted on the blog, “Student and Teacher Blogging that Succeeds.” Pushing the idea that Blogging Begins With Reading, the writer encourages students to read twice as many blogs as they write, which is advice I can live with. It is at least promoting thought and patience. Meanwhile, my own spark of interest has been struck by this Web 2.0 course and by my coach, who is always encouraging–never judging–in spite of my hesitations.
One of the most interesting and provocative sites I have found concerning the use of technology in the classroom was a presentation on PBS’s show, Frontline. The episode entitled Digital_Nation has multiple examples of new uses for technology and learning. It also includes interviews with people on both sides of the technological divide. You should check it out sometime!