I read something Mark Cuban wrote recently that said you can easily find your passion within what you do by what you value with your time. Since reading that I have been very aware of my time management. Not that I changed anything, rather, I was just keeping a mental clock on what I valued with my time. Lesson planning and grading are what they are. In the other time, when seeking professional fulfillment or development I turned to tech devices and articles, blogs, tweets etc about how technology is impacting and will continue impact (exponentially) the kids we get in our classrooms and how they expect to learn.
There is, naturally, a guarded approach as to how to best incorporate technology in the classroom. We all ask prospective teachers the technology question in their interview - but what really do we hope to hear as an answer. What I've been reading and learning seems to suggest that most of those (us) asking the question wouldn't know the best answers even if we did hear them. I am currently reading The Connected Educator By Sheryl Nussbaum Beach (@snbeach) and Lani Ritter Hall (@lannihall). This book starts out with a simple yet profound truth - most kids have to "unplug" when they come to school. Our realm (the schoolhouse) is a place our students have to live a secret life one of lap texts, Internet filters, and "on vibrate."
I am really looking forward to learning some methodology for letting our kids plug in at school. How do we let them connect at school the way they are connecting in the "real word?" The information I am reading seems to be pointing to one truth with many approaches, practices, and answers - and that is the World has changed technologically and schools need to. As much as we stress the necessary skills that we believe our students need in their tool belts for their futures - Core subject skills like Math and Literacy - there is a technological world in which they live now and it is becoming increasingly more complex. As educators we need to prepare them for this world too by teaching them sound 21st century skills. As easily as a student can get lost in the text of a classic novel they can get lost in this cyber world that exists.
I cannot wait to meet with other educators attending the Teaching the iGeneration workshop in Dallas this week. I am curious if I am asking the right questions and who out there has started to answer these questions.
I hope to update this Blog from the conference - we'll see!