Reading Kim Cofino’s recent post and watching the presentations on 21st century learning, I am both daunted and inspired. I feel like I have been in a coma for 10 years, and woken up to a whole new world that I don’t quite understand.
First of all, the more I read, the more I feel out of the loop. It seems as though there are thousands of teachers out there managing to incorporate new technology into their lessons. They have umpteen ideas for its use and their students are benefiting from their expertise and guidance. In trying to adapt, I am experiencing severe changes in emotion over this. At times I feel excited at the prospects; at others I feel like I’m never going to get to grips with it all.
Teachermac talks about connectivism and so does this post over on Once a Teacher. I am beginning to appreciate the need to develop my own pln, and to encourage my students to do the same. I have to say, though, that this would certainly be easier if I worked in a laptop/tablet school. I love the idea of collaborative note-taking [see Less Chalk, More Talk] and have begun taking steps towards this. A colleague set up a wiki for his students to use in IB Biology. The original idea was that the students themselves contribute to it by completing a series of questions from the syllabus. However, these great intentions became derailed somewhat as he discovered only a handful of students could work on the wiki at one time. In the end, he wrote the bulk of the answers himself, which defeated the purpose of student involvement. This took a huge amount of time and effort on his part to set up, but now, although it is a great online resource, it is simply like a textbook rather than an interactive tool.
So, I suppose, I am basically reflecting here on where to concentrate my efforts. I recognize I cannot do it all. I know I have to be selective in where my energy goes. This makes it all the more important to choose right.