As I sit here on Sunday night doing laundry, I am looking back at all the things that I have done this week. I have learned about more web tools than I have my entire undergrad and first year of teach in one week. As exciting and wonderful as the first week has been, one thing still remains on my mind and that is how am I going to be able to implement this at my school.
My high school does not possess the technologies to implement all of the applications and software I have learned. Our school currently has a computer lab with 20 netbooks, where about 5 to 10 of them won’t work on a day-to-day basis. The mobile laptop cart that we have on the first floor of our school is the same exact way. Similarly, about half of my students don’t have Internet access at home, not even on a smart phone.
This past year has also been a struggle for me because of restrictions that I have as a faculty member. We were told at the beginning of the year that we were not allowed to make any website or Wiki page for our classroom. We also certainly are not allowed to use any social media with our students. I was actually asked to take down my Weebly page and to disable my EdModo account.
So the question I ask myself constantly is how am I going to make all of these tools work for me?
I know that I can always use what I am learning to emphasize a lesson and create most elaborate artifacts to enhance my student’s learning, but this week was asking us to push our students to be more critical thinkers and learners. How do I push my students if I don’t have access?
When I told various administrators, most importantly my CEO, about my program their faces lit up; they were so enthusiastic and mentioned how my expertise will enhance the curriculum at our school. So here’s another question: how to make all of what I am learning convincing and make them want us to do it?
I’m optimistic with this upcoming school year with changing of CEO’s and with a new, real high school building for my students to appreciate. I can only hope that if I show my fellow co-workers and friends what I have been doing this summer, that it will give me the confidence to really “sell it” to my administration. I think that students would benefit so much from what I am learning from my MAET program because of the lack of exposure they have to various things such as technology.
So as I enter the second week of my MAET program, I hope to grow more as not only a student, but a teacher too, a teacher that wants to give their students the opportunity to grow into life long learners.