|Posted on 28 October, 2014 at 17:05|
We all go through spits and spurts of attending professional learning and in the last few months, it has certainly been a spurt. As I reflect on all of the professional learning that I have attended and what I am attempting to implement in my school in addition to what I am accessing personally, I realise one key common denominator. Never has technology played such an integral role in my life. Initially, I was feeling extremely overwhelmed and feeling that there were simply far too many email accounts to check, so many messaging/social networking sites to review and action, Apps to access and new tools to learn, but in a light bulb moment, I have realised that yes, there are quite a lot of things I now need to do on the computer as part of my normal daily practice, all of the technologies that I am accessing are actually necessary and crucial in order for anyone to be an active traditional and digital citizen.
I'm not simply taking about using my phone to send emails or messages or playing on my iPad, but I'm talking about using technologies in order to be an active citizen in the local community that we live in. I have been exposed to new Apps that truly simplify practices that I participate in, access Web 2.0 tools that reduce my work load and many more. I know understand how technologies are truly saving and changing lives. Which brings me to my next question - a question which makes me feel guilty as a technological educator.
Are we teaching the right technologies to our students and how do we speed up their learning so that they truly benefit the offerings technology can offer?
I feel that the new technology curriculum is definitely heading into the right direction of developing the overall skill set of students and their understanding of theoretical processes, however, are they learning the skills that we need to use today (ie, collaborative learning through web 2.0 tools) or the skills they need in the future (yet,..... what will these be?) Our students are very tech savvy and do know how to access and develop their skills in spaces that many educators are not even aware that they exist, however, are they provided with the opportunity to develop these skills and access further resources or mentors that could give them a real chance of success in life?
I often think about a student who is a brilliant soccer player. Unfortunately his parents are not financially able to support his dream. Through fundraising, he was able to attend a game which he was then selected to represent Australia. One person who has identified his skills in the correct setting is about to change the life of this boy. Do we do this in the technological space?
As I ponder on this question, I will continue to attend and review future professional learning opportunities and seek guidance from someone who will make a life changing impact with me so I can replicate that and offer that same opportunity to my students.