Saturday, April 5, 2014

What I Am Thinking for April 5th


Sometimes, I have ideas or thoughts that I would like to share.  If you ask my wife, it may be more than sometimes!  Often times, though, these are not long enough to constitute a full-length blog post.  They seem more fitting for a What I Am Thinking type of post.

  • I participated (I use the term participated loosely here) this week about gaming in education.  It was a combination of chats, called #1BigChat, that brought together four separate chats- #byotchat, #patue, #isedchat, and #leveluped.  I was excited for this chat, however, soon after it started, I realized that I was in the dark on this subject.  Sure, I know what Minecraft was, and I have played games on my own time, but it quickly became apparent that I had a lot to learn during this chat.  I had a choice to make, should I give up and look for a different chat to participate in, or should I stay and learn all that I could from these talented educators?  Hmmm, tough decision... in the end, I decided to stay.  Even though I shared with a colleague of mine that I felt like a fish out of water, I knew that this was a topic that I did not know much about, and that by staying, I would be able to learn some new ideas for utilizing gaming in the classroom.  Throughout the rest of the chat, I mainly lurked and tried to learn as much as I could!  It worked as I learned about Kahoot, Kodable, and Quizup.  I am excited to learn more about these resources, and in turn, share them with the teachers at my school!

  • I am in my first year as an Instructional Technology Specialist, and I am learning new things all the time.  One thing that I am wondering about is the upcoming 'post-testing' season at my school.  In years past, it has always seemed as though once the testing is finished for the year, teachers 'open' up their classroom more (I will share my feelings on this subject at another time) and bring in more projects for their students to create.  This inevitably has led to a 'run' on the laptop carts that were in my building.  This typically had no effect on me as I never had to 'open' up my class after testing, and most of my students had their own devices to use in class.  But, this year, I am thinking that there may be more of an impact on me as the ITS at the school.  I can foresee emails from teachers about other teachers hogging the laptops, how the laptops are not being utilized appropriately, or how slow the laptops are.  I am preparing myself for these discussions, and am asking you for help.  How best is it to handle these conversations?  Do you have any suggestions for policies that would stem the tide of these types of concerns?  I look forward to your suggestions in the comments section!

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