Technology in the Classroom
I firmly believe that the use of Web 2.0 tools in the classroom has such teaching potential, but I’ve never had anything in my teaching career so far that is as frustrating as attempting to use this technology with students on a tightly controlled networked computer system! The system is so slow that in a 35 minute lab session it takes 10 minutes just to get onto the data-base! Lab time in a school that is over-crowded is at a premium so getting the lab time and the time slots needed is a battle. The Admin and staff are unaware of the role technology plays in the teaching of library/research skills.
The next hurdle for this novice user of technology in the classroom is to think 10 steps ahead of the upper intermediate students to be aware of exactly what they are up to. Some wanted to create a web-page about themselves so I, the new teacher, would get to know them better. Hmmm, really??? Such a noble gesture! So exactly where would this web-page be hosted? Web-page indeed.
A very explicit Internet use policy is manditory and I must say we have one. Very quiet in that classroom when I told them I knew exactly what was in it and what would happen if it was breached. Ah, the Internet Nazi was teaching.
Result was things went quite well besides the frustration of computers operating at glacial speed. Students enjoyed Britannica Online and are looking forward to mind-mapping on Inspiration. Hmm, wondering how that mind-map will work out?
Also, discovered that contrary to my prior post, with some candid conversation about equality in education, these well-off students were able to understand the concept of social justice and have empathy for others more disadvantaged than themselves and are now enjoying this research much more. Made me realize I should have had more faith in these young people and been far less cynical and jaded. They really did rise to the occasion.
Next group – Thursday. Wonder how that will go?