Recently I have been given the opportunity to be a part of an incredible cohort lead by Sylvia Tolisano. This cohort and I are on the same yet different journey. How to best prepare our students NOW for the 22nd century. When it comes to technology, many from my generation say “by the time I learn to use one technology the world is on to another” It was pointed out that the form of technology used, is simply a tool. From even the beginning of the first cohort meeting, this was implied and repeated. I now understand that to be true, and there are many tools I am learning to use, but the most important thing I discovered was, what these tools do to enhance learning!
At our last PD day I was asked to be part of a Speed Geeking workshop. It immediately made me reflect on what I had learned to this point and how I can best share this knowledge with others. At first, I became caught up with the tool itself and not focusing nearly enough on how the tool can enhance learning. I presented iMovies to the staff and how this can be used in their classrooms. Where and how did I start?
I had no previous experience with using iMovie at all. I had to get out of my comfort zone and try something new. With the help of a colleague, we modeled as a team to the grade one class how they can document their thinking on how to solve a math problem. Within a 40 minute period, I was a believer. I got to see first hand how much I could get out of this app. As I write this, without deleting the word app, I understand clearly that it is not about the app. The apps will change. It is what I saw before my eyes and what two six-year olds can independently accomplish. One student was able to ask questions, give positive feedback and promote another student to share their strategies, and their thinking, while the student video recorded the other. I, on the sidelines was able to see first hand how well the student understood the concept as she could understand it, explain it, and teach it to others. It wasn’t the app that did this. It was the student. The tool just allowed me to visualize and capture the moment in time, which then allowed me to share and amplify learning during our Speed Geeking workshop.
Two things to note at this point;
- the 15 minute sessions in Speed Geeking opened up my colleagues eyes to various new possibilities within their own classrooms, regardless of subject or language.
- I now can’t wait to give every child in my classroom that same learning opportunity as those first two mentioned above.
I AM A BELIEVER!!!