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Not the world from which I retired!

Friday, April 19, 2013

So, I worked as Teacher-on-Call in a secondary classroom for three days this week. Senior class of First Nations Studies; Grade 10 "Planning" class; grade 11/12 Communications (senior English for non-university-bound students), and 9th grade Social Studies. Nice kids, mostly. Well-planned lessons and classroom systems. Good back-up from the administration. But--teaching and learning? Wow! 'way out there!

When I was doing Teacher-Librarian training, we were encouraged to be the "Guide on the Side", not the "Sage on the Stage." That day seems to have come. Here's a paraphrase of the lesson plan for one of the classes: "The students have individual assignments. They may use the SmartBoard to access their assignments and print them off. I have booked the clsss into the Library. They are to research their topics. Some may use iPads (there are 13), others may use the library computers, and some will want to use their SmartPhones. Just make sure they access only the CareerCruising website--no online games."

If you haven't seen one, let me tell you about SmartBoards. They're essentially *huge* iPads, about 4' X 6', mounted on the wall where the chalkboard used to be in my day in the classroom. They have a touch-sensitive screen, which the teacher can use like a chalkboard: special pens make coloured images on the screen; the SmartBoard wirelessly accesses the internet via the teacher's classroom computer. Anything that can be displayed on the computer screen can be projected on the SmartBoard. And the students had to teach me how to use it : )

Smartphones as teaching tools? Brilliant! If you can't beat them, join them!

It was grand, but boy, oh boy, oh boy did I feel like I'd stepped into the world of my imagination!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Leaves me wondering what kind of diving equipment you need to keep from drowning in the internet.
    1280 days ago
    Sounds like a great experience for the class and for you. Actually, your acceptance of the new approaches is the best part of the story. Congratulations to you, personally!

    1280 days ago
    I'm waiting for the day when we can just upload knowledge into our brains via USB stick, or wi-fi!
    1281 days ago
    As a child in school I used to fantasize about a big screen on the wall behind the teacher that I could read with answers to questions the teacher was asking. Never thought it was possible!
    1281 days ago
    1281 days ago
  • NWFL59
    Thanks for the update on classroom technology and how research has changed. Sure wish those tools had been available way back when but then I probably don't know what has been sacrificed in the process of relying increasing more on technology to teach/research/guide the learning process. emoticon
    1281 days ago
    Wow that's pretty cool!
    1281 days ago
    I know! I know! But we gotta conform! My 7 year old g daughter shows me how to use my new Ipod! I am embarrased!
    1281 days ago
    I've noticed that more lectures these days are just power point presentations. Long gone are the days of getting in front of a class and talking.

    A year ago I was at a community college. A group of students were working on a presentation. Their presentation entailed pulling things off the web (text, pictures, graphs), gussying them up, and using the result as their presentation.
    1281 days ago
  • PDQ1203
    1281 days ago
  • PICKIE98
    Wow!! An affluent school.. Nothing like that around here,, we were blessed to get new computers a few years ago for the students in the high school. They also got a new HVAC system and roof. IT was a biggie.
    1281 days ago
    I can't wait till they come up with "smart brains" to help mine be more efficient and speak more clearly :)
    1281 days ago
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