Category Archives: Communication

Categorizing the Fluid …

  • Dabbling.
  • Doing old things in old ways.
  • Doing old things in new ways.
  • Doing new things in new ways.

When i initially came across these four bullet points above, i didn’t give them much thought until i went to the edutopia site that Prensky wrote.  now it has taken shape and meaning for me because it is so simple yet powerful.  breaking it down, in a sense, for us with four bullet points gives us (i.e., educators) the chance to see where we are in terms of using technology with our students because it has a built-in hierarchy, although it does take some time to thing about what he means by “old things” and “new things”.

it is interesting for me to think that i do have control over “how much” i use technology in my lessons.  in other words, as a teacher, i can either finds way to carry out my lessons in a new way that students might find more engaging or do it the old way but still be successful.  i mean “successful” here in that i could still get the same learning across (most of the time, right?) by not exposing or using any form of technology.  using technology in this instance would mean pushing myself to think of a new way to present a particular lesson to my students that would makes things easier for me and the students as well as have them learn some new way of doing things that they could possibly use in the future.

as for doing old things in new, creative ways, the first thing that comes to mind is using google docs because it has become a major player in many classrooms at my school.  the rewards of having students working together on one document, typing up their thoughts as they go along, saving it later to work it on at home, and having a record of who did what could not be done without technology.

but i don’t want to just expose students to cool or interesting new ways of using technology for certain tasks.  since i work with high school students, i try to constantly ask myself, will they (students) be using this in the future? and/or will they need this skill in college?  since we do not really know for sure which skills be more desirable in 5-10 years from now, i often catch myself just saying ‘maybe’ to many of these new or emphasized skills.  for instance, i love how easy (seamlessly) it is now to ask students to collaborate on a document and to share each other’s work because it’s all centralized within our class site.  now, will the students use or need this in university?  i would say yes because we are seeing students using it now when they are asked to complete a project even when the teacher did not specifically say to use it.