Wednesday, August 29, 2012

teaches with technology

Teaches With Technology
As educators, we are constantly learning. We learn from our interactions with students, parents, community members and faculty members. We learn everything from classroom management techniques, to RTI procedures, how to stay up-to-date with changing standards, to the first and last names of hundreds and hundreds of students. And I don’t know about you, but doesn’t it seem like every other year there’s another training to go to in the use of a new Teacher’s Edition to our text (which I hardly use anyway)? Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE to learn! I mean, I am a pretty big advocate of learning, after all. It’s just that there is SO much of it that needs to be done!

Sometimes, I wish our brains came with USB ports. When we ran out of space, we could just plug in an external hard drive and begin filling it up with more information. I would be the first in line to get my hands on one of those, let me tell you.

Being a teacher has always been a tough job, but as the amount of information that exists in the universe increases each year, so does the amount of pressure on teachers to teach and students to learn. According to Richard Alleyne, Science Corresponded for the The Telegraph, the growth in the internet, 24-hour television and mobile phones means that we now receive five times as much information every day as we did in 1986. Every day the average person produces six newspapers worth of information compared with just two and a half pages 24 years ago – nearly a 200-fold increase!

These days technology, alone, seems to advance at the speed of light and let’s face it, there is no possible way teachers can stay up to date on EVERYTHING tech related. But, there are tons of amazing tools and resources floating around in cyber land, just waiting to be put to good, educational use. I have always believed that if you teach in a way that gets your students excited and enthusiastic, the learning targets will pretty much look after themselves. Using the internet in the classroom is one of the best ways to bring out that excitement and enthusiasm in classrooms today.

I’ve decided to begin a series of posts to share some of the ways in which teachers and parents can incorporate the internet into the classroom, or their child's learning at home. There are hundreds and thousands, if not millions (okay, maybe not millions) of amazing, quality websites that teachers and parents should know about and should be using right now. My goal is to share some that I have personally tried and tested.

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