What does play have to do with embracing change and how does this impact you as a professional?
I think you can interchange play and explore for this question. Douglas Thomas point about children playing with a new toy and an adult logging onto the Internet both having the same wonder questions made me reflect on all the new programs we have to learn every year. Just this weekend I will explore or play with the updated moviemaker to use with the students. We constantly adapt to new or updated programs, apps, etc.. It is time consuming. I understand what Douglas is saying but it does not always feel like play to me. It is more exploration or something I have to get through in order to start on a project. For example, I want to use the moviemaker program, but I am not looking forward to all the time it will take to learn how to use it well. I am thankful that I will be able to view multiple youtube videos and look up information about it on the internet. Although, I do not miss the day of reading the manual. It seems now days the change is so fast you spend as much time learning as you do using a tool.
In the article William Astore wrote, technology is over used in the classroom. He uses technology only when it enhances the learning environment of the classroom. He cautions not to use technology just to be cutting edge and look good. Today new programs and apps come out daily basis. Our rate of change is so great that we now need to discern about what we choose to use. Over he years I have played around with different ways to include technology into my daily lessons. I use an iPad to allow students to practice math facts, money, and time. Today I use a math tutor program and spelling programs to support and enhance the core programs being taught in my school today. The technology today allows me to individualize instruction. The programs used were reviewed and chosen to support the core programs taught at my school. I have learned to keep it simple and focused.
When I review technology I compare it to my goals for student instruction. Much like the article by Scott Steinberg 5 Reasons Why Digital Learning Matters, I focus on how accessible and efficient the programs or apps perform. The other factor I consider is the ability to personalize the program or app in order to individualize instruction. Technology for use in the classroom has come a long way and enhances the classroom as long as you take the time to “play” with the many options available and keep up with all the updates and filter through the many new alternatives that consistently become available.