Margo's World with Leadership In Educational Technology

An adventure of leading and learning technology simultaneously

Blog #6

on October 13, 2013

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.


3 responses to “Blog #6

  1. Your comment about MovieMaker reminded me of all the times I wanted to learn some kind of technology and decided to learn it along with the students. This is a valuable way to play! It is meaningful in the sense that we are all trying to learn a software, but it is not necessarily me guiding the learning. Last year, I learning how to use Garage Band. Then I guided students in how to incorporate their newly created Garage Band pieces into their iMovies. Pretty cool!

  2. hmdavis2013 says:

    You bring up a good point about play verses exploration. Sometimes they are the same, but other times they are different. I also agree that technology should not be used just for the sake of using technology. I feel it needs to enhance and add to what is going on in the classroom. That can be the challenging part. With everything that is thrown at us, we need to take the time to play or explore to make sure things really enhance our instruction. But, we have to play with them to decide these things.
    I also think that especially when we are talking younger ages, the students need time to really play. Not just with technology or math manipulatives, but with each other. Is school the place for this? Maybe not always, but it can make a huge difference. In my blog, I talked about an article where a teacher teaches in a pedagogy that embraces play, and the students start their day off coming in and being able to go to different stations designed to let them play and create and solve problems. The teacher says it has done wonders for the education.

  3. alirenay says:

    this blog might be helpful to you:
    it was very helpful to me because I thought technology was over used and not supervised. She lists one excellent suggestions to facilitate play with technology in educational settings. I hope it helps

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