After the "Why" Comes the "How"
In Chapter 1, we were given an analogy for professional learning. Hooker writes, "If a mobile device initiative were a car, the teachers would most certainly be the drivers. The district leaders would be the bank that ultimately choose the car (device) and finances it. The campus leader is the GPS that gives the car direction, and the classroom is the road. Technology department's provide the maintenance and upkeep as well as fix any flat tires or cracked windshields." This makes perfect sense to me...but, I am not sure that it is just the teachers who are the drivers. If we hand devices to our scholars, aren't we also giving them the opportunity to direct their own learning? Are they the drivers too?
Mobile devices empower students to drive their own learning, with support from their teachers.
After the "Why"
In reading through this chapter I kept circling back to my own origin story. I started a one to one program in 2010 with iPod Touch devices in my 1st Grade classroom. It feels like forever ago and yesterday at the same time. I spent four years teaching one to one before becoming a Teacher on Special Assignment in my school district. From almost the very beginning, my "why" has been the same: empower authentic voices for authentic audiences. I realized early on that my students' ownership and interest in their own learning was transformed when I let them sit in the driver seat. Sure I was the learning leader in the classroom…but they were empowered to make decisions and had the opportunities to choose how they would use their device to showcase their learning and demonstrate understanding.
As a TOSA, my why is a bit different. Now, I work to support teachers with the innovative and instructional use of technology in their own classrooms. In 2012, I attended my first CUE Conference heard three words that changed me: quit, complain, innovate. Marco Torres (@torres21) challenged the audience to consider those words and choose one. I chose to innovate. Later that year, I attended my first ISTE Conference and I heard three more words that would come to shape my perspective on how I approach life outside of the classroom: explore, share, contribute. I strive to do all three.
#TOSAlife at #cuerockstar January 2017
Back to the car metaphor...we read that professional learning is the gas that makes the car go. It left me wondering what are the most necessary parts to my own professional learning? What are the things that help me go forward? When I think about what fuels me, I think about my PLN…my #TOSAchat and ADE family and the incredible FSD team that I work with daily. But beyond that I think of things like Twitter and Snapchat, and how the connections I've made over social media have transformed my own professional learning. This book club is one example. It started as an idea and spread...because of Twitter the power of social media.
What fuels your professional learning?
So...what makes YOU go? What fuels your professional learning? I am so excited to continue to connect with folks across the US and Canada as we continue to develop our Mobile Learning Mindset.
Stay tuned for Chapter 2…