by jwomack

Just when I think I am getting the hang of all the new tools on the internet Dr. Coffman provides us with more tools that make me feel like a novice.  Don’t get me wrong all the tools that we are learning are great and I plan to use many of them as I move forward as a teacher.  After last week and working with those tools I felt as though I was beginning to get a grasp on all this new technology.  Then came this week and again I am left trying to catch up with great tools that seem like I need a class just to use them.  This week’s projects definitely are more involved, but they are just as useful as last weeks.  As a first year teacher it has been a lot to begin teaching as well as continue finishing my education.  I have felt a lot of stress and I have dealt with many afternoons of self-doubt.  Is this right for me?  Do I REALLY want to do this?  Only after clicking on my computer and checking out my online classes and the plethora of useful information do I feel better.  I think as a first year teacher you can be overwhelmed easily.  School is not what it was when I was going through middle school.  It is an ever evolving system and if you do not understand that you will be thoroughly shocked as I was.  We have to get out of our antiquated mindsets of how things WERE and adapt to how things ARE.  Attention spans are shortened, and students need information that grabs them.  As new and reformed teachers we must work to make our lessons interesting and not just the old notes, classwork, homework that we are used to.  I guarantee if you do not have your students moving around or interacting in some creative way you are going to have long days trying to maintain your student’s attention.

With regards to the projects we looked at this week, I feel the best way to go about implementing these would be through large class workshops.  Reading through many of the projects it seemed like two key components to most of them were research and time.  With this in mind I thought the best way to introduce this would be through class workshops of relevant material.  Making the Google Trek or Fusion apart of daily routine would work perfectly for getting the information and know how to my students.  As a class we could work together on the larger scale of how to operate these new tools.  I could then assign more specific aspects of each such as researching a specific place as homework to my students.  I could also do this in the form of smaller groups.  As the year goes on the students would hopefully be more comfortable with the tools and better prepared to work with them on a larger scale on their own.  At first glance these projects can seem like a lot of work, but with great lesson planning and practice I can see these projects being great mainstays in classrooms leading the way for focused learning.


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