Monday, November 22, 2010

Interview with a Teacher Blogger

"Cool Cat Teacher" is, like me, both a teacher and a blogger with a major interest in technology's role in our lives and the classroom. You can read more about her blog here.

How do you use new technology for your job?
I take at least 15 minutes 2-3 times a week to "play" with new technology. as a teacher who teaches students how to learn new technology and also how to stay abreast of technology change, it is vital that I "practice what I teach" and DO IT myself.  I'm always playing with new things and sometimes even testing new things for companies as part of my blog (which is very exciting for the students - this is how I found some cool things like ArtRage and my M90z touch computer.)  We have a very limited budget, so often I'm trying free or open source software or websites.  Sometimes students learn as much when we use a website that is in Beta and we have problems than if everything were perfect.  Technology, in order to be profitable, has to meet needs and remain innovative and edgy - I find that I also have to remain innovative and edgy to be excellent in my teaching.

Is there any technology/website made in the last 5-7 years that you can't live without?

My gmail, wikispaces, elluminate, and timebridge. These are four of the most important sites I use, but I'd also say the Amazon website and my Kindle - although my Kindle isn't a "website" per se - I receive about 8-9 blogs and news sources on my kindle that are vital to my survival as a person as they provide the mental food that keeps me growing and vibrant. I can also read my kindle when I'm away from the hustle and bustle of life and can soak in learning.
Is there any technology/website made in the last 5-7 years that seems useless to you?

Gosh. I think everything out there has some use or it ceases to exist eventually. I think the only thing that is often useless is negativity. A negative attitude makes us sick, causes us to worry, and makes us unable to perform our jobs. So, I think, if I know of one useless thing it would be a negative attitude. Ban negativity and the word "can't" and I'd be happy and I think we'd get a lot more done. We need constructive criticism but often nowadays because of the pressure of the world in which we live we get obstructive criticism which serves to obstruct us from getting anything done. Now, more than ever, we need the determination and drive to improve our classrooms and world!

What's one thing you wish you could do with technology but can't yet?
I am ready for Augmented Reality and what it will offer us. It is frustrating that Foursquare and Gowalla don't get that we really want an educational overlay of our world that allows ANONYMOUS or private users like our children. Although Foursquare is adding overlays that will allow us to go into a town and see what history is in that town, it won't allow us to take kids on field trips and have them tag the artifacts and things they find with their information without causing privacy concerns. I think that location based apps need to realize that there is a HUGE potential for the educational market of our world that requires a higher quality privacy control than exists today. 

No comments:

Post a Comment