We are in the midst of figuring out how to integrate technology into our school curriculum. It’s frustrating at times, and teachers are sometimes tempted to give up. I won’t bore you with the details, but assume that everything that could go wrong has gone wrong.
It’s no one’s fault. I have to admit that I’ve played the blame game, and don’t want to continue. Too often the game becomes an excuse for doing nothing, and I don’t want to get trapped into that. Taking COETAIL class has helped me persevere, and to link up with like minded teachers and counselors.
NETS for Students:
Digital Citizenship is the area I am most concerned about as a school counselor. For the past few years, we have done mini lessons in guidance classes for grades 4 and 5. This year our principal asked us to start covering this topic in grade 3, and more extensively in grade 5 as we are piloting 1 to 1 in all 5 classes (2 classes with Mac Books, and 3 classes with iPads)
Grade 5 used Carnegie Cyber Academy from the first day of school, and the kids responded quite well. This site is engaging and not too childish for 10 and 11 year olds.
What to do with grades 4 and 3 is up for discussion. One thing for sure is I want to approach it differently this year, and encourage the kids to use higher order thinking. Let’s not make posters anymore >.< With Grade 4, I am thinking we should concentrate on learning about e-mail etiquette. This seems to be the age many parents are thinking about giving them their own e-mail accounts. At school, we set up e-mail accounts for all grade 5 students, with no plan of issuing them in grade 4. What does research say about appropriate ages for kids having an e-mail account?
NETS for Teachers:
We are in the pilot year of a new professional growth and evaluation program, and NETS for teachers is included therein. Though it has made some teachers edgy, I welcome the increased accountability. We don’t have a choice about whether or not to integrate technology. Not is not an option.
Counselors are charged with developing our own professional growth and evaluation protocol this year. Our first meeting is set for mid-October, and I am determined to put NETS for teachers in our document. Wish me luck!