Drowning in Technology

Photo CC- By Backdoor Survival

In the age so focused on social media and the internet, you would think that technology would be seamlessly incorporated into the classroom by now. This may be true in some schools; however, I believe many (if not most) teachers are struggling to keep up with the rapid technological advances society is experiencing. There are many older teachers in the business, and these people are labeled “digital immigrants” opposed to “digital natives” given to younger people. However, I don’t think it is by any fault of their own. I’m not even in my twenties yet, and I find some technology to be frustrating and seemingly impossible to use.

Technological advances are only increasing with time. This makes it even more important for teachers to be digitally literate. First of all, what does that even mean? When first searching keywords “digital literacy,” I found multiple free online courses that are supposed to help people familiarize themselves with computers and computer programs. While we are focused on digital literacy in education, many people across the world are also struggling to keep up with nonstop technological advances. For teachers, I think digital literacy is the ability to be aware and knowledgeable about any useful technology and being able to effectively incorporate it into lessons; however, this is easier said than done. Teachers must be constantly looking for new ways to better the technology in their classrooms. I will be teaching secondary English, and I think there will be a multitude of opportunities for students to discuss readings as well as complete projects through technology and the internet. The link I added at the bottom of the page provided some useful ideas for incorporating technology in the classroom.

In order for teachers to be “effective digital learners and leaders,” the importance of learning technology needs to be stressed even more. I think that a lot of teachers are encouraged to use technology in the classroom when they themselves are not confident in their abilities. Throughout this course and throughout the rest of my college career, I hope to close the gap between my current knowledge of technology and the level of knowledge I need to have to be an effective teacher. In doing this, I hope to become familiar with a number of computer programs that I can teach my students as well.

Although I have spent 400 words writing about the importance of technology in the classroom, I will add that I don’t think using it is always automatically the best way to teach. I think technology should definitely play a role in the classroom, but older, effective methods shouldn’t be disregarded just because they aren’t new. Just like everything else in life, teachers must find a balance in their classrooms in order to provide their students with the most beneficial learning experience.

 

Technology in the Classroom: What is Digital Literacy?

 

How Learning to be a Teacher has Taught me to be a Student

Although I have always received exceptional grades from the time I started school, I have immensely changed as a student since the time my schooling began. Throughout my experiences from elementary to college, I have gained an enjoyment and a passion for my area of study and for learning as well.

Ever since I was in elementary, I knew that I wanted to be a teacher; however, at first, it was only because my mother is also a teacher. Every day before classes started, my sister and I would “play school” in my mom’s classroom. I would make her sit at a desk while I taught her a variety of subjects. Although at the time I forced her to do this activity with me mostly out of boredom, it was my first teaching experience, and I absolutely loved it.

In high school, I was involved in an extracurricular activity named Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) where students competed in business-related events at a district, state, and national level. I competed in E-Business where teams must present a website they created to a panel of judges. Although this experience didn’t progress my love of literature, it did increase my excitement for being a teacher. I was previously terrified of presenting in front of any group of people, let alone in a competitive environment. After participating in this event at the district, state, and national level, I began to see public speaking as a challenge that excited me rather than terrified me.

I believe being heavily involved in athletics has also affected me as a learner. Before I enjoyed being a student, I enjoyed challenging myself through sports. Throughout high school, school came much easier to me than sports did, and I loved constantly seeing progress on the court.

I have enjoyed reading since I could pick up a book, and I can remember secretly staying up past my bedtime to read about Junie B. Jones in Barbara Park’s children’s books. I had always sped through books and appreciated being entertained by them; however, my junior year of high school, I had a completely different experience. At the beginning of the semester, we read The Scarlet Letter, and it challenged me more than any other book had before. At first, I hated the book just because it was difficult for me to understand. After taking more time to comprehend the novel, I developed an appreciation for the language style as well as began enjoying the challenge.

Taking college literature classes has challenged me even more. Although I am only a sophomore and have only taken a handful of courses, they have tested my abilities as a reader as well my outlook on the world. I have learned about different types of people throughout history and their experiences, and I think doing this has made me a more well-rounded student and person.

alli-and-me

The piano was one of many things I forced my sister to learn throughout our childhood.

digital-collections-at-the-university-of-maryland

Photo CC- By Digital Collections at the University of Maryland

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My group placed third in E-Business at the national FBLA competition.

jimmy-emerson

Photo CC- By Jimmy Emerson

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My volleyball team won the district tournament my senior year of high school.