29 June 2009

Happy Birthday to My Blog!

Holy Cow! An entire year has gone by already. My intent with this post was to reflect on my Ed Tech journey over the past year and all that I have learned, but I'm not sure that I'll be able to put it into any coherent form. When I think about all I have learned my mind jumps from one thing to another like a drop of water on a hot skillet. Therefore, I will simply make a random list about my growth over the past year.

  1. I STILL can't believe that I went to the Google Teacher Academy at the Googleplex last summer. That day started this whole wild ride and I've loved every minute of it. Sometimes I'm successful with all of the cool tools I learned about and sometimes I'm not, but it's always interesting. I feel very fortunate to have had the experience with Google and the fabulous presenters that day. As a result, I have become MUCH more of a tech evangelist. Our students use technology to get information every day, but it seems that many in education are reluctant to tap into that.
  2. Within a week of attending GTA I had started this blog and joined Twitter. As I've said before here and here, I learn something new on Twitter every day. For me, Twitter is primarily a professional thing; I follow teachers and other education professionals. Just last night, because of Twitter, I found the YouTube Reporter's Center and links to several blog posts summarizing sessions from NECC '09.
  3. In the past year I've learned to be less afraid of technology. Actually, I'm not sure that I ever was afraid of it, I was just cautious. This week I've given my blog a facelift and earlier in the year I finally figured out the timeline gadget in Google Spreadsheet. Both of those tasks would have been beyond me a year ago...not so much that I couldn't do them, but I would have been afraid to try.
So, where does this leave me? I know I still have much to learn. I find I spend much more time thinking about how to make my classroom more student centered. I believe this is especially important now that I am in a journalism lab. The dynamics of the physical layout, in my opinion, demand a different way of teaching and learning. There are new tools that I want to try (like Skype). I want to attend more webinars this year and plan to 'attend' this year's K12 Online Conference in December.

I am looking forward to learning this year. Stay tuned for updates!