So I’m considering my Back to School Message for 2010 and one major goal is to treat tech & tools as part of all curricular areas and not as a separate subject. A second major goal is to get parents to understand the importance of introducing social media and tech tools to students in a supported, monitored environment rather than hiding our heads in the sand and hoping they never find it.
In social studies, we create presentations on the wiki and will even blog about our new insights. In math, we visit math modeling sites to bolster and strengthen our understanding and even try to blog our thinking. In science, we create Prezi’s to show our understanding of processes. In language arts we prepare presentations on the wiki, blog about book study and write a lot. All the while, we use paper and pencil and notebooks as well. It all goes together.
I’m hoping to present these tech/tools as just another aspect of learning and more of a “this is what we do” rather than a “may your child participate?” It’s the way learning happens in 2010.
The point of view that parents are protecting their children from the evils that lurk on the internet is interesting to me. I have two children and I don’t feel any particular fear over the web. We check out the Lego site and even play a few games. They participate in family emails once in a while, but my children know that they need my permission first and I will help them when they get “lost”. I monitor what they do and how they learn to navigate the web.
I fall back on standard leadership training: Assume Positive Intent. From these parents’ point of view, protecting their child is paramount. What they might not understand is that the same is true for me–our goals match. My plan is to make that crystal clear in the 60 minutes I have AND mention the million other “important” aspects of sixth grade. Good luck, Mrs. Haugen!