There is so much chatter about the 21st century schools, schools of the future, school 2.0, teacher 2.0, classroom 2.0, web 2.0 and on and on. It can be overwhelming even for those of us familiar with the terms. Here are my questions about the future of schools. Is it as random as it seems? Is it in the hands of someone other then myself? What is my role? What does it really mean to the classroom teacher? What is in it for the kids? What do the kids think?
Clearly I'm no soothsayer, but perhaps it means that each each educator no matter what their job, level or subject(s) should take hold of one new technology this year. Something that they haven't used in their work, venture in to the center and see if it might be their future.
My promise to you is that I will try to stay on top of new things, keep trying something new and pass my experiences along. On that topic just last week I downloaded Skype, pretty easily I might add. The only problem occurred when I realized I didn't have any Skype friends (sob) and nobody to talk to (sob, sob). If you Skype (I think it can be a verb) look me up and we can chat (for free!). Lesson learned? No need to venture off alone, take the adventure with a colleague or friend.
So get on board with something new this year. Talk to your peers to see what they know and are involved in. Try a blog, wiki, or podcast. Perhaps Google Earth, Smartboards, or videos are more your thing. What ever it is at the very minimum read about it, look at some examples, attend a conference or read what the experts have to say.
Resources can be found on the Blog Roll and Ed Tech Gurus links on the right side of this page. If some of these technologies are blocked at your school, that's OK, try it at home or choose something doable.
Let's check it out together, we may find that the future of schools is already here!
Sarah Martabano for the Model School Team