This was the last day of school here in the overly-large school district, providing the Post with the opportunity to recycle the old tale of tech savvy teens causing concerns among the adults in their lives.
All the usual stuff got tossed into the article: tales of a few students who broke into a computer system, mandatory references to social networking sites MySpace and Facebook, and frustrated school officials throwing up barriers as fast as they can.
Although the summer break is ahead for our teachers (and most of it still remains for those in other parts of the country), I’d like to propose three resolutions for them to begin the fall with.
Don’t hide from Web 2.0, explore it. You’ll never understand all the pieces as well as some of your students, but that doesn’t mean you can’t learn. Start by setting up a Bloglines or Google Reader account, add some blogs, and check it every day.
With that start, you can then…
Let your students teach you. Just accept the fact that many of them know more about this stuff than you do and use those resources to continue building your own knowledge.
That will help you…
Establish a trust relationship with your students. Don’t assume that everything kids do with the web and those little devices in their pockets is anti-learning. Work with them to find ways of using some of their technology in your teaching.
Of course, anyone reading this post probably doesn’t need any of this advice.
But it would be nice if we could convince those who do to start the fall by being a little less afraid of technology and a little more open to the possibilities.