Struggling to Synthesize: What Do I Do in My Classroom?

Posted on July 1, 2008

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I can feel myself growing dendrites, and it hurts. I’m seeing connections among several concepts: abandoning template-driven bulleted slideshows, harnessing the power of visuals, teaching kids to craft narrative, integrating digital storytelling. It’s still fuzzy: I can’t quite put it all together yet, but I’m starting to see a new curriculum for my class-one that uses digital tools to teach core skills of reading, writing, thinking-both critical and creative, problem-solving, communicating, collaborating, researching-with digital storytelling at the core.

Actually, this isn’t new. I’ve been dabbling in integrating technology, but I don’t feel like I have it together yet, like I can see the road ahead but a fog keeps me from seeing too far, like a hill rising to conceal the pavement showing only the horizon.

The BIG question: what, exactly, does this look like in my English 11 class? Day to day, what do I do in my classroom? Where do I start?

I don’t want to abandon blogging. It works.

I don’t want to dabble in a ton of tools just because they’re cool. I don’t want to skim the surface and not dig deep, really teaching concepts and skills.

Realization:  I think I must choose. Me-one teacher of one course-can’t teach it all. Could I focus on blogging and digital storytelling? Are these the best avenues to teach the core skills my students need to learn?

I need more dendrites to answer these questions. Maybe I’ll grow more today at NECC 2008. I’m heading over to learn from Kathy Schrock about MUVE. Another new tool? (Scream!)

 

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Posted in: Reflection