On the third day of school, a tech specialist knocked on my classroom door. "Here are your laptops!" she chimed. A couple days prior, my teammates advised me not to count on the laptops for a least a month. Naturally, I was very pleased to see that they had arrived on the third day school as opposed to the third week, or even third month of school!
first question was, "When may I begin using these computers? And how do
the students sign on?" The tech specialist's response was a little
wishy-washy. Apparently students used to use a standard user name and
password. Now, for security reasons, each student must have their own
user name and password. But... the user names and passwords have not
been created yet. She suggested that I try using the outdated
standardized user name and password. Problem: The tech specialist could
not remember the standard user name and password nor had she been told
when the individualized user names and passwords would be available.
there I was. Three classroom laptops. No usernames and passwords. I'm
sure they will rise to the surface and be shared with the teachers in
time, but, how much time? My students were thrilled to see them lined up
neatly on our computer table, plugged in and "ready to go" when they
arrived to school on Friday morning. Let's hope the user names and
passwords arrive as promptly as the hardware did.
are curious about their peers' thoughts and experiences. I'd like for my
students to feel enthused when sharing their writing and reading
others' writing and I'd like for them to write not only for me, but for
themselves, and for a larger audience (their classmates). I am a huge
believer in personal journal writing as well. Thus, not all writing is
meant to be shared, but, when it is meant to be shared, I want my
students to feel comfortable enough with each other to share their
thoughts, comment on each others' work, and grow as readers, writers,
and technological navigators, together.
a side note, web PLNs may be especially beneficial for ESOL students.
The computer screen serves as a buffer. Students have more think time
before they share, and more think time while they interpret what others
have already shared. This creates a low-stress environment where each
student can relax, and respond without the pressure of "real-time".
like to experiment more with edublogs and edmodo, however, I must first
collaborate with my 2nd grade teammates to see if thy are at all
interested in participating. I'll also need to get permission from the
administration. Sometimes, I feel as though teachers have quite a few
hoops to jump through before they are able to experiment with new
programs, etc. One of the busiest weeks of my life was last week (first
week of school) and it was tough to get enough sleep, let alone
experiment with technology. But, it is something I would like to do, so,
I will find the time... sometime. Hopefully soon! Perhaps around the
same time my user names and passwords arrive!
Cheers to a new school year and to a new way of sharing.