Technology Enhanced Classrooms
Rather than leave for the weekend with some overly verbose post about some resource or idea, I thought I’d share some teacher websites that I greatly admire. There are many educators that use technology in their teaching, but there are far fewer teachers that are teaching in a true “Technology Enhanced Classroom”. A classroom in which technology provides more than just a means of creating knowledge, but also disseminating information, inspiring learners, and improving the productivity of the students. The following three sites are examples of teachers that I feel have a wonderful understanding of where education is headed, and have focused not just their lessons, but their daily classroom management and philosophy of teaching to integrate technology throughout the learning process. These teachers are the ones that inspire me to push harder, set the bar a little higher, and find increasingly creative ways to integrate technology with education. Give a click on the images to visit their sites and become inspired yourself.
Chris Wright does an amazing job of putting learning first, and using the technology as a means of discovery, not a hurdle. From producing short commercials for students’ favorite candy bar candidate to publishing PDF newsletters online for easier parent access, Chris really understands the importance of communication.
Beth Newingham is a teacher who I’ve recently been clued into, but I can’t wait to find out more about what she does in her classroom after searching through all of the amazing student produced content on her site. Downloadable practice spelling tests, student movies, newsletters, galleries full of images, and resources for parents to learn about their handheld computer learning program is just the tip of the iceberg.
Christopher Craft is not the traditional educator. He’s a convert, having taught first in the private sector before leaving the IT world to join teachers. I couldn’t be more thrilled as he has not only improved my understanding of wikis and other web 2.0 tools on his blog, but also uses very simple tools to highly effective ends. Simple telephone call podcasts for the daily announcements and publishing student made commercials on his homepage gives his Spanish students a huge audience to perform to, and being more engaged because of it.
It’s easy to get discouraged to see so many other teachers doing so much more with technology and learning than I am, but it gives me a high bar to shoot for, and for that I’m thankful. I would much rather be trying to catch up to these impressive educators, than comfortably growing stagnant in my teaching.