1. What are your favorite tools you now have in your personal technology toolbox?
I am so pleased to know that my classroom will be equipped with the new devices next year. I already had plans to incorporate my own personal iPad for student use to create online tutorials. Having more than one iPad for student use will accommodate more students at a time. I would like to see the iPads become a regular part of classroom learning where students can not only use them for specific assignments but also to independently find information that relates to what they are learning as needed. I often find students asking me questions like, "Do you have any more worksheets with practice problems?" I look forward to teaching my students how to search for specific math concepts and finding exactly what they need.
2. How have you transformed your thinking about the learning that will take place in your classroom? How has your vision for your classroom changed? Are you going to need to make any changes to your classroom to accommodate the 21st Century learner?
Learning about the various technology resources available has made me more aware of the changes that need to take place in the classroom to keep up with the evolving technology that surrounds the real world. Lessons and activities need to be relevant to our students' real world in order to create a more meaningful learning experience for the students. Having the netbooks and iPads readily available in my classroom will enable the students to have more exposure to technology. They need to see this as an opportunity to obtain information, communicate with others in various ways and make the connection between what we do in the classroom and what they do outside of the classroom. I will need to thoughtfully plan more lessons that incorporate ways for students to use our new devices in a purposeful manner. I will need to collaborate with other teachers for ideas and attend professional development to ensure that my proficiency with technology is up-to-date.
3. Were there any unexpected outcomes from this program that surprised you?
I was not familiar with many of the available resources and enjoyed navigating through the Tools. From just the few that I thoroughly tested out, I found applications that I plan to use in class next year. It is nice to know that other teachers on campus are becoming familiar with the same Tools enabling me to ask other teachers for assistance as I recreate my classroom to incorporate these Tools.