Resources and Reflections

Saturday, November 17, 2007

A Deliberate Pace is Progress for this Kro-Magnon Man

Slowed only by his dragging arms, K.'s Cro-Magnon man strides indicate he walks hurriedly -perhaps to the feeding troth or the head. But the fact is Cro-Magnon man walked deliberately for to waste steps meant wasting energy and that meant less energy to capture food. Mr K is a hunter (perhaps a gatherer as well) and understands that stealth and deliberate steps means getting his prey or not. So it isn't a stretch to think (yes, it is) that when he decides to use technology in the classroom (other than searching hunting sites on google earth) his decision-making is calculated, paced - so as not to misfire, thus not finding himself in uncontrolled and uncomfortable circumstances. In sum, (and to the point) K is cautious that technology does not usurp the structured learning environment that embodies his teaching practices. K has decided to use technology on his terms instead of letting technology dictate his teaching. Really, it is all part of the change process - discover, adapt and adjust, and then use (read Toffler's Future Shock for a better description) that if done too fast overload occurs. iHis calculating approach will pay dividends as his students learn to use technology as a learning tool and not a glorified music video player. And from what I have seen students have been excited about learning with and from the technology lately as opposed to be excited about using technology as a plaything. This was best iluustrated this week when the Tech Integrator showed him Hippocampus.org. I thought that the use of this site might be to supplement learning or to be used in an independent study for an advanced student. But K found a way for the site to play to his strength - that of a lecturer. I sat in on a couple of classes after hooking up the LCD projector and saw his usual good lectures become visually dynamic. Every student was engaged and discussed historical topics at such a learned and sophisticated level. Knowledge was certainly acquired. In one week, with slow, paced, deliberate thought about teaching and learning K improved his teaching style using technology not to influence his teaching practice but secondarily as an assisting tool. From this he created a self- pleasing experience encouraging confidence using with technology.


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