I’m struggling right now with finding that delicate balance between designing my learning experience with my own personal outcomes in mind and outcomes that will benefit the community surrounding me. Let me explain.
At a recent English department meeting, small teams of teachers were looking at various “scope and sequences” of English from grades 7-12. As I am new on the department, I had the ability to choose which team I jumped in on: assessments, texts, discussions / oral tasks, media literacy, and technology were my options. Guess which one I flew to like a moth to a flame?
While sifting through all of the survey data from teachers about how they use technology, I had a delightful “a ha” moment, inspired by my Cohort clan: the SAMR model would be a valuable way to sift all of these uses of technology in our English classes.
Not surprisingly, my sifting partner and I quickly noticed that we too (gasp) might be in the “trough of disillusionment”: most of our uses of technology were somewhere in and around the “substitution” or “augmentation” realm.
Enter the struggle: my current action plan is centred around how well my Grade 7 English program measures up to the standards of “21st Century” learning. But I realized through this conversation (and through reading Tim Rollwagen’s blog) that another possibility is to harvest for my department various possibilities for “redefined” English assessments and tasks that leverage technology in creative and innovative ways.
How can I balance my own personal goals / interests with what will clearly benefit my department? Is there a way to combine these two possibilities, without making my brain explode? I think I just need some suggestions or offerings from an outside perspective…this is my electronic SOS!