Be all that you can be. Find your future--as a teacher.

Musings of a second-year teacher.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Seamless Integration?

This is my first post of the semester, as I've found myself in the midst of student teaching and insanely busy.

With a class specifically focusing on technology last semester, I found it easy to focus on technology in the classroom. However, now that I'm teaching, I realize that technology has fallen by the wayside. As a teacher, I use technology frequently. The internet is my lifesaver. I use it to find lesson ideas, worksheets, collaborate with other teachers, communicate with my cooperating teacher, etc, etc. But, I've found that my students rarely use technology IN the classroom.

I am in a first grade classroom and we have four computers. The computers are connected to the internet; however, the connection is rather slow. About once a week, there is a volunteer that comes into the classroom and helps students on the computers and they get about 15 minutes to play games on the computer. Other than that, we rarely use technology in the classroom.

I'd love to have a projector to project my computer screen on the board, but that's anot feasible. I'm not really sure of other ways to use technology in the classroom right now. I know that blogs are an option, but with only four computers and just me in the classroom...I'm not sure how to manage this.

Any suggestions from lower elementary school teachers of "best technology practices" in your classrooms?

1 Comments:

Blogger EduTech1 said...

It may feel like "seemless" integration is a pipedream, but you have to start with baby steps, especially at the youngest levels. First, I would make inquiries on what it would take to get you that projector. Try your PTO/PTA, look into a grant opportunity like 3M. (Go to their website) I would be lost without my projector. It facilitates my lessons and stimulates their interest in web based materials. I'm not sure how slow your Internet connection is but, yes, that could have significant impact on it's "effective" use with your class. At your level I have found web sites like Starfall.com, BrainPopjr.com(free until at least May), EnchantedLearning.com & Storylineonline.net to be very useful sites. But a couple of these do require a decent connection speed to be most useful. You never mentioned what software you have on your computer. Titles like KidPix, Kidspiration & GraphClub let your children be as creative as they want and at the same time you can use them in whole class activities. Kidspiration is great to use to help develop their mental organization skills. Graph Club is one I use from time to time to do class surveys and generate visual displays (Graphs) of information. For example I have had my 1st graders survey each others eye color, hair color, favorite candy, etc. We then chart, graph & discuss the results visible of the graph. They love the interaction aspect of the lesson the "surveying" brings. I hope this is helful.

8:37 AM  

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