Teaching to Learn, Learning to Teach

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Tech Autobiography Post

I embrace and enthusiastically welcome technology. This doesn't mean I want human interactions to be replaced with robots or anything; I really just love how connected technology has made the world and I am amazed at the wealth of resources at my fingertips.

I have been a computer technician for the past four summers at my home high school (geeky, yes, I know). My boss actually calls me and my two co-workers the "geek squad." I think she got that title from a commercial or something, but I suppose it sometimes fits. But seriously, I don't see myself as a computer geek. I can do basic physical maintenance and repairs on computers (mostly Dell) and I'm pretty confident using Microsoft Office. I am currently working on a pilot program in King William County called Computers Available on Loan for Literacy in which the school provides out of service computers to children from lower socioeconomic status to facilitate learning.

I think I got my first computer in about fifth grade. It was a Tandy Sensation, and I basically used it to play a pretty primitive version of Oregon Trail. There was nothing like the thrill of hunting buffalo, forwarding the river, and stopping to trade from the comfort of my own home! My parents are not exactly computer saavy, so what I learned about computers has been at school, personal exploration, and at work.

I am your average college student, so of course I use my computer (faithfully). I guess I take day to day technologies for granted (like my alarm clock that forces me out of bed every morning). And, of course, I have a nano Ipod! I'm not real into the digital video games and all, but for the most part, I always welcome new technology!

I had different extremes in school with teachers who embraced technology and those that strayed from it. I had one teacher at Governor's School who did all his lessons on powerpoint, which was very engaging. Some of my teachers have used Smartboards, and I took an awesome Synergistics class in middle school where I did my own radio show, lauched a rocket, cooked solar power hot dogs, flew a simulated airplane, built a race car, and so many other cool things! However, I have also had the teachers who struggled with overhead projectors and writing e-mails. Although they too were great teachers, they did not work out of their comfort zone. I think that teachers from when I came through school could choose to either use technology or not, but I think when I beginning teaching, it will be essential to keep my students engaged.

*Image from Free Clipart Pictures: http://www.free-clipart-pictures.net


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