Believe it or not, I’m not a roller coaster nut. Oh, I’ve been on my share – in fact, on one visit to Magic Mountain my friends and I rode the Revolution 9 times. I think it was before lunch …
Now I’m on a different ride … and there’s no admission tickets to buy … join me at the digital fun park. If you know anything about me, you know that I have a long history of play … I was a playground rat (we didn’t have gyms in California elementary schools) … a high school athlete … a college athlete and PE major … a high school coach … and a college coach. So play is a big part of my life – I’m the rowdy one in the group classes at my gym. I get as much as I can out of my workout/play experiences and want to share that enthusiasm with others.
The same goes with my ventures into ed tech. The picture above was the result of playing with PhotoBooth. This roller coaster background was actually moving, so I had to keep going with the changing angles. Fun! I’ve had more time this semester to play with the tools and it’s resulted in some creative applications to my teaching. My students are benefiting from my play.
So are you having fun with the technology? Are you enabling your students to have fun?
I’m also seeing some big changes occurring in my department. Over the past couple of years we have hired 12 new tenure-track faculty. They now make up 1/3 of our full-time faculty. The new folks come with an wide array of technology experiences and they’re raising the bar for all of us. Also, the uses of technology are much more in the forefront. As a result, there’s more curiosity and desire to learn about ed tech – the what, when, where, and how of using the tools. I was approached yesterday and today with a barrage of questions – more than normal. So I decided to pull together some of my colleagues and provide a workshop for all who are interested.
We will focus on 3 themes:
developing PLNs (personal learning networks)
enhancing student engagement and learning
What does this have to do with play? Everything! We are going to provide a playground experience for them – teach them how to use the swings, the batting tee, the backboard, and the rings – and then let them experiment and play. How fun is that? I’ll let you know. In fact, when we’re introducing PLNs I may be Skyping or Twittering you to be a part – come share your productivity and student tools.
Join us at the Digital Fun Park!