My journey through this “15 Things” blog has been fun and illuminating. Exploring and experimenting with new apps, websites, social media, tools, and many others, has been exciting and engaging. I have learned many new, exciting, and engaging ways of teaching, creating lessons, learning and making learning fun. I will use QR codes in my classroom for group activities. I will use Twitter in my classroom to communicate with other educators, and allow students to receive feedback from experts and communicate with fellow classmates about projects and assignments on Twitter. I’ll create a Wordle to display in my classroom, and perhaps have my students create their own. I’ll be on constant lookout for new videos on YouTube to use in my classroom, not only to teach, but to exercise my students to help them exert pent-up energy. I’ll teach my students how to use photo effects to enhance or change their photos to fit an assigned project. I’ll also teach my students about Creative Commons and the ethics of giving artists and authors credit for their work, while making sure that I do the same and lead by example.
My “15 Things” experience has also given me a better understanding of the National Educational Technology Standards and Performance Indicators for Teachers (NETS-T). I’ve learned that it is important to focus on learning and creativity and how to facilitate these qualities in students using technology. I now know that teachers are asked to assess their own progress in the development of technology-enriched learning environments, as well as assessing students’ learning experiences through technology. Teachers are also asked to model digital-age work and learning in their teaching, their work with families, with the use of current and emerging digital tools to locate, analyze, evaluate, and use information resources to support research and learning, and that educators must also promote and model digital citizenship and responsibility. We cannot ask our students to respect intellectual property if we do not model its importance in digital-age communication and collaboration. Finally, I have learned that the need for professional growth and for a willingness to assume leadership roles has never been so great.