A few months ago (and more recently), we asked for your help: we wanted real-life teachers to share what was happening in their classrooms technology-wise. And share you did! We heard from so many of you, and we’re going to be sharing your classrooms with our fabulous readers starting…today! I don’t know about you guys, but I find it so insightful to see what other folks are out there doing. Sometimes they mention a tool they use or an application for a particular device that I hadn’t thought of, and I wish I had been able to think of that particular thing so much earlier! This is why collaboration is so awesome, and important.
Today, we’re hearing from Cheryl Uy, who teachers at the Shekou International School in Shekou, China. Her classroom sounds pretty awesome, and I love that she was willing to share it with everyone. Thanks, Cheryl!
And don’t forget, if you’d like to share your classroom with us, please do! We’d love to hear from you!
Cheryl Uy (Follow Cheryl on Twitter!)
Early years (4/5 year olds), Shekou International School (China)
This year our school has upgraded the program by marrying technology and curriculum. Initially resistant to change, I’ve finally accepted the fact that technology is not a fad and is here to stay in my young students’ lives! However, I refuse to let technology especially iPads to control my students’ use of technology-I wanted them to use it productively – and not by playing the so-called “educational games”. I want them to use and view it as a tool they can make something in. Early this year, I used a developmentally appropriate open-ended iPad app for the children to colour-in their pencil illustrations = digital painting. We used this digitally painted illustration/plan into their artwork in which they used acrylic paint. Next week, I would like them to use another open-ended app to make their own book or movie to assimilate their learning on our class project : Superheroes – the Real ones!
Currently in my classroom, we use a camera projector (Elmo) (to read small books, their Journal stories, 3-D artworks), a projector that we hook up to our iPad & Macs to view e-books, documentaries, etc.
I think it depends upon how a teacher uses technology in the classroom.
An effective teacher would find ways to use technology in meaningful activities for the students. This teacher would also be able to find ways to use its full potential and is able create an environment to encourage students to use it as a tool to extend their creativity.
Technology would only be counterproductive if a teacher limits her/himself with the so called “educational” apps – which mostly are close-ended.
Classroom Technology I use with my students :
3. my DSLR
A Smart board would be nice.
An assessment based app to help me monitor and track my students’ progress.
Open-ended early years appropriate iPad apps for drawing & story telling.
My hurdle? Myself. I still question whether technology belong in the early years environment. Philosophically, I believe that the early years is a time for young children to observe, experience and explore, their outdoor environment using their 5 senses. I believe there will plenty of time and opportunity for them to learn technology later on.
I am now slowly accepting this new concept of including technology in my inquiry-based classroom. I am now using technology for research and virtual experiences.
I love learning with my students! My students inspire me to learn new things; I enjoy researching new ideas (nowadays, technology-related) and strategies that I can share with them. I love enabling my young students to gain skills through their own discovery fired by their curiosity.
My ideal early years classroom is an inquiry-based classroom.
Physically, it will have a warm ambiance and full of natural materials to entice the children’s curiosity about their world. It is an environment wherein the children will feel safe and secure to discover new things.
Technology will find a place in my room as a resource tool – something to use to support and extend the children’s curiosity. It would also help me introduce the children to a global community. And that would be awesome!
I would like to be able to use an app to monitor and track the children’s progress and to be able to share this with the families for up-to-date transparency.
Want to get featured on Edudemic? Get all the info about how to take part in the Edudemic Teacher Profiles in the post here!