Monday, July 14, 2008

Did You Know That Literacy Technology Is Necessary?

I am facilitating a group of teachers learning science content this week, and today, while I was presenting, I was actually a little surprised at my passion when discussion the usage of technology and innovative, or at least interesting, techniques in teaching literacy (science as well, but I went off on a tangent). I actually went as far as to tell the group of elementary school teachers I was presenting to that they need to stop teaching out of textbooks, they need to stop using worksheets, and they need to pick up the innovation, even if that means more work for them in terms of preparation and set up time.

The actual words I used were "stop doing those things, just stop it, or it's time to retire." I actually got some head nods and thumbs up. These teachers knew that I wasn't criticizing their methods, but I was reacting to the need for innovative methods to reach innovative minds.

I could actually go on here for a long time, but I think the need is obvious. We have students that will be living and working in a world that doesn't exist, even in theory, right now. I am in the late stages of the creation of a reading program for my class that integrates technology and authentic literature (books, graphic novels, magazines, newspapers, NOT textbooks, NOT basals, NOT those little lame made up books, NOT worksheets). I will explain my program in full once I'm done with it, and I'll update the readers of this blog on its progress once school starts. Of course, I'll throw that out there for free, I'm not trying to make money, I'm trying to teach kids they way they deserve to be taught, and hopefully others out there are doing the same.

In the meantime, here is the video that I was actually reacting to today when I had this discussion at this conference. It's called Did You Know?, and is rapidly making the rounds in the field of education. Enjoy.