Friday, September 23, 2011

One Thing I'm Good At - Teacher 2.0

Decided, at Junita's invitation, to join Steve Hardagon's Teacher 2.0.  Apparently there is a series of challenges to be undertaken to promote personal and  professional growth.  So I decided to give it a go.  You need to record what you do, so I decided I'd use this blog to record my activities.  Perfect place.

Activity 1 was to introduce myself to the group - done.
Activity 2 is to write down something I am very good at.
Some questions to ponder:
  • How does using your talent(s) make you feel?
  • Do your students/children know what your talents are?
  • Do you know what your students’/children’s talents are?
  • How do you help others recognize that they matter?
I think I am good at adapting to technology - not so much in regards to what makes it tick - but in terms of making the technology work for you.  Let's say I took to using computers like a duck to water.  I used computers personally long before many other teachers made the transition.  I introduced my students to using computers before they were commonplace in classrooms - in fact I carted my own Commodore 64 to school on a regular basis.  We used it mainly for word processing, but also for Logo - a simple programming language for teaching the computer to make geometric shapes, but catering for the simplistic to the complex and a powerful tool for developing logical thinking.
Towards the end of my (school) teaching career I was employed as an IT specialist working variously with the students and the teachers in two schools.  When I made the transition to adult education I became heavily involved in the notion of e-learning and the use of technology within a training environment.
Yes, I believe I had a well-known reputation with my students, and fellow teachers, as being the person to go to for all things computer (as long as it didn't involve the technical - and even that I could come to grips with if I was shown what to do.)  Before I retired I was developing my reputation as a leader in the area of e-learning in the adult education field.
I believe that I was able to recognise my student's talents and draw on those talents to help the students extend themselves, and to learn from them.  Not only in the area of IT but wherever those talents lay. I am particularly proud of the fact that a trainer who worked for the Community College where I was employed as Program / Training Manager is now an e-Mentor for the Gippsland District because I encouraged her to become involved in e-Learning.  Another trainer completed her Certificate IV in Training and Assessment and is now a marvellous trainer of new trainers in her own right.  I could see her potential when she was a student.
I also believe I am able to make people recognise that they matter just through my positive approach to them.  I like to think that I treat all people, be they students (child or adult), colleagues, employees, family or friends as if they do matter - because they do!

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