It took me awhile to come up with the title for this blog. I wasn't quite sure where I wanted to go with the title. I had a vision for what I wanted the blog to be- reflections and thoughts on my attempts to integrate technology into my classroom- but I wasn't sure what title best captured that sense. I wanted it to be something catchy and clever, and ultimately I'm not sure I succeeded in being either. Perhaps you'll think the title more clever once you understand where I was coming from.
The idea behind "digital" in the title is pretty straightforward. This blog's focus is my integration of technology into the classroom, and digital describes the way computers store and transmit information. Since computers are digital devices the term digital seemed to be a good fit (though interestingly enough, smoke signals and the abacus are also digital systems)
The notion of sustainability is borrowed from my experience and interest with environmental science. In that realm, sustainability is the idea of being able to meet the needs of the present without compromising the needs of the future. It's a way of thinking about development, natural resources, and consumption that shifts the focus from only worrying about what we're doing today to concern about future generations as well.
In the context of this blog, the idea of sustainability refers to integrating technology into the classroom in a feasible manner. I'd like to avoid hypothetical situations and focus on methods that I could actually carry out. I'm not interested in technology integration that would take expansive amounts of time, huge budgets, or that have unrealistic expectations of the teacher or student.
Technology is here to stay. Teachers need to start utilizing the tools available through the internet and computer usage. Districts and administrators need to start allocating budgets with that future in mind.
Here's a couple posts that I've seen recently that resonate with some of the ideas I've expressed above:
- VoiceThread Publishing Example (from Moving at the Speed of Creativity via Wired Librarian): A great example of a tool actually being used in the classroom. I'd been playing with the idea of having my students use VoiceThread in my Physics class, and this post really solidified how I could make it work.
- Two Million Minutes- A call for educational change (from Moving at the Speed of Creativity, again): While not necessarily about specific methods of technology integration, Wes Fryer very thoroughly expounds on the necessity of creating technologically integrated classrooms today. I wholeheartedly agree. Twenty years from now is too late. The future is here, who wants in?
- I Can't Make Educational History- But We Can (from Beyond-School) : The class described might be a little beyond my technological means (it's a 1:1 school), but I'm constantly impressed with the things Clay Burell is attempting with his students. My hope is that efforts like his will show the power of full, fearless integration. We need more positive examples like this to convince the naysayers.