Adventures in Pencil Integration
This first assignment is supposed to explain this cartoon. I am not exactly sure what this cartoon represents. On the left side the cartoon represents the Papermate pencil, which is inexpensive and breaks all the time. The cartoon itself is a drawing of an older, chubby, kind of geeky looking cartoon man in a suit, which does not make sense because if the pencil breaks often I would have drawn a skinnier, frailer looking man. On the right side the cartoon represents the Ticonderoga pencil which is more expensive and supposedly more hip. The cartoon itself is a skinnier, hipper looking teen in a t-shirt and pants. A 12 pack of Papermate pencils costs $2.49 at Office Max, which is 20 cents per pencil. An 8 pack of Ticonderoga pencils costs $2.99 at Office Max, which is 37 cents per pencil. This is a total difference of 17 cents. I just don't get what the cartoon is supposed to represent and I did not know there was such a difference in pencils. I buy what I like regardless of the price.
Why Were Your Kids Playing Games
In Mr. Spencer's post, Why Were Your Kids Playing Games he is being scolded by the principal for using a game to teach his lesson to his students. The principal had previously stated that there would be no games in school because of parent complaints. Mr. Spencer explained it as an advanced simulation, where the students were drawing products in a mock factory. Even though the students were applying several different skills and covering more than one subject the principal still considered it a game. Teachers are supposed to be focusing on rote memorization skills for a skills test. Memorization is not learning, it is simply memorizing temporarily for the purpose of a test. You learn by doing and that is what Mr. Spencer was trying to teach.
I also read another blog post of Mr. Spencer's called Avoid Social Networking. In this post the district office Human Resources officer is telling all teachers that they can no longer interact with students on social networking sites. Ms. Jackson one of the teachers at the meeting spoke up and said "best way to model appropriate adult behavior is to interact with kids and be a positive role model." She's a volunteer at her church but must give it up to avoid outside of school contact with children from school. One teacher is told to resign from coaching baseball because it was not a school team. Another was told to un-friend a long time family friend because her friend's child goes to her school. Another was told they could go to the grocery store but could not acknowledge any of the children from school. Basically this post is saying that teachers should avoid all contact with students outside of school because contact outside of school can be misconstrued as inappropriate behavior of an educator.
In some cases this is true. There are many instances in the United States of inappropriate interaction between teacher and student that is publicly displayed on the news every other week. Most of these cases are instances of inappropriate sexual behavior of teachers and students. One of these cases just made news locally at one of the high schools in Mobile County. Some people in the profession do not know how to draw the line between right and wrong. It disgusts me! It really does! But All teachers should not pay the consequences of the few minority who do not act in a professional manner. I think when it pertains to school, children should have access to their teacher. For instance, if a child is having problems with homework after school and can message the teacher through Facebook for help, I think that's great. I also think it's great if the student can watch lesson reviews on You Tube as well. I think having class blogs are great for students, teachers, and parents to be up to date on everything the students are doing in class. There are great ways social networking benefit the teacher-student relationship. I do however, understand why it is frowned upon. For those who can not draw the line between appropriate and inappropriate behavior of teacher-student relationships; they ruin it for the majority of all good educators who do know the difference and who are trying to make a difference.
Don't Teach Your Kids This Stuff Please?
This post by Dr. Scott McLeod is a letter addressing Parents, Teachers, and Administrators asking them not to teach the students how to use social media or technology of any nature in the classroom. It warns of the dangers in allowing it such as cyber bullying, sexting, and sexual predators. Students need to learn how to use technology in this day in age. To ask that it not be allowed in school at all is just totally ridiculous to me. A school without computers or SMARTboards or any electronic devices is just not a school at all, in my opinion. It must be taught in school, however the dangers of using technology should also be taught in school. It is our responsibility as educators to teach the good and the bad of technology.
Dr. Scott McLeod is currently serving as the Director of Innovation for Prairie Lakes Area Education Agency 8 in Iowa. He is also an Associate Professor of Educational Leadership at the University of Kentucky. Dr. McLeod also is the Founding Director of the UCEA Center for the Advanced Study of Technology Leadership in Education (CASTLE), the nation’s only academic center dedicated to the technology needs of school administrators. He was also co-creator of the popular video series, Did You Know? (Shift Happens). Dr. Scott McLeod is widely recognized as one of the nation’s leading academic experts on K-12 school leadership and technology issues.