It happens every year. I say I’ll blog while I’m at ISTE, but when I’m there I can’t sit still long enough to get it done. Now I have so many things to write about I’m having a hard time settling on just one. Thankfully, Dr. Gretz already did some of the writing for me when he mentioned my favorite keynote in his weekly recap.
There are two main topics vying for this blog post. First, the new ISTE standards for technology coaches. My title is ITRT, which does not mention coaching, but that’s what I do. These standards provide a sound basis for my job description and performance evaluation, and have given me some ideas of what to look for in future professional learning opportunities.
Second, much of what I heard at the sessions I attended, and from all keynote speakers, is the importance of encouraging students to find their own voice, interests, and talents to achieve. I think I heard Einstein’s quote about fish climbing trees at least ten times while at ISTE. “… if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”
If we judge kids solely on their ability to take multiple choice tests based on irrelevant factual information… Fill in the blank yourself.
Of course, our Senior Projects come to mind, and of course, we cannot wait until our students are in their senior year before we prepare them to be self-guided, self-motivated students. We must provide more open-ended, authentic learning opportunities at all grade levels, with age-appropriate materials and scaffolding. This, I believe, is the aim of our G21 framework. Our G21 is not “just something else we have to get done.” It is what thousands of school districts all over the United States and around the world are trying to implement. We have a head start. Let’s not waste it.