Last week, I did a little playing with ed-tech and found myself thinking, “Why haven’t I done this before??”

I have a student who’s had some real issues with attention to the point where it’s difficult to put words on paper.  He’s so easily furstrated, argumentative, and act out with any kind of push.  He’s not the same student that I had last year, but that’s for a whole different blog post.  Last week, he’d described this awesome, outside of the box, strategy for solving a math problem we were working on, but when asked to write it down, he started to melt down (again) on me.

So, I pulled out my iPod, opened the voice memo app and explained that if he could retell that strategy, record it.  He gives me this sideways look and says “Really?”.  The sarcastic side of me just wanting to jump out, but I calmly nod and give him the instructions on what to do.  He comes back in a few minutes later beaming.  Now I won’t say it was perfect because he was nervous and mixed a couple of numbers up, but that is where I stop him, as a couple of questions where I can recognize if he’s got the understanding or not.  He even allowed me to share this with the class, and you could see some of my upper level kids thinking, then nodding as they realized the strategy he described really does work.  Very cool to watch!

Now, for those of you who are the real techies out there, you are shaking your head feeling sorry for me at this point, but it was a real eye opener for me.  How many of these kinds of activities am I missing that we could just pull up a recording app, have them give a 30 second how to, and go from there?  How about reading? Instead of summarizing or writing, why not record it?  Or better yet, record it and see if we can do a voice to text sort of thing?  *mind blown*  It’s little things like this that make me realize just how much I have to learn to truly know my craft.  I say this, and I feel I’m pretty well versed in technology, what would those who aren’t comfortable with technology thinking?


Anyway, I just wanted to share that little piece of sunshine in what is becoming a more and more difficult year.