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Yup, a coffee pot.  Now, I can hear you: “Why would you have this in your blog?”

In late June and early July, our family took a trip to the Grand Canyon.  We tent camped most nights because that’s what we do.  Tons of memories and a lot of miles later, we got back to reality here in Iowa.  One of the things we purchased for our trip was a coffee pot as we both drink coffee in the morning (fully blaming my wife for this).  I can run an electric coffee pot, but this was new learning for me.  So my wife being the loving woman she is, taught me how to make coffee using an old fashioned pot.  Now, I’m no coffee expert, but I’ll be darned if this pot didn’t make the best coffee we’ve had in a LONG time! I’m not sure if it’s the slow way that coffee percliates or what, but the french vanilla smell was strong and delicious as the coffee was too!  Totally unexpected, but so very good!

This is an example of some real old school technology that worked way back in the day and keeps working today.  When we go camping again, you can be assured that technology will be part of our camping gear.  We actually had someone suggest we purchase an electric coffee maker we could plug into our car. Wait wait, what?? If the older technology works (and works well) why in the world would we consider that?

I get the feeling we as educators sometimes feel like my wife and I with that friend suggesting something new and shiny.  “Oh come on, that’s the ‘old way’ of doing things, this new shiny way will be better!”  Sometimes, we change, not always because we are upgrading, but for the sake of changing.  Now, I will be the first to admit as I’m typing on my laptop here, I love laptops, electricity, gas powered cars (and lawn mowers!), refridgeration, flush toliets and a slew of other changes that have happened over time.  However, I look at my own classroom and there are things that work, period.  I’ve said before, I’m not the person to talk to about change, I enjoy my routines and keeps things on the level.  If something doesn’t work, I’ll tweek it, mess with it, and hopefully find a combination that creates what I want.  I do fit squarely into the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it camp” so if things are going smoothly, why change it?

So, as the next buzz words, band wagons, or popular trend comes floating around, and it will, keep in mind what works for you and your students.  If you’ve got a class of students who could deal with a little different method, then obviously, investigate things, try something out, be inivated and bold.  But if you’ve found your students respond well to methods you’ve used in the past, that they are growing and flurishing with you, why would you ever think “new and shiny” would be the way to go?  Change for the betterment of all is never a bad thing.  Change for the sake of change, well, why? 🙂