This year, due to budgetary constraints, we’ve been asked to pick up the classes of our retired colleagues.
Yeah, not a whole lot of fun for us, but yet, the silver lining (or so I thought) was teaching a technology class. Now, this isn’t to say that teaching the class isn’t fun, it’s crappy attitudes and the fact that this is some brand new territory for me. Computer science and coding and the creation of things is pretty different than what I normally teach. Throw in a splash of “what the hell does this do” and you’ve got the recipe for panic attacks in the middle of the night. No, not always a good deal when you are waking up at 4:00 AM just because you are worried about the lesson, but we’ll get by.
Because there is SO MUCH stuff out there. I’ve struggled just working on the plan. I’m just as bad as the students. I’m a consumer of technology. I love looking at video, pictures, posts of all sorts, so flipping that switch from consumer to creator is difficult, period.
HOWEVER (you knew this was coming), I’ve blogged for years, creating content and constantly looking for it. I create at home with my gardens and various animals. So physical creation yes. Digital creation? Not so much.
So, let’s just right into a lesson on digital creation and see what happens, right?
Oh come on, where is your sense and spirit of adventure? 🙂
We bit off a little of Google’s Applied Digital Skill curriculum and started with creating pop art. Why? Why not! It’s something the students have seen and understand, the lesson wasn’t huge involved, and it was something I felt comfortable getting my feet wet.
The students? Not so much. They were very uncomfortable for a couple of reasons. The first and foremost, they had to create something, not just consume. It was their picture they were working with, their understand that was being challenged, and their ability to create (in their own mind) being put there out there for all to see. Now, they were also uncomfortable because I didn’t have all the answers. Hell, I was uncomfortable with what we were doing because I didn’t know all the answers.
I will say this, I didn’t know the answers, but knew where to find them. The set up to this lesson and all of Digital Lessons is pretty video based. I had three or four kids, just dive in, head first without following any directions and then got frustrated with me because they were doing things wrong. Typical because I get blamed for everything, but it won’t work in class. And my 7th graders were much more willing to go back into the videos to see what they missed vs my 8th graders.
I had one of my 8th graders just get escalated over and over again. Finally, headed over to my cozy corner to get calmed down. He’s very loud and boisterous, but never worry about him getting that frustrated. He was definitely that today, so very frustrated!
Monday, I get my second group and they may drive me over the edge. I have hope based on the group today that yes, directions will be followed, but yet, they are middle schoolers.
Directions be damned!!
Being a creator is much more difficult than being a consumer, and this technology class (and these students) have shown that all ready! We’ll see what Monday brings! 🙂