You march across the hallway and lay down on your cozy bed, thankful that the day is over. The solace of the pillow beneath your head reminds you that you have had a challenging day and need to take breaks more often. As you start to drift away, something pesters you beneath the facade. A gnawing sense that something is in the room with you. It rears its head in the night when you are quiet and pursues you down the school corridors during the day. It never goes away.
You think that in time the monster will go away. You cannot conceivably live like this, and yet the last two years have been a game of shadows, feeling anxiety for one moment and then calm in the next. You do not know how much longer you can carry on feigning that normalcy prevails.
Everyone has a monster under their bed-it plagues you with sentiments of insecurity and doubt. While I hollered the merits of EdTech from the rooftops whenever I could, I recognized that new technology could be a monster for some people. Earlier, teachers would be urged to upscale their tech skills in a pre-pandemic era and integrate the latest apps unearthed by the ICT department. This way of working suited everyone, as it was a dollop of face-to-face teaching with a sprinkling of technology. When Covid 19 gnashed its teeth and made us retreat into lockdown, educators understood that they had nowhere to run. Technology would infiltrate every home, and the ones who needed to learn the most were us. Our strengths no longer mattered, the playing field was levelled, and tech swung the balance every time. If you could leverage tech for your virtual classes, it would be a great triumph, but what if you could not?
I know that educators and students alike grapple with technology. Perhaps their strengths lie elsewhere, and the pandemic has forced them towards an arena where they struggle. I can envision the anxiety suffered when the facilitator must utilize a new tech tool for the first time when he or she has doubts about teaching it. Although most students have taken to technology like fish to water, it appears that every classroom has a few children who find it exhausting to traverse the virtual platform and soon become reticent and underconfident. In our mission to revamp the education sector during and after Covid 19, we must remember not to forget our struggling comrades and find methods to help them understand technology rather than fear it.
My blogging journey has permitted me to collaborate with people worldwide, and I enjoyed connecting with Sean Farrell from Ghergich and Co. on this matter. He had worked with Salesforce in Canada to share tips about getting comfortable with new technology rather than being intimidated. If you would like to read the original article, please click here- https://www.salesforce.com/ca/blog/2020/10/9-ways-to-make-new-technology-less-intimidating.html
As I perused the article, I pondered if these tips could be beneficial for teachers. We have made it our business to know our student’s learning styles, but what about our own? Educators stand to gain a lot by understanding their strengths and weaknesses to benefit from technology and grow in ways they never imagined. I was also drawn to the infographic below which beautifully encompasses all you need to know.
I loved that this infographic did not just concentrate on recognizing learning styles or how to embrace technology but connected it with being a lifelong learner. In our profession, being a lifelong learner is the key to professional happiness and sustaining the passion that drove us to become teachers. ‘Prepare for the unexpected’ is the tagline of our industry. We know how the flow of a class can change because of a multitude of reasons. Covid 19 is another unexpected factor that affected our lessons, and asking a mentee for assistance, taking classes, or researching can allow us to reconsider our relationship with technology. Play to your strengths and discard what does not work for you, but don’t let technology be the monster under your bed. Always remember that you have the support of teachers around the globe that are willing to help you in any way possible. Let me know if I can help you with anything through the ‘Contact’ page and I will get back to you as soon as possible. Follow my page for regular updates that make life easier for teachers through strategies, tech advice and more. I hope to collaborate with you soon!