Friday, January 24, 2014

Rodriguez Journal Post # 2

How can teachers more closely connect learning to the experiences of the digital natives who are their students?

The students in classrooms today have grown up with the use of instant, interactive computers and wireless devices and are know as the digital natives.  This gives some teachers a greater disadvantage because they still trying to learn how to interact with the technology that is available to them. Teaching has taken on a whole new meaning since the use of technology is being added to the traditional classroom. 

There are two important implications for teachers regarding the way the use technology:

  • Students Perspectives: Students through the use of technology have been able to develop ideas and talents that they would not have in a traditional learning environment.  The have learned skills such as how to research using the internet, games and multimedia. These skills are all necessary in today's workforce. 

  • Teachers Actions:Teachers have the most difficult task when it comes to planning and creating a new learning environment.  Most teachers have only been exposed to book learning.  Most students are now what we call tactical learns because they can develop there skills only but interacting with the material they are learning. Therefore, teachers have to integrate new technology into their classroom. 
Tech Resources for Teachers
There are many resources site that can be used by teachers to help with the planning and implementation of technology in their classrooms.  There are sites that will help with creative classroom management, lesson planning and applications that both teachers and students can explore for different subject topics.  Many students learn from playing games and being allowed to create with the use of technology.  

Students and teachers have a digital disconnect due to the lack on skills needed to provide technology based classroom programs by teachers.  Many teachers find it difficult to keep up with the ever changing demands of technology. Students are no longer considered individuals who attend school in a classroom environment. Many students today do not even step into a classroom because they are virtual learners. Many teachers have become facilitators and are no longer required to physically teach a subject. Many school, colleges and universities have developed programs that solely focus on the need for online based courses. I have not only experienced online course work but my daughter is part of the online virtual school world. She is in the seventh grade and attends Florida Virtual School.  She was having a difficult time in school and I decided when she was in the sixth grade to take her out of the public school system and give her a chance to learn at her own pace.  She is doing great in all her subjects.  She is in a special middle school Cambridge Science, Math and Reading program for advanced learners.  I was worried about it at first; because I wanted her to have social interaction with other children. However, she still interacts with other child during her after school activities.  Technology has given my daughter the ability to grow as a student and develop her knowledge and skills at a comfortable pace for her.  

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Rodriguez Journal Post# 1

What roles does technology play in the lives of student and teachers?

There are many roles that technology takes in the lives of both students and teachers. Technology is a great assist to our classroom culture.  A majority of teachers have altered their  classroom cultures by allowing their students to explore what technology has to offer. Students gain a sense of accomplishment and self confidence when they master new skills and create projects that allow them to explore new subjects. Teachers have found that through technology their group of students become cohesive and need very little guidance to complete their assignments. Many school are starting to look at substituting tablets for textbooks. I would like to break this question down into the students and then teachers.


  • Students are actively engaging in their learning process. 
  • Students use technology as a tool to support their performance.
  • Students use technology as their connection to their teachers and the world.
  • Students that are actively engaged with technology everyday and exposed to information, making choices and executing skills that are usually teacher led lessons/topics.
  • Students with the help of technology are in a position that they can define their goals, decisions and evaluate their progress. 
  • Students take pride in their abilities to master the use of the computer based tools.


  • Teachers are no longer the students focus in the classroom as the dispenser of information.
  • Teachers have become facilitators as they set the stage for the students to meet full performance potential. 
  • Teachers in the classroom have taken on a new look they are no longer at a chalk board and behind a desk. Rather they are rotating through the room assisting the students with their questions and suggesting resources for them research for the answers to their questions. 
  • Teacher encourage students to collaborate with their peers.
  • Teacher help the students find their sense of empowerment by teaching them to master their skills and associating them with real world applications

Tech Tools 

Tech tools that enhance both the students and teachers abilities in the classroom and at home.  The tech tool that I would like to discuss is the use of tablets vs. traditional textbooks. I have been doing a lot of research regarding the purchasing of tablets vs. traditional textbooks over the last year because of the new school I am involved with.  The tablets are an excellent idea because their are several apps that can connect the teacher to student in and out of the classroom. There are many positive factors to this technology. I have only found one negative which is the up front expense for both the school and the student. However, many of the textbook publication companies have provided reasonable cost attached to their e-books and digital textbooks.  For teachers there are many resources to assist you with enhancing your students learning experience.  Teachers and students can download lots of free learning and planning apps that will create a library of knowledge and insight right at their finger tips.

Website link of the 70 top teacher/student apps for mobile devices. 


Technology for both students and teachers help bridge in class and out of class learning. Today's students also know as the iGeneration have been raised in the ongoing changing world of technology.  Whether it be an Elementary, Middle, High School or College students technology is a part of both their personal and educational life. Children as young as 8 years old us technology as almost every waking hour of the day.  At the school where I work with we use technology to assist the students in credit recovery for their high school diploma.  The system is called APEX with this system the teachers can monitor the progress of the students g in any given subject area and if the student needs additional help the teachers have the resources to sit one on one with those students.  Our program is a blended learning module but technology is used everyday to enhance the learning and track the progress of our students.
We have started a new project at the school it is called Destination Occupation. Our students interview people from different careers  via Skype Conference. Then students have to create a power point presentation regarding what they learned during the interview with the guest speaker.  This project has been great for our juniors and seniors it is one example of the use of technology that has been successful for students career pathways.  The teachers of the 21st century integrate technology in to all aspects of student learning.  Teachers then have a chance to make to create their own digital identity that will incorporate all their technology talents and knowledge.  Classrooms are no longer a teacher, chalkboard and students now the classroom culture is embracing the world through technology.