Sunday, September 30, 2012

Old Dog, New Tricks

Teaching math has changed drastically since I was employed full-time.  Drastically.  When I graduated teacher’s college and began teaching (Grade 7 - circa 1999), I used chalk, textbooks and overheads in my daily math lessons.

**** 10 years later ****

Enter to the supply-teaching world a 35-year-old mother of 3, “OCT” - who has never used (let alone seen) a Smartboard.  Wowzers.  I have always had a keen interest in technology and taken pride in being able to help my chemical engineer husband overcome minor PC issues (Right click! Sheesh.), but this was way over my head.  Pun intended.  I officially went to teacher’s college in the Dark Ages.

Now, even as a (somewhat) seasoned supply teacher, I find it hard to imagine a day in a classroom without a Smartboard.  What on earth would I do?  The most ridiculous part about this last statement is that I am still learning and am probably still considered a total rookie where this device is concerned.  I wish they would provide Smartboard training for Occasionals.

Thank goodness for the AQ’s.  This is my 3rd course in the last year and I feel like I have gone to teacher’s college all over again and have gained confidence to get back into the classroom and conquer the curriculum.

I do realize the Smartboard is just the beginning, am learning quickly how to utilize it where math lessons are concerned, and loving every minute.  This old dog is ready for some new tricks.


  1. Nice personal reflection. This is often one way you will see people using blogs (as a public journal).
    On a technical note, you may want to go back into edit your post and include labels so that it could be categorized. See some of the labels that have been used in the past on the right side. Use as many as them as you wish or create your own.

    1. Thanks David, I did that - and in the process discovered that my title was not very original! There is one from earlier this year with a very similar title...darn.

  2. Sarah, I started full time teaching 5 years ago and I am constantly overwhelmed with the technology. There seems like there is something new each day. Currently my school is really pushing us to use Opus and create programs that our students can work on individually. This would be very useful at the type of school I work at, but it is a huge learning curve, which means that it currently takes a lot of time to do. BUT I realize that students will need to know how to use this technology as well to be successful in the real world and it makes learning fun, so learning some kind of new technology each school year has been one of my annual learning goals for the last 5 years.

  3. Kara - I hear the same from many of my friends who are teachers. So much technology, so little time... and where to start?? Sounds like many are being pulled in many different directions but I guess you have to go with the flow and focus on what your board/school/division recommends.
    Staying one step ahead of the students seems to be half the battle, I find that with my own children and their technology.

  4. Sarah,
    Great reflection! Having started in 1999ish and been in the classroom throught all of those years as a full time teacher, I can still fully understand the overwhelming nature of technology. I am constantly amazed at the amount of technology (SmartBoards, Ipads, Clickers, etc.) that become available every year. Just when I think I have a handle on it, I will get a student teacher who arrives and shows me something I had never seen before (Glogster) and the learning curve continues again. The great thing is we are a constant model of life long learning for our students!