Now that the new year is underway and I’ve had a chance to reflect on 2012, I wanted to pause and do some thinking forward about 2013. Where will I go? What will I learn? What are my goals (big and little) and how can I achieve them?
Where will I go, both literally and metaphorically?
- I hope to go to at least one new conference that I have never attended before to stretch myself professionally and expand my knowledge and exposure of what others are thinking and doing around technology integration in early childhood and for global collaboration
- I would love to travel overseas again sometime in 2013 because I have and probably will always carry the travel bug. Whether it’s returning to a favorite spot, like Italia, or venturing into new territory (maybe Asia?), I’m up for the adventure!
- I’m also looking forward to the pause and peace of summer and I hope it will involve a trip to Cape Cod, where I always find so much serenity
- Metaphorically, I am planning to continue exploring new lands of tech curricula and to go where I haven’t gone before in terms of studying and designing projects that will integrate technology into the classroom in a meaningful way
What will I learn?
- Programming Languages
- I would like to continue learning more about different programing languages in the coming year. Recently, I have been working through Super Scratch Programming Adventure! to examine ways I might be able to use Scratch with my older students. I have also been looking at CodeHS/Code Academy and apps like Move the Turtle and Cato’s Hike to see if they could be used in the classroom. There still seems to be a gap in available materials and languages suitable for very young children but hopefully programs like Scratch Jr. and CHERP will be available soon!
- iPad apps
- These are on my list of learning materials because as we move towards a deeper integration of mobile technologies, I want to be familiar and comfortable with tools that can facilitate meaningful and developmentally appropriate learning experiences for my students. I plan to continue using Simple K12 Webinars, my PLN and my own explorations of various apps to make this happen.
- Ways to integrate the Maker movement and robotics
- I would love to have both of these as part of the technology work my students are engaged in. I believe that tools like MaKey MaKey and LittleBits provide an opportunity to introduce technology as a tool for creation and collaboration in a way that is tangible and exciting for young children.
- Foreign Languages
- I hope to continue practicing and expanding my Italian during the upcoming year, as well as building my Spanish skills, primarily through apps like Duolingo and MindSnacks.
Some Big and Little Goals:
- Continue to be a constant learner
- I want my learning to include materials and topics I find intriguing but also challenging so I can have a better understanding of how my students feel when they are trying to learn new concepts
- For example, I hope to explore some new classes in 2013, such as barre and maybe a math-focused MOOC
- Share more!
- I would like to focus on sharing more of my own knowledge and experiences this year, through my PLN, via my blogs and also by running conference sessions
- To start, I plan to attend #EdCampIS, followed by the Villanova Tech Expo and hopefully another new conference in the summer
- I will be looking for opportunities to share my learning around tech as a tool for global learning, as well as tech integration ideas for early childhood – if anyone has recommendations for venues or conferences, please let me know!
- Create a tech project database:
- Over the next year, I want to work on creating a project database for my teachers and other educators who are looking for ideas on how to use technology as a tool to enhance their class projects and curricula
- I hope to make it easier for new tech users to plan and engage in tech integration work by having some concrete examples and tools available
- Expand my school tech website:
- I hope to expand my tech website for the students, teachers, and parents at my school to include additional resources and tech recommendations that are easy to access and navigate. Over time, as I explore more mobile apps, I also intend to add more specifics about how they can be used in the classroom with young children since that is a gap I have seen in what’s currently available online.
- Make Global Connections
- An ongoing goal I have is to continue making more global connections so that I can start and facilitate more global collaborative projects among educators and students at my school and around the world.
- By using ePals, iEARN, the Global Classroom Project and Twitter connections, I hope to make this goal a reality.
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