"You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing which you think you cannot do."
Fear. It's a scary word in itself. For those of you that know me well enough, you know that I like things to be very organized, well planned and structured. I must admit, I have a fear of trying something new.
I love my comfort zone. I find that even more so the older I get. The tried and true....it's so safe and secure. Today, I stepped out of my comfort zone when it comes to technology. I am glad to blog that I survived!!!!
Here's what I did......
In our most recent rotation in the media center we have been learning to use our Google Apps accounts in fourth and fifth grade. Our third graders have been learning how to navigate the media center using our online catalog program Destiny. My first and second graders have been practicing their keyboarding skills. I am very comfortable teaching all of those skills during our students' tech time.
Well today that all changed. I ventured into the world of Web 2.0 with my second grade. I wanted to see if they could handle using Voki.
Now I have no fear when it comes to integrating Web 2.0 tools with my older kids, I haven't really ventured into the integration with my younger kids. I didn't know what to expect. I was worried that they couldn't find the Internet. I didn't know if they would be able to enter a simple web address. I didn't know if they would be able to follow my directions. I was worried they wouldn't be capable of some of the skill I take for granted. So I empowered them!
The kids alleviated all of my fears. After a brief set of instructions and modeling, my second graders were becoming Voki pros right before my eyes! My fear slowly subsided.
"Fear" is the new four letter word when it comes to the use of technology. Too many times we are not providing engaging opportunities for kids because of our fear. "What if the kids know more than I do?" "What if a kid corrects me?" "What if it fails?"
When was the last time fear held you back in your classroom when it comes to technology? Are you really doing the right thing by holding back? Give your kids the opportunity! My advice would be to try whatever you have been putting on the back burner. Give it a shot! Yes, you may fail, but you might just learn something in the process as well.
"Never be afraid to try something new. Remember, amateurs built the ark, professionals built the Titanic."