Skype Interview with Ms. Cassidy
After watching, "Little Kids, Big Potential", I was completely amazed. These first graders in Ms. Cassidy’s class are much more advanced than most. I think it is incredible that the teacher involves all the technology that is available to her. Working with blogs, web pages, video, and Skype in the classroom will better prepare these first graders for their future education.
The "Skype interview" with Ms. Cassidy was great. As a senior in college, I have been subjected to a lot of technology. I cannot imagine how advanced I would be if I were to have begun my education as these first graders.
Ms. Cassidy told us she was given five computers with no programs on them, although they did have internet. She wanted to use the computers, so she had to go online to find places for her to use with her students. She had to research and what she found for her students is extraordinary. She taught her students to blog and how to navigate her webpage. When asked about safety on the internet, I loved her statement, “We must teach.” She taught her students to only use their first name, use no photos, and use only the links that she approved. She taught her students to always be kind when online. Ms. Cassidy also searched for federal grants and funding for her classroom. What a dedicated teacher! Instead of waiting for money to come in, she went and found it. I hope I can mimic Ms. Cassidy with her enthusiasm for technology.
One of her comments about having a great technological coordinator, I think, is an essential key for success in the classroom. Ms. Cassidy said he was skeptical at first, but used her as a guinea pig with her first graders. It worked! Technology is always changing and we must keep up with the changes. Ms. Cassidy said some teachers do not want to change. Others are trying to change. Ms. Cassidy believes all teachers should be technologically literate. What worked even ten years ago, does not work today, according to Cassidy. She also tells us that some administrators have no interest in adding technology. Some do not care, and offer no encouragement.
Parents love to see their child’s progress through their blogs. The kids love technology. It is not new to them. They think it is a part of their world. They love to see how many people have looked at their blogs and the comments on their blogs. They get excited and are eager to learn. Ms. Cassidy tells us that we are handicapping our students if we do not take advantage of opportunities of technology. I also want the parents to have access. I want my students to get excited and eager to learn. Adding something new all the time will keep the students interested and not get in a rut. Having some peers not encouraging what you do and the way you teach will be a hurdle for me. I will always have to put by students first, no matter what.
Some great advice from Ms. Cassidy is to learn about something before you reject it. You may like it. She also tells us to start learning technology with something that interests us such as video, photography, and writing. There is no limit as to how you learn. I want to use this advice in my classroom. Trying something new is sometimes hard and time consuming, but we must persevere to accomplish our objective.
Another student asked Ms. Cassidy about blogging and cheating. Her response was blogging is collaborating, not cheating. This is a little hard for me to comprehend. I think I will have to work hard on learning this concept. I would like to use any type of technology available to me and whatever I have to learn will only better my students.
Facebook for education? Why or why not? Most students use facebook everyday. Ms. Cassidy had a great suggestion. Create a different account that is used only for education purposes. This would be a great way to deliver information, especially for a coach. I believe this would probably be a hard sell for any teacher to their administrator. When you are talking about first graders and technology is one thing. When you are talking about teenagers and technology is a very different story. Facebook is practical, but I am not so sure it would ever be approved by administration because the kids use facebook for negative purposes sometimes.
Ms. Cassidy said Twitter was a huge tool for her. I have recently become a Twitter user and I hope to have the same success with it as Ms. Cassidy. She told us that she would never have found some of the links to use in her classroom if she had not found them from her followers on Twitter. This will be a great tool for support when I become an educator.
I love all the technology that Ms. Cassidy has talked about in this interview. I believe I can use everything she has mentioned if I work hard and prepare. Blogging will be hard for me because of the cheating opportunity. Skype will definitely be a useful tool for me. I am looking forward to using everything available to me to better prepare my students for the future.