Sitting down and reading the ISTE Standards for Students and Educators through the lens of my own learning goals was a really interesting exercise in reflection. With each standard I could reflect on areas of my practice I feel are really going well, and many areas that I am looking to improve.
The standards that really stood out to me and related goals are:
3B – Establish a learning culture that promotes curiosity and critical examination of online resources and fosters digital literacy and media fluency.
Being able to critically consume and navigate digital media is in my mind on of the more pressing jobs that we have as educators. In a time when all of the world’s information is at our fingertips, both good and bad, it is important that our students can sort through, analyze and respond to that information in responsible and meaningful ways. That being said, in my role as a technology integrator I am often at a loss when other teachers ask me for ideas and resources to effectively help students consume media more critically and improve their digital literacy. One of my primary reasons for taking the COETAIL courses is to expand my understanding of how to help students develop these integral skills, and developing ways to help my colleagues do the same.
4C – Use collaborative tools to expand students’ authentic, real-world learning experiences by engaging virtually with experts, teams and students, locally and globally.
While I think our school does a great job using collaborative tools within our community, allowing students to effectively work on collaborative projects and share their ideas with their peers, I think we have a long way to go in engaging and collaborating outside of the walls of our school. I would like to develop connections, tools and ideas for ways to help our students to engage with the wider world and have more authentic, real-world experiences and problem solving in their learning.
6C – Create learning opportunities that challenge students to use a design process and computational thinking to innovate and solve problems.
This year I have started to run a few short series of coding workshops for grade 3,4 and 5 students, introducing basic concepts such as loops, events and conditionals. I have no background in computational thinking, but have really enjoyed learning alongside the students. I would like to learn about more ways to integrate the concepts and skills that students gain in these introductory workshops into other parts of their learning and projects, and make their work more applicable to real world problems that they can work to solve.
My final learning goal has to do with my stackable certificate selection, as I am hoping to complete my Google Education Trainer certificate at the same time. Completing even just the Google Certified Educator certifications have been on my to do list since my first year of teaching, but I have just never gotten around to it. I’m an avid Google user, but have never committed to taking the time to complete the exams. COETAIL will be the boost and motivation to not just finally go through the process myself, but help my colleagues take the leap as well and encourage them to harness these great tools that I love using so much.