Day 2, ISTE 2015. Jaded. No, that’s not fair. I am still amazed by this world, every turn there is something impressive and innovative. There are poster sessions upon poster sessions of educators doing amazing things in their classrooms, excited about sharing their work. There are playgrounds full of passionate people sharing their experiences that could look awesome in classrooms. And then there is the Expo center I haven’t even made it to, filled with 4,500 industry representatives anxiously wanting to sell me something incredible for my school(s). All amazing and I am very thankful for these eye-opening experiences.
Reality check. I am seeing possibilities but I’m wearied by the fact that I just left the classroom and see a major lacking component for these crazy (in a good way) innovative educational ideas to be successful in our classrooms: leadership. As much as I would like to say teachers can make this happen, they can’t make the shift alone. To be effective on a large scale, we need a trickle down effect. The change has to be prescribed to our educational systems starting with state, administration, and then to the soldiers, our teachers in the trenches*. Why prescribe? If you’re sick, you are prescribed a remedy, a treatment to “fix” your ailment. Our schools are sick. They NEED the medicine, they have no choice. Our kiddos need their classrooms to change with the times, challenge ALL of them in new ways. We need our leaders to step up and administer the formula of enhancing the learning by transforming our classrooms to provide more personalized learning through student-centered, project based/real world experiences.
*The buy-in from administration to teachers is another conversation. This HAS to be a combined effort of teacher leaders and admin…will post more on that later.)