This session was based on the book Because Digital Writing Matters. The presenters of this session were Seth Mitchell, Southern Maine Writing Project
and Jason Shiroff, Denver Writing Project.
Each table group began by reading a chapter of the book. At our tables we discussed the implications for our classrooms and what we thought teachers need to rethink. We also discussed the implications for our Writing Project sites.
Some of the points I made during this discussion were that teachers needed to let their students use computers as a web 2.0 tool instead of just as a web 1.0 tool. In other words they need to let the students actively participate in web applications versus using the web passively.
Discussion also ensued about the need for teacher trust in using the web with their students. Many sites do not have access to a number of applications because of fear students will encounter something negative. Teachers need to be trusted to instill proper web use in their students just like any other rules they teach.
We then jigsawed our discussion by breaking out into new groups with people who had read different chapters. We listed the important points of our discussions from the previous groups.
We had writing time to reflect on what we learned. Some of the notes I wrote are as follows:
- The implications of digital use in Selma: Teachers need to rethink how they use technology. They need to try to use something [a small piece of technology] and not be fearful of technology. Teachers need to stop thinking of technology as a 1.0 tool. They need to try 2.0 tools. Technology is part of every one's lives these days. Teachers need to embrace it.
- Administration needs to trust teachers to monitor students' use of technology. Students need to be taught appropriate use and be trusted to learn through appropriate sites.
- Form a student technology team
- On-going education for teachers