Thing 28: Emerging Tech: Scanning the Horizon

I thought I would be completely overwhelmed with this post but to my surprise I wasn’t. I looked over every link, spending more time on a few over the others but for the most part it seemed to address the same trends and technologies including cloud computing, bring your own device (byod), makerspaces, project based learning and mobile learning. I am familiar with all these but not all are implemented in my library/throughout our building.

In the past few months, I have attended 4 pds related to google that have addressed using chrome as a browser, cloud computing, google classrooms, google apps and chromebooks. This is where I see my library going in the next year. I remember listening to the woman discussing advocacy when we did Thing 26 and she made a really great point and that was instead of attempting to use multiple tools in your library, focus on one or two that you will use really well. Our building recently received three chromebook carts, one in each of the Grade 4-6 classrooms for the grades to share. Each teacher attended a brief training on how to use the carts and the tools associated with google. This training fueled me to attend some other PD’s related to cloud computing, google apps for education and google classrooms. I see all of these tools as a great benefit to me in the library, specifically for my students in Grades 4-6 as a tool for research and for students to work collaboratively on a project. I’ve also begun to establish some classrooms using google classrooms. It is a great way to post assignments in each class, for myself and my teachers to be working collaboratively, gauge how my students are doing and what their needs are and giving them feedback quickly. In one of Joyce Valenza’s articles, she included some statistics about African American teens and how they are more likely than their Hispanic and white counterparts to use smartphones. Google classrooms also has an app for smartphones and I feel like this is a great way to connect with my students outside of the classroom. In one of the articles it discussed a flipped classroom where the teacher’s role is more of a guide and mentor than a lecturer. A flipped classroom included resources like video lectures, listening to podcasts, and collaborating with peers in online communities which are all things I could do using google classrooms.

Makerspaces were brought up quite a bit and the article “What does the next generation school library look like?” was a really good read. It was interesting to see how the students over time were able to learn from each other how to act in their new library and to use the space responsibly and effectively rather than using it as a free space to goof off. I love the idea of makerspaces and how students learn through doing and that they are in charge of their own creations. I can see creating a very small one in my library but honestly, I’m not sure our school is quite there yet for something like this school has created. Unfortunately, time, space and scheduling implementing this and I think our school would have to make some major changes for this to run effectively.

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