Being an adoptive parent, there are many moments of “new learning”, both when your kids come into your home, as well as parenting them through toddler, child, tween and teen. In fact being a parent also of two step-children entering adulthood, I’d argue the learning never stops. They give you ample moments of an “ah-ha” awareness that gift your teaching in some capacity.
One of my most memorable moments, though, came after my kids were home a year or two, and I was struggling to write a follow up adoption report that could significantly portray to their mother that I shared her same aspirations of hope for these two amazing kids. In talking with the agency owner, I tried to explain my shortcomings in putting the pen to paper. She then told me that in the adoptive country, the words used to express this hope are, “be somebody, someday”.
It has been something I’ve never forgotten. As parents and teachers, this is a value that we try to convey to our students every day, even if we’re not simultaneously thinking it—it is what shapes our thinking and moves us forward…we want every kiddo to maximize his full potential and recognize and refine his talents. We take these kids into our classrooms knowing they are a “bundle of somebody amazing” and move that forward with the influence of our content area and knowledge—hoping to pique in them an interest to question and investigate what we’ve put before them, even further.
Where does technology fit into this? It’s really a great leveler. Once technology is in their hands, and they are provided a supportive environment to investigate, explore and be led to new learning, they have access to the wealth of information that is available.
Live too far away from New York to experience the Met? http://www.google.com/culturalinstitute/collection/the-metropolitan-museum-of-art Visit the Google Cultural Institute or any other world-class museum: http://www.google.com/culturalinstitute/home
Love science and space? View last Friday’s *nearby* Supernova activity: http://www.nasa.gov/content/goddard/nasa-spacecraft-take-aim-at-nearby-supernova/#.UubSGWTnZn0
Love music? Stream in your favorite orchestral works from your favorite public music radio station website.
You get the idea. Regardless of race, socioeconomic background, content area or ability to learn, technology affords one the opportunity to pursue his or her interests and passions to fully develop who he wants to be. Shaped artistically with a teacher guiding the path, this is a magnificent combination of ability and opportunity.