I spent the day in Raleigh observing a fabulous event. The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction sponsored the North Carolina Legislative School Technology Day. WOW! What a wonderful experience.
The school districts in the state were invited to showcase what their students are doing with technology. This included bringing student representatives to explain the technology. How exciting to speak with elementary school kiddos who could articulately tell you how they use technology. Our county was well represented by Deep River Elementary led by the technology facilitator Kim Collazo. Kim is doing some phenomenal technology activities with her students. I can’t wait until they get to the middle schools and teach me!
I was most impressed with two 5th grade young ladies who taught me how to animate a PowerPoint while using Paint to make a background. I had not thought of painting a background then drawing and painting an object to animate in the PowerPoint. Out of the mouths of babes.
There was also a middle school group that was powering cars and fans with water. The possibilities for this technology is endless. So are the futures of these students. I sure hope that the State Legislators were able to see what these students were accomplishing.
Howard Lee, the Chairman of the State Board of Education, began the session as only Howard can. He encouraged the students as well as the teachers. He received several rounds of applause. Of course, one was when he mentioned that teachers in the state will be making more money soon. What teacher wouldn’t applaud that?
But, he also hit home when he told the students that it didn’t matter what sex you are, color you are, what your home life is like, how smart you are, or how much money your family has, it is your responsibility to be the best you can be. There are no excuses for not succeeding in this day and age. He told them that there were too many people and dedicated teachers that were begging to help them for them not to take advantaged of that help. Bravo Howard, bravo!
Howard Lee also told the story of being held back in 1st grade. His mother was his teacher and she refused to pass him to second grade even though he had the highest average in the class. She told him that he did just enough to be better than the other students, but he didn’t do his best. That lesson has stuck with Howard and he shares it with students whenever he can.
This day was an excellent example of how the digital natives are surpassing us “dinosaurs”. Just when I think I’ve got it, along comes a 5th grader who very gently puts me in my place.
Until next time ~ Danita
Flickr: Our Presentation