I began using computers in class when we had XT computers, floppy discs and a word processing program called Einstein.
For many years I advanced slowly, my main source of knowledge coming from ETAI teacher conferences, which I usually attended once a year.
Since I began blogging, more than two and a half years ago, the pace of advance increased dramatically. Especially as all my descriptions of the new things I needed the computer to do, but it couldn’t, got me a better computer and and later an Internet connection. The woman in charge of the computers really likes me…
Since then the computer has become such an integral part of the learning center which is my classroom, that it is in use almost at all times. The schedule in a learning center is very complex and changes frequently, so it was always open in one window. We have a class website. Homework is given online, using google forms, YouTube and various websites. Edmodo and a blog is used to connect with high schools for the deaf around the world. Quizlet is used to practice vocabulary. At the end of the day even Solitaire is not frowned on, when a student who deosn’t even have a lesson hangs out until his transportation home arrives.
We’re on vacation now. A kind soul leaked the information to me that because the school is expanding, my class will be rennovated for use for a hearing group. They can’t let a space that can fit 20 students a lesson continue to be used by an average of 8 deaf and hard of hearing students who have work stations around the room. I say “leaked” because nobody considered it necessary to inform me officially. I’ve only been using this particular room for about 15 years.
My new room will be a third of its size. Assuming that it will be ready for use by the end of August. At the moment it is totally unsuitable for teaching students with a hearing loss. It has to be renovated. I was told that there is no official objection to me having a computer in the new room but that would require a better door and bars on the windows. No one will deal with that before the acoustic rennovations have been done. My guess is that I will begin the year teaching every hour in another classroom.
After losing quite a bit of sleep over this, I have decided I can’t “unlearn” use of Edtech in class.
If the school is closing doors for me, I will go down the road of phone apps. I feel a bit better now.