Friday, December 3

Tell your parent they have to read your blog and comment...

On Thursday night, the #elemchat topic was: Homework: How do we differentiate and make it authentic. It was a lively discussion with lots of sharing of ideas and philosophies.  One of the reason I love moderating #elemchat is because I always learn something new.  Also, during these chats I get to “converse” with educators that I might have missed during the course of a Twitter day.  My PLN (Personal Learning Network) grows and I become a better teacher.

Sometimes after the hour is officially over, the conversation and tweets about the topic continue.  I find responses to the topic on my Tweetdeck hours later.  Friday morning I found this…   

@NancyTeaches I guess all of your students have home computers with great connection (no dial up)?? How fortunate.

I had shared that my class had fallen in love with blogging and my new favorite homework assignment was: tell your parent they have to read your blog and comment.  When I read the tweet above, I was taken aback.  My initial reaction was a rapid heartbeat and visceral.  I thought this person was being “snarky.”  I felt offended.  Here I was presenting my great idea to the #elemchat and in response, I felt as if I were getting a spoonful of  sarcasm. 

Then, I reflected.  (Being mature is such hard work.)

What if I taught in a school where the students didn’t have computers with great connection or didn’t have internet access?  What if the students lived in a house without a computer!

I didn’t even think about this, and more importantly, I take for granted that my students could do the new “fav. assignment.”  Do I even appreciate that I teach in a setting where all of the students have what they need and more?

I don’t know who this Twitter person is, but she taught me an important lesson this morning.  When I share my enthusiasm and ideas, I have a responsibility to be sensitive and think of other educational settings that are not as fortunate as mine.  Within my 140 character limit, I can share more thoughtfully and considerately.  I need to turn off my tunnel vision and look at things with a broader eye.

I need to practice what I preach to my students about commenting on blogs. It is a global audience!

Once again, Twitter helped me become a better teacher, and maybe a better person, too.



LiteracyDocent said...

I so respect how you turned that comment into a reflective moment for yourself. My repsonse might have been different. Once again you are leading by example and that's the hallmark of a thoughtful, reflective educator...something you already were.

Kathryn (koolkat222) said...

I've taught in both wealthy schools and in low SES schools. Currently, I teach in a school where many students do not have a computer, let alone internet access. Just last week, one of the office secretaries asked me if I had a current phone number for an active PTA parent who has a son in my class. Turned out that their two cell phones, as well as her home phone, were disconnected because money was so tight. Her son quietly confided that information to me.

I love hearing what many members of my PLN do in their classes, but some of the things their students do at home is just not possible for my students.

I'm glad you reflected on that comment. The writer was probably venting some frustration at not being able to do some of terrific things you've been able to do with your students. Keep up the good work!