Posted by Bill Ferriter on Saturday, 08/09/2014
Let me start with a simple truth: The learning experiences that resonate the most are those that tap into the inherent desire within my students to make a difference in the world around them. Causes matter, y'all -- especially when working with middle schoolers who are naturally tuned in to issues connected to fairness and justice and who are still convinced that anything is possible as long as we work together.
Whether they are fighting poverty, helping other teens and tweens to understand the amount of sugar in the foods they eat on a daily basis, standing up to bullying, or raising awareness about controversial political issues, my kids are STRAIGHT JAZZED when they realize that THEY have the power to make a difference.
The challenge for me has always been that I work in a tech-limited classroom.
We make do with two desktop computers, my teacher laptop, and an occasional trip to the computer lab. That often destroys momentum, as students give up on our change efforts because they sometimes have to wait for weeks in order to take their turn to publish content that they've created for our powerful projects.
That's why I've decided to create my first Donors Choose project. My goal is to raise enough money to buy three Chromebooks for my classroom:
With those three Chromebooks, I'll be able to give more kids access to the web during our weekly "Change the World" meetings. Whether they are choosing a person in the developing world to support, writing a new entry for our #SUGARKILLS blog, or wrestling with potential solutions to a global challenge as a part of our upcoming 20/20 project, access matters -- and three Chromebooks would literally double the access that I can provide in my classroom.
Would you consider supporting me? Heck -- any donations made between now and August 15th will be matched dollar-for-dollar (up to $100) by Donors Choose as long as you use code INSPIRE on the payment page. That's a double-your-donation-dollar moment that might just be worth seizing.
I'm more than a little embarrassed to ask, but I'm also more than a little motivated to leave my kids convinced that THEY can change the world and I just can't scrape together the money to buy more devices on my own.
Related Radical Reads:
Technology is a Tool, NOT a Learning Outcome
More on Technology is a Tool, NOT a Learning Outcome
Edtech Reflections for Preservice Teachers
Interview with the #SUGARKILLS Gang
My Kids, a Cause and Our Classroom Blog