Posted by John Holland on Thursday, 04/30/2015
One of the reasons I went into teaching is because of my love of stories. In my class we draw a picture almost every day. The teacher writes what the student says about their picture. Then we read it together. This is the very first instructional practice I was taught as a young substitute teacher in Head Start. Back then it was called the Language Experience Approach. It is the epitome of child centered literacy instruction. Since that time how we think about Language Experiences changed in early childhood. It kept changing until it came full circle through technology.
I have always found the use of technology with young children to be a powerful, and in some situations, enslaving medium for learning. When I recently discovered Liberty Elementary school in Baltimore using technology well in all its grades I became enamored of their hashtag #Liberty64. Every day I can count on a post that inspires me, not because of the bangs and whistles of technology but because of the solid hands-on learning taking place in the school. Even amidst the strife of the #BaltimoreUprising teachers like @KevinReldnahc are using technology to help his 2nd Grade students process their stories and the stories of their families and community.
This is the real power of technology.
I wanted to share a project that @JoeManko (Principal) and the #NBCT s of Liberty inspired.
The teachers of Liberty introduced me to Adobe Voice. This simple multimedia app has the ability to move even the youngest students from consumers to creators. Just check out this video our class made. I am so proud of them.
Now we don't just get to listen to the student in the classroom. We develop students' technological literacy, emergent literacy, and children's perspective at the same time; all while celebrating the power of story.