A fellow speech-language pathologist, John, recently approached me about making safety videos for his students. We tossed around some different ideas, then we settled on making our first video about crossing the street. In the video, John wanted to utilize the concept of contrasting the inappropriate behavior with the appropriate behavior. We demonstrated a distinction between running across the street and crossing at the crosswalk after looking both ways. See the attached video for our finished project.
I’m gonna take this opportunity to discuss how I’m happy to see my fellow young special educators “crossing the street” into web 2.0 resources. They, like John, aren’t afraid to learn how to make slideshows, use interactive websites, blog, share videos, and the sort. My “seasoned” colleagues, however, aren’t always as willing. I suppose the reason is that they are digital immigrants, as opposed to digital natives like my fellow young colleagues and me. They didn’t grow up using computers like we did. And, even though there’s a learning curve of web 2.0 resources for us, theirs is much steeper. We’re much more interested and willing to try these new resources. Speaking only for myself, I’m willing to “test the waters” because I know how engaged my students are by technology. It’s really incredible to see their jaws dropping when I show them something like the Wiimote Whiteboard. They get so involved in the technology, that it’s very easy to facilitate learning. It’s hard, on the other hand, for me to put into words how much joy that brings to me. But, I can say that the wow factor is definitely my source of encouragement to continue learning web 2.0 resources.