This post is the first phase of this idea. Ideally, I'd like to take is a step further and either do it in audio/video format but that is still ways away. The interviews you will see here are all volunteer and it is up to each user if they want to display a pic or not. The process in which I select people has no rhyme or reason and I don't want anybody to feel left out. I'd be more then happy to post any reader's thoughts/views.
Finally, keep in mind this is a work in progress and as for now happening as a friday column. I hope everyone will find this an entertaining read and recognize some of the people that you read about on here!!!
- Where do you live? Madeira, Portugal
- How long have you been working w/ Technology/education? 15 years
- What OS/Platform do you use for your work? Windows
- What is your favorite Web 2.0/21st Century tool and why? At the moment, my favourite web2.0 tool is Google Apps, because it provides me and my students with a very user friendly set of tools that make it easy to collaborate and create content.
- What is the biggest misconception about technology? Personally speaking, I think the biggest misconception about technology is that it will magically solve our educational problems. Some people tend to forget that technology is only a tool, one that we can and should, no doubt, use to better our classes and enhance our students' learning, but a tool nonetheless.
- What are the biggest hurdles you face as a technology educator? I guess, one way or another, with all deal with pretty much the same type of hurdles, which range from time/curriculum management to dealing with parents and so on. I can work my way around the financial aspects, I can try and solve my time/curriculum issues, I can try and reason with parents, but what really gets to me is having to cope with school administration policies, which hinder what I try to do as a technology teacher in almost every step of the way.
- What has been your biggest success in technology integration? Well, I have only just recently (about a year ago) began to use web2.0 tools in my EFL classes and I was amazed at how much my students were able to grow as learners in that short time: they used a wide variety of tools for project development, they created digital content, they started their own blogs and what really astounded me was that the majority of them would ask me to assign more tasks and be eager to post them on their blogs once they had completed them.
- What has been your biggest set back in technology integration? My biggest set-back in technology integration has been not being able to reach my department colleagues, who keep saying they do not have the skills nor the time to be playing with technology. It gets me down that they feel that way, because as a group we could accomplish so much more for our students.
- Who/what has been your biggest inspiration in technology/education? It's hard to narrow it down to only one person, since, fortunately, we do have some amazing educators out there that show us that technology integration can happen and it does work. But if I had to choose one I would, no doubt, choose Larry Ferlazzo, who unknowingly has helped and inspired me in so many ways.
- Where do you see technology integration heading in the future? Web2.0 focuses on the power of the community to create, collaborate and validate content, but we all know the web is always evolving and from what I've read linking data will be the power of the web3.0. Does this mean technology integration will be easier? Will we more readily accept the educational power of web tools? I hope so. Our students could benefit so much from it. But bottom line is, regardless of the technology, like Silvia Tolisano brilliantly put it on her blog Langwitches "Now, I have arrived at a point in the process where I believe that it is not (never was) about technology. To make a difference, it has always been about good teaching, reflecting and focusing on (relevant?) student learning."