A lot of teacher-authors read my WordDreams blog. In this monthly column, I share the most popular post from the past month on my teacher education blog, Ask a Tech Teacher.
Here’s one popular post that is taken from my day as tech teacher in a classroom (before I went virtual), but sounds almost too funny to be believable:
Why? I’m a tech teacher. That is like a geek+. I teach–yes–but I’m also the first line of defense (sometimes offense) for colleagues as they struggle to use the digital devices populating their classrooms. From the moment I step foot on campus, life spins out of my control. Here’s a typical day:
6:45 arrive at school
6:47 a student enters to use lab
6:48 I greet student with a friendly hi and begin work on a lesson plan
6:49 Student asks for help
7:00 Student finishes and leaves; I return to my lesson plan
7:02 Frantic teacher calls–her computer won’t boot up. She came in early to work and now what’s she supposed to do can I come right away?
7:03 I arrive in teacher classroom to help and plug it in. The maintenance folk must have unplugged it last night–who knows why
7:07 Return to my lab, find a student waiting, jumping from one foot to the other. His printer ran out of ink at home can he use mine?
7:08 His parent who arrived with him wants to chat
7:18 Parent and child leave happy
7:19 I return to work on my lesson plan
7:30 I report for yard duty–managing the students arriving for classes until their teachers are ready to receive them.
8:00 I return to my classroom and throw together the balance of the lesson plan for my 8:15 class
8:02 A teacher calls. A student can’t get on the internet. Can I help?
8:12 I get back from solving the problem (student was logged in wrong) and run around checking my lab computers, make sure my digital devices survived the night.
8:15 My class arrives. I can’t help but smile as I see their excitement. Everyone loves computer lab time.
8:45 A teacher arrives, face stressed, shoulders tight, knuckles white. She has a tech problem. I smile and tell her I have a break at 9. I’ll come right over.
9:00 Students out, I go to help. She can’t find her slideshow. We try a few search options (ordering columns by name, using the ‘search’ function) and find her slideshow. She’s smiling as I leave
9:15 My next class arrives. I’m booked until lunch time. I ignore all forms of communication–even visitors.
12:15 Students arrive to use computers during lunch. Luckily, I have a small frig in my room so I don’t have to leave. They work while I eat (hiding behind my monitor–I hate having people see me eat).
12:45 Second group of students arrive for their lunch hour. I work on a school tech vision document while they work. They’re older so pretty much ignore me, which suits me fine.
1:15 Two back-to-back classes, one a lower school and one middle school. I struggle to juggle the different ages (they giggle when I call them 2nd graders). Sometimes, it’s easy because they’re working on projects.
2:45 I respond to parent emails. This must be done daily. I understand parents’ need to get questions answered in a timely manner.
3:00 Parents arrive to pick up students and chat about classes, quizzes, projects. Students arrive for extra help or simply to use the computers. I finish with parents and work on school tech issues until 4.
4:00 I leave–or work late. It depends upon what needs to be done.
What haven’t I done yet? Here’s a list:
- graded projects
- prepared future lesson plans
- helped teachers integrate tech into their class projects
- planned and organized in-house PD on tech
- worked on my class website and blog
- mentored new teachers on tech
- communicated with my PLN
I collected a list of what my efriend tech teachers do with their days. Read it–you won’t believe it!
I know–this sounds crazy. But there is never a boring moment. My brain always chugs along on high. I never think rote is right. What’s not to love about that?
What’s your day like? Do you get a break every two hours–or every eight hours?
Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy, the Man vs. Nature saga, and the Rowe-Delamagente thrillers. She is also the author/editor of over a hundred books on integrating tech into education, adjunct professor of technology in education, blog webmaster, an Amazon Vine Voice, a columnist for NEA Today, and a freelance journalist on tech ed topics. Look for her next prehistoric fiction, Laws of Nature, Summer 2021.