This week Amy, Hailie and I all worked together to create this dialogue demonstrating how we might talk with a parent who had an opposition to using mathletics in the classroom.
Parent → Teacher: Concerns of excessive use of Mathletics
Context: Parent meeting with Teacher
Parent: Hi, I am concerned about the lack of teaching in my child’s math
class. Brady said that all he does is play Mathletics. Mathletics looks
like math games to me.
Teacher: Thank you for coming to me and sharing your opinion. I value
all my student’s parent’s opinions. In education we are working on
incorporating technology and digital citizenship in their lives. I
believe that students all have a digital identity, or will eventually. A
way to develop the foundations of digital identity is through
educational resources. Mathletics is an educational website that we do
use on occasion. May I log into my account and show you the benefits of
Mathletics and how we use it in our class? If you are interested I can
show you Brady’s work!
Parent: Yes, please. Thank you.
Teacher: So here you can see there are different options of focus, here
we have Patterns. When I click on Brady’s account, I can see his
progress, what he is doing well in and what he needs to work towards.
Parent: Well is this all he does? How can he get better if there is no
Teacher: This is only one of our math centres. We have 5 stations that
the students work on, so using this technology is only one of them. They
are also using blocks to create patterns, working on worksheets, and in
small groups with me and other students.
Parent: So this isn’t all you do then?
Teacher: Our school made the purchase to use Mathletics and all grades
from Gr.1-5 use this site. We find it quite educational and the students
really enjoy it. It provides another way for students to learn the
content at their own pace. It is a great way to track progress and them
working independently helps build stamina and competence in their own
Parent: Oh! Thank you so much. I didn’t realize the context it is used.
Is there a way I can see Brady’s work too?
Teacher: Of course! I will give you Brady’s username and password so he
can work on it at home and you can see what he is working on.
Parent: Great. Thank you!
While I have not yet had the experience of having a parent opposing technology in the classroom, I have had the pleasure of working alongside and shadowing Susan Barton, a high school teacher who is a technology consultant for Christ The Teacher School Division . Susan’s job role includes sharing new forms and uses of technology as well supporting teachers exploring technology in the classroom. In shadowing Susan I saw the endless benefits of using technology in the classroom as well as the endless possibilities of using technology in classroom. I saw students doing book reports on Adobe Spark , students using seesaw to track and post their progress, amongst many other things. Because I have seen these instances and many others, I do absolutely see the value and will make sure I take the time to explain this to my families so that they may also see the value.
I also found a great ted talk that talks about technology in the classroom that I thought related well.