As a good little educator, I try to read a number of blogs to help keep me up to date on some of the trends that are going on and how people are using these new ideas in their classrooms. One blog I discovered was Frasier Speirs blog (spiers.org). Mr. Speirs is a computing teacher at a private school in Scotland and has drawn some notoriety as he implemented a one-to-one iPad initiative in his school. Pretty cool huh? I blogged about this a little earlier and let me tell you I may have been wrong and am eagerly reading his adventures into this unknown forest. I recent blog he just posted concerns the future of the IT teacher. Read on past the break for more tech goodness.
The man, just doesn’t blog about iPads. In late September he wrote an interesting post titled The Invisible Computing Teacher. In the post he talks about the diminishing role of the computer teacher. As more and more teachers are integrating technology, the teachers themselves start to become the expert when it comes to certain software. As their expertise grows, there is less of a need for an IT teacher to help and in respect of IT classes, since, n theory at least, the students are getting their daily does of IT in their other classes.
Well that is a bit to chew on and let me tell you it has crossed my mind more than once. Frasier suggests that maybe IT classes go a more hardcore approach on programming and more of a computer science track, but he doesn’t like that idea too much. As for me, I still think there are a number of challenging apps out there that (GIMP, Photoshop, HTML training, etc.) will keep me in business, but he does raise a point. These classes could be taught much later and to a more select individuals. What future does an IT teacher have?
I guess it just matters where you work. In his case, the students are using an iPad and are constantly engaging with technology in more and more ways. I happen to work at a school where we have numerous labs, laptop carts, but one-to-one is not an option right now and the school does not seem to have any initiative in going that route. So, my job here is safe and sound, but what if I was Frasier? Well for one, I’d be considerably more handsome. Two, I guess my role which shift considerably. Frasier is not only an accomplished educator, but also an accomplished software developer. Couldn’t this skill be put to use by teaching students how to create some apps for the iPad? I really don’t have a good answer to Mr. Speirs.
I find that when the roads seems to stop, it just means you have more choices and more directions to head into. It is a little scary but pretty liberating. I can’t wait to read what happens to Mr. Frasier Speirs next.
Check out Frasier Speirs blog at speirs.org