By Angelica Lara, Teacher, East Austin College Prep
I cannot believe it has almost been a year since I applied to present at the 2015 Leadership Institute for Latino Literacy (LILL), generously supported by State Farm. I am so grateful for the opportunity to present to other teachers and administrators on the topic of digital literacy. I have to admit this is the first educational institute I had ever applied to and very appreciative to have been selected along with another teacher. I believe this experience provided me the opportunity to network with other educators and facilitate excellent discussions on classroom resources, techniques, and current research.
Another aspect I certainly appreciated was the opportunity to work with Dr. James Gee, an expert on computer science and video gaming. It was inspiring to hear his research and words of wisdom about digital literacy in today’s age. To this day I still remind not only myself but my students of the importance of the simplicity of paper and pencils, which are also examples of technology, something that Dr. Gee made sure to state during his keynote speech. In this digital age, we get caught up with the latest and greatest technology, but I believe we sometimes forget where it all started. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, technology is “the application of scientific knowledge for practical purposes.” Technology can come in many forms.
As you begin your own process on applying for the 2016 LILL focusing on technology in the classroom, have fun. Even if this is your first your proposal to submit, do it! I know I was hesitant at first, but the nerves do calm down and in the end it was a lot of fun. Apply today!