Well, I may really have pushed the class over the edge today. I thought there would be a general revolt when Lisa started her Twitter introduction. Perhaps I have overwhelmed them with all the technology, but the MAT candidates need to learn about the technology their students use today and it doesn’t seem like there has been a lot of technology built into their program. Maybe I should have delayed the Twitter deal until next week – but with 3 hours of class every day, and having to be at mid-term by next Friday, I’m not sure they wouldn’t be overwhelmed anyway. Oh well, I seem to leave out increasingly more of the topics every year, and I’ll have to carve out even more after today, so it becomes a juggling act to include the most important topics and at the same time provide them with experience using a wide variety of strategies in class. What could I have done to lessen the impact of so much information?
I could have delayed the Twitter introduction until next week [but Lisa was only available up until Wednesday of next week, so that might have been problematic]. I suppose I could have eliminated the Twitter information altogether. But that feels like cheating them out of experiences and knowledge they need – or will in the future. If I had delayed or eliminated the Twitter information, I might have gotten the topics scheduled for today “covered” – but what then? I hate feeling that old “cover the curriculum” urge, but at the same time appreciate that there are topics that must be addressed in this one and only literacy course. I know I tend to plan more than I can possibly do, but in all honesty I’d rather have topics and activities I change during class [to model what happens in the “real world of a middle school classroom” when time runs short] than to short change them on a sound foundation in literacy. Trouble is, many of the MAT candidates have developed a “hard copy” view of literacy – they have never heard of the New Literacy Studies, or of the ideas and concepts that accompany NLS. I can only hope that as the semester progresses, they begin to see the place of literacy in their disciplines, and in their own classrooms.