The Challenge of Information Overload

May 29, 2010 at 12:34 pm | Posted in Collaboration, Learning is Messy, Planning | Leave a comment

As a tech integration specialist the last three years, I have greatly benefited from the inspiration and support from my PLN. I went from focusing on a group of students to a focus on co-creating relevant tech-related classroom activities in all subject areas for students aged 3 to 11 and providing teacher professional development and support. Because of this broad focus, I have learned a great deal and discovered many educators and other professionals online who inspire me and who I learn from. However, now that I am returning to the classroom I need to focus again foremost on curriculum and learning that may or may not include technology. This has prompted me to review my Netvibes feed page and not drop feeds but revise my home page to those blogs that are written by teachers and from educators I collaborate with.

plousia/flickr

My problem is that I can get so side-tracked just by browsing and following tweets appearing among the 20 most recent tweets when I open Twitter. Then there are all the blogs I want to read regularly and podcasts to listen to. And books to read. I want to contribute as well so I need time to write. This summer I look forward to reading and learning more about writing and reading continuums and increasing my Mac application skills in preparation for August, as those are areas I have less experience with as a classroom teacher. I want to become more adept as a user of Myst and Scratch and other game-based learning tools to use in my classroom. I want to contribute to my personal blog again and reflect on life overseas. There are only 24 hours in a day and if I add areas to focus on, something has to take a back seat.

One idea I have is to integrate by reflecting on what I’m reading and learning by podcasting using Garageband (rather than the familiar Audacity) or creating a digital story sample in iMovie or Keynote for use as a classroom model/sample to use next year. I can reflect in a journal on my experiences in the Myst or Quest Atlantis worlds and create a Scratch animation reflecting on one of my summer reading books.

How do you handle the information overload? How do you focus but also stay in touch with the broad views and innovation in education and technology?

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