Today, I needed to go up to Tufts Veterinary clinic for Clio. They may be able to take care of her pee problem. But that’s not the point. I had to get someone to cover my class, and that person insisted on having a lesson plan. So I decided to show three videos about Africa from the TED conference, to talk about leadership issues as they relate to solving the problems of Africa. He knows how to use a DVD player attached to a TV monitor, but not how to use a computer attached to a digital projector even though they’re the same thing.

I’ve never done anything like this before, but in about 15 minutes I’d made a DVD image on my Mac laptop, using iDVD. I entered the four videos from TED, and wrote some quick menu blurbs. Then it took two hours to burn the image to disk, and I was then done. In 15 minutes I created an hour-long lesson plan, with some techno-burning going on in the background while I did the other things. It was easier than making bread by a long shot.

I find myself wondering what other technological marvels exist like this, that I can use for empowering myself and my students in the classroom, that I don’t currently know how to use. It makes for an interesting gedankenexperiment.


  1. Some More Tech Ideas


    Here are a few tech marvels that I just learned about from Jason Cummings, a Spanish teacher at GFA: (social annotation) (collaborative writing) (language flashcards and other tools) (Alan November’s blog for creating blogs)

    And here are some that I’m going to be using myself soon: (build-your-own wikis; private wikis are free for the first 100,000 educators who sign up) (Dragon NaturallySpeaking, a program that converts speech to text with 98% accuracy; my tech department is considering buying a site license for me and my class)

    Go, technology!


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