As I was walking through one of our schools today I went into a classroom and started talking with a teacher whom has one of our Interactive Classroom Solutions set up in her room. We discussed some things about her board that she could not get working and were able to quickly correct the issue and get her back into action.
As we talked before her students came back in from specials she told me that this was her first year in a classroom with an Interactive White Board(IWB), and that she had not really had any formalized training. As we discussed some quick things she could do to get acclimated to the software and to the board itself she started telling me of all the neat and fun websites she had found on her own to assist her with using the technology. I could tell that she was excited and proud that she had learned to use the product on her own and began to show me all of her resources.
After this I imposed on her to ask how long she had been with the school system as a teacher. She immediately said that she had been with the school system for 30 years and this was the start of her 31st year. I then proceeded to ask her what technology had she used in the previous years and her response was a Chalkboard and Whiteboard, nothing else. So it came down to the last part of our talk as her students were lining up to come back into the room I asked how she felt about using the technology and what would she do if she had to go back to a classroom that did not have an IWB in it.
Her response "...they would have to drag me out of here kicking and screaming. I don't know what I would do without it now." To see the look of excitement and energy in her eyes brought a ray of sunshine and a great feeling that our teachers are "Getting It." They are beginning to understand that the technology is there to help them not to hinder or hold them back. Kudos to this 30 year veteran teacher to completely step out of her comfort zone and take a chance on what can feel like a daunting task smelling like a rose.