Whatsfordinner.com: Why I started Integrating Technology into my Classroom

I have told this story several times to start presentations about my journey into educational technology as the start of my career but it still holds relevance for me today and so it is a great place to start my blog. Since my job did not exist when I was a child, I could not have dreamed that this is how my life would turn out or that integrating technology into the elementary classroom would be so important to me. However, I can pinpoint the day I had the epiphany that I needed to integrate technology into my classroom. I was a tired first grade teacher who had just gotten home to my professional stay-at-home husband and our four children who were all seven and younger. I sat down the huge bag of papers I would have to grade when the kids fell asleep and I went to give everyone a hello hug. My son, Dean, who was about three years old came up to me and pulled on my dress. I leaned down and he asked me what was for supper. Since my husband did the cooking in the house, the question took me off guard and I just sighed and said, “I don’t know yet. I just got home.” Dean looked curiously at me and replied, “Just look it up on Whatsfordinner.com.”  I laughed and he ran to ask his father. I realized in that split second that the children I was raising did not think parents had all the answers themselves, they just looked up everything on the internet. At the age of three he knew the answers to all of his questions were online waiting for someone to read them to him. This was such a different way of thinking than I had grown up with that I thought about this comment for days. Then it hit me. I was teaching six year olds who already lived in a different world than I had grown up with. I needed to teach them in a way that they could relate to and technology was the only way to achieve this. Integrating technology into my classroom was never a question of importance after that day. It was not just that I was preparing these children for a world that had not been invented yet, I was teaching and raising different creatures than myself who spoke a different language. If I wanted to stay relevant in their lives and communicate with them I was going to have to change as well. And so I did.