Tuesday, May 22, 2012

An Interview with a HS Spanish Teacher

I have worked with Mrs. Springer for several years implementing technology into her Spanish curriculum so I have asked her a few questions about how it has impacted her classroom. I hope this will inspire you!

Mrs. Kyriazis: What grades/subject do you teach?
Mrs. Springer: Spanish, grades 9-12

Mrs. Kyriazis: How long have you been a teacher?

Mrs. Springer: More than 20 years

Mrs. Kyriazis: How long have you used technology for productivity? (lesson plan creation, presentations, research etc...)

Mrs. Springer: I really was using technology from the beginning for managerial, record-keeping tasks. My use of technology for presentations and my integration of web-based material in my classes have increased tremendously in the last 3-5 years.

Mrs. Kyriazis: When did you start having the students create technology based projects?

Mrs. Springer: I'd say three years ago.

Mrs. Kyriazis: Why do you like using technology in the classroom? How do you feel that it has impacted student learning?

Mrs. Springer: It's current. It's real. The students are completely engaged if the material is level/theme appropriate.

Mrs. Kyriazis: What are some of the challenges that you face when it comes to using technology with a group of high school students?

Mrs. Springer: Finding the "right" (theme/level appropriate) material for the given lesson. It takes a lot of time to find the materials I want in the vast treasure trove out there on the web.

Mrs. Kyriazis: What are some successes?

Mrs. Springer: Some youtube videos that contrast with a literary theme, powerpoints of Arabic / Roman / etc. architecture present throughout much of the world due to the Spanish expansion in the 16th century, prezis for Spanish 1 presentations on Hispanic countries (I need to tweak this one a little more).

Also, integrating the use of flipcams to record students' speaking presentations so that 1) students can self-critique, 2) teachers can compile a speaking portfolio for students, 3) department members can assess presentations together to ensure consistent application of rubrics and 4) department members can showcase/market department accomplishments. 

Mrs. Kyriazis: What are some of your favorite tech tools?

Mrs. Springer: Video clips (3-4 minutes in length, especially music videos), powerpoints to focus students on discussion topic, prezis and the flipcam.

Mrs. Kyriazis: If you had an unlimited budget, what pieces of technology would you buy for your classroom?

Mrs. Springer: FAST computers in every classroom. I travel between classes. I had a line up of current event videos featuring up and coming Latin American artists (singers). I couldn't get the video to load in the class I was in. Lesson lost!
Also, TIME, if I could buy it! Time to download the students' speaking presentations, time to look for materials, time to use the technology to be comfortable with it, etc.

Thank You Mrs. Springer!

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