Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Technology Moment

Today's technology moment came along when a student asked to use my phone.  He had braces put on yesterday and wanted to ring up his father to ask that he bring him in some medicine for the pain.  Using the teacher's phone can sometimes prove to be a little confusing since most kids don't know they need to first dial 9 to get an outside line.

That was not a problem for the young man, in fact he asked about dialing 9 as he strolled toward my desk.  He started to push the numbers on the keypad and then stopped to look at me with a rolled up nose of confusion.

"Do I have to pick this thing up?" he asked as he pointed to the handset. 

"Yes, pick that up," I responded.  "Do you hear a dial tone?"

Again I was faced with the rolled up nose of confusion.  I moved closer to the phone and took the handset from him to listen.

"Do you hear anything?" I asked.

"Oh, that humming sound?"

"Yeah, that's a dial tone."

It was only then that I realized how the use of cell phones has started to change our own culture.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

What's Your Favorite Color?

What's your favorite color?  That's a question posed to children of all ages on a daily basis.  It's a conversation starter, a way to break the ice when meeting new young people.  Teachers ask it over and over in Kindergarten.  In fact I remember watching as a kindergarten teacher sat her students down in a circle and then took turns rolling a playground ball to her charges.  As each student grabbed the ball with their small hands they would call out their name followed by their favorite color. 

I'm Betsy!  My favorite color is black!

Yes, that really happened.  Even though Betsy was adorned from head toe in pink she was harboring a secret love for the color black.

My nephew, Michael, never liked that kind of game.  He would often complain about having to choose one color over all the others.

I don't like one color, he would say.  I like all the colors! 

We suggested just picking one for the sake of the exercise but that didn't sit well.

I can't, he would respond.  I like all the colors!

Fifteen years later he's in art school, a place where he can work with all his favorite colors on a daily basis.