A Day with Technology

Technology plays a significant role in every aspect of my daily life. I rely on technology from the moment I wake up until I go to bed.

smartphone, alarm clock, superhero

My day begins with my phone. For most of us, our phones are what wakes us up in the morning. Ironic really. From that moment on, I am almost always using technology for something.

As I get ready in the morning, I listen to a podcast on Spotify, check the Weather Network, and answer any message I received while I was sleeping. Admittedly, there are a few TikTok breaks in there as well. My commute to work is only a few blocks, but during this time I am usually still listening to the podcast I started when I woke up.

My reliance on technology at work is no better. I am willing to admit that there is no way I could do my job without access to technology – my laptop is my teaching lifeline. Not only are my files (i.e., assignments, projects, PowerPoints, etc.) on my laptop, but my entire day book is digital. Since 2019, I have been using Planbook for my daily lesson plans. I have continually returned to Planbook every school year despite the small cost associated with the platform and always recommend it to my colleagues.

Students in a classroom utilizing technology to learn

Beyond my daily lesson plans, I utilize many other forms of technology throughout my day it is almost dizzying. From the photocopiers to my classroom projector to Outlook for emails, I almost always use some form of technology to teach my students.

Most important, however, is my classroom laptop cart. The division I work for offers teachers the opportunity to become Connected Educator. I became a Connected Educator in 2023 and it has been a game changer for my classroom. Having access to one-on-one devices for my students has, in my observations, helped my students excel in my classroom as students are more willing to participate and engage in course content and it has created more equitable learning opportunities. The increased success in my classroom connected to access to one-on-one devices relies heavily on the fact that I can access several educational tools more easily than the average teacher.

Below are several online resources that I have found increase student success:

Kahoot!: An old faithful. Kids love Kahoot!. Before I became a Connected Educator, I found myself using Kahoot! less and less for two reasons: it was hard for kids to use their phones (i.e., spotty Wifi, etc.) and I thought kids were over it. Once I became a Connected Educator and had access to one-on-one technology I decided to try it out again and I am happy that I did. Despite it being used all the time, kids love it.

Quizlet: I love using Quizlet to help students study for exams. Studying can be a challenging skill for adolescents (mostly I think we don’t teach them how to study) and Quizlet allows students a digital way to keep flashcards. Students have the option to make their own study sets or, if you are feeling extra nice, you can make a study set for students that can be shared out to the class. Quizlet also allows teachers to create printable quizzes using the study decks which can be helpful when in a pinch!

Flipgrid: I just recently started using Flipgrid in my classroom. I was hesitant at first to use it out of selfishness because as a learned I would have HATED filming myself for an assignment. However, in a passing conversation, a student mentioned using it in another class and that they loved it. This moment made me realize that just because I would have hated something doesn’t mean I will. I have only used Flipgrid a few times so far, but I plan to use in in the coming school year in my classroom in several different ways!

After work, my reliance on technology only heightens. At any given point in the evening, it is almost guaranteed that I am listening to a podcast – there’s a trend here – or chatting with friends over text message. However, the real issue comes later in the evening when I begin scrolling TikTok. I am certainly aware of the addiction I have to TikTok and sometimes I am embarrassed to admit it as an almost 30-year-old has better things to be doing, but it is a hurtful truth.

After hours of scrolling, I am off to bed to repeat the cycle over again. Sometimes I wonder what I would do if my access to technology were to be cut off.

A scary thought, am I right?

Describe your current “day in the life” related to technology, teaching, and learning. What tools do you use? How do you connect with others? Describe your interactions with others, including your students, if applicable.