For some reason, keeping my teaching blog going has been something that I have not been able to generate consistent momentum on. It’s a great metaphor for my workload that I don’t feel like I have time after completing the tasks of the day to spend more time on a reflective exercise like this.
Nevertheless, I’ll try again. My aim this time will be to write two posts a week: one post on Tuesday about what is going on in my Java programming class, and one post on Friday about what is going on in my role as our educational technology facilitator. If you like teaching, read the Tuesday posts; if you like educational technology, read the Friday posts. If you just want to take pity on me, read both posts (or maybe neither — caveat emptor).
In an act likely motivated in equal parts by inspiration and desperation, I have agreed to take on the role of Educational Technology Facilitator at the school where I am working. In many ways, this is a fantastic move for me. It allows me to jettison some of my other non-technology responsibilities and crystallizes my job into something approaching a coherent whole. I will still be responsible for teaching all of the computer courses, which was something that I insisted on so that I could stay in the classroom. And I also get to keep my job as the school’s sports information director, which is something that I really love to do.
The majority of my job role, however, will consist of this new position. What exactly my responsibilities will be remain to be determined. In a nutshell, my job will be to start pushing the school’s use of technology a little further down the field again since the last person to hold this job left 18 months ago. In what areas will that manifest itself? That’s a good question. I hope that I can make meaningful changes both in and out of the classroom.
I am excited about this new opportunity and also somewhat terrified. The fact that the job remained unfilled for nearly two years makes me nervous that the position (or me) could be judged to be expendable when the initial two-year appointment expires. I’m worried that prevailing faculty attitudes about technology might be difficult to budge much during that short period of time. And I guess I’m just worried about my ability to get up to speed quickly enough to be effective in the job.
But it’s a great challenge and, if it works, should be a great career move. Being a successful technology integrationist is actually something tangible that has some street cred, much more than the extremely valuable but largely unrelated hodgepodge of responsibilities that has been my job for the last five years.
In an attempt to manage my to-do list tonight, I made a list of the various roles I currently have responsibilities in:
- Teaching classes
- Managing the Technology Proficiency Program
- Overseeing the School Service Program
- Creating and printing the Daily Bulletin
- Writing and editing for the Sports Information Department
- Serving as interim head of the Technology Training Team
- Working with my six advisees
- Living with the girls in the dorm
- Being a good husband and father
- Caring for myself
My situation isn’t particularly unusual for the place that I work, or really for any boarding school, I would expect. So does a multi-headed hydra of a job like this ultimately make me stronger overall, or pull me in too many different directions? You be the judge.