Working on the EdTech Skill Set

I want to leave the classroom at the end of the school year.  There are various reasons why: some positive, some negative.  I love teaching, I love children, but, my philosophy of learning compels me to move on now.  It’s time to step up my game.  I want to be an educational technologist, so I have to start LOOKING like an educational technologist.

As I reflect on who I am as an educator and classroom teacher, I have looked at what I know, why I know it, and what I need to know, in order to move forward in my quest to be more than just who I am now.  Part of doing this, for me is to help teachers become comfortable with technology so they can teach using it and help students to grow from their use of it. One of the things I’m most interested in doing is becoming a Google Trainer. So, I’ve done the research, spoken to a few warm bodies about it, and will begin my online journey to reach this goal.

Before becoming a trainer, it is suggested I first become a Google Educator. I’m ok with that. This is what is required of me:

Become a Google Educator

You’ve started with Google tools, now let’s make it official. Become a Google Educator to be recognized for your mastery of four required subjects plus at least one elective. Deepen your knowledge by learning and practicing the content in the Level 2 courses. You’ll receive your Google Educator certificate by passing the five related exams (small fee for examination). (from Google for Education website)

OK… I’ll get started on this ASAP.  The four required courses are Sites, Gmail, Calendar, and Docs and Drive. I’ve been playing around with Sites; I want to set up something for my building teachers to get their learning on, so this course will do me a world of good. I’m a pro at Gmail (hell, who isn’t?), so that should be easy. Calendar is easy enough, I’ve used it, but I’m sure there are tricks and tips I’m missing, so I’m looking forward to this course.  Docs and Drive are my current area of learning and teaching.  I know the basics, and am teaching same to the teachers in my building.  I swear, I learn something new every time I read an article on “Using Google Docs”… I love this app.  Drive, is a life saver; if you don’t have an account, get one.  Period.

There are 4 elective courses to choose from: Chromebooks, Chrome Browser, Google Play and Android Tablets for Education.  I am learning my way around my Chromebook assigned to me by the district, and even bought my niece and nephew their own for Christmas this year (yes, I’ve already given them to the kids; they need to start using them, right?)  I’m not sure if there’s anything about the browser I don’t “get”, so I’ll put that one on the back burner for now.  I always peek at Play but never really dig into the possibilities there.  I just might make this one my elective course.  Android tablets is another one I just might consider taking, just because it looks interesting.

So the basics of knowing Google is what becoming a Google Educator is about.  Becoming a Google Trainer, getting my badge that tells the world, I’m a professional development diva and can help get them where they need to be is my goal.  Self improvement is important; helping others improve their skill sets is equally important.  There’s so much more to do; I choose to start here.

Reflection Time:

What are you doing to improve your skill set? What is your passion in education and what are you doing to shine in that area?