I can't count the number of times people have commented about kids being more savvy on devices than adults. It's true. They pick up things extraordinarily quick, have little fear of trying new things, and realize that, if something goes wrong, said device will not spontaneously combust. I see kids in doctors' offices showing parents how to maneuver their iPhones. I hear kids telling their parents, "Just give it to me, I'll fix it" in too many venues to recollect. I smile. Why? Because I have harnessed the power of "The Kid" and used it to my advantage in our school environment.
If you are a 1:1 school, or even have a decent amount of technology in school, then you too must harness the power of "The Kid". They are mini geniuses waiting to learn more, and it is our duty to provide that learning. Our school initiated the T.E.A.C.H. Team (Technology Experts and Computer Helpers) in the months prior to roll out of our school computers nearly two years ago. We knew that there would be questions and needs beyond what our IT department could handle alone. What better way to do this than by utilizing those who either already know or who aren't afraid to find out!
|Addison gives some illustration tips to a young student|
|Paola guiding a student on his project|
Daily, using a Google Calendar, kids are signed up to fill slots at the desk. This calendar is made available on our school webpage, so anyone can check at any time to see if someone is "manning" the desk. In my office full of windows which overlooks the Help Desk, I see people flock when they know help has arrived. It's the bomb! And, because I'm close by (if they can catch me actually IN my office), I can provide any additional assistance for those especially pesky troubles or any needed passwords. For the truly horrifying fix-its, we send the devices off to our IT guy for an intervention or a kick in the digital pants.
|A snapshot of our Help Desk Calendar|
|Logan working with a table of Foster Grandparents|
I'm a bit of a territorial mother bear with these kids. We are becoming a bit of a family. They are each tremendously talented, gifted, caring kids who just impress me daily with their willingness to give of their time for the betterment of our school and technology use. And, if you're 1:1, may I suggest getting your own group of brag-worthy kids to show 'em how it's done.
I never dreamed of having the tools today's kids have access to. The ability to repair and troubleshoot technology and multimedia tools was not even a flicker in my mind. We 80's kids were too busy Aquanetting our hair or tight-rolling our jeans as we danced around to Debbie Gibson and Bon Jovi.... Oh wait..Bon Jovi...he's still around. Well, some good things never die...