Friday, November 2, 2007

Why "Digital Quill"?

A little nervous here, be gentle, kind readers. I guess the first order of business is to explain the title of this Blog. I live for contrasts. What would you expect from a guy who was an English major and a football player? Professors furled eyebrows at this jock in a literature class. Coaches scratched their heads as they saw Shakespeare, Hemingway, and Chomsky spill out of my bookbag.
So here I am now, and English teacher for 23 years with a prediliction for technology. I still believe that there is no substitute for "old-school writing." Developing ideas, crafting words, making meaning. In this "cut and paste" world, we must remember that the tools available to us are that. Tools.
(Pardon the above fragment)
However, I have witnessed, like many teachers the ease in editing that stems from word processing. Simple? Yes, but effective. To take that to the next level, I realize the power of Digital Storytelling, Blogs, Wikis anf the plethora of tools available for us students. (We should ALL be students all the time, shouldn't we?) Unfortunately, some have embraced the tools, and lost sight of the goals: creating meaning, learning, growing. As my tech mentor, Dave Jakes points out, a tech tool or strategy must first advance literacy.

Here is my charge, my battle cry. Embrace the technology (Digital) while adhering to my English roots to build a solid writing foundation for my students (Quill).

So I take the plunge. After a couple years of blog-phobia, here I am diving in with the rest of you swimming when I can, steering clear of sharks, hoping the water is warm, not too deep, and not too salty.