Yesterday, during the hours I spent eagerly scanning my Flipboard, Pulse, Twitter, and Google Reader feeds, I came across several references to the concept of choosing a “word of the year” to express a goal or resolution. After sending several links to Instapaper’s “read later” and several more links about “amazing” new tools and services to Evernote, my word of the year became glaringly obvious: FOCUS.
If I am to be the effective agent of change that I want to be, I need to do more than be a frenzied collector of sources and tools. Reflecting over the past year, I realized there were numerous “ah ha” moments when, tripping through links on Twitter, I’d think, “wow, this would be SO great for students!” In reality, the majority of these tools, or at least the purpose with which I had intended to introduce them, became lost in the minutiae of the tools themselves.
In my personal obsession with All that is Flashy and Wonderful, I had forgotten the Golden Rule of EdTech: “It’s not the tech, it’s the learning!”
This year, I’m putting the brakes on being enamored with All that is Flashy and Wonderful. Instead, I’ll ease into a comfortable relationship with just a couple of tools that I believe will increase learning opportunities for my students. I will FOCUS on skillfully and regularly implementing tools that work. I will FOCUS on following through. Most importantly, I will work toward FOCUSED Creation, rather than Aimless Consumption.
Take that, Adult-onset ADD.