Giving Tuesday

After all the hype around Black Friday, Cyber Monday and now even Grey Thursday it seems the spirit of the season might easily be taken over with shopping fever. Finally, someone has offered an alternative with the creation of Giving Tuesday.  Another gimmick? Perhaps, but at least the sentiment is heading us in the right direction.

Maureen Highland from the Petaluma Educational Foundation joined us for coffee social this week and offered some insight into the art of giving and the breadth of programs PEF has been able to support over the years. Technology in schools is definitely a hot topic these days and given the diverse expertise of the coWORKers around the table it quickly became a focus for discussion.

With the high capital investment required and the fast pace of obsolescence, investing in school tech programs can be a tricky thing. Desktop computers have been replaced with laptops soon to be pushed aside by tablets. But the opportunities for new educational experiences that engage students more fully abound. And Paul Werbaneth chimed in with a great observation- using virtual teaching tools is a great way to pick back up subjects that have been lost with budget cuts or lack of mass popularity. Now kids can chose to learn any language they want and you don’t need to fill a classroom of thirty to make it worth teaching. They can personalize curriculum to students’ interests, abilities, and learning styles. Not that teachers and mentors aren’t important, I truly believe they are most important, but utilizing the potential for a greater educational experience through technology is definitely worth investigating.