I took advantage of my "furlough" days immediately before the Thanksgiving holiday (November 20) to visit Ami at RACE. It was a good day to visit as I was invited to join Ami and several other teachers at their pre-holiday Thanksgiving potluck! Here you can see the very nice lunch spread. (And the very nice Ami too!)
Ami is making great progress having identified several teachers to participate in her mentoring project this year. Her school has several teachers who are quite adept at using technology. As part of her project, Ami will leverage their existing skills by working with them to train teachers who aren't using technology much at the current time.
During my visit Ami brought me into one room just as the teacher was using the very nice "short throw" LCD projector to screen an educational video for the whole class. Somehow, the conversation turned to the incredibly popular international YouTube hit "Gangnam Style." The teacher found the video and played it for the class. We all got up and danced (see the photo) "Gangnam Style" but even more importantly, the video triggered an extensive discussion on whether or not the international exposure of this particular singer and video was a good thing or a bad thing for Korea. There was a very lively discussion with the Korean students in the class giving their own personal opinions in addition to a general translation of the Korean words to the song for the rest of the students. I felt that I had just witnessed a wonderful example of how the integration of technology into the classroom sparked a motivational impromptu learning experience that gave all of the students the opportunity to speak and practice English on a topic of interest for an extended period of time.
I am sure that Ami will be able to easily move forward with her project and encourage even greater use of technology at Rowland Adult and Community Education in the future.