Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Welcome to a 1:1 Classroom.

Hi!  My name is Tori Parde and I am a sixth grade teacher at Fairview Elementary in Bellevue, Nebraska.  I am excited to start a blog to help share my thoughts and ideas, as well as, learn from the many educators I admire.

Another reason I began to chronicle my work was the announcement that I would be receiving iPads to use in my classroom.  My excitement for the iPads and the implications to help my students connect to a global society was overflowing.  I couldn't wait to tell my husband, mom & dad, sisters and anyone else I thought would give me an inkling of excitement!

My initial euphoric joy was tempered by the many tweeted and online educational articles that seemingly outlined big mistakes educators make with iPads (or other technology) in their classroom.
"Oh . . . .no!  What if I am someone who fails and makes endless mistakes with the technology?  Was I adequate to receive such an honor and responsibility?"  The fear of failure was slowly creeping in like the black vine that consumes the castle in a scary fairytale.  My mind went to everything I could do wrong, despite my confidence with Apple products and the extensive training BPS has given me.

....and so I thought, I wonder why we do that?  Good teachers, well-trained teachers, educators who truly do what is best for students, sometimes doubt the positive impact they will have on their students.  I feel that educators care so deeply about student learning that they fear failing on any level because, in their mind, that implies that they have let their classroom community down.

So, where am I at now?  I am excited to get my classroom set of iPad Airs and make a difference with my students!  Instead of ignoring the fear, I read and educated myself about the many things educators have done wrong, but also about the many things they have done right.  I also told myself that it is not only okay to make mistakes, but realize I will make mistakes.  It is not about the mistake, it will be about how I grow, learn, and respond to the mistakes I make.  After having a positive and realistic outlook on how I am going to implement the use of iPads in my classroom, I feel I am better prepared to help my students become connected students who learn, grow, produce, and make a difference.


  1. Very well said! I too have some of the same feelings about failing. Reflection and self guessing ourselves shows how dedicated teachers can be about providing the best for their students! Glad to be on this journey with you!

  2. 1st of all, so excited to see you blogging! Awesome stuff! Wow! Really impressed with your thoughtfulness!
    Failing is potentially a part of it, but recognizing it the way you have is wonderful. One of my favorite Michael Jordan commercials ever has to do with his failures, "and that is why i succeed"

  3. With our amazing #fvfirebirds team, it will be an adventure that we will grow as educators and students together as a team! I can't think of a better team to be with on this journey! "Success is the result of perfection, hard work, learning from failure, loyalty, and persistence."~ Colin Powell

  4. Nice first blog post, Tori! I'm very excited at the possibilities that six 1:1 iPad environments bring to our students. #FVFirebirds are fortunate to have such a variety of dedicated teachers who spend so much time going above and beyond for the best of their kiddos.

    Please let me know if there is anything I can do to help. If you ever need to borrow a student from my class to assist with anything, just let me know - I'm sure they'd love to. I look forward to collaborating with you and exchanging implementation ideas.

  5. Thank you to all of my colleagues for your confidence and support. I really appreciate how cohesive our team is and how willing everyone is to help.

  6. Fantastic reflection! I have been reading about "mistakes" as well. I know there will be challenges, but failure leads to change which leads to success, right? :)