Lori’s Latest Links was kind of quiet for a few days because of Spring Break! Every year my daughter Ashlyn and myself take off on a trip during Spring Break. This tradition started when she was just in 2nd grade and now she’s a junior in high school. We look forward to this memorable week every year. This year we took some of Ashlyn’s buddies with us to Disney World. To say that We Heart Disney, is an understatement. It is one of our favorite places on the planet. Thought I would take a minute and share a couple of things I was reminded of during our week of Disney Mania.
1. Differentiation in the Real World
I was reminded that we are all different and are inspired by different things. During our week together we visited the 4 parks of Disney in Orlando. Two of our group had never done the Disney thing. It was so interesting to observe what parks and attractions appealed to each of the 4 teenagers in our group. The science and technology type of rides and attractions appealed to some and others adored the whimsy of FantasyLand. Some of our group loved working within an organized schedule and racing from thing to thing, while others liked a more easy going pace. Park Hopping and breaking up into smaller groups made the trip more fun for everyone. Differentiation was the name of the game on this trip and it worked. We did some things as a whole group and others were based solely on choice and interest. How about that?
2. We Just Do Technology
The use of technology was a natural part of our adventures. Since I was the only adult and I needed to communicate with the other sets of parents I used texting and mainly photos to keep everyone updated. We took photos and videos with our Smart Phones. All of us posted things on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. I used pic collage apps like InstaCollage and Pic Collage to summarize the day in visual form and send it to others. We used the My Disney Experience app on our phones to figure out our daily schedule and find out wait times for attractions. I made dinner reservations using the app while we stood in line waiting for the Little Mermaid Show. We texted each other when we were in small groups to decide on a meeting time and location. When we returned home I put all the photos and videos in a Dropbox folder and shared it with all the group and their parents. My point is this… we didn’t have to plan to use apps or tools, we used them as we needed them. The right tool for the right time. The same is true for tech in the classroom. Instead of trying to make things fit, use the right tool for the right time.
3. There is More to Life than Technology
Even though we used technology to communicate and share things, most of our trip was spent doing, laughing, talking, going, dreaming, etc. The favorite parts of our trip had nothing to do with technology. The hilarious dinner we enjoyed at the 50’s Prime Time Diner in Hollywood Studios was outstanding because of an entertaining waiter and his interactions with the gang. No apps needed here. Another highlight was getting absolutely drenched on the water ride in Animal Kingdom. We all sat together in a big round raft and watched each other get soaked. The laughter made our sides hurt. Probably the best moment was when the 2 girls, hams that they are, met Gaston at Magic Kingdom. The show they put on with this guy went on for almost 15 minutes and created a crowd. He was such a good sport. He played right along. It was priceless. When people worry about the technology taking over our lives and our ability to communicate, I would suggest they take a trip to Disney. We made memories the old fashioned way, we lived them.