McClung’s World; an Interview with Joe McClung

Joe McClung is with us today. Joe is an 8th grade teacher who teaches science, history, and physical education. Joe posts updates of his classroom and other reflections on education on his blog. He is here with us today to lend his views on education and technology.

1. What inspired you to start McClung’s world?

I got started with my class blog as almost a novelty. I had a co-worker that had been blogging for years and was always advocating the wonders of blogging in the classroom. Out of curiosity I followed his lead and started my own blog. As I progressed I started to see what exactly he was talking about. Blogging allowed me to bridge the gap between school and home while also connecting with the world around us. The more and more I became involved with blogging, the more value I found in it as a communication tool for teachers.

2. What makes the current generation of students different from others in terms of technology?

This generation of students do not know a life without the conveniences of technology. It is now a world where they have to be able to not only coexist with technology buy be able to harness it’s abilities for future careers.

3. How can technology change education?

The number one change that I think technology can make is that it can make the lives of teachers and students a whole lot easier. I feel like the main purpose of technology should be to make everyday life easier and I feel like my role as a teacher should be to embrace these technologies and try to understand them better so that I can better educate my students on what is valuable and what is not.

4. What is the biggest obstacle in integrating technology in education?

Educating the public of how it can be used as a positive factor in education.

5. As a teacher, do you think it is possible to one day have all-online classroom in the future?

Yes I do believe because this is already happening now. It has slowly worked it’s way down from the college ranks to high schools now starting to embrace the online classroom. However, while I may agree that technology is a great component to a classroom, I don’t believe that all online classes are the best approach to education. I believe there is something to be said about the human element and the interaction that comes with a physical classroom, it is something that when done right is a great experience. In my ideal classroom, I would use heavy components of technology with my students (maybe even some components of an online classroom) but I still believe the the relationships that are built in a physical classroom are too valuable to leave behind.

Thanks for agreeing to talk to us Joe! Again, you can find his blog McClung’s world here. For more information about democratizing online education, see Udemy’s main site here.