Thursday, June 5, 2014

Digital Divide Series: Character…Curiosity. Disposition Is Just As Important As Intellect.

Jean Donham’s presentation at ILA 2013 College ready? What do first-year college assignments tell us woke me up to the importance of dispositions and that they are just as important as intellect when it comes to making plans for progress in a school library.

Standard 4: Pursue personal and aesthetic growth.
4.2 Dispositions in Action
4.2.1 Display curiosity by pursuing interests through multiple resources.
Character counts

“Character is at least as important as intellect.”- Maria Popova.  If this quote speaks to you the following article may be of interest. Wisdom from a MacArthur Genius: Psychologist Angela Duckworth on Why Grit, Not IQ, Predicts Success  

Disposition matters. What does disposition got to do with the digital divide?
Definition of disposition according to Merriam-Webster, “a tendency to act or think in a particular way." To me a positive disposition related to the digital divide means that we are all curious, interested, and confident life-long learners. A negative disposition could be indulging too much in pride and/or resisting ideas based on fear and/or lack of awareness.
                   Encountering educational scenarios with no interest in altering dispositions? Before you critique ask a question.
1.  Are you humble?
2.  Can your mindset open and expand? 
3. Are you willing to try and see things in a new way? 
4. Are you allowing yourself to receive new information?
5.  Are you continually educating yourself? This is vital for growth.
-Mastin Kipp


On a side note I am excited to learn about PBIS (Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports) and its potential to impact our district.
A motto worth following
I appreciate Kristen Swanson's viewpoints who pens the blog Teachers As Technology Trailblazers. I think that she shares a great attitude about learning. “Being a good Edcamper means that you take a giving, educative stance. Offer to get involved. Ask honest questions. Help. Educate. In the long run, it will make us all better.” (Swanson).
Quotes to motivate
From the Joshua Katz’s video from the May 30th digital divide post. Students need to be equipped with “thinking, reasoning, and learning vs. accountability measures” in our educational systems.

“Given the chance someone in Africa is just as smart as I but need to have self-respect and the hope that things are going to get better.”
-Jimmy Carter
“It takes a team of talented and motivated minds working together. Don’t stop innovating.” “I can’t help you if you don’t help yourself.”
-Steve Jobs
Integrating grit into our school libraries

I believe that we all can succeed by creating communities of grit, curiosity and tapping into the power of character.  How are we connecting the dots between empowerment and learning in our library settings?  We need to give ourselves permission to explore our spaces ranging from anything between our ears to library access 24/7.

As we teach are we paying attention to how students are reacting to frustration and failure? Success? I believe that it is imperative to think about both ends of the spectrum when it comes to academic performance.  Maybe if we focus a bit more on dispositions associated with our library programs we can help lessen the digital divide.  School libraries representing the hub of the school can take the lead on this one.  

Next on the digital divide growth of educational communities and building a culture of learning.