Mr. H do you want to play Fortnite with us?

Ahh the joys of being a younger teacher (soon I won’t be able to say this so I’ll take advantage of it). Students are always asking me what video games I play, if I want to play with them, and if I’m any good. I usually just default to the, “it wouldn’t be fair if I played you. I’m too good”. This is my attempt to get them to drop it. Then they say something like “Skibidi Ohio” and then I’m left confused and feeling like I can no longer call myself a younger teacher.

One of my previous posts for a former class was about how I grew up with technology. I was born in 1997, so it has always been very present in my life. From video games, media, and learning tools like the internet, PowerPoint, and the google suite. Learning PowerPoint was wild because in the 4th grade they pulled 5 students from our class of 25 to learn PowerPoint on their own with the teacher-librarian and then present to us. We all thought it was the craziest thing. Fast forward 2 years and I got to use PowerPoint for the very first time myself. It was for science class and you wouldn’t believe how proud I was of my first slideshow about Uranus. Yes, I was that kid. To be honest, I’m still that kid.

In the more modern times of my current job as a high school teacher I’m constantly using technology and it is a real pain in the Uranus when it doesn’t work. EDSBY, Outlook, and Google Suites, are all used on a daily basis. My school division operates with these systems, and if you’re a teacher in Saskatchewan, I can imagine you have experience with these as well. I’m not a big Google Classroom person anymore as I found it was too much of a pain in the (insert same lame butt/planet joke here) to have things posted on EDSBY and in classroom. I much prefer having things in one central location, so I default to EDSBY now.

The last two years I’ve been a Phys Ed teacher/Social/Math teacher. In the gymnasium we use more basic technologies like physical equipment (i.e a ball, racket, volleyball net etc.) These are more primitive in nature than a cellphone, but they are still developed forms of technology. I might as well address the elephant in the room with what I just said, but yes I even *gasp* use cellphones for somethings too. This will be a hot topic come my debate on the 17th, so stay tuned for that. In the classroom we have used slide show programs, Padlet (learned about this last semester from some peers. Super fun for getting some engagement from the students). Students have made mock social media accounts for philosophers using Canva or real social media apps like Instagram and Facebook. Nothing makes you chuckle more like seeing Descartes spam posting like a 13 year old. My favourite format we use is videos. Not like in the sense that I show a lot of movies, but I love having students create their own movies. I have not laughed harder at anything in my life that student made films. They are funny, informative, and just let students shine in a different way.

Outside of my job I’m taking the TLL program through the University of Regina. I’m not in the online cohort, but so far, all my classes have been digital. In the fall I take my 5th class and it will be the first one in my program where I will actually have to go to the University. What is even the point now that Henderson’s is closed? Urcourses, while not my favourite tool, has been instrumental in my undergrad and now master’s studies. Also shoutout zoom. You made university a little lame but also a little practical in my busy life.

When it comes to communication, I was 16 when Snapchat came out and that is still how I contact some of my friends, 11 years later. I don’t even bother texting them. That only works for my old friends of course, so besides that it’s texting, other social medias, and *sigh* having to call someone. That is how I know I’m part of the technology age when my principal said, “you should give that students a CALL home.” I looked at him like he was crazy. Disclaimer: I can talk on the phone fine-unless ordering a pizza).

When it comes to communicating with students, we use email, EDSBY messenger, and the gradebook on EDSBY. I can leave comments on things in there, and on google/microsoft projects they hand in. Sometimes when I’m feeling crazy I even given them feedback on a literal piece of paper along with their rubric.

Thanks for reading this far! I’m very excited for this class and for these debates to kickoff!



7 thoughts on “Mr. H do you want to play Fortnite with us?

  1. You talk on the phone to order pizza? Crazy! I have have to joys of Meituan and Elema to type my communications to Pizzaa Hut, Dominos, and even the delivery driver. Talking on the phone is a bit of a lost skill for me as I seldomly do it in China, and wouldn’t be able to communicate if I did grow some confidence. One of my grade 8 students from Turkey dropped a “Skibidi Ohio” in class and I had to take a moment for myself. I didn’t think it would reach the international school, but it did.

  2. I loved reading this.I find that so much of your personality came through in your writing. It is crazy how everyone uses technology differently. When I moved up to middle years I had to rely on my techy grade a like teacher to show me things. I am the young teacher who is old because I cannot be bothered to really learn new things. My students love when they are able to troubleshoot and solve their own problems…. I love it because 1. it creates a deeper understanding and knowledge and 2. I dont have to pretend that I know what I am doing.
    I am so oldschool that I prefer calling rather than email or texting but in part that is because I can multitask better!

  3. Hi Greg! I also hate the idea of calling parents if I’m completely honest. Emailing is such an efficient way for me to contact home – I usually already have a laptop/computer open with my emails right there, and it takes 10 seconds to type up a little diddy about their kid. The school I used to work at, most of the phone numbers were wrong, out of service, or the parents wouldn’t pick up from the school number, so I had my classroom EA Facebook message them when needed – which is still a bit weird to me, but it worked! Finding time in the day to call, for both you and the parents can be a pain. I think that having a type of communication center where parents and teachers exclusively communicate through is ideal – if only the world worked so smoothly, haha!

  4. Savannah and Greg – I am with you in regards to calling parents. More often than not, no one answers their phone these days anymore. If I send an email I have documentation with the date and time along with the message I am sending out. I find it easier and more convenient to send out information to parents/students via technology. On the flip side, I really appreciate the verbal communication approach when dealing with difficult topics. I rather discuss student issues on the phone so I can get a feel for how the parents are feeling and what their suggestions are to deal with these problems. Technology is convenient, but no one can replace a face-to-face conversation or simply a phone call where they can hear your voice. It personalizes the communication between the parties. HINT HINT: I am on the debate against you, Greg.

    • I agree that with certain topics a phone call is definitely better. If there are some serious issues going on, you bet we’ll talk in person. The scenario where my principal said I should call was related to when parent-teacher conferences were happening. Not the actual conference, just when they were happening haha. Looking forward to the debate next week!

  5. I agree with Chloe, your personality really comes through your writing! And yes becoming an “old teacher” definitely creeps up on you, so ENJOY IT! Lol!
    I also use snap chat a lot as a communication source with friends. I am not sure why.. I don’t prefer it.. it just seems to be one of those things that, once the conversation is started, it just keeps pace on there! Then all of the sudden you’re talking to the same friend through Snap Chat AND text AND messenger… it’s funny!

  6. Thank you for this engaging post, Greg! Your humorous and relatable take on technology in education, from using PowerPoint as a student to navigating modern tech tools as a teacher, is both entertaining and insightful. Your experiences with different tech platforms and the challenges of balancing traditional and digital methods offer valuable lessons. Your writing truly reflects your personality and makes the content enjoyable to read. Keep sharing your unique perspective and experiences!

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