I was reading through Facebook this morning. There were lots of grumbling posts about the changes FB made. I admit that I felt a few disgruntled and frustrated moments when they changed it again, but once I had a chance to look through the differences I realized they were fairly harmless changes. Maybe improvements, even.
That got me thinking about how shook up we can get when something we rely on changes. We all use FB everyday, and have gotten so used to the look and way it moves that even small changes ripple out across the FB-sphere. It's a lot like introducing technology into teaching practice. One day we're standing above an overhead and the next we're trying to figure out which button on the new remote switches the Smartboard from video to computer.
There is a definite fear and loathing to changes that involve technology in our practice. Not everyone, of course. There are fearless souls who embrace wikis, blogs, and Wordle like they are new babies to the family. But others have a much, much tougher time with adding technology to their teaching.
This diagram shows the cycle we experience when change happens. We move through the steps at different rates; our learning styles apply to change as easily as academics. Where are you on the cycle? When someone walks into your classroom at 6:45 in the morning and starts to chatter with enthusiasm about how Twitter can be used to learn about the Civil War, where do you find yourself?
Change is ok. It's scary, but it's ok.