Friday, March 8, 2019

iSWAT (SOL19 #8)

“We’re making a robot!” The excitement in her voice was contagious. The group picked up the tiny circuits and put them together to create a motor. “Look, Mrs. Suomi, we made it move! It’s alive!” They continued by assembling the body of the droid. Watching them work together to make sure that each piece was assembled just right made my heart swell.

I am so proud to be the leader of a techie group of students called iSWAT. iSWAT stands for I’m a Student Willing to Assist with Technology. I’ve been the teacher leader of this amazing club as long as it has been my school district. I love it.  These students choose to wake up early and come to school at 7:15 in the morning to be part of this club. They consider it an honor and a privilege. As I worked with the group this week I started thinking about all the things I love about iSWAT and being their teacher leader. 

-I love giving students an opportunity to create with their technology, not just consume.
-I love providing students with a chance to hone their leadership skills by teaching other students and teachers about technology.
-I love the looks on their faces as they explore with a robot or different tech tool. 
-I love teaching students about a new language through coding. 
-I love when my iSWAT leaders work together to debug a line of code that they took so long to write. 
-I love hearing them problem solve and think through each line of code to make sure that they are achieving their goal.
-I love watching them teach others about their passions by creating their own presentations and speaking at technology conferences. 
-I love when they take such pride in their work while they are creating. 
-I love hearing from coaches across the district how great our iSWAT kiddos are when they are representing our school.

I don’t love waking up early on Wednesday mornings, but the second I am with this incredible group of students, it makes it all worth it. 

If you want to watch our journey in our iSWAT club, please check out our website. We have presentations from each of our meetings, and examples of student work. 


  1. Their excitement and determination is such a positive element of our school community! It is a direct reflection of your leadership. Looking forward to following more of their journey.