I missed the turn leaving Saskatoon today. Not that I realized as I passed it, but I quickly knew this road was foreign to me. Would it take me home to Calgary? I had no map. My only guide was the compass in my car (I’m not that good with the sun). Oh well, I thought, as long as I’m heading west or south, it was all good. The sun was shining, the Saskatchewan skies were wide above me. Why not just drive and take it all in.

I was listening to Rodd Lucier from The Clever Sheep at the time, catching up on my podcasts. Rodd was talking about the digital divide between teachers and students. He related a story about teachers unable to problem-solve when the computer froze at home while in the next room the kids were conquering the Wii with ease.

It occurred to me that my uncharted drive must be what teachers exploring technology feel like, just what Rodd was talking about. Am I going the right way? Will I hit a dead end? Will I waste an hour messing around?

And I thought of how we might encourage them to just enjoy the ride. Learning is all about exploring, feeling some discomfort along the way.

So did I make it home? Well, yes. But I did hit a dead end. After driving along Valley Road and turning left on 60, I found myself at the entrance to Pike Lake Provincial Park. They were very kind at the park entrance. By backtracking only a little bit, I could drive across to Deslisle and catch Highway 7 there.

All it takes is a little help along the way from one who knows. If you’re among those that know, be sure you are available with some directions. If you’re just exploring, go for it. The risk is well worth it.