There's no doubt that you will encounter things you NEVER anticipated when it comes to students and technology, just like your first years as a teacher. "You put WHAT in the pencil sharpener?!"
Over the years I've found a few things that have worked for me in helping curb some of the issues that can occur with having tech in the classroom.
- Have a charging station - even if you have a cart of laptops in your room, have a few power strips in different parts of the room so kids can charge easily while continuing to work.
- If you encounter class-wide issues, give it 5 minutes to troubleshoot, then move onto Plan B - Maybe the website you were planning on using is down for maintenance, or perhaps the network isn't working. If it's something you feel comfortable tackling, give it 5 minutes. I have wasted entire class periods trying to address an issue. Maybe you can get to the website and you pull it up on the projector and do the activity as a class. Whatever it is, do what teachers do best: think on your feet.
- See the screens - If students are working independently, have them turn their desks (if possible) so you can see their screens. Perhaps they can't adjust their seating, consider working from a place where you can see the screen. If students are working in groups, use Google Docs so you can monitor their progress.
- Post login information - Are you tired of reminding students how to login into Google or SIS or whatever common website they are using? Consider posting those naming conventions to cue their memory on what their login is. If your district/school doesn't use a naming convention, then help students by offering one to use.