Thursday, June 3, 2010

Technology Professional Development

We as educator's need to be about the "How" and not the "Why" when learning new technologies. How can technology bring a fifth grade student reading level up from a second grade level in six months. How can a high schooler use technology to help him understand geometry . These are the questions that classroom teachers are wanting to know. Teachers want to know how to use technology to enhance learning in the classroom but the truth of the matter is teachers are not provided the proper training. Teachers are intimidated by new technology and therefore will never use it due to not knowing how to use it. I see it everyday because I am on the front lines with these teachers. First of all how do we overcome this intimidation factor, first we must have training, training and more training to meet the needs of the teacher. This will make the teacher feel more comfortable when using the technology. Next, we need to let the teacher know when the training is over that if he/she has anymore concerns or problems please feel free to contact the instructor at in time. This will also make the teacher feel comfortable knowing that he/she has help anytime he/she needs it. Lastly as instructors we need to know what technologies enhance student learning. How do we find this out through reliable research that has been conducted and proven to enhance learning. By using reliable research data it will save time and money on what works and what doesn't work. When I am conducting a workshop the first thing I tell my fellow teachers is "How" this is going to enhance student learning. By finding some research that has been conducted and showing them the results usually makes the teacher more attentive to what is being taught. It also makes the teacher feel that it is not a waste of his/her time. During a workshop I like to let teachers brainstrom and come up with creative ways to use technology in their classrooms. By letting the teachers come up with creative ways to use a new technology in the classroom usually creates excitement amoung the teacher during the training and the teachers are more likely to use it. In conclusion I believe if we will follow these guidelines we will have alot more success winning teachers over to the 21st century educator.

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