Archive for Technology

PLP Experience

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on April 12, 2011 by gfreducation

Over the past school year a team of teachers at my school participated in PLP (Powerful Learning Practice). The purpose of PLP is to allow educators the opportunity to participate in job-embedded professional development  and action research centered around the changing learning landscape of the 21st century.

The goal of our action research project was to institute changes in teaching practices that would involve students in more authentic learning experiences, the impact of which would expand beyond classroom walls, and to consider the effects of these changes on students’ knowledge of the use of technology for communication, collaboration, and research. A secondary goal of the project was to evaluate the impact our PLP team teachers have on the school’s faculty through their modeling of innovative teaching and learning.

The participation in the action research project has led to many interesting discussions about how teachers can lead positive change from within a school building.  Some of our discussions have revolved around:

  • how schools might look different in 10 -15 years
  • how teachers can encourage other teachers to change
  • how schools might better allocate resources to gain the technology necessary so all students can be connected
  • how we can use teacher “experts” to lead professional development
  • how we need to shift from teacher directed to student directed learning
  • teachers acting as the lead learner of the classroom
  • taking into account student interests, learning styles and passions when planning instruction
  • the importance of connected learning for teachers and students

I would be interested to hear how your schools are changing and what you envision schools and learning looking like in the future.

School Technology Leadership

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on July 30, 2010 by gfreducation

To celebrate Leadership Day 2010 here are my top 5 things school administrators must know/do to be technology leaders:

5.  They must empower and support those teachers willing to take risks integrating technology into their classroom.  Let’s face it, it is very difficult to get teachers to take the leap, especially when students may know more about technology than they do.  So teachers who are willing to leave their comfort zone and take risks must feel safe, be supported and be rewarded.

4. They must be teachers.  Even though many administrators have left the classroom, they haven’t stopped instructing.  Administrators must set high expectations, take every opportunity to teach new technologies to teachers, encourage them to use it and build a community of learners.

3. They must lead by example.  Administrators must embed technology into their everyday routine if they expect teachers to embrace it.

2. They must be learners.   They must WANT to learn. True leaders know that they don’t know everything and are never satisfied with what they know.  They thirst for learning new tools, exploring new ways of doing things and finding ways to improve what they are already doing.

1.  At all costs, students come first.  Since the students we are teaching will no doubt be using technology now and in the future it is vital that they learn how to learn new technology.  So it is an administrator’s obligation to make sure students have teachers who are learning  and embedding  new technology into their lessons.