Bringing in technology into a high school classroom is not a one-step method. “You cannot simply slap a netbook [computer] along with a textbook and say, ‘Great, we now have technology,” says Bob Wise, former governor of West Virginia and leader of the Alliance for Excellent Education, an advocacy institution.
Wise says that electronic studying begins with educators, in whose efficiency is improved by technology-not the other way round. Which is even the concept of Digital Learning Day, that the Alliance is spearheading.
The first yearly Digital Learning Day falls on February 1 and can celebrate modern K-12 instructors who effectively bring technologies into the educational setting by setting web based course content, utilizing versatile software program for young students with particular requirements, and using online student checks and various digital tools. Educators, and also parents, college students, librarians, and community frontrunners, can understand classroom improvements and acquire new concepts by chiming in throughout the virtual National Town Hall meeting held on Digital Learning Day.
“The entire objective of Digital Learning Day is to genuinely celebrate educators and excellent educational understanding methods,” states Sarah Hall, director of the Alliance’s Center for Secondary School Digital Learning and Policy.
And excellent teaching, particularly the kind which involves working together with developing technologies, occasionally demands useful advice. Hall and Wise discussed the following suggestions for successfully utilizing technology in the classroom-not merely on Digital Learning Day, however at any time.
Plan in advance: There needs to be an extensive strategy in location to employ technology into the school system, Wise states, and the teachers need to be active in the planning stages.
“When a school states, ‘OK, you want to use technologies better,’ you need to create your objectives and what understanding outcomes you are attempting to reach,” Wise says. School leaders and teachers need to then take into account the “three T’s,” he provides, which request how instructing can be enhanced, what technology will be utilized, and how time will probably be used more proficiently.
Try out new things: The Digital Learning Day website features a quantity of teacher “toolkits” with lesson suggestions and devices for increasing lessons with technology. One tool pointed out is the website Animoto, that allows students to produce and upload videos, including oral book reviews. Additionally, there are lists of suggestions for digital learning, that have been posted by other teachers.
One indisputable fact that has witnessed achievement, say Wise and Hall, is the “turned classroom.” With this particular setup, they clarify, the lectures and homework are corrected. Students will pay attention to a webcast or recording of the teacher’s lecture in the home, and chances are they will come to class and focus on projects and problem-solving routines linked to the lecture with the teachers.
With this particular system, says Wise, “The teacher has the capacity to engage with every student and instantly figure out what their needs are.”
Develop into an instructional developer: As technology advances, so must the teachers. “For the last 100 years, teachers have basically been the sage on the stage,” Wise says. “They are the only entry way of information.”
However, Wise says, teachers will be more like developers, who be able to select and develop what types of content their students access and which technologies they will use. Wise states that with new content technologies, too, educators can rapidly see evaluation outcomes of their students.
“They have resources so that rather than seeing 25 students seated when in front of them looking exactly the same,” Wise says, “they now understand that this student needs this kind of assistance, and also this student needs that something different.”