Often there is a sense that a school is missing opportunities for integrating technology into the education of its students and failing to reap the benefits that such integration brings: enhanced engagement, information processing and discernment skills, technical skills, and fair preparation for career opportunities in the age of information. Traditional teaching is great for intrinsically engaged students, but today’s students are learning differently, and have immediate, ubiquitous access to endless amounts of information and free tools that they must learn to use appropriately.
As you create the Instructional Technology Plan for your school keep in mind the following actions items to help overcome common adoption impediments:
- Update classroom technology to high standards of consistency, reliability and performance.
- Start engaged sessions with teachers on new teaching and learning research. Get them connected with the way students today are learning and new ways to instruct.
- Remove eBook requirement. Faculty have to be able to select their texts, and eBooks are not often the best texts. Communicate new objectives about the iPad program, if needed.
- Create instructional technology philosophy, then educational technology action plan.
- Create new class schedule with some longer class times (no net increase) for technology-rich and other collaborative activities.
- Hire faculty instructional support person, with real teaching experience, to work 1:1 with teachers to meet their objectives (mid 2015).
- Create upper school computer lab / class space with dedicated computers. Dorm students could have access during homework hours. Printing. Maker lab.
- Convert library to information commons with trained staff to guide students through making choices about information and technology.
- Implement originality checking and smart grading systems
- Implement a learning management system
- Regular departmental meetings in which, each time, one teacher demonstrates a unit of integrated teaching.
- Professional Development standard – must be about instruction, not content.
- Bonus Tip – Enhance the new teacher hiring process to include requirements for strong educational technology experience.
The list goes on… What are some of the impediments your school has run into and how have you addressed them?