Technology Leadership Standard II
Educational technology leaders plan, design, and model effective learning environments and multiple experiences supported by technology.
A. Design developmentally appropriate learning opportunities that apply technology-enhanced instructional strategies to support the diverse needs of learners.
B. Apply current research on teaching and learning with technology when planning learning environments and experiences.
C. Identify and locate technology resources and evaluate them for accuracy and suitability.
D. Plan for the management of technology resources within the context of learning activities.
E. Plan strategies to manage student learning in a technology-enhanced environment.
F. Identify and apply instructional design principles associated with the development of technology resources.
“The right moves in teaching are made in light of what learning requires,” (Wiggins, 2005). During each school year I reflect and identify areas of overall strength and weakness in my students, and in my teaching methods, and work to better meet student needs. This last year I had two sections of seniors who needed to be brought up to speed on how to interact with technology as a method of instructional delivery and learn to communicate better with one another. I already had been using technology for research papers, podcasts, and photo essays, but wanted the students to be better prepared for the ways in which college courses are incorporating technology so the soon-to-graduate seniors could be better prepared for higher expectations.
Using examples from teaching sites and training from my district, I created a Moodle site to host information and online forums in which the students could discuss concepts leading up to an in-class Socratic Seminar. I had previously written a discussion-based workbook for the students in my Teen Issues in Literature English elective classes, the contents of which were a natural fit for Moodle. In each unit students read and discussed within Moodle, then read additional material and watched films, shows, and documentaries in class that corresponded to the unit. Class was also a time for group projects and research; all of this work culminated in a formal Socratic seminar discussion at the end of the unit.
Through creating a hybrid class using Moodle, students were able to work at their own pace on “homework” assignments and easily catch up when they missed class. The hybrid model offered them an opportunity to interact with technology in a way that was not just assessment/product driven as well as the familiarity of a more traditional classroom experience. In a recent study at the University of British Columbia, the research of Dr. Louis Deslauriers with 850 undergraduate engineering students, looks to support this method of instructional delivery via online methods and in-person instruction, “…the new teaching style [is]more effective even than personal, one-to-one tuition.” (“An alternative vote:,” 2011). Though the researchers state that more studies need to be done, my personal observations are in-line with the findings of the study, that our students can deepen their understanding of course content through web-based delivery methods that already have a place in their everyday lives.
My personal exploration of hybrid and flipped classrooms led to my being asked to teach a class on the purpose and implementation of this classroom model at this summer’s Anchorage teacher academy. With a collaborator, I created a class outline and identified examples, research, and video evidence to share with other teachers. Though the class was cancelled due to low enrollment, I continue to add to the course outline because this is a new concept and is gaining popularity and interest locally.
In addition to the new hybrid class model, I have been creating developmentally appropriate learning opportunities for all of the high school English classes that I teach, applying technology-enhanced instructional strategies to my lesson plans. My Advanced Placement classes have been using wikis to show Socratic connections to readings and in-class discussions, editing the wiki to show deeper knowledge and understanding of dystopian societies in A Brave New World and 1984. They use the discussion forums of the wikis to chat about concepts and ideas related to what we are learning in class, continuing the discussions begun in class. This last year my ninth grade students, a mix of honors and regular education students, used a wiki to trace the hero’s journey, steps identified by Joseph Campbell, in modern films. They integrated the knowledge of a mythologist’s decades of study of the patterns in stories from around the world with clips from YouTube and still images from the Internet.
As an educator I also create content for my students, framing the curriculum with literature and media I think will help them to make additional connections to their own learning and experiences from other classes or outside of school. I create podcasts, WebQuests, Web pages, and short films that give students the knowledge I want them to have. More importantly though I create frames, like wikis and Moodles, for students to interact with material in their own ways, learning from their peers and reflecting on themselves, exploring technology-driven content and creating content of their own using technology to show what they have learned.
An alternative vote: Applying science to the teaching of science. (2011, May 12). The Economist, Retrieved from http://www.economist.com/node/18678925
Wiggins, G., & McTighe, J. (2005). Understanding by design. Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Retrieved from: http://books.google.com/books?id=N 2EfKlyUN4QC&lpg=PR1&dq=quotes%20mctighe%20wiggins&pg=PR2#v=onepage&q&f=fals