Ask any teacher what they are up to these days and you'd better pull up a chair and bring a snack. There are many new things happening in our schools and teachers are being asked to make many changes to they way they teach. Each change requires time: time to learn, time to apply your learning, time to collaborate and develop new curriculum.
So when I speak to teachers about technology and 21st century learning, I am often greeted with a glazed over look that says, "I don't have time for one more thing." That's not to say that many teachers aren't doing wonderful things with technology. They are. But we could be doing much more. The key is figuring out what are the most important changes that need to take place. This is no easy task. Take the following initiatives:
Data and Assessment
Literacy (This includes multiple concepts like Daily 5, Reader's Workshop, Big 6, etc...)
The list goes on...
How do you pick one over another? All are backed up by some sort of research. Some claim to improve test scores.
For me, it comes down to this. Imagine your students as adults. Imagine the world as it will be then (Good luck!) What will make the difference for them? What will make them successful? Healthy? Functional? Happy?
The answer is all of them: But knowing how to access information(in all its forms) and communicating effectively (in all ITS forms) will undoubtedly be important. Knowing how to be safe in an online world will become increasingly important. Knowing how to work with and live alongside people from around the world will be increasingly important. It is hard to imagine how we will do these things without a strong understanding of technology.
How do we infuse technology into our cultural proficiency program? Literacy program? All programs?