This is my proposal. This is my initial pitch for technology reform in my school. Our students have laptops and our classrooms have smart boards, however, at this point we just have aesthetically pleasing tools. How we use these tools, how we integrate these tools, will define how our students learn in a 21st century context.
A lot of schools wear the badge of technology proudly on their sleeve, however, how are they really incorporating these new tools? How far do students travel beyond Microsoft Word and Powerpoint? In short, could we run the same class if we were using word processors or typewriters? If you answered yes, then you are not integrating technology.
"We never use our laptops."
This comment was all it took for me. I began by engaging my PLN and looking back through the previous work I had done with technology integration (most examples are found on my blog archive). I found standards for the 21st century student via the NCTE framework for 21st Century Learning skills and assessment. I wrote the following proposal and presented the idea to my administration. This was only step one. Step two will take place on January 13 when I will present a PD to our faculty. This presentation will run roughly 30-40 minutes and include time for "playing around" with new technology "toys". Teachers will work on writing their technology integration plans and select one, maybe two, new learning tools to incorporate into their curriculum maps.
This is exactly what I had hoped for when I addressed my administration about this idea. They were receptive and excited about getting our technology plan in order. The other end of this is the possibility of a new position for next fall. I would still teach a few ELA classes, but my other focus would be working within classrooms to help teachers incorporate, utilize and effectively monitor technology use in their content area. I would work hand in hand with teachers to design and implement tech-driven lesson plans.
Like riding a bike for the first time, it is good to have someone guiding you. Eventually they will let go and we will be off on our own, riding without assistance. The same can be said for implementing technology into our curriculum. We need to guide our teachers, give them the initial assistance they need and eventually let them ride on their own. My school is giving me this opportunity, and I plan on making our school "cutting edge" "21st century" "2.0" and every other neo-buzzword you can think up.
As with any post I write, I look forward to hearing your feedback, comments and suggestions. If you have traveled this road before, please feel free to contact me with comments about your experience.
Curriculum & Instructional Technology Specialist
Job Proposal by: Andrew P. Marcinek
Please consider the following job proposal for a new position for Boys’ Latin Charter School of Philadelphia. The title I am requesting is "Curriculum & Instructional Technology Specialist." If awarded this position, I believe I can use my experience, talents and abilities to help our school be on the cutting edge of Virtual Learning and 21st Century Skills.
The Curriculum & Instructional Technology specialist will collaborate with administration, teachers, students and parents in the area of instructional technology synthesis. This position will work in creating a school wide educational technology curriculum, synthesize all content standards and technology standards and work with teachers to incorporate technology into all content areas to meet the needs of 21st century skills.
21st century skills
- Information and communications skills Examples:
- Using communication, information processing, and research tools (such as word processing, e-mail, groupware, presentation software, and the Internet) to access, manage, integrate, evaluate, create, and communicate information). These skills include information and media literacy skills.
- Thinking and problem-solving skills Examples:
- Using problem-solving tools (such as spreadsheets, decision support, and design tools) to manage complexity, solve problems, and think critically, creatively, and systematically.
- Interpersonal and self-directional skills Examples:
- Using personal development and productivity tools (such as e-learning, time managers, and collaboration tools) to enhance productivity and personal development. These skills include accountability and adaptability skills.
- Use digital technology and communication tools to access, manage, integrate and evaluate information; Construct new knowledge; Communicate with others effectively. Examples:
- Using 21st Century tools (such as word processing, e-mail, presentation software, the Internet, spreadsheets, decision support programs, design tools, e-learning, time management programs, and collaboration tools) combined with learning skills in core subjects equals 21st Century Skills (ICT Literacy) Teach and learn in a 21st century context.
- Learn academic content through real-world examples;
- Learning must expand beyond the four classroom walls. Teach and learn 21st century content (3 emerging content areas) Global awareness, Financial, economic and business literacy, and Civic literacy. Use 21st Century Assessments that measure 21st Century Skills High quality standardized tests Classroom assessments for teaching and learning.
21st Century Assessment
· Supports a balance of assessments, including high-quality standardized testing along with effective classroom formative and summative assessments.
· Emphasizes useful feedback on student performance that is embedded into everyday learning.
· Requires a balance of technology-enhanced, formative and summative assessments that measure student mastery of 21st century skills.
· Enables development of portfolios of student work that demonstrate mastery of 21st century skills to educators and prospective employers.
· Enables a balanced portfolio of measures to assess the educational system’s effectiveness at reaching high levels of student competency in 21st century skills
Suggested List of Performance Responsibilities
Curriculum and Instructional Support
1. Monitor the use of instructional technology to ensure that resources and activities enhance rigorous academic content and the school’s mission.
2. Assist teachers in the classroom to provide training on the integration of technology and curriculum. Offer support hours in tech lab.
3. Maintain blog for teachers, parents, and staff; to share inspiration, assistance, engagement, and resources.
4. Make continuous improvements in key processes, techniques, and procedures.
5. Promote a positive, caring climate for learning. Deal sensitively and fairly with all staff ranging in diverse levels of technology proficiencies.
6. Participate in training and conferences for 21st Century Skills and Web 2.0.
7. Establish technology proficiencies for teachers and students and provide support training model to help them achieve success.
8. Participate in collaboration teams to develop a school-wide technology plan.
9. Develop list of project ideas, to be submitted in August, which would be centered on teacher support and professional development.
10. Seek out professional development opportunities for administration, faculty and staff.
This is an updated version of what I am using to present my idea to our Administration and Faculty. I encourage you to steal this and make it your own! Show your faculty, your friends your tweeps! Enjoy the lack of bullet points and minimalistic approach. If you would like to see what I have done with my wikispaces in the classroom or any other learning tool presented, please feel free to get in touch with me.