West Clermont Elementary Schools

Team Members: Joe Stahl, Lori Van Eman, Jody Davis, and Sarah Sloan

Community: Dublin-Dallas Year 1, 2010-2011

This research project increases awareness of technology for our teachers regardless of what technology they have access to. Staff members will have access to a common, interactive resource to increase collaboration and support of new learning for teachers and students alike.

 

 

Our district is large and has different access to technology from building to building. We wanted to increase awareness of technology to all teachers regardless if they have access to one computer or if they are fully equipped. The range of access intrigued us so we wanted teachers to know they could use technology tools to increase learning regardless of their situation. We wanted resources for teachers in hopes they would have a place to go for new learning if f-2-f learning was too time consuming.
The first outcome we would like to see happen with this project would be to increase teachers willingness to explore more technology for their classrooms. A second outcome is for teachers to embrace 21st century standards combined with technology to engage students.

To achieve these outcomes we have and will continue to provide in-service on different Web 2.0 tools to increase awareness and comfort levels. We want teachers to attend an in-service of their choice and from those who attend we will determine if our outcomes were met.

From our first round of sessions we have been successful at increasing awareness. We know this from the results of an exit survey completed by teachers who attended. The next question is whether or not teachers will actually use this new learning to develop and integrate it into their instruction or change their instruction to increase student engagement.

2010 – 2011

– collect baseline data to determine needs of teachers in regards to technology awareness â—¦ teacher online survey

– provide first round of after school training sessions â—¦ Smartboard 101 â—¦ Flip camera â—¦ Social Bookmarking â—¦ Skype for teachers

– develop common resources to increase collaboration and support â—¦ Live Binder containing 21 Web 2.0 resources and how to videos â—¦ creation of Tech21 Wiki linked to our districts Teaching and Learning Community

2011 – 2012

– develop focus groups or collaborative teams to apply new learning technology while becoming aware of and implementing 21st century learning standards

– continue in-service to increase awareness and comfort level of Web 2.0 resources; possibly the inservice be in multiple buildings with and without technology. In addition, discuss with main office personnel using staff meetings as a place for a 20 minute inservice to meet the needs of all teachers.

– post teacher online survey

From this project, we learned that providing in-service was the easy part. Getting teachers to attend was our biggest challenge. Our new question now is how do we share our new learning and resources, as well as, begin to increase collaboration and sharing of strategies among teachers if teachers don’t attend.

Currently, we are updating our wiki and Live Binder, which are our common resources for teachers. We are sharing our resources with our staff in hopes of creating excitement for those who may be interested in being part of a collaborative team in the fall. Since teachers are at all levels, we want a place to share and post ideas and new learning to create a professional learning community across the district. This project has increased our own awareness of Web 2.0 tools as well as the process of creating resources that are relevant for our peers.

The feeling of the “unknown” was uncomfortable, yet forced us to move forward without the security of knowing what the final project should look like. This is the learning we want our students to have access to. Brainstorming, using critical thinking strategies, creating, problem solving, and collaborating, these are the tools for success that embraced our new learning. This has been our experience… challenging, rewarding, and powerful.

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Sheryl is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Powerful Learning Practice. She works with schools and districts from around the world helping them to infuse technology into their curriculums and by leading other digital conversion efforts. Sheryl also consults with governments, educational organizations and non-profits in development of their various professional learning initiatives. Sheryl is a sought-after presenter at national and international events, speaking on topics related to digital and online learning, teacher and educational leadership, online community building, and other educational issues impacting children of poverty. Sheryl served on the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) Board of Directors for six years. She co-authored The Connected Educator: Learning and Leading in a Digital Age with Lani Ritter Hall. Sheryl has four children and four grandsons, Luke, Logan, Levi and Tanner and a trio of dachshunds. You can find out more on her blog and on Twitter @snbeach.
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