Technology is a topic not unlike math or history: you either embrace it or hide when it is mentioned. Many teachers who think they are technologically inept use technology daily without realizing it. A simple projector is technology, as is a phone or a smart board. The second argument stems from student use of technology: if students use their phones to play games, how can phones be a serious contender for the next best technological advancement? Lastly, most teachers believe they do not have enough time to learn or practice the latest technology breakthrough. Enter the fascinating world of technology through a teacher development program, a venue that breaks through the aforementioned barriers to assist teachers in effectively bringing technology to the classroom.
In today’s world, students use computers and phones as if they were born with keypads in their hands. When a teacher instructs students using technology, student interest is immediately piqued and lessons are often more immersive. To learn this technology, it is important to thoroughly understand it yourself. By practicing with other educators in an environment away from the stress of the classroom, teachers can share ideas, rehearse using the technology in a lesson plan, and give advice when the technology is mastered. Giving a teacher development program meeting in a “text expo” format will entice teachers to try something new.
Social media is technology’s primary method of communication. By creating a social media group for instructors via Twitter, Facebook, or another form of social media (depending on what may work within the firewalls of your district), educators can connect in real-time discussions of current technology topics, ask and respond to technology questions, and learn the latest technology news.
Ensure the meetings are interactive to keep everyone engaged. At the end of the meeting, ask teachers to describe their favorite technology or the app they use most regularly. Be sure these apps and technological wonders are written down so each participant can have a copy emailed or sent to a form of social media discussed in your meeting.