Our school has been involved in a lot of pilots and demonstration classrooms. I love working with technology where I can and especially sharing it with the students. We have been asked to document some of the technology and computer software that we use to enrich the science experience in our classes. Instead of listing a bunch of software we decided to demonstrate it being used for science.
Two problems exist when introducing new technology into a school. You need staff to buy into it, and also invest time in to not just learning it but to effectively integrate it into curriculum and the classroom. The novelty and experience should not be about the particular software/hardware itself but the learning experience of the subject. No one now brags about email or how they can type a word document. That is just a common tool like paper and pencil. These new technologies should fluidly be integrated where the students appreciate it but what they learn is the skill of that tool and the content. This allows them to apply this new skill to other applications, for both school and personal use.
A simple example, let’s look at a Prezi presentation. The students are the creators, not just consumers, where they can creatively communicate knowledge. Students can research an environmental issue and see how it affects certain groups of individuals. They then can use Prezi in other classes and for fun projects. The issue is when the teacher gets too caught up with Prezi itself and does not know how to pair it with a lesson. A teacher normally make brochures and just transfer the project from a paper to digital medium. This is a good first step, but sometimes the learning is more focused on the technology itself and not the content.
With the newest technology we need to move from consumer to creator. Instead of simple viewing of material we want technology to allow us to manipulate variables, allow for changes and publishing student ideas. Hope you enjoy the video and it gives you some ideas to apply technology in your classroom or workplace. It features 2 other teachers from our school as well.