Woo! Hoo! I've handed my last assignment in and just come back from lunch and a movie with my friend and our boys. So a very pleasant afternoon accompanied by that happy feeling that you have when something that kept you busy is completed. I can now get on to the other things on my list, including some more blog posts based on what I got up to last term. But first, here's the best bits from this week:
- Models and Best Practices in Teacher Professional Development - This was one of my favourite quotes:
"Many computer-supported TPD projects focus on technical concerns, to the exclusion of all others. Underlying these projects is the assumption that learning how to use computers equals knowing how to teach with computers". This point has been brought up in the readings before and I think it is one to keep in mind in order to properly integrate ICT in a school. Just showing teachers how to use a new tool is not enough, there also needs to be suggestions on how to use the tool with students.
And one more:
"Like their students, teachers learn by doing—by collaborating with peers, reflecting, planning classroom activities—not by sitting and listening to a facilitator or following along in directed technology instruction".
- The above article also discussed what is meant by technology integration. It should not be a separate subject that you study by itself. Instead students should use computers regularly and learn computer skills as part of their study of other content areas.
- ICTs and Teacher Competencies - I had no idea how many really interesting UNESCO publications there were. This one discusses the fact that students today have grown up with technology and expect that their education will have "the same authentic, relevant and interactive characteristics" as they have at home. Unfortunately in a lot of classrooms this is not the case. Here's a good quote:
"The literature is clear that among other factors, high-quality professional development for teachers is critical, yet often lacking in education reform efforts. This lack of effective professional development for teachers is often considered a root cause of the divide between what learners could potentially achieve and the reality they actually face in classrooms throughout the world".
- There was a reference to ISTE and their essential conditions, although after exploring I also found their standards interesting as well.
- Here are some great last words: "Our challenge, then, is to use effective professional development to scale up from successful “pockets” to large-scale, systemic change".