Friday, August 25, 2017

Expectations - Defined, Communicated, and Reinforced

Expectations need to be clearly defined, communicated, and reinforced. In order for teachers to design and implement lessons that make the best use of digital tools, they need to participate in the development of district expectations and understand the implications on instructional practice. 

Teachers should be asking:
  • What does this look like?
  • What will my principal look for when he/she visits my class?
  • How can I take advantage of these tools to personalize learning, differentiate instruction, and assess for learning?
Teachers are wondering: 
Some teachers feel like every use of technology
is the equivalent of scaling a skyscraper.
  • Why are we using technology? 
  • What does a 1:1 look like? 
  • Do you think the students should be using their computers all day long? 
  • Must they take notes on the computer?
  • Will students use digital tools for reading, writing, speaking, and listening in all content areas? Or just in some?
  • You said that we should only use ____ (fill in the blank with Schoology, Google Classroom, Microsoft Teams, Canvas), does that mean we can't use other tools?
  • If you want us to use digital tools to promote critical thinking, are there tools that are better than others?
  • Do I have to use all the tools that are mentioned in PD? 
  • How much time do you expect me to spend planning for a lesson? Is there someone to help me?
  • Everyone talks about using technology for collaboration. Does that mean that my students will never talk with each other in class?
  • We have been teaching our students how to read using a variety of literacy strategies, which include marking up the text. Now you want to limit our printing, because everything is on-line. How are students supposed to use these strategies?
  • What do you mean we should have our students creating? If they create a PowerPoint, does that count? 
  • Students can look everything up now. Is that cheating?
  • Everyone says that our students should be solving authentic problems with the use of the technology. How can we fit that into our curriculum?
  • Why should they curate content? The textbook has curated it for them.
  • How can technology make communication more effective? People never talk to each other any more. 
Do you know the answers to these questions? Have your teachers been part of the conversation?  Have they seen success stories?

When the devices arrive, not everyone will be on board. In fact, a large percentage will be less-than-interested. How do you get all voices heard and limit the negativity? Do you need to bring someone in from outside to facilitate the conversation? Will your early adopters be the best persons to share their stories? Or does your culture not support that approach? Could your teachers visit another school to see what's happening right around the corner or across the state?

How will you define expectations? If you've already successfully set the stage, how did you agree upon expectations?

No comments:

Post a Comment