Saturday, February 19, 2011

METC 2011 - Getting Teachers to Adopt Technology: What To and Not To Do

Rushton Hurley’s list of What To and Not To Do in Getting Teachers to Adopt Technology was a thought provoking list for all administrators or technology specialists. The list of do’s and don’ts for both training and funds is listed below.

The item that has resonated with me since sitting in his session is “Don’t have teachers require themselves to be technology experts.” This idea can help leaders develop a vision that encourages teachers to implement technology tools (or any instructional method) that they feel will enhance student learning. If we wait to try something until we feel we are experts, we will never try it.

My encouragement to leaders is to not expect your teachers to be an expert. Instead, expect your teachers to be professional. Develop a philosophy of how you expect a professional teacher to plan, prepare, perform, and grow. To me, the term expert implies that you are someone who is at the very top of their profession and it is a term that is not applied to very many people. We should encourage greatness among our teachers, and recognize an educator who has become an expert in an area. But don’t expect every teacher to be experts. Expect professionalism.

PART 1: Training
Don’t have teachers require themselves to be technology experts
Do remind teachers of their expertise
Don’t start with standards
Do show something fun
Don’t sit in the lab for training
Do allow regular and short sharing time

PART 2: Funds
Don’t limit technology labs
Do show what’s possible with one or two computers in the classroom
Don’t buy expensive software a teacher hasn’t used
Do learn what's freely available
Dont blanket the campus with expensive hardware

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