I have had a number of opportunities to facilitate a “professional learning program that [models the] principles of adult learning and [promotes] digital age best practices in teaching, learning, and assessment” (International Society for Technology in Education, 2011). Through these opportunities and my work in the Digital Education Leadership program, I have come to enjoy my work in professional development
My co-technology integration specialist and I have had a number of opportunities to lead our staff in various professional development workshops throughout the year. One such workshop was a session on incorporating Common Sense Media‘s Digital Scope and Sequence into the classroom curriculum. We found that while devices were being actively placed in the hands of our students, they were not consistently being taught how to be safe online citizens. There was an attempt to teach digital citizenship skills during weekly library lessons but the the content didn’t seem to stick. The students weren’t engaged, they weren’t invested. So, we investigated digital citizenship curriculum, reviewed the materials provided by Common Sense Media and shared it with our teachers.
My co-technology integration specialist created the following blog post to share at a PD workshop with classroom teachers:
Sample lessons were demonstrated and teachers perused the scope and sequence. From there, teachers were given access to a collaborative document and signed up to teach individual lessons in their classroom, based on what lessons intertwined nicely with topics they already planned to cover:
Following the workshop, my co-technology integration specialist and I touched base with individual teachers to talk through upcoming lessons and offer support. Midway through the following semester, we hosted another PD workshop and reflected on the process, asked teachers to share their successes and challenges and discussed our future plans. By the teachers getting more involved in the implementation of digital citizenship, lessons were more engaging and, therefore, students were more invested.
My goal in “[promoting] digital age best practices in teaching, learning, and assessment” is to help the teachers help themselves. Provide them with the training, tools and support to feel confident in their classrooms and create meaningful learning experiences for their students.
International Society for Technology in Education. (2011). ISTE standards: coaches. Retrieved June 29, 2011, from http://www.iste.org/standards/ISTE-standards/standards-for-coaches