|Posted on 15 December, 2014 at 21:50|
Planning is a critical part of an educator’s role. However it doesn't go without saying that in order for an educator to successfully plan, they need to be completely equipped with the correct tools. Correct tools that enable self-learning, collaboration, and record keeping such as those offered by Office 365 and Google Docs.
My school has worked tirelessly to introduce a BYOD that will commence in 2015 and in order to do this successfully, extensive planning administratively as well as create digital curriculum and facilitate professional learning is vital. BYOD programs have proven popular in schools as;
1.) Students are already familiar and comfortable using their own technology so they can focus on actually learning with them than learning how to use the device.
2.) Students’ personal mobile devices tend to be more cutting-edge, so schools can more easily stay up-to-date with technology.
3.) Students are more likely to have remembered their beloved mobile devices than textbooks or notes.
4.) It’s a cost-effective way to save schools money on technology.
5.) With BYOD students are more likely to continue learning outside of schools hours.
I have been fortunate to have played a role in all three of these areas and as a result have been able to assist teachers in developing confidence and direction in their approach to use these tools in their own classroom. Furthermore, teachers are now able to use these new skills in their own planning and curriculum development.
The 6 hour professional learning session included hands-on sessions of how to use these collaborative tools as well as how to embed them within school programs. It is important that teachers know how to trouble shoot problems that either themselves or their students are encountering as it occurs. The sessions also provided that teachers time to learn the tools in a self-paced learning environment in order that teachers could fully grasp and play with their device and tools rather than be left to play with it in their own time (as you know, we all intend to do this, but don’t actually get too). By using a procedural approach (ie, first do this, then do that, then do this…), teachers were able to use rope learning techniques to master their own learning.
Overall, this professional learning session united teachers by their KLA in their commitment to achieving their outcomes. By completing the tasks in such a way, teachers were able share a variety of activities including sharing their vision, working and learning collaboratively, visiting and observing other classrooms, and participating in shared decision making. This structure also reduces isolation of teachers and creates better informed and committed teachers, and academic gains for students.