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Helping those who are amazing teachers but "don't have time" to learn ICT

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Started by Andrew 13 Jun 2011 1:34pm () Replies (5)

Teachers among us who find ICT a challenge need someone (doesn't matter who...could be another teacher that they choose, or a teacher's aide or the caretaker,or....) that they feel they can ask over and over and over again the same old questions.

The helper must be calm (not like me), positive, not too clever... or fast, they must be patient (not like me) and persistant.

Also helps if you buy iPads and let the kids get into it. Then teachers have to have them. ANd they don't require as much work.

Hmmm, also those (reluctant ICT) teachers have to be prepared to give up some control of the universe and let there be exploration .... yes that is a hard thing to give up.


Experince with ICT does take time and play and frustration and exploration and being prepared to get it all wrong!


  • Enabling e-Learning (View all users posts) 14 Jun 2011 8:04am ()

    You raise an important point here, AndrewSmile. You touch on the importance of giving up a bit of control - in effect, a movement towards more of a collaborative classroom, in which the students take a lead or where other teachers might have valuable knowledge to share, too.

    What comes first - knowing how to use the technogy (which can be a real challenge) or knowing how to integrate it into one's teaching (which requires understanding of both pedagogy and curriculum)? How do teachers address all those pesky techno-questions while keeping their eyes on the 'why', the purpose of using the technology in the first place?

    What is the issue that you grapple with most often, in terms of professional learning, your own context?

  • Tessa Gray (View all users posts) 14 Jun 2011 11:08am ()

    What another great debate! Yes control control control! Who wants to look silly when the technology doesn't work? Who wants to lose control of class behaviour - when the technical issues occur? And who doesn't want to be responsible or 'in control' of their students' learning?

    When I worked with teachers, I would ask them how often the students would have access to computers and why? Amongst other things they responded with:

    • Before/after school
    • During breaks
    • When they finished their work
    • As a reward

    So I used a concentric circle diagram originally introduced by *Dr Julia Atkin. Here I asked teachers what their core values and beliefs about teaching and learning were and how they saw their role in the classroom. Most teachers felt responsible for learning for almost all parts of the day and that the computer was a distraction and an interruption.


    So, as well as unpacking the issues of time, control and technical frustrations, we may need to unpack teacher beliefs about constructivism and what this could look like with the use of e-learning tools.

    Julia’s diagram enables individuals or schools to articulate a fundamental belief about learning, built on the principles of effective e-learning theory while the practices part of the diagram is a way to brainstorm possible processes and methodologies for enabling this to come to fruition.

    *Dr Julia Aitkin From Values and Beliefs about Learning

  • Karen Mills (View all users posts) 14 Jun 2011 11:43am ()

    Julia also refers to the 'Guru loop' which is pertinent to this discussion especially as many 'technophobes' are in this loop. Basically, she says that at the lowest level, learners think that someone else has the answer so they are constantly asking an 'expert' to show them. They never try and figure things out for themselves and when they are shown something they don't see how this can relate to something else. Moving teachers out of this 'Guru loop' is very difficult.


  • Isaac Day (View all users posts) 14 Jun 2011 6:31pm ()

    Every step forward (big or small) is a step in the direction you want to go!  Celebrate it and honour it and further steps will come.

    Just like when your kids were learning to walk... you held their hands and supported them to do it by themselves, not every breathing moment, but when you saw an opportunity to help, you did.  You didn't expect your son/daughter to run that day, did you?

    I believe that if you push someone too hard, they will fall over.


    From a previous post in the last discussion:

    I think, if the teacher is a great teacher who loves their kids, actively engages them in their learning and gets the best out of them, why force them into using a computer?  Let them get on with the job of making a difference to their learners. Then allow them to see the benefits, e.g. how they could use an iPad with one of their reading groups, get some reluctant writers going with a cool web 2.0 tool.  Effective leadership, Small steps, and patience will see this teacher grow.  Show them how it improves learning for the kids... don't just tell them 'its motivating', or that they 'have to use it in the workplace' or that it will 'improve test scores'... that won't wash with anyone with any clues.  Show them how they can use it to promote effective pedagogies and quality learning (and tell them that they don't have to be a computer expert to do it!).

    Just my thoughts. Loving the rigor of these discussions and the variety of views and ideas, great leadership VLN team!


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