Librarians are Gold!

Let the Learning Begin…..

ETL411 – ICT for Innovative Practice

Part 2: Critical Reflection

Web 2.0 technologies are fundamentally reshaping and realigning many aspects of communication. These ongoing processes bring to the fore exciting opportunities and novel challenges for educators (Light & Polin, 2010). Web2.0 tools are relevant in the teaching and learning environment as they:

  • assist teachers cater for differentiation of learning styles and levels,
  • extended learning beyond the school day and
  • allow for alternative learning environments (DiscoveryEd2010Web, 2010).
  • provide support and structure to students who need scaffolding and enrichment.

By integrating Web2.0 tools into “teaching and learning experiences, the learning environment is task-centred and students understand what is expected of them and how to succeed” (Hobgood & Ormsby, 2011).

Explain your understanding

The roles of the Teacher Librarian, ICT Coordinator, Director of ICT, Digital Learning Coaches (ICT Integrators), Director of Curriculum, and IT technician’s in the integration of ICT’s in curriculum programs in my school is currently being revised. This is due to the following reasons:

  • the arrival of a new Head of School at the start of the 2013-14 school year in August.
  • ongoing issues arising between what is the role of Information Technology and what is the role of Educational Technology (E.T.)
  • lack of cohesion and team work between these 2 departments – IT and ET. In my opinion, this should be one department working towards the common goal of leveraging the best ­resources to enhance student learning (Rix, 2014).

TLs and educational technologists must work together to design stimulating collaborative learning environments for students (Jackson, 2011). There can be a tendency to focus on the tools and devices rather than how digital technology can enhance learning, therefore technology specialists and TLs need to assist teachers develop new pedagogies. “New technology does not lead to better learning; it’s what you do with that technology that can make a difference” (Creelman, 2014).

There is widespread recognition of the need for ongoing professional support for teachers to be able to embed Web2.0 tools effectively into curriculum programs (Wood et al., 2005). Hence, many schools are utilising the expertise of the TL as an information specialist to assist staff to implement Web2.0 tools in their classrooms by modelling and / or demonstrating these tools (Bharti, 2014). With the new Australian Curriculum on our doorstops, this is a perfect opportunity to rise to the occasion and be an innovative, dynamic leader in your school who drives change! It is up to TLs to step up and take the initiative to be a “change-agents” in our schools.

“Teachers use their home computers for word processing, internet searching and email” (Conlon & Simpson, 2003). Therefore teachers with expertise and knowledge in ICT are essential to mentor, coach, lead, support and assist the rest of the staff, whether they are in a formal or informal leadership role or not. These educators offer their expertise by offering teacher training which is crucial for successful tech integration in the classroom. Without professional development that can give teachers the full practical knowledge on the use of technology, you will not see technology being successfully integrated in the classrooms for better learning (Bharti, 2014).

There is an growing consensus that all students must achieve “Information literacy: It is the task of general education to provide every student with the versatile basic skills in acquiring, managing and communicating information necessary in the information society and essential for successful further study” (Blurton, 1999).

Analysis of my learning journey

Things I have learnt “how to do” Why is this useful?
1. Navigate around ACARA website. As a TL, part of my role is to collaboratively plan units of work with teachers and to ensure the library is a well resourced learning centre. Therefore it is imperative that I have a thorough understanding of the ACARA site.
2. ICT – General Capabilities learning continuum. To have an overview of what is expected when integrating technology, information research skills and digital literacy K-6.
3. Utilise the ‘Australian Curriculum Units of Work’. It will be very useful to access this site when collaboratively planning innovative lessons with teachers.
4. Create a wiki page. Students, staff and parents use wikis at my school as an online collaboratively working space. It is essential that I have the skills required to use this Web2.0 tool efficiently.
5. Create a Padlet. Padlet can be used during library lessons and staff PD sessions to collaboratively brainstorm and gather feedback.
New pieces of knowledge Why might this be useful?
1. TPACK Model.

Image source:

Share with colleagues TPACK and emphasis the distinction between use and integration of technology. It is a model that is referred to in many schools when embedding technology into curriculum programs (Hobgood & Ormsby, 2011).
2. SAMR Model. Share SAMR model and explain the four levels of achievement.

Image source: http://www.schrockguide.net/samr.html

3. Flipped Bloom’s Taxonomy triangle (Utecht, 2012). This image will be useful to refer to when devising curriculum programs collaboratively with teachers. Spend more time in the Create area than the Remember area.
4. Responsibility of ALL teacher’s to become adequately prepared for the use of technology. UNESCO (2008) states, “the teacher is responsible for establishing the classroom environment and preparing the learning opportunities that facilitate students’ use of technology to learn”. As a TL, this information is useful to have in case issues arise.
5. Teacher training is crucial for successful tech integration. Share knowledge with management team and assist them organise an effective PD program.

I found the underlying message in ETL411 to be: use technology to enhance the learning. Technology for innovative practice is about the thinking and learning that will be enhanced when using Web2.0 tools. This strong message was investigated and further developed throughout the unit. I am a firm believer that it is not about the technological devices or the tools, which are here today, gone tomorrow and replaced with something new, it about how technology is used to further engage and motivate learners to achieve curriculum outcomes in an exciting and innovative way.

Wiki URL: http://ictinnovation.wikispaces.com/JessicaR

References

Bharti, P. (2014). What Teachers Want More than New Technologies? PD Opportunities To Learn to Use them Effectively. Retrieved from http://edtechreview.in/trends-insights/insights/1318-what-teachers-want-more-than-new-technologies-pd-opportunities-to-learn-to-use-them-effectively

Blurton, C. (1999). New directions of ICT-Use in education, UNESCO’s World Communication and Information Report. Retrieved from http://www.unesco.org/education/lwf/dl/edict.pdf

Creelman, A. (2014, August 21). Is the concept of e-learning in danger of soon becoming redundant? [Web log Post]. Retrieved from ttp://efquel.org/is-the-concept-of-e-learning-in-danger-of-soon-becoming-redundant/#sthash.SBqRQcz4.dpuf

Conlon, T. & Simpson, M. (2003). Silicon Valley versus Silicon Glen: the impact of computers upon teaching and learning: a comparative study. British Journal of Educational Technology, 34(2), 137–150.

DiscoveryED2010Wed. (2010, January 6). Web20_Intro.flv [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KN11ZoDJXD4

Hobgood, B. & Ormsby, L. (2011). Inclusion in the 21st century classroom: Differentiating with technology. University of North Carolina. Retrieved August 2, 2014 from http://www.learnnc.org/lp/editions/every-learner/6776#noteref15

Jackson, S. (2011). The Digital Era Needs Human Guides: Why Your School Should Keep, Not Cut, the Librarian. Spotlight on Digital Media Learning.  Retrieved from http://spotlight.macfound.org/blog/entry/the-digital-era-needs-human-guides-why-your-school-should-keep-not-cut-the-/#sthash.LUzKvu83.dpuf

Light, D & Polin, D. (2010). Integrating Web 2.0 tools into the classroom: Changing the culture of learning. Retrieved from http://cct.edc.org/publications/integrating-web-20-tools-classroom-changing-culture-learning

Rix, K. (2014). How to stop worrying and love your tech. Retrieved from http://www.scholastic.com/browse/article.jsp?id=3758397&eml=ANL/e/20140508////ANL//story1/Tier1///&ym_MID=1528682&ym_rid=21467176

UNESCO. (2008). Information and communication technologies in schools: A handbook for teachers. Retrieved from http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0013/001390/139028e.pdf

Utecht, J. (2012). Really? Its my job to teach technology? The Thinking Stick Blog. Retrieved from http://www.thethinkingstick.com/really-its-my-job-to-teach-technology/

Wood, E., Mueller, J., Willoughby, T., Specht, J. & Deyoung, T. (2005). Teachers’ perceptions: Barriers and supports to using technology in the classroom. Education, Communication & Information, 5(2), 183-206. doi:10.1080/14636310500186214


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: