What if? – Teacher training

What if every teacher received 40 hours a year of content-specific training in Web 2.0 technologies (wikis, blogs, podcasts, social networking, photo sharing, social bookmarks, mashups, etc.) and also had access to these tools? What would our schools be like? What would our children’s lives be like?

4 Responses to “What if? – Teacher training”

  1. I’m currently putting together a training for 20 teachers that want to learn about video editing with MovieMaker. My first question of the afternoon is “What is it that I’m here to learn today?”

    The first half of my presentation is about Flickr and Creative Commons. That’s right. In a “How to Use MovieMaker” class.

  2. I stumbled across your blog via del.icio.us. I used to teacher high school English. I was often frustrated by my many failed attempts to incorporate technology and social networks into my lessons. About 6 years ago I was begging to use the schools computer lab for a “chat room” format classroom discussion. I was routinely confiscating chat and im logs from students, so I knew they were comfortable with the technology. Unfortunately the administration and IT department were not. My vision of a networked classroom discussion was to forever remain a dream. I had been inspired by Lester Faigley’s book: Fragments of Rationality. I am glad to see that there are others out there that see the need for overhauling the framework of teaching.

  3. Actually, we have data that point toward an answer to your question: http://newsroom.cdwg.com/features/TeachersTalkTech2006Results.pdf

    See slides 20-22. The punchline: the more hours of tech-related PD teacher receive, the more they feel comfortable using technology and the more effective they feel they are at employing it to teach 21st century skills.

    You’ve set the bar rhetorically high, but we’ve got empirical data suggesting (yes, I know its self-report and correlational – but it *is* a reasonable read of the results) that if every teacher got at least 8 hours of tech-related PD a year it’d potentially make a huge difference.

    Let’s make the goal 8 by 2008. It’s even got a snappy ring to it.

  4. Thanks for all of the comments, everyone. I’ll have to check out Fragments of Rationality.

    Doug, I didn’t mean to ‘set the bar rhetorically high’ – I was just thinking a good week’s worth of training was about right. Even 8 hours would be huge, of course, given today’s staff development practices, but I’d like to think we could envision a time when we’d actually build in some follow-up and/or deeper learning. ‘8 by 08’ sounds good to me, especially if that learning is content-specific learning rather than generic tool learning.

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