After completing my Ph.D. I want to pursue helping teachers get over perceived barriers they have with technology. I know that there are teachers who are risk takers and willing to try new things all the time. There are also large factions of teachers, both brand new and experienced, who are not comfortable at all with educational technology. I want to help these teachers not only become comfortable with their use of technology in the classroom, but help them share what they have learned in a way that benefits all educators. The coursework that I must complete will clarify my view of how technology for the classroom can best be implemented, and give me even more tools to take to teachers, from teacher candidates, to first years, to the seasoned veteran.
In helping teachers to learn to use more educational technology, for both their students and for professional growth, I am planning on developing a website. I am very interested in gamification and am strongly considering using gamification in combination with professional development to help make the learning more fun for teachers. Teachers are such strong creatures of habit, and technology is “new” enough that it can also be scary. I want to help teachers to see that using technology in the classroom does not have to be scary or terrifying. Creating a website that can make the learning fun and give teachers the opportunity to learn when they have time is important. Teachers can be so busy preparing for school and planning for their students that they sometimes lose focus on learning for themselves. For teachers, having the opportunity to learn on their own time and at their own pace is critical.
Through the course work that I have completed so far, I have been challenged to view education differently than I ever have before, through the lens of equity. I love technology and how it can bring the entire world into the classroom. The problem is that different communities fund their schools in different ways. This means that schools that separated by a small distance will have vastly different learning opportunities available to them through technology. I am passionate about the flipped classroom, students having the opportunity to use technology outside of the school day to learn and grow. How do you do this when students and schools cannot support this structure? I am not sure that I want to focus on trying to resolve this issue, but I do want to be more aware. As I work with teachers and share with them how to incorporate and use educational technology, I also need to be able to share possible ways to work with equity issues.
All of the cool people leave comments - what are your thoughts?