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This book is a great resource for both teachers in teacher-training programs and working teachers. The book approaches TML from a constructivist perspective.

I particularly enjoyed their analysis of technology:

Learning Technologies:

  • are more than hardware
  • are any environment or definable set of (constructivist) activities
  • are not conveyors or communicators of meaning
  • support meaningful learning when they  fulfill a learning need

* learners and technologies should be intellectual partners, where the cognitive responsibility for performance is distributed to the partner that performs it better (p.6)

Howland, J., Jonassen, D., & Marra, R. (2011). Meaningful learning with technology (4th edition ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson.

Bates and Sangrà (2011) argue that successful technology integration requires equal attention being paid to three main elements: pedagogy, technology, and organization.

This is based on Sangrà’s (2008) TOPs Model:
Furthermore, Bates and Sangrà continue to come back to the idea of supporting ‘innovation in teaching’- encouraging it, funding it, and evaluating it.Jonah

Bates, T., & Sangrà, A. (2011). Managing technology in higher education: Strategies for transforming teaching and learning. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

An important quote:

“I’ve seen too many people sink into the quicksand of metrics, never to return. The key is not to measure every possible angle but to focus on metrics that are pragmatic and relevant to both human and business performance at the same time.” (Zeigler as cited in Newman (2003).

A good friend recommended Clay Sharky’s book a few years ago and now I have one more reason to read it. Can’t wait…

Managing Technology in Higher Education (2011) by Bates and Sangra:

The Race Between Technology and Education (2010) by Goldin and Katz

Caffarella’s (2002) discussion of the importance of naming your personal beliefs rang a few bells for me. She states that “rarely do people involved in program planning fully articulate their personal beliefs about program planning, sometimes even to themselves; yet a system of beliefs guides their actions” (39).

We had a new administrator at our school last year and she implemented a visioning process where we were asked to state individually, by department, and as a staff our beliefs about learning, and the role of teachers and our school in the community. There was initially some resistance from people who felt that this might be just one more pet project but I think there was buy-in by most of us at the end.

It is a surprisingly powerful process to articulate what you think is important. Once it it out there, the onus is on you to act in ways that support your beliefs. You also open yourself up to criticism from people who may disagree with you and cause you to question your own beliefs or actions.

Very interesting!

I was struck by this quote from Bates and Poole (2003) “The intelligent use of technology for teaching need not lead to more work for the teacher, but only if the teacher works in a different way and in particular only if the teacher works as part of a team of professionals.” (p.93)

I do have some concerns about the level of support we as high school teachers receive to embark on TML but I do think collaboration plays an important role- to stay inspired, continue learning, and avoid being redundant.