Some of the ideas Mr. Lewis mentioned in his presentation are really important since they guide future technology for education users in how to make the most of it for a more effective use. Here is a summary of some of them.
· One of the key things is to turn personal behavior into educational practice. This is that if you are not computer literate or a technology user, it will be difficult to teach using technology.
· Unlike the traditional class preparation where you prepared material that was expected to last and be used several times, when using technology we should think that there is no such preservation so we must be ready to leave the material and move on.
· Teachers and students are empowered by the use of digital technology. Furthermore, students will get more of what they want and less of what someone else believes they need.
· One drawback of using technology is the lack of strategy and planning. Many times technology is used as a fancy trend with no real place in the syllabus and this is because technology has not been integrated in the classroom plan.
· The goals we want to achieve by using technology should have specific characteristics :
Specific and Strategic(the use of technology for differentiation, assessment, planning or communication)
Measurable ( the effects of the use of technology should be measured using clear indicators of its effectiveness)
Attainable ( to introduce technology is not only to use laptops or i-pads but to plan how these would be used, by who and for what purpose within the institution plan)
Results-oriented ( the objectives of the activity should be the key issue to provide the focus rather than the sophistication of the tools)
Time-bound ( there should be a period of time assigned to the activity and a deadline that would allow further analysis of the cost-effectiveness of the use of technology)
On the practical side of the use of Technology in education, Mr. Lewis gave an example of how to use technology for developing Writing. He suggested the following for the different stages of the process:
Brainstorming : use the Whiteboard to record and save the ideas generated in this stage
Drafting: Use ppt slides one per paragraph since it is easy to change the order of the slides to make the paragraphs work into the text
Revising: For peer-editing we can use wikis and for feedback we can use video with editing tools
Editing: Use the facilities any PC provide regarding spelling and sentence organization, punctuation, etc.
Publishing: Use Wikis or Blogs
Another thought-provoking idea Mr. Lewis mentioned was that of Community of Practice which are as its creator Etienne Winger states: “…groups of people who share a concern or a passion for something they do and learn how to do it better as they interact regularly”
Mr. Lewis said that in order to create a community of practice we needed Membership, Mentorship, Orchestrated Spontaneity (Participation) and Recognition. If you want to explore more on this interesting idea go to http://wenger-trayner.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/06-Brief-introduction-to-communities-of-practice.pdf
Last, but not least, for measuring the success of the use of Technology there are key questions such as: Did they (the students) like it?, did they learn? Are they applying it? And you can use the Brinkerhoff Success Case study methodology. You can read more about it at http://aetcnec.ucsf.edu/evaluation/Brinkerhoff.impactassess1.pdf