In terms of professional development for myself, I would like to receive professional development in the following areas: providing professional development to others and providing quick fixes for common computer problems. As I gain a reputation for some with an educational technology background and being “tech savvy”, I often get asked to assist in various technology roles, whether it is with administering benchmark and SBAC tests, fixing a computer that isn’t working, retrieving a file a student deleted, or teaching someone how to insert a hyperlink. Sometimes I don’t know how to do something (case in point: being asked to retrieve a deleted document. Thankfully, it turned out the student had just moved it to another folder in her Z drive. Also, sometimes when computers aren’t working I don’t know why. I don’t know what all the little messages that pop up mean). In the professional development I receive, I would look to learn more about computers and their workings, almost at an IT level, so I can assist people more easily. I would like also to learn more about how to provide professional development to others in these and other areas. I don’t feel confident enough providing the training without receiving training on how to train, if that makes sense.
In terms of the educational setting, I believe the district could benefit from in-district and out of district professional training is the areas of administering computer based testing and incorporating technology in everyday assessments. . I also think there needs to be more instruction on the way of citing and using sources. Teachers need to begin incorporating this training and reinforcing it in all classes. Technology is used often for benchmark testing to be able track whole school student data in an easy way, but in everyday assessments, such as at the end of a lesson or for content tests, there is a reliance on verbal and paper assessments. Options for using technology for testing include simple clicker response systems at the end of class. With the introduction of SBAC testing in the state in which all teachers’ students are being tested, it is important that all teachers feel comfortable administering these tests. Professional development on specific test administration is important to ensuring that going forward all teachers are able to administer tests independently to allow for the smoothest testing for students.
For me professional goals in terms of equipment acquisition include iPad for teacher use, a set of iPads for student use, and a set of durable headphones for student use. The school has similar acquisitions, but they also seek to acquire school wide Wi-Fi as well as created a dependable network by replacing old switches. In addition, the school is hoping to switch to a Google Drive and Email, to save money and storage next year. The roll out of this plan is slated for next year.
In the assessment process, families are involved when there are issues, such as when students do poorly on assessments, but rarely are parents contacted for other reasons in relation to assessment, for example if a student does exceedingly well on an assessment or improves throughout the year on assessments. Parents could be notified of their students’ scores via Power school or another medium for their benchmark results so parents are kept in the loop, not only about their student’s grades but also about their retention of material and progress throughout the school year.
U.S. Department of Education. (2012). Enhancing Teaching and Learning Through Educational Data Mining and Learning Analytics. Retrieved from http://www.ed.gov/edblogs/technology/files/2012/03/edm-la-brief.pdf
U.S. Department of Education. (2003). Identifying and implementing educational practices supported by rigorous evidence: A user friendly guide. Retrieved from http://epsl.asu.edu/epru/articles/EPRU-0312-46-OWI.pdf
U.S. Department of Education. (2010). Transforming American Education: Learning Powered By Technology (The National Education Technology Plan). Retrieved from http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/os/technology/netp.pdf