Technology Challenges During Teachers' Induction Years
|There were a lot of things to worry about my first year of teaching but fortunately technology use was not one of them," said Michael, a second year teacher in a small Midwestern town. "I received a great deal of technology training in my teacher education program at college and was able to put almost everything I learned to good use.
When he began teaching his school provided a mentor teacher who was also skilled and experienced with using technology. He found that the principal was open to his ideas concerning the use of technology and would do all she could to provide him with the hardware and software that he requested for his classroom.
After my first year, many of the other teachers in my school came to view me as a resource for learning more about technology. I helped when the school offered training sessions and also answered questions on a less formal basis.
|Helpful Hints To Meet The Challenge:|
|1. Keep or make connections with your university and/or instructors that you had in your teacher education program. Ask them for new ideas on software you might request at your school.|
|2. Begin planning to use technology in your instruction as soon as you sign your new teaching contract.|
|3. Spend time at the school, get to know your classroom computer and the materials that are available in the school's computer lab(s).|
|4. Try to meet with the school technology coordinator and ask for ideas on how to integrate technology into your curriculum.|
|5. Prior to the beginning of school, set up an electronic grade book and other teacher productivity tools to save yourself the rush at the beginning of school.|
|6. Continue reading professional journals, especially ones that highlight instructional technology issues.|
|7. Join professional organizations, especially ones that highlight instructional technology and investigate whether they have workshops, conferences, or on-line help for new teachers.|
|8. Duplicate or modify successful technology innovations of other teachers.|
|9. Do a quick scan of your students to find out what they already know about computers, and what software programs they are familiar with.|
|10. Volunteer to serve on a committee that would seek out and write grant proposals to support technology hardware, software, and staff development.|
|11. Attend school board meetings and/or meet with the superintendent to learn about the district/corporation's long and short term plans to upgrade technology.|
|1. Look for areas in which new teachers have special skills and knowledge and allow them time/resources to share these with other teachers.|
|2. Meet personally with all new teachers and your technology coordinator. Be sure that the teachers are fully aware of ALL technology-related resources available to them and know how to access them (i.e., hardware, software, technical support, staff development opportunities, etc.).|
|3. Stay abreast of new developments so that you can provide on-going leadership for your school.|
|4. Continue to pursue external funding sources to maintain and upgrade hardware and software and to continue staff development.|