The article I choose to write about this week is by David Nagel, and it is titled 6 Technology Challenges Facing Education. Nagel spoke about the how in grades K-12 and the increase of technology is actually preventing a widespread effective implementation. He also discusses how most of the problems are systematic, teachers also share the blame as well. Now we’ll get into the challenges.
1. Professional Development – “Key among all challenges is the lack of adequate, ongoing professional development for teachers who are required to integrate new technologies into their classrooms yet who are unprepared or unable to understand new technologies.” …I found this interesting because we know the new technologies are being introduced into the classroom and the teachers may not know how to use it but, have we ever though that why aren’t they being TRAINED on how to use it. And if they conducted workshops in the summer prior to the school year, they would be able to use it correctly and better understand the new technology in their classroom!
2. Resistance to Change- “Resistance to technology comes in many forms, but one of the key resistance challenges identified in the report is “comfort with the status quo.” According to the researchers, teachers and school leaders often see technological experimentation as outside the scope of their job descriptions.” I find this crazy as a teacher you should want to learn the change and be apart of it. You become a teacher because for the most part you love school! You love learning and you love teaching and need to be up for any change to better the students! I know it is hard to adjust to the new technology and media that is out their but the kids are the most important and they are growing up in a world where it evolves around technology and the constant changing of technology. STOP RESISTING!
3. Massive Open Online Course (MCCOs) and other new models for schooling – “New in this year’s report, new models for teaching and learning are providing “unprecedented competition to traditional models of schooling.” In particular, the MOOC (massive open online course) — probably the hottest topic in higher education right now — was identified as being “at the forefront” of discussions about new modes of delivering K-12 education.” And this is hard for me to think about kids not going to real school and going to a virtual school and not getting the real interaction in a school not able to go to special, (gym, art, music, library, computers) Yet you stay in your house in your PJs and just do work and interact virtually with a teacher. Going to school is such an amazing experience, it teaches children to interact with others socially and to make the real school experience happen.
4. Delivering Informal Learning – “Related to challenge 3, rigid lecture-and-test models of learning are failing to challenge students to experiment and engage in informal learning. But, according to the report, opportunities for such informal learning can be found in non-traditional classroom models, such as flipped classrooms, which allow for a blending of formal and informal learning.” What is a Flipped Classroom ? Good thing I googled that, it is instead of traditional lecture then in class exercise and homework, it is “the term is widely used to describe almost any class structure that provides prerecorded lectures followed by in-class exercises.” from the Educause Learning Initiative article. I don’t know how I feel about this because I understand formal learning isn’t always the way with lecture and test models, but you can make learning fun by giving them interactive group activities and you don’t need to constantly lecture and that’s is why we have hands on learning!
5. Failures on Personalized Learning – “According to the report, there’s a gap between the vision of delivering personalized, differentiated instruction and the technologies available to make this possible. So while K-12 teachers seem to see the need for personalized learning, they aren’t being given the tools they need to accomplish it, or adequate tools simply don’t exist.” This would fall back on the lack of help from the states and even districts to give the teachers the tools they need to be able to give the personalized learning, and differentiated instruction because they are doing everything out of their own pocket and can not do as much because we are not properly prepared for these types of things because of the lack of money or tools to help teachers better their students and develop them and give them their personalized learning to help those students who need it.
6. Failure to use Technology to Deliver Effective Formative Assessments – “Assessment is an important driver for educational practice and change, and over the last years we have seen a welcome rise in the use of formative assessment in educational practice. However, there is still an assessment gap in how changes in curricula and new skill demands are implemented in education; schools do not always make necessary adjustments in assessment practices as a consequence of these changes. Simple applications of digital media tools, like webcams that allow non-disruptive peer observation, offer considerable promise in giving teachers timely feedback they can use.” This is another challenge that is throwing to me because I do not understand what non – disruptive peer observation is so again I googled it. And I didn’t have too much success. But if I am trying to understand it I don’t know how I would feel first off with kids having webcams for this non – disruptive peer observation because I would think this would still be disruptive because they can spend time being chatty to each other. But I also don’t know if I as a teacher would like to be on a webcam with my students and to make sure that at home they are completing work assigned.
In closing I have gather that technology is not a bad thing to have in education but if you do not have the proper tools or training and all that follows it will not be used effective and it will hurt the students and teachers if they can not use it. We need to be ready for change and accepting we need to not resist the new technology. I hope that this article will get out there and let people see that its not that teachers don’t want to use the technology but its because we need to better train and get students more active in SCHOOL a traditional school instead of virtual school, because I still believe in social interaction. Hope this is knowledgeable for all. And also may be I can gain more insight and different opinions from my readers.