This post first appeared on eSchoolNews.
For nearly a dozen years, I’ve traveled to various schools and districts to deliver professional development workshops and presentations. These experiences have taught me that if our goal is to create fundamental change in classrooms, professional development workshops should ultimately devote less time to the “nuts and bolts” of technology and more time addressing pedagogy and best practices. Technology, in and of itself, doesn’t necessarily change learning. So, the primary focus of any workshop must be the educator’s vision of a technology, and not the technology itself.
To this end, I’ve learned that great and effective professional development usually has these six characteristics:
- Goal Oriented
Professional development should inspire teachers to integrate technologies as creative platforms that manifest student learning and nurture essential skills for our digital age.
At the heart of any educational reform is change in the instructional core. Infrastructure, hardware, and apps are important, but the fundamental measure of success is the impact on learning that comes from exchanges between teacher-student and student-student.
Tom Daccord will be a featured presenter at the July 28-30 EdTechTeacher Summit in Chicago. He will also be co-instructing with Justin Reich during the July 10-11 Leading, Implementing, & Evaluating 1:1 Classroom Learning seminar in Cambridge, MA.