Saturday, January 23, 2010

Concepts of Educational Technology Assignment

Digital technologies are changing the world. If we are to prepare our students adequately to meet the global, technologically advanced workplace of tomorrow, we must change many of our antiquated teaching methods. The Texas Long-Range Plan for Technology is an ambitious plan to bring Texas schools, teachers and students into the digital future by 2020. While it is divided into four sections, it is the first, Teaching and Learning, that needs to be addressed.

Ideally by the year 2020, our classrooms will have undergone a significant shift. The teacher will be learning alongside his or her students, becoming a facilitator and a mentor to the students. This is an essential transition as we can no longer allow our students to merely consume information given to them. The vast amount of information on the internet, both true and untrue, means that our students must learn how to find, evaluate and apply information for themselves.

According to the Texas Star Chart, a tool for assessing the progress Texas Educators are making towards the four goals of the plan, Mesquite High School is among the 69% s Texas schools which are at the “developing tech” level in Teaching and Learning. This means that while we are using technology in some of our classrooms, instruction is still being directed by the teachers, rather than being student centered.

In order to reach our target goal, teachers must search for professional development opportunities to increase our understanding of ways to use technology in the classroom. We also must realize that the students themselves have much to teach us as well. If we are willing to learn, they can show uses for technology that we could never imagine.