No matter how welcome the addition or how seamless the integration into the classroom, using educational technology for the first time can be an intimidating experience. EdTech experts agree that the best resources are district tech coaches and fellow teachers who are already successfully using technology. A few helpful tips from the experts:
Take It Slow: Don’t try to do everything at once. The amount of educational technology on the market is overwhelming. Focus on learning a specific app or tool and how to integrate it across content. Implementation is everything.
One at a Time: It’s easy to want to try the newest app or implement new gadgetry in the classroom after reading about it on an EdTech blog. Don’t get caught up with being a first-adopter. Sharpen skills and integration on one or two new things at a time and do them well.
Learning First, Technology Second: All technology needs to be content-driven. Focus on educational goals and how the tech tool will help reach them.
Be Choosy: Not every tech tool has enough benefits to merit space and time in your classroom. Take time to learn the value-added of new technology and potential drawbacks.
Use Online Resources: Resources abound on what educators are doing with technology, which can help inspire new approaches. Follow EdTech coaches on social media, identify blogs and podcasts that provide useful information, and join online forums to discuss new tools and techniques or tips on integrating technology.
CTA Has Your Back: Look to your union for a variety of EdTech training opportunities in person and online. And keep an eye on CTA conferences like the Good Teaching Conference for workshops on the latest and greatest in educational technology.
Don’t Be Afraid to Fail: It’s scary to not be the expert when in front of the classroom, but EdTech offers opportunities for learning moments for educators. Show students how to react to setback, and don’t be afraid to let them be the teacher when it comes to tech.
Back to School 2019: Related content
The links below offer a mix of tips and trends that may guide your journey this year.
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A cool classroom makeover
Sage advice from California Teachers of the Year Rosie Reid, Kim Holz, and Angel Mejico
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