Saturday, March 26, 2011

Web Conferencing

I attended a web conference on March 20, 2011.  I had to try several different web addresses before I got into a web conference. From what I gathered through the other students, Dr. Abernathy had closed the original conference and I had joined a second web conference that did not have a professor in attendance.  We did not have any audio or visual, however, I did enjoy the discussions.  My experience with web conferencing was a little confusing; however, I do believe that it does have some value in education.  For example, teachers could use web conferencing to work with homebound students or students who are in ISS.  I think that teachers could also use web conferencing to have students communicate with others around the world.  I think it would be amazing to have a web conference with an author or expert.  I think that administrators could also use web conferencing to communicate with teachers and staff.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Technology Action Plan

Needs Assessment
The areas of concern identified from the STaR Chart data were in Educator Preparation and Development and Teaching and Learning. The teacher responses indicated that they participate in minimal amounts of technology professional development each year, demonstrate only two to three of the SBEC Technology Applications Standards, use technology for content area instruction only and have not had the opportunity to participate in web-based or online learning. In reference to Teaching and Learning, instruction is teacher-directed, students use technology on an individual basis to access electronic information and there is a minimal use of technology in foundation TEKS.  In addition, Campus Improvement Plan was analyzed paying special attention to the areas relating to technology and technology integration. One of the target areas is expanding the use of technology through the Vision 2020 and Connections grants.

Professional Development Action Plan

Tasks/ Action Steps





Survey teacher technology professional development needs and desired training areas.
Grant Coordinator Ashley Chandler
Survey Monkey
Conference period

End of March
Analyze and organize data to find out teacher technology training needs.
Provide training in Technology Application TEKS based on STaR Chart and survey results
Ashley Chandler
Grant Coordinator Campus Principal
STaR Chart Areas of weakness
Technology Application TEKS
PowerPoint Presentation of TEKS
Beginning of April 2011
Survey Teachers new understanding of TEKS

Provide DMAC training and how to analyze the information it provides to all core area teachers
Ashley Chandler
Instructional Technology Coordinator
Campus Principal
DMAC instructions
Example student data with demonstration of how to use it to make decisions
May 2011
Each core teacher must submit a plan of how they will use the data provided by DMAC to improve their instruction
Create a blog in which teachers can share resources to help improve students’ online learning.
Ashley Chandler
Throughout the year
Ask teachers to submit one resource each 3 weeks

Survey teachers to determine whether or not the resources provided have been useful
Provide ongoing professional development that addresses iWork, iPhoto, iMovie and other Apple Applications to enhance technology use in the classroom
Grant Coordinator

Technology Integration Specialists
Information needed to assist teachers integrate technology
Throughout the year
Progress can be seen through observations of classroom technology integration.  In addition, each teacher will be required to create and share at least one technology enriched project based lesson every three weeks.
Provide opportunities for teachers to observe each other using technology in the classroom. 
Campus Principal
Grant Coordinator
Model Teachers
Time during conference or provide sub to cover when teachers are observing others
Throughout the year
Teachers will submit a reflection of what they learned to the resource blog.
Create and implement a teacher peer mentor/tutoring program that will allow technology proficient teachers to mentor teachers who are less proficient.
Ashley Chandler
Grant Coordinator
Campus Principal
Allow time for mentor and mentee to meet
Throughout the year
Progress will be seen through mentees integration lesson plans and classroom observations.


The technology action plan will be evaluated through a variety of methods.  Teachers will be surveyed to determine whether or not they feel that the professional development training provided is effective and meets their needs.  In order to ensure that teachers have an understanding of DMAC and how to effectively use the information it provides, teachers will be asked to submit a plan of how they will incorporate the data gathered into their instruction.  Teachers will also be asked to submit one online resource every three weeks.  According to Will Richardson, blogs can help educators “”manage” the knowledge that members of the school community create.” (Richardson, 2005)  In addition to submitting information to the resource blog, teachers will be required to post at least one technology enriched project based lesson to their webpage every three weeks.  After observing their peers, teachers will be asked to reflect on what they have seen and post this reflection to the resource blog.  Much of the evaluation can be done through the principal’s classroom observations.  When he conducts his observations, he will be able to determine if the teachers are using the technology that has been provided.

Richardson, W. (2005). Blog revolution: Expanding classroom horizons with web logs.Technology & Learning, 26(3).

Saturday, March 5, 2011

EDLD 5352 Week 2 Blog Post 3 - The National Technology Plan

         The Department of Education has released the National Education Technology Plan that has goals of raising the amount of college graduates to 60% and closing the achievement gap so that high school graduates are able to succeed in college.  The National Education Plan addresses goals related to learning, assessment, teaching, infrastructure, and productivity. 
            According to this plan, all learners will have engaging and empowering learning experiences in and out of school that will allow them to be active, creative, knowledgeable and ethical participants in our globally networked society (U.S. Department of Education Office of Educational Technology, 2010).  I believe that this is an important goal because we have to prepare students to enter and compete in a new digital technology world.
            The goal for teaching is for “educators to be supported individually and in teams by technology that connects them to data, content, resources, expertise, and learning experiences that can empower and inspire them to provide more effective teaching for all learners.” (U.S. Department of Education Office of Educational Technology, 2010) In order to accomplish this goal, we need to make sure that educators have access, time, funding and support from administrators. 
            The plan identifies online learning and continuous professional development as ways to help meet this goal.  New teacher training that involves experience and practice.  I believe that professional development is essential in order to meet the needs of today’s technological world.  We have many teachers who are eager to learn and try new approaches, however, we must provide the support and training to help them be inspired.  After reading the National Education Technology Plan, I believe that we are moving in the right direction in terms of using technology to improve education.

U.S. Department of Education, Office of Educational Technology, Transforming American Education: Learning Powered by Technology, Washington, D.C., 2010.

EDLD 5352 Week 2 Blog Post 2 - Texas Long Range Plan Progress Report

         I found that the 2008 Progress Report on the Long Range Plan for Technology, 2006-2020 was informative and useful.  I found the results from the Speak Up 2007 survey were particularly interesting.  Students across various grade levels felt that one of the  barriers to using computers was a lack of availability.  Children as young as kindergarten felt that they could learn better if they all had a computer.  I also thought that it was interesting that high school and junior high students felt that filters and firewalls were a major obstacle to using technology.  Students and teachers have faced this frustration at my school.  We have made some progress and some of the restrictions have been lifted.  I believe that instead of blocking everything, we need teach the students to use the Internet responsibly. 
            I was encouraged by the results of higher technology immersion schools.  The results show that immersing students in technology is beneficial for students, teachers and parents.  Students in technology immersed school show ownership and responsibility.  Their academic achievement has improved.  They receive more differentiated instruction.  More people need to be aware of these benefits. 
            After reading the progress report, I find that there is even more evidence to support the use of technology in education.  We can no longer deny the need to provide every student with a laptop.  My school has been fortunate enough to be able to do this and our results seem to go along with the results for higher technology immersion schools. Students are using higher order thinking skills and creating amazing products using their laptops.  Teachers are using online assignments and tests that are graded for them.  Our school seems to be running more efficiently.  There are still a lot of questions, concerns and areas to improve, however, we are moving forward.  Our students will be more prepared to enter the real world.  

EDLD 5352 Week 2 Blog Post 1 - Teaching and Learning

     The Texas Long Range Plan for Technology describes what is needed in order to meet the unique needs of today’s 21st century learners and ensure their success in this new technological world.  Teaching and Learning  goals are identified in the Texas Long Range Plan for Technology.  These goals include having access to technology tools and resources, using technology to solve real world problems, improving academic achievement and effective communication. 
     The area of Teaching and Learning is particularly interesting to me because I feel that it is a weak area for my school.  We have been at the developing stage for the last three years.  Content Area Connections and Online Learning have been two key areas on the STaR Chart that have fluctuated for my campus.  Despite our lack of improvement in the past, I am proud to say that we have a 1:1 ratio of students to computers.  All students at my school have a laptop that they can take home.  This is huge progress for my school.  I believe that we do need to improve the way we use the laptops in our classrooms.  We need to work on using technology to solve real world problems and communicate effectively.  I believe that if we embrace blogging and online learning communities, we can improve in this area. 
     The state of Texas has also made progress in the area of Teaching and Learning.  The majority of teachers describe themselves as Developin Tech on the Texas STaR Chart.  Most campuses in Texas have shown improvement in this area.  Few teachers feel that they have reached the Target Tech level; however, the number of teachers at this level did increase.  In order to improve this rating, we need to work toward creating more opportunities for student-centered learning and encourage online collaboration.
     At the national level, there has been a push for increasing technology in the classroom.  Teachers are encouraged to practice connected teaching in which they have access and connections to their students and technology resources.  Educators are encouraged to provide engaging and powerful learning experiences that will aid students in becoming contributing and successful members of a new digital society.

STaR Chart

Check out this SlideShare Presentation: