Educational Technology Strategy

Forum Goal: Discuss ways to build an educational technology strategy with community partners.

Summary

A technology strategy that promotes community learning is a bi-directional process in which information from the classroom is applied and used for the greater community as well as one where community concerns, projects and events are integrated into classroom lessons. Conversation for arriving at shared goals, online blogs and forums for sharing and discussion and the creation of open resources on school grounds are some of the smart ways to get started on the path to a strong technological partnership with the greater school community.

 

 Top 5 Key Executable Takeaways:

  1. Online components of course work creates a flexibility for students – Creating more online components of course work can be a great way to be more inclusive for different types of students.  If given access to it, it can also be a way to assist parents in staying informed and engaged with what their students are learning.
  2. Technology based collaborative tools – “Meeting tools such as Adobe Connect, Elluminate, Skype etc. provide an opportunity for participants who are geographically separated to collaborate in real-time. Other learning platforms like Moodle or WebCT provide asynchronous collaboration structure and could invite the community (local to global) to collaborate to create a learning society. Communities of practice exist on the Internet that bring together people with similar interests for collaboration and learning societies are built”
  3. Open classrooms and learning community to the world with “global classmates” – Use social media and web tools to connect students and their work to the greater community including parents and “global classmates”.  This can be an opportunity to teach collaboration as well as engage the community and get parents more involved. One example provided in the Thoughtstream report: “creative writing on blogs open to parents on a portal where they can see what their children have written and leave comments.”
  4. On-line forums to exchange ideas between school and community – Online forums can be great ways for schools and their communities to share classroom projects, meeting notes, research, articles and goals as well as engage in conversation around them.
  5. Build a culture of shared responsibility for success for all youth – it’s been said thatit takes a whole village to raise a child.  While our “villages” are now larger than ever, the potential power of and options for collaboration have never been greater.  Engaging whole communities in shared learning and understanding of the major goals of education in the district is an important way to begin this process.

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