Title 1, Large district, Urban, 9-12
Timing matters in life. And the school district where I work had exquisite timing when we transitioned to a 1:1 model for our high schools. The change happened two years before COVID-19 forced us to go fully virtual in March of 2020. Of course, the foundation that had been laid up to that point was more solid for some teachers than others. But each educator had been part of the transition to some degree and could rely on their colleagues for support and inspiration.
It had been just 20 months after laptops were introduced to each student and those pre-COVID years seem nostalgic. The pre 1:1 experience, however, seems like a century ago. This is largely because what was perceived as a radical change in teaching and learning or something only a few teachers do, has now become the norm. And, in many cases, it has made learning experiences better.
As we entered this school year, it was evident that it was going to be a year full of new challenges and opportunities. One feature of education, however, was going to be familiar. That is, instruction, assessment, relationship building, and class management are all now intertwined with some aspects of technology designed for educators. More importantly, educational technology, or more specifically teacher use of these tools, has changed the educational landscape for the better.
To support these and other practices, it is important to be networked with organizations and practitioners. Some of my favorites to follow include Catlin Tucker https://catlintucker.com/, ISTE https://www.iste.org/, the Cult of Pedagogy https://www.cultofpedagogy.com/who-we-are/
One mantra to hold dear regarding the use of educational technology is that no individual holds all the information in the field, and no one can be expected to do this on their own. So, ask questions, ask for help, embrace change, and help educators accomplish their goals while accomplishing yours!