Instructional Technology: Meeting the needs of 21st Century Learners

10 Oct

Instructional Technology: Meeting the needs of 21st Century Learners

Read chapter 10 from the book 21st Century Skills Rethinking How Students Learn by clicking here:

Chapter 10 Reading from 21st Century Skills Rethinking How Students Learn

Visit these web links to become familiar with national standards, research and information relevant to instructional technology.

Share your reflections of these readings by clicking Leave a Comment in relation to your professional role in instructional technology.

Consider these Guiding Questions when leaving your comment:

  • How does Instructional Technology impact education today?
  • How do we meet the needs of today’s adult and student learners?

Happy Learning!

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14 Responses to “Instructional Technology: Meeting the needs of 21st Century Learners”

  1. Sheri Firch October 23, 2012 at 10:07 am #

    Would love to get my hands on the entire book from where ch. 10 was taken, in total agreement of current technology becoming an everyday tool within the classroom. Our students today live with tech — at home, at the beach, with friends, etc… As educators, we need to embrace this and use it hand-in-hand within our classrooms… it’s not a negative if viewed and used in a mannerly way. Technology can enhance students’ education and creativity… Educators can use technology to their advantage.. but I think the first step is not being afraid of it, not being afraid to know that their students may know more about the technology—and that’s OK! Learning together, teaching together, collaborating together-isn’t that what a classroom should be?

    • abbemiller October 24, 2012 at 5:07 pm #

      Building a future where leaders, teachers, and learners are learning, teaching and collaborating together is an exciting possibility. In order to create this vision, we as leaders, teachers, and learners must look at where we fear change. Is it with the technology? Is it the teaching/learning paradigm shift? Is it with ourselves? Taking an honest look at where we are resistant to change, so that, we can come to embrace the change to create a more powerful learning experience in our schools and classrooms is necessary for all of us to move forward.

      • lroe October 31, 2012 at 10:14 am #

        I agree with you, in that we, as educators, particularly in the field of instructional technology, need to promote vision for others. To do that, it’s critical to keep up with readings and research for what’s happening, not just in our area, but globally. It is absolutely the “way” in which we are teaching with these tools, and not necessarily the tools themselves. I’ve always believed that technology is the impetus for the paradigm shift and what will inspire changes in the way we teach and learn.

      • Alyssa Moore November 6, 2012 at 10:27 am #

        I really liked what you said about taking an honest look at where we are resistant to change. Our positions and integrating technology in general requires a lot of flexiblity and a willingness to constantly step outside of the box and out of our comfort zones. We need to be willing to do it in order to model for the teachers we are here to support.

    • wendymod November 2, 2012 at 10:30 am #

      I like that you brought up creativity, Sheri. I think it can be at the heart of technology integration since the resources for students are so extensive. I especially like that when the NETS were “refreshed” and the second versions were released, that creativity was added to the list of standards for students, teachers, administrators AND coaches. Imagine if that was the number one goal of all the technology initiatives that the DLC did with teachers and students this year. That would be very powerful.

      • Anonymous November 6, 2012 at 10:22 am #

        I agree Wendy! And this is the year to do it. The CCSS and the current version of the Next Generation Science Standards are finally using the same terminology as the NETS. It’ll be interesting to see what the new Social Studies standards say…

    • Anonymous November 7, 2012 at 6:14 pm #

      I agree with Sheri I would like to have the book for my resources. The book right on point about using technology to enhance student’s education and creativity. I like how Lemke introduces the three important innovations for learning visualization, democratization of knowledge, and participatory cultures for learning. It is important that educators adapt and prepare our students to new technology. Collaborative, cooperative and communicative is significant tool for education and career development.

    • celliott November 7, 2012 at 6:18 pm #

      I.I agree with Sheri I would like to have the book for my resources. Technology is great assets to enhance students’ education and creativity. I like how Lemke introduces the three important innovations for learning visualization, democratization of knowledge, and participatory cultures for learning. It is important that educators adapt and prepare our students to new technology. Collaborative, cooperative and communicative is significant tool for education and career development.

  2. abbemiller October 24, 2012 at 5:47 pm #

    Integrating technology into all classrooms and subject areas can bring innovative teaching and learning to both teachers and students. Having such concrete examples of successful teaching modeling and learning described in the chapter 10 reading from 21st Century Skills Rethinking How Students Learn creates a workable road map. In my experience, how technology gets implemented in our schools varies with the comfort level of those using the technology in their classrooms. Other factors include the cost of the technology and if its lifecycle costs have been taken into account when the technology was chosen to be implemented. Remembering that educators need to focus on the functions of technology instead of all of the different tools or forms make integrating technology into the classroom less overwhelming. Looking at district and school technology policies to allow more innovative solutions to be embraced will take dialogue among the many stakeholders in our communities.

    • Sheri Firch November 1, 2012 at 12:08 pm #

      Absolutely, Abbie 🙂 Integrating technology, even in the smallest form, is so important to our students–our future generations. They “live” with technology daily, integrating the technology themselves into their own lives. We need to embrace the 21st Century and what it brings and what it will bring to our learning environments and to our personal environments.

    • wendymod November 2, 2012 at 10:43 am #

      I think this just may be at the heart of instructional technology: “focus on the functions of technology instead of all of the different tools or forms make integrating technology into the classroom less overwhelming.” This is so succinct and well stated. It could almost be a mantra for all instructional technology PD!

  3. wendymod November 2, 2012 at 10:18 am #

    My favorite passage from the chapter states, “It’s time for a confession: we feel stressed trying to keep up with the innovations of the 21st century”.

    I love the author’s honesty. As instructional technology leaders, I would venture that all of us, at some point, have felt stressed and overwhelmed with technology. Ironically, when the leadership team met and we discussed and tested blogs to determine what would best meet the needs of the DLC for this assignment –we became frustrated when each of us experienced the same blog differently.

    How many of you have procrastinated posting to this blog because you became stressed and wondered if you had something relevant to contribute? We have to get past those feelings. Of course you have something to say! The DLC is a professional learning community and your thoughts and ideas are always welcome. Your personal growth and that of the group depends on your sharing and contributing with others.

    It IS difficult to be in our positions where we are expected to be the “experts” and we have trouble finding the time, and sometimes the energy, to plow ahead, find solutions, and to successfully get technology and instruction work together. We should all appreciate that we have a wonderful group of peers in the DLC who are there experiencing what we are experiencing and are living the same exhilaration and frustration that others are experiencing. We all have shown proficiency in the area of instructional technology which is why we have the jobs that we have. We CAN make a difference in the lives of our students and teachers and it is important that we keep that focus and become the team we can be through the synergy we create.

    The passage moves and references Marc Prensky who suggests that we have to stop thinking in terms of nouns (PowerPoint, YouTube, or Twitter) and instead think in terms of verbs (presenting, sharing, and communicating). Prensky states that teachers should focus on the functions of technology rather than the tools or forms of technology. The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) provide us with a rare occurrence where technology is a vital and important part of helping teachers teach and students learn. The DLC must seize that opportunity as students cannot become College and Career Ready unless technology is present in their education. The following statements are from the ELA CC Standards and are described as a “portrait of students who meet the standards:”

    • Students become self-directed learners, effectively seeking out and using resources to assist them, including teachers, peers, and print and digital reference materials.
    • Students employ technology thoughtfully to enhance their reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language use.
    • Students tailor their searches online to acquire useful information efficiently, and they integrate what they learn using technology with what they learn offline.
    • Students are familiar with the strengths and limitations of various technological tools and mediums and can select and use those best suited to their communication goals.

    The exciting part is that those verbs, combined with technology, have become an active part of student learning in the CCSS. That has not occurred before. The DLC, as a group, has the talent to assist teachers across the state in moving forward. Could the opportunity get any better?

    • Sheri Firch November 2, 2012 at 10:35 am #

      I couldn’t say it any better, Wendy!!!! Much applause to your thoughts about technology and referencing to CC 🙂 🙂 Kudos!!!

  4. Alyssa Moore November 6, 2012 at 10:32 am #

    I appreciated the discussion about altering technology policies. I truly believe that we, in a lot of cases, are still “unplugging” our students when they come to school. I agree that if we teach them to use their technology for the forces of good instead of the powers of evil so to speak they will live up to the challenge. I really liked the idea of a Courtesy Policy, especially the fact that it applied to more than just technology use…it was a great way to show that citizenship applies to many situations and that we need to use manners and behave in appropriate ways all the time. I think this reinforcement is huge!

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