Inspiration for technology integration comes from many diverse places: a great app suggested by your colleague, a student who shows you a favorite site, the blogs you read, online versions of newspapers you love, professional organizations, and our daily lives.
How do we make our technology integration decisions? Who’s got the best recipe?
Ask the experts and it comes as no surprise: there is no single, right recipe, no “secret sauce” for technology integration. That said, we can build a roadmap, a lesson template to use again and again.
To start, let’s ask educators like yourself, who contribute to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s annual report, Teachers Know Best.
The overarching principle outlined in this report is that technology is an “accelerator of gains in education,” supporting the teacher and increasing student learning. In other words, technology is a tool to enhance effectiveness of instruction.
Based on that principle, we can start to build our roadmap.
- Start with content, guided by standards for each content area we teach.
- Consider the pedagogy and the instructional tools we have to execute best practices. Remember, gradual release and teaching for transfer are two key examples that cross the curriculum.
- Bring in the technology into the planning! Think about your devices and applications, their features and functions. Which ones could be used to best support teaching, learning, and practice?
Sounding familiar? It may be!
What I’ve just walked you through is a model of technology-integrated instruction, a lesson planning framework, developed by Dr. Matthew J. Koehler and Punya Mishra at Michigan State University. They use the knowledge strands of content, pedagogy, and technology to find the most advantageous use of technology.
Check out this video, TPACK in 2 Minutes. As you can see, TPACK is agile enough for any teacher, any grade level, any instructional setting; AND it keeps the focus on instruction, with technology as a tool to accomplish our objectives better, more efficiently, and completely more engaging as we meet students’ needs.
Some have compared technology-integrated instruction to an artist layering paint on canvas. Technology. Pedagogy. Content Knowledge. The context of you and your students completes the picture.
Here’s an example I’ve used. Give it a try. You’ll find yourself coming back to this template again and again!
Tags: Instructional Design, Instructional Strategies, Instructional Technology