Sunday, 22 March 2009

Models for Integrating Technology: From a TL Perspective

I’m going to go off the beaten path with this blog post and I’m going to be really serious about what I learned this week (no really, I am, I swear!). But I have to be honest first. After spending all week cramming to finish my own counterpoint discussion for NEXT WEEK’S TOPIC on whether or not current practices in professional development for technology are effective in encouraging teachers to integrate technology (you can get a sneak peek at Better PD Needed), I have a kind of skewed vision of this week’s topic. I mean I spent all week looking at this topic from the back end! Luckily the two topics are so interrelated that I was able to mesh the readings for this week with my already conceived thoughts about next week’s topic.

Another thing you may need to understand about this week’s change in the way I’m approaching my blog is that my current professional situation is likely to change in the next couple months and that has suddenly led me to think in a whole different way about what we have been learning. I know I have often talked about the when (or if?) of me becoming a real teacher-librarian (a la Pinocchio), instead of a classroom teacher who is a teacher-librarian wannabe. This situation has led me to frame most of my blog thoughts from the perspective of a classroom teacher, whether I realized it or not. But . . . I have been given some news recently that leads me to believe I just might, possibly, perhaps be given a teacher-librarian position next year. Not really sure about the details, or if it will even really happen, but the possibility has cause my brain to switch gears. I am now looking at all these things from the perspective of “How would/could I use this information to help teachers and students on a larger school wide scale?” and “How would a veteran Teacher-Librarian integrate this information into what they already do everyday,” and “How would I present this information to teachers who were reluctant collaborators and reluctant tech users?” All this, and the fact that I am drawn to visuals like a moth to a flame, has caused me to focus on the Instructional models for integrating technology that this week’s readings presented. So, although I have much to say about whether teachers are really integrating technology effectively, and on Chris and Kathy’s wonderfully well presented point/counterpoint I have limited time and space (which I’ve probably already gone over!! I do tend to be verbose :)

I was immediately drawn to the TPACK model as the visual that was presented made it all seem so clear and so obvious (to me at least, I am very mathematical and quite visual, so . . .).



Image retrieved from http://tpack.org/tpck/images/tpck/a/a1/Tpack-contexts.jpg%20on%20March%2022 on March 22, 2009.

I did a quick search and found this definition of the model:

“Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK) attempts to capture some of the essential qualities of knowledge required by teachers for technology integration in their teaching, while addressing the complex, multifaceted and situated nature of teacher knowledge. At the heart of the TPACK framework, is the complex interplay of three primary forms of knowledge: Content (CK), Pedagogy (PK), and Technology (TK). . . . The TPACK approach goes beyond seeing these three knowledge bases in isoloation. On the other hand, it emphasizes the new kinds of knowledge that lie at the intersections between them.” Retreived from http://www.tpck.org/tpck/index.php?title=Main_Page on March 22, 2009.

What I like about this model is that is recognizes that the process of integrating technology is much more complex than just simply using a computer to type up an essay, and it recognizes that this process requires teachers to partake in a new kind of learning of new knowledge. I think this would be a fantastic model to show to teachers. Once it is really understood by all parties it could be a valuable tool for both self assessment and goal setting for teachers AND school wide needs assessment and goal setting by administartors and of course the teacher-librarian. Having teachers point out which areas they themselves feel they are in need of new learning can also help them set goals for their personal professional growth plan and help them to determine in which areas they need professional development for. This could then drive a school wide professional development plan as well as encourage technology integration (see how I’m unable to separate the two topics!!).

The Kemp Design Model of Instructional Design (seen below) could be a very useful tool for teacher-librarians to use (either formally or informally) with teachers who are interested in collaboration with regards to ICT skills.


Image retreived from http://edutechwiki.unige.ch/en/Kemp_design_model on March 22. 2009.

The nine key elements of this model are(Retrieved from http://edutechwiki.unige.ch/en/Kemp_design_model on March 22. 2009):

1. Identify instructional problems, and specify goals for designing an instructional program.
2. Examine learner characteristics that should receive attention during planning.
3. Identify subject content, and analyze task components related to stated goals and purposes.
4. State instructional objectives for the learner.
5. Sequence content within each instructional unit for logical learning.
6. Design instructional strategies so that each learner can master the objectives.
7. Plan the instructional message and delivery.
8. Develop evaluation instruments to assess objectives.
9. Select resources to support instruction and learning activities.

Those key elements could be worked into a graphic organizer and then used during a meeting between a teacher and the teacher-librarian. The information collected can then aid in the creation of collaborative lessons and/or units. But even better, if this model is paired with a working knowledge on the teachers behalf of the TPACK model, it could not only provide a good staring point for collaboration, but also allow the teacher to be very specific in defining their own needs and in their request for help from the teacher-librarian. For example after gioing through Kemp’s model, teachers then refer to the TPACK areas which they have already determined they need assistance with and those are the areas where the teacher-librarian focusses her expertise. In this way the collaboration becomes much more effective and the teacher also learns and grows in the areas they have defined as their areas of need.

This process could easily be recreated using the Summerville Integrated Model instead of the Kemp model, depending upon the preferences of the teacher and teacher-librarian in question. The Summerville model is more cyclical and better addresses “how knowledge is transferred among the teirs.” according to Technology Integration and Instructional Design (J. Summerville and A. Reid-Griffin,TechTrends, Sept/Oct 2008, p. 48.).

This topic has really made me think about the role of the teacher-librarian in effectively helping teachers integrate technology and ICT skills on an individual level, but the role that the TL plays on a school wide level as well. And this quote from Technology Integration and Instructional Design really hit home:

“Everything that we do . . . everything that we select . . . every standard to which we adhere . . . all the content that we design . . . every time we assess, evaluate and revise, we are working toward a common goal” (Summerville, 2006). That goal is the transfer of knowledge to other subjects.” (J. Summerville and A. Reid-Griffin,TechTrends, Sept/Oct 2008, p. 50.).

But the interesting thing for me is that I am suddenly not only able to see how this applies to classroom teachers, but also how it applies to teacher-librarians. And this is an eye-opening experience for me, one I will continue to be in awe of.

Suddenly becoming a teacher-librarian,
Christine :)

1 comment:

lifelonglearnerrhonda said...

As usual you hooked me into your discussion with your unique style. I think you're right about the difference between a classroom teacher and a school-wide perspective. The school climate can make a huge difference in student learning, and the TL can have a big part in faciliating that school-wide climate conducive to technology integration. But what I'm really most curious about is the possibility of a TL position for you! I've got my fingers crossed.

Rhonda