Join Duncanville’s CTO, Kyle Berger, to learn how this innovative district is transforming classrooms into next generation digital learning environments designed to effectively integrate technology and visual resources into the instructional process.
We have all witnessed the Passback Effect when sitting in a restaurant, and to keep a young child content and quiet, parents hand over their own technology device. This phenomenon also occurs when parents pass smartphones or tablets to their children in the backseat of the car or in a shopping cart. The result is usually the same as the child becomes enamored with the device, and the parents earn several precious moments of silence. What are the children doing with the device? Most likely, they are playing a familiar game, but they could also be taking photos, listening to music, surfing websites, etc. The possibilities are endless, since they are holding the doorway to all of humankind’s recorded history within their little fingers.
I recently had the opportunity to meet with a team of forward-thinking Media Specialists at Keller Independent School District. The primary objective for our time together was to co-construct meaningful goals for 21st Century teaching and learning and the instructional integration of SAFARI Montage Digital Curriculum Presenter as a tool for this process.
Prior to implementing the SAFARI Montage system, Allen ISD was using school-based media retrieval systems. That was back in 2006, and David Spann, AISD’s Executive Director of Technology, says that the district set its sights on a centralized digital media system. “The goal was to streamline, and with SAFARI Montage, we no longer have a need to put VCRs or DVD players in all of our classrooms,” he explains, adding, “The content on SAFARI Montage opened up a lot of avenues for our teachers.”
We hear a lot today about “flipping” classrooms, where the “lecture” happens at home with online media and class time is spent solidifying learning through small group activities, problem-based projects, or discussion. Teachers are creating their own mini-video guided lectures that incorporate other multi-media materials and hosting these learning objects on class websites, YouTube channels, or other district-sanctioned and protected social networks. In other words the homework, typically done at home after class instruction and classwork are flipped.
Is there a Rosetta Stone for instructional technology? IWB, LMS, LRS, PLC, DRM, BYOD, 1:1, VLE…AHHH it is easy to get swept away in a whirlwind of different educational technology acronyms (EDTAs) and buzzwords these days. As soon as you think you have mastered them all, a new one replaces an old term and the crazy cycle begins again.
It’s no secret the majority of those involved in education would like to make the most of the technologies represented in these letters in order to get the ROI they are seeking. However, the amalgamation of these distinctive pieces in pursuit of an effective digital classroom implementation is a complex, ever-moving target. How does it all fit together? What does seamless integration really look like?
Hi and let me introduce myself as the new Curriculum Director for SAFARI Montage. I am an educator with a drive to change the way we teach in the 21st century. When working with and thinking about our students today, the digital native as an individual or the iGeneration as a whole, it is clear to me that teaching strategies need to move and improve at a faster rate than ever before. In my blog I will focus on best practices for digital instruction.