Survival Tips for Teaching with Technology
Technology is just a tool. In terms of getting the kids working together and motivating them, the teacher is the most important.” ~ Bill Gates
Enjoyed these resources? Get your copy of THE 30 GOALS FOR TEACHERS OR LEARNING TO GO with digital/printable/editable handouts.
In my book, The 30 Goals Challenge for Teachers, I describe the many ways in which technology has impacted our traditions, rituals, communication, language, relationships, values, and learning. We have a generation of digital learners who have had very little guidance on how to navigate the web. They also don’t feel the weight of their responsibility because every act on the web has the potential to go viral and definitely has an audience. Below are some tips to help you integrate technology effectively. Feel free to download the slides and share them with your staff. Keep scrolling to access the bookmarks.
- Discover what tools your students currently use. Feel free to use my Google Student Survey as a guide.
- Familiarize yourself with the pedagogy and skills needed.
- You’ll find resources on Connectivism, SAMR, and Peeragogy in the bookmarks below. Download the free peeragogy ebook at Peeragogy.org.
- Choose the right tool for the job! Edshelf and Graphite are tool and app search engines for teachers and parents. They also include reviews by teachers.
- Be a connected educator. Check out my Survival Tips for Building a PLN!
- Hashtags help students and you find the most relevant and updated resources in any field and build a Professional/Passionate Learning Network. Check out my clickable Edhashtags page!
- Pair or group students for projects so they learn the value of teamwork and collaboration. In Learning to Go find handouts for designating roles and permissions.
- Get students to use digital tools to create interactive mindmaps, multimedia presentations, digital stories, comics, games, blogs, scavenger hunts, videos, podcasts, digital fliers, posters, infographics, and more!
- Let a VLE/LMS do the work for you (Edmodo, Google Classroom, Moodle, Edublogs, Kid blog, Engrade, ClassDojo, RemindHQ, Haiku Learning, Schoology, Wiki, Educlipper, Nearpod, or Google Apps for Education).
- Be familiar with Andrew Stillman and his scripts for teachers, such as Doctopus, Goobric, and Formmule, Cloudlab.newvisions.org/add-ons.
- Why reinvent the wheel? Someone has shared a free template for you to edit so find it at Docs.google.com/templates.
- Introduce your students to extensions to do mind-blowing things! Find some here and more here, Tackk.com/googledocsquickcreate and Bit.ly/50chrome!
- I recommend getting the Extensify extension which helps you manage all your extensions.
- Discover which tools your students already have access to or know how to use by surveying them. Here’s my student Google Survey template to get you started.
- Need the right tool for your project? Check out Edshelf.com and Graphite.org, which are search engines for teacher recommended digital tools.\
- Create a community with digital icebreakers. Find a list of digital icebreakers I’ve created and a presentation!
- Get students to social bookmark and curate with free tools, like Diigo, Pearltrees, Storify, Pinterest, Livebinders, and Educlipper. Find more resources here!
- Check the technology again right before the lesson. Try to check it at least 30 minutes prior to the lesson.
- When the technology doesn’t work try the following: shut it down, unplug it, reboot it, Google the problem, or ask students for help.
- Have students learn the tools, then train others.
- Commonsensemedia.org has many resources for parents and teachers for all grade levels!
- Have a backup plan that doesn’t involve technology. Checkout this post, 10 ways I Utilize a Computer with No Internet Connection in the Classroom.
- Get parents on board with these parent resources.