A scene from the movie, “Italian Job”, has come to mind lately. In this particular scene the villain takes the gold bars and places them in three different armored trucks. Now what to do? The old hidden ball trick!
In the movie, the team of thieves didn’t sit on the problem for long. With the aid of technology, they had access to video footage of the three trucks. So they measured the tire height and determined which truck carried the most weight. It turned out to be an obvious determination and the truck with the gold bars was identified.
Sometimes integrating technology can feel like the old hidden ball trick. Teachers plan lessons that include technology to engage learners, enhance delivery, and assess student learning. And even with thoughtful planning, sometimes lessons don’t go as planned. In our first month of our 1:1 Computing initiative, many teachers have reflected on lessons that integrate technology.
When lessons did not go as planned, these were some of the key problems:
Reflections From Teachers
- The students had never used Prezi before.
- Students were not familiar with how to access and/or retrieve documents as attachments in email.
I planned to use an interactive website and have the students work independently on their devices, but when they went to the site a message came up and said that latest version of Flash was needed. I tested it on my teacher laptop, but did not try it on a student device.
- Students were working more on the background, font style, color and animations than on the content of the presentation.
- While these thoughts do not cover all of the possible potential, “hidden” threats, we can see there are many perspectives to plan for.
- What is the ultimate outcome desired in student learning?
- What skills do the students already possess?
- What types of scaffolding are needed to support student learning and to aid in successful task completion?
Make The Most Of Your Time
As a teacher in the classroom, integrating technology can be empowering and exhausting. There are times when the students produce amazing projects that demonstrate deep understanding. And there are times when students are frustrated or apprehensive about using the computer.
Just like the scene from the movie, teachers have a short amount of time to identify the solution that will work. Most often, thinking through the teacher’s perspective and the student’s perspective will bring ideas for solutions to the surface.