I don’t know how many times I have posted my frustrations this year about my inability to motivate and encourage my staff to try to integrate more technology into the classrooms in this school. I have tried a few things, but it took a presentation at a staff meeting that ended with feelings of frustration and anger to make me realize I had to change my techniques. One of the things I have learned this year as a new administrator, and trust me there have been many, is that my passions are not necessarily other people’s passions. I needed to back up the bulldozer and realize that everyone is not in the same place and I need to respect that.
On the other hand I have had monumental success in the area lately! I decided to apply for a school division technology grant (TIP) this year and sent out an e-mail to see if anyone would be interested in joining me. What was in it for them was a new Flip Video camera and digital still camera for each of their classrooms, the possibility of learning some new things about assessment in math, and some release time to do it. I had 4 teachers jump on board and we had a great time.
Our questions were:
1. Could we improve student engagement in math by using the cameras?
2. Could we increase opportunities for teacher assessment through using the cameras?
3. Could we increase opportunities for student assessment through using the cameras?
The answer was yes, yes and yes!
We had a lot of fun doing the project and we learned a lot. It had the exact effect on everyone that I wanted and had a few extra effects that I was hoping would happen and some that I did not anticipate…
- Other staff in the school were wishing they would have jumped on board when they saw what we were doing
- We had the opportunity to share our learning with division staff
- Another teacher in the school wants to add some more technology into her teaching and has met with me and spent a half a day with the technology consultant discussing possible ways to do that
- One of the teachers that participated in the action research wants to present our learning at convention in the fall and has taken responsibility for that
- Three other teachers have agreed to jump on board with another action research grant project I have successfully applied to do in the fall
Wow! What else can I say! Look what happened when I stopped talking and started walking!