Tuesday, September 4, 2012

And so it begins...

This year at Hamilton Community Schools we are re-inventing professional development one educator at a time.

Wendy Baker who covers Sandyview Elementary and Hamilton Elementary and I are expanding our roles as elementary Infotech teachers. This year in addition to teaching 40 minutes of combined media and technology instruction to students in grades Young Fives through Fifth we will be providing elementary staff a number of professional growth opportunities.

Instead of sticking with the old model of professional development coming in the form of a one day workshop where the great new idea has little follow-up we are choosing to truly differentiate and do PD on an individual needs based level. No matter where anyone might be on the road of technology integration we will help them grow in ways to improve their teaching and engage learners.

The following are the goals of our program:

•To provide elementary teachers with relevant, usable, needs-based professional development in the areas of educational technology and its successful integration into the curriculum
•To create team-teaching opportunities for consultants and classroom teachers to integrate technology together into the core curriculum
•To develop collaborative projects based on a combination of technology skills taught in Infotech and the content being taught simultaneously in the regular classroom
•To create a repository of online self-help reference materials for teachers to utilize. Most likely a blog or Weebly site that houses help guides but also highlights the successes we are having through teacher reflection pieces and examples of student work accomplished through this process
•To champion and highlight professional development the way it should be . . . a bottom-up approach that is individualized, not a top-down shotgun approach that is presented one day and then never addressed again

This blog will share my experiences working with staff members at Blue Star Elementary and Bentheim Elementary this year. It will feature many of the lessons we learn, tips and tricks, as well as reflections from real educators sharing their experiences with this PD model.

I hope you will join us on this journey by reading and leaving your own comments.

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