Monday, February 8, 2010

Instructional Technology's Role in the Curriculum

This week's JHU homework prompt is:

· As a school administrator and instructional leader, what instructional technology would you expect to see in the written, taught, and tested curriculum of a school or school district striving to meet the needs of 21st century learners?

Written Curriculum:

As an administrator, I would expect to see objectives in the written curriculum that would allow for flexibility for classroom teacher differentiation. More than naming specific technology, I would like to see learner outcomes that are achievable through a variety of ways, especially through the use of Web 2.0 applications. I would like to see the curriculum itself generated through a shared, collaborative space so that teachers would be able to contribute their ideas for effective practices and network with peers throughout the district. When teachers are given the opportunity to implement best practices in order for their students to learn and be able to accomplish the given standards, teachers can address their students’ diverse abilities. Each student’s strengths are recognized and provided for as the standards are met in a variety of ways.

Wordle: Written Curriculum

Taught Curriculum:

As an administrator, I would work to create a taught curriculum that contains a variety of interesting learning opportunities, incorporating multiple technologies for teachers to choose from to deliver the content to their students. Words would be infused into the curriculum guides that would encourage tiered instruction, Socratic seminars, compact instruction for acceleration and a variety of grouping methods for instruction. The written curriculum should encourage the classroom teacher to challenge their students to achieve the objectives of instruction.

Wordle: Taught Curriculum

Tested Curriculum:

As an administrator, I would like to see a variety of assessment procedures to prevent “one size fits all” approach that is common with high stakes, standardized tests. I would work to see the addition of digital portfolios that contain a sampling of learner products covering instruction from in different subject matter areas, during a specific interval of time. I would like to see the use of video tapes showing student progress such as in a discussion or problem solving situation. Self evaluation by the learner of a completed project or other activity would be facilitated through the use of weblogs. Objects constructed related to an ongoing unit of study, using rubrics the means of appraisal could be uploaded to Flickr, SlideShare, Google Applications, or any number of Web 2.0 applications. The Tested Curriculum would dictate what is to be assessed, leaving the how to the classroom teachers and/or schools. The assessment would be a combination of formative and summative. I would advocate for these additional approaches to testing to ascertain learner achievement.

Wordle: Tested Curriculum

· What instructional technology would you promote to differentiate instruction for all learners? Consider some of the Web 2.0 tools discussed in Week 3 and some of the tools/ applications suggested in the UDL discussion.

The instructional technology that I would promote to differentiate instruction would not be specific to a particular brand or application, but a category of technology. This would allow for newer generation tools to be applied and prevent the addition of an obsolete technology in the ever changing 21st Century technology arena. I would group the technology according to data collection, graphing tools, presentation tools, poster generators, translation tools, video and animation applications and rubrics generators. It is difficult to stay abreast of the latest technology available and that is why I would advocate the use of a Wiki or other collaborative site to host the curriculum in order to accommodate the rapidly changing technology landscape.

Wordle: Technology & the Curriculum

1 comment:

  1. Andrea -- Yes, yes, yes! I love that you advocate the process of learning through a technology rich environment and not necessarily specific technology tools. As we know these tools vary school to school and teacher to teacher. In addition, technology changes (sometimes daily) and with a typical 5 year curriculum process, what was once cutting edge, may become very passé in 5 years. It is clear through your response that you fully embrace differentiation and UDL.

    You have earned full credit for this assignment - thank you for sharing your reflections!