Digital-Age Literacy for Teachers: Applying Technology Standards in Everyday Practice

Digital-Age Literacy for Teachers: Applying Technology Standards in Everyday Practice

Digital-Age Literacy for Teachers: Applying Technology Standards in Everyday Practice

Digital-Age Literacy for Teachers: Applying Technology Standards in Everyday Practice

Synopsis

Guides teachers step-by-step through each of the National Educational Technology Standards for Teachers performance indicators, demonstrating along the way how to use appropriate digital-age tools to increase productivity and advance student learning.

Excerpt

It is a terrible thing to see and have no vision.

—HELEN KELLER

(attributed by D. Kenny; CEO, National Institute for the Blind of Ireland; 2006)

The quotation above encapsulates the dilemma educators face today when it comes to the role of technology in schools. The dilemma is that since the 1980s, we've seen rapid advances in technology development that have significantly impacted nearly every facet of American life except life in the classroom. Desktop computers appeared in K-12 classrooms approximately 25 years ago, and early adopters of instructional technology were certain that computers would redefine education practice in the United States. We now know that this belief was optimistic. Why? The necessary vision has been missing.

Try to imagine everyday life outside of school without a laptop, cell phone, personal digital assistant, digital camera, DVD player, MP3 player, or any one of a number of other technologies that were rare or nonexistent 25 years ago. Imagine not being able to access the Internet using a high-speed connection. Now think about your classroom. How many of these technologies are readily available to you and your students? If your situation is like that of many educators, you can relate to the student who said, [When I get to school, I feel like I have to power down before I go inside.]

A primary reason for this situation is the fact that technology integration requires a coherent vision for systemic reform, a vision that must be supported by the entire educational community. In fact, systemic reform is so critical that the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) has identified 10 elements, or [Essential Conditions,] that must be in place, stating that in the absence of these Essential Conditions teachers cannot be expected to incorporate technology use as an integral part of the teaching and learning process. These Essential Conditions are shown in table 0.1.

Unfortunately, the reality is that many teachers and administrators don't have the necessary background in either system change or technology integration to implement and sustain reform. The purpose of the National Educational Technology Standards for Teachers (NETS•T) is to provide guidelines to assist in addressing the Essential Conditions as you work to implement effective use of technology as a tool for teaching and learning.

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