Magazine article Technology & Learning

Four Tips for Effective Digital Leadership

Magazine article Technology & Learning

Four Tips for Effective Digital Leadership

Article excerpt

As educators transition from being "sages on the stage" to "facilitators of learning," the culture in our schools needs to be rich in digital learning. Educators must be open-minded and flexible learners, focused on continuous improvement and adjustment, in order to best engage students

in digital learning. Educators who are honing skills around visioning, ongoing and differentiated professional development, anytime learning, and risk taking are well on their way to effective technology leadership. Here are four ways you can become an effective digital leader:

1. BE A VISIONARY

What do your students want to know? What skills do you want them to have? When students leave your school, what skills should they have? Let these questions shape your vision for learning and technology integration.

Know where your school is and think about where you want to go from here. Identify what steps you need to take, in terms of resource acquisition and professional development, to take your team to that next level. Invest time and energy in the areas for growth that you identify.

2. FOCUS ON PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Effective leadership begins with a commitment to professional development, becoming comfortable and effective in the use of technology doesn't happen by osmosis, but rather by thoughtful, intentional staff development that reinforces technology as a tool for teaching and learning.

Start with the hardware and software knowledge so educators have the basics and can do essential troubleshooting, but then move on to the deeper conversations: How do the digital resources extend learning? Support students? And consider differentiating the professional development. Just as students have varying needs in the classroom, so teachers will pick up on the tech at different levels and should have support that meets their learning styles and needs.

3. BUILD A PROFESSIONAL LEARNING NETWORK (PLN)

None of us learns effectively in isolation, yet the times that busy educators have available may not coincide with the schedules of others or with the training that is offered. Professional learning networks (PLNs) allow educators to build ubiquitous learning cadres, continuing the learning that then trickles down to students. …

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