|3c. Coach teachers in and model use of online and blended learning, digital content, and collaborative learning networks to support and extend student learning as well as expand opportunities and choices for online professional development for teachers and administrators.|
As coaches, we spent a lot of time focusing on this particular standard as we strive to develop meaningful professional development that is useful, relevant and keeps in mind the various needs of adult learners. I wrote about Developing Tech Fluency for Teachers because I believe that one avenue we have for offering those technology rich professional development experiences is through personalized learning for teachers. Offering a combination of in person coaching, online learning, webinars and blended learning for PLCs and other small work groups, can expand the range of options available to teachers to learn about, and with, technology. I like the idea of micro credentialing (The Potential for Micro Credentialing in Support of Adult Learning) as an incentive for teachers to hone their skills on technology integration methods or tools that are particularly relevant to them. Plus it gives them the flexibility to take those credentials with them when they go to other districts.
It is important that coaches have strong listening and questioning skills to help Add Technology Capacity to Buildings through Coaching. Coaches bring a fresh eye to the classroom and can often help teachers identify appropriate places for technology to be added to support instruction or the assessment of student work as well as supporting student learning directly. They also can identify tools that the teacher may not be aware of and offer the support to implement them in the classroom.
Lastly, I have been thinking a lot about Differentiating Professional Development for Teachers. One of the biggest challenges of teaching skill based technology classes is that every teacher is at a different place and has different comfort levels with technology. We do not always have the capacity for small group or individual instruction on new tools but leveraging the technology to provide differentiated learning within a training may help address the variety of needs and capacities of the participants. It is something I am going to continue to explore.