Trainers Corner: Integrating Technology Over the Summer With the Help of Professional Development

Bringing technology inside the classroom isn’t always as simple as asking students to download an app on their tablets, or having them type out spelling lists. If your school has a goal to get better at integrating technology more seamlessly, professional development is a great place to start, and what better time to learn about new ways to bring technology inside the classroom than over the summer break?

Look to Your School District
Oftentimes, many school districts will offer professional development opportunities for faculty to get various certifications and training during the break. These opportunities help teachers rejuvenate from the past school year and learn new techniques to prepare for next year.

Flip Professional Development
There’s been a lot of discussions about flipping the classroom—a technique where instruction happens outside the classroom and more discussion and group type activities take place inside the classroom. Try flipping professional development by incorporating webinars, videos and other forms of self-directed training.

Use Technology to Get Ideas
One of the easiest ways to find more methods to utilize technology is to use the technology itself, including Discussion Boards, Google Docs or Twitter chats, for ideas, tips and conversations about using technology in the classroom. Follow these online conversations and you will find an abundance of new ideas. And then, once you’re comfortable, you can start incorporating these ideas into the classroom.

Set Aside Some Extra Time
Let’s be honest. You won’t get any closer to your goals without making a time commitment. Directing a larger focus on technology in your school means you will need to find the tools you want to integrate, and get familiar with those tools. Make a commitment to send weekly tips and updates to your peers to keep them engaged in the technology conversation. And remember; be creative with your exploration and use of technology. There is plenty at your fingertips!