If you walked into an after school staff meeting, you would most likely see the same thing at most schools: The administration standing in front of their teachers regurgitating information from a piece of paper or reading the information off a wordy PowerPoint. At the same point you could walk around the room and see teachers reading emails, grading papers, knitting, and playing games on their phones or iPads. While at the same time telling the teachers that they need to “engage” their students more.
Upon being awarded Utah Association of Secondary Schools Principal of the Year, Mary Anderson was asked to present a topic of her choice at the UASSP conference in Park City. Mary wanted to present on something her school, Union Middle, has been working on for years, OTRs and effect size. The question was how to present it to her peers from around the state. Mary knew that she wanted to use technology; if you know Mary you know that she loves her technology.
By: Dustin Worm
The main question became, how can we expect teachers to engage students if we ourselves do not lead by example. Starting during the last quarter of the school year the administration and the counselors decided that they would use one technology tool to engage faculty. Each tool would be used during two faculty meetings to help demonstrate how the tool can be used and what it has to offer. Think of this as a commercial for the technology tool. If the teacher would like to know more about the tool or how to use it they could see their schools EdTech.
At the UASSP conference, Mary Anderson decided to use this approach for her presentation, titled "Using iPads to Engage Staff in Professional Development." Mary used Infuse Learning, Doceri, Apple TV, and Nearpod to help engage her audience. Hearing the ooohs, ahhs, and the “I could use this with my teachers,” was confirmation that even adults need to be engaged to learn.
A special thanks to Nearpod for donating a 30-day trial of their School Edition so that Mary could highlight all of Nearpod’s amazing features; Nearpod also donated three teacher gold accounts to give away during Mary’s presentation.