Toward a Conceptual Framework for a Quality, Learning-Focused 1to1 Initiative

Here is an emerging (draft) conceptual framework.
In order to create a high performing, learning-focused 1to1 initiative, this is where to move the needle:
  • Leadership skilled at building a high level of buy-in with educators, students and parents/community
  • Leadership skilled at effectively managing large-scale school change
  • PD designed to effectively support teachers’ successfully changing classroom practice
  • Teachers focusing technology on learning more than devices & tools
  • Students meaningfully engaged – mentally and physically
  • Technology in support of learning

Notes & Resources:

Leadership for change that builds a high level of buy-in with educators, students and parents/community
  • We often think (incorrectly) that when our initiatives stall or we can’t get to where we want to be with an initiative, the problem is not enough information and we share resources and more training with our teachers. I believe, instead, the problem is that we have not nurtured sufficient buy-in for the program, so we need a different set of strategies if leaders are to successfully overcome this challenge
  • Building Buy-In: Shared Vision
  • Building Buy-In: Shared Leadership
  • Building Buy-In: Branding & Buzz
    • Public schools aren’t good at marketing. They have rarely had to do it in the past; the really prestigious private schools are much better at it. But in this era of competing for shrinking resources, and needing to make some fairly substantial changes, schools need to focus on Branding and Buzz. Branding and Buzz includes naming the initiative, stating your case, communicating with your community and beyond, telling your stories, presenting your evidence, and dealing with controversy.
    • Burning Platform – Why should the school and community change? What’s your most compelling reason? Is it some local community need? Is it that, looking at test scores, your schools are working for too few students? Is it the changing economy? This is your burning platform; that driving reason for change that educators and community can rally around.
Leadership for change that successfully manages that change (especially implementing learning through technology at a high level)
  • Managing Change: Positive Pressure & Support
  • Managing Change: Helping staff address hopes and fears
    • Leaders having strategies to help validate and support the emotional realities of large-scale school change, but not let them unduly interfere with making the change
  • Managing Change: Knowing how to support a diverse staff 
  • Managing Change: Knowing how to define success and if “it” is working (smart use of data for planning, formative feedback, and program evaluation)
    • Deliberately and proactively defining success (more in terms of learning than of technology)
    • Metrics primarily focused on Learning-centered outcomes (e.g. – learning progress, level of proficiency, behavior, attendance, engagement, pedagogical practices)
    • Technology metrics are used to establish foundational levels of an implementation (tech access, connectivity, etc.), but with caution toward not inadvertently giving too much power to the tech over learning (e.g. – measure teacher basic tech skills as a foundational piece of a teachers increasing their pedagogical skill, not as a separate technology practice – teachers being able to make videos as a foundational piece of helping students demonstrate what they know or of digital storytelling, not as a separate competency)
    • Leveraging data-based planning tools designed around a high-quality conceptual framework
PD designed to effectively support teachers’ successfully changing classroom practice
Teachers focusing technology on learning more than devices & tools
Students meaningfully engaged – mentally and physically
Technology in support of learning
  • Pedagogy and Instruction are at the center of ed tech conversations (e.g. “What instructional practices will help my students reach proficiency on these learning targets, and what technology tools would help me implement those pedagogies? – think TPCK with Pedagogy being the driver)
  • Think “Learning Resources” or “Learning Objects” or “tools,” not “content.” “Content” is a term from the publishing field that, although technically accurate, inadvertently promotes the ongoing mistake of ignoring pedagogy and equating having access to content as learning. Digital content is a PDF of the Common Core. Online courses, instructional videos, apps, and e-books are all learning resources.
  • Tech support focuses on helping teachers reach these pedagogical goals and decisions related to caring for and protecting “the stuff” don’t interfere with reaching the learning goals for technology use.
Note: this draft conceptual framework has as it’s roots the MLTI Success Strategies shared in the early years of MLTI (and some have found still apply today!)
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