When integrating technology sharing the why matters more than the how
Working with colleagues is a large part of my role. Upskilling their digital capcity and opening their minds to new uses of technoogy connected to meaningful tasks, assessment and all things education is rad fun. Especially when you see them take a risk, produce something wonderful and watch a new world of possibilities open to them.
Like KI. KI asked me to help her make a podcast for her Senior English students. She has seen podcasts on Youtube and wanted to make some for her learners. So we met along with some of her collegues and I taught her how to do it very early one morning before school. We spend an hour and a half establishing what she wanted to make and with what content. this led to learning how to record the screen using Quick Time Pro and present info in Keynote - both a which were new tools for all team members. But I forgot to cover something very important at this point- why she was doing this and this becomes important down the track.
KI went away and produced her first podcast - she scripted it, recorded it, gathered poems, visual imagery even clips and put them into this podcast. It was a solid 30 minute immersion into her wonderufl understanding. And it was good. She spoke with such clarity, real passion and connected even a poetry-phobe like myself to reading and understanding poetry. I felt priveleged to be able to listen to my learned colleague speak and to hear the passion in her voice. I got to learn something more that I usually would on my tram into the city. Her podcasts will only continue to improve as her understanding of the program does and now I know I can sit with her and show her some more tricks. However the students did not get this same opportunity because I forgot to clarify the why with her.
And why does the why matter? This is why.
KI got it. She knew the power in the podcast being accessible at point of need, targetted to multiple learning styles. She put the onus on students to autonomously front load their learning prior to turning up to class, understood that so much more can be gathered from listening to information that supports the work that occurs in class. She nailed it when she said that copying and handing out the script defeated the purpose. Not that her collegues were being deliberately malicious. They were present for the learning session but did not understand the why and power of what KI had created.
So what now? Continue working with KI to keep producing and refining her podcasts, using feedback from students and peers to help this. And to work with her collegues and students to help them understand the why behind these podcasts and the other skills they will gain by moving their learning styles to be more like KI.
They will know why they are taking risks and growing immesely in doing so as they have an excellent role model in KI.