Campus Technology Specialist -
The week before Thanksgiving break, I had the opportunity to attend a Campus Technology Specialist Academy hosted by TCEA in Austin. During the 2-day academy, I attended several sessions on professional development activities and badging - some of my "hot topics" of this school year.
Professional Development -
How does your district/campus handle technology-based professional development for teachers? In the past, I have offered a Tech Tuesday session. We would meet for about 30 minutes after school on Tuesdays and I would show teachers how to use a technology tool. Attendance slowly dwindled to 1 or 2 participants. Last year I implemented a Tech Tidbits newsletter that I would send out weekly. I used Smore and could track the number of times the document was opened. At the beginning of the school year, I had great response. As the year went, less people were opening and reading the newsletter. This year, I have based my information on my website and send an email notice every once in a while. After attending the Campus Tech Academy, I plan on creating an online professional development platform to provide my teachers technology training. My goal is to have it personalized for my campus and to roll it out in May - that way teachers can work through lessons during the summer. I know they would have less stress during the summer and this would give them time to implement some new technology tools in their lesson plans.
Now that I have my professional development planned, I need to decide how I will reward my teachers. I attended a session on badging and found several sites that would either send electronic badges or let me create badges that I can print. Personally, I would like to have the badges in electronic format so that I can put below my signature line. However, I feel that I might get more involvement if I print badges for teachers to display - maybe develop some friendly competition between teachers. So, are badges enough of a reward? Do I need to plan on providing a prize, also? I do not have a training budget to buy prizes, so I would definitely have to think outside the box so that I do not spend a ton of money.