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Tagged With: tech teacher

8 Ways Parents and Teachers Support Remote Teaching

Corona virus has been difficult not just for teachers and students but for parents. They aren’t used to the homeschool aspect of remote teaching and it is a challenge to balance the needs of all of their children as well as their own personal circumstances. Here are thoughtful suggestions on how to make that work from Ask a Tech Teacher contributor, Emily, from over at My Tech Classroom. Her website is filled with innovative ideas on blending tech into education. Today, she’s focused her considerable experience on how parents and teachers can support remote teaching. You’ll enjoy this: 

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With millions of children out of school and trying to adjust to online classes from home, there is a big challenge for parents and teachers. The first thing parents need to arrange is online access. Not all families have computers at home and not all children are tech-savvy. Fortunately, most people have smartphones, and it is possible to access online teaching platforms from a phone.

If your child’s school is giving online classes, they will be live group classes and lectures as well as recorded material that your child can view later. This is very important for parents who have more than one child needing online teaching. The family can choose the time a child accesses her lessons.

  • Make a Schedule 

The organization of computer use timings is important if the parents need the computer for their work at certain hours of the day. Since we don’t know how long online classes will be required, it’s important to invest in an upgrade of your technology, so you and your child can keep up.

  • Help Children Relax

During the lockdown, children may become tense and nervous about their schooling. After all, they need to learn new skills on the computer and do their work by themselves. Parents can help their children to relax and take it one step at a time.

  • Trust the Teacher

Teachers will do their best to inform the parents about their aims and goals for online teaching as well as give a schedule for classes. This information will be posted on the learning platform such as Microsoft Teams, where you can see it. It may also be sent in easily accessible formats such as texts that make it easier for parents to stay connected to the teacher.

  • Make Sure Your Child Gets Facetime

Teachers are doing their best to give facetime to all of their students, but sometimes this isn’t possible. If the child has to babysit a younger sibling, or the Internet goes out or any other reason the student can’t get on the facetime part of the lesson parents need to know. All the experts recommend at least some time every week when the student can talk directly to the teacher. This helps develop security and reduce anxiety in the child. This article gives you a clear example of what to expect from the teacher.

  • Keep the Schedule

Another problem parents face is trying to work from home without childcare. That means they are not only trying to do their jobs and keep that paycheck but also look after their child’s or children’s education. This is where a schedule goes a long way to allow everyone to get what they need. If it means your child needs to access recorded lessons at a particular time, so be it. But, remember to let him have some facetime with his teacher at least twice a week.

  • Tips for Parents

Even if you are not doing all the teaching from home, this article gives tips for making your child’s online experience with his class and teacher better, starting with establishing a dedicated working space and establishing a routine to keeping track of what your child is doing. These are important steps for any parent to follow in order to give their child the best experience possible while they are stuck at home. Finally, make sure your child gets enough breaks and fun time between lessons. This is just as important as study time.

  • Check How Your Child Adapts to Online Teaching

While many students are struggling to adapt to online learning, some seem to thrive with it. Teachers in Northern California report that a few of the shy, highly creative and hyperactive kids seem to be doing better in their school work online than they did in class.This has inspired the teachers to consider keeping some days online even when schools reopen. Students can self-pace their learning and choose when they do their homework. It also gives students a chance to take a needed break and exercise, walk around, do something different for a while, which research shows are beneficial for renewed focus.

  • Contact the School

Schools use different approaches to online teaching. Some schools have a schedule that the student needs to log into for a video conference, but the majority of schools use a system of giving lessons to the student and correcting them every week. It’s up to the parents to make sure they do the work. Be very clear how your child’s school handles online teaching from the beginning, so your child and you don’t get off to a shaky start.

When Parents and Teachers Work Together

The learning curve for remote teaching was steep for parents and teachers in the beginning. But, as we get used to it, we find there are ways to make it easier and even more effective than solely classroom teaching. The main key is for parents and teachers to have open communication about the child and to each understand everyone’s challenges.

Emily’s Bio

Teaching young children, starting with my own son and daughter, is the joy of Emily’s life. She started teaching in a conventional classroom with a whiteboard and a laptop and learned quickly the many ways today’s technology can enhance the learning experience.

#coronavirus #covid19 @WeAreTeachers @TechLearning

More on parents in ed

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10 Great Posts on How to Involve Parents

Teaching Basic Cybersecurity Measures To Everyday People (For Parents of Digital Natives)

Categories: Guest post, Parents | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Teacher Appreciation Week Gifts for the Tech Teacher in Your Life

Teacher Appreciation Week: The First Full Week of May

teacher appreciation weekThere’s always been something mystically cerebral about people in technical professions like engineering, science, and mathematics. They talk animatedly about plate tectonics, debate the structure of atoms, even smile at the mention of calculus. The teaching profession has our own version of these nerdy individuals, called technology teachers. In your district, you may refer to them as IT specialists, Coordinators for Instructional Technology, Technology Facilitators, Curriculum Specialists, or something else that infers big brains, quick minds, and the ability to talk to digital devices. School lore probably says they can drop a pin through a straw without touching the sides.

When I started teaching K-8 technology, people like me were stuffed in a corner of the building where all other teachers could avoid us unless they had a computer emergency, pretending that what we did was for “some other educator in an alternate dimension”. Simply talking to us often made a colleague feel like a rock, only dumber. When my fellow teachers did seek me out — always to ask for help and rarely to request training — they’d come to my room, laptop in hand, and follow the noise of my fingers flying across the keyboard. It always amazed them I could make eye contact and say “Hi!” without stopping or slowing my typing.

That reticence to ask for help or request training changed about a decade ago when technology swept across the academic landscape like a firestorm:

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Top 10 Reasons to Sign Up for Summer Learning with Ask a Tech Teacher

This summer, Ask a Tech Teacher is holding five Summer Learning classes:

  1. Tech-infused Teacher (Certificate edition for CEUs or grad class for college credit)
  2. Tech-infused Class
  3. Teach Writing with Tech (closed–only open for groups of five)
  4. 20 Webtools in 20 Days (for groups interested in learning webtools from the Structured Learning curriculum)
  5. the Differentiated Teacher (college credit)

Most award Certificates at completion, for CEUs. The Differentiated Teacher and Tech-infused Teacher can be taken for college credit.

If you’re still wondering whether to sign up for one of the Ask a Tech Teacher Summer Learning classes, here are the Top Ten Reasons to do that:

10. Tech ed is a change agent. You like change.

9. You’ll have a bunch of tech ed skills you can now say ‘I know how to do that’. Like TwitterChats. And Google Hangouts. And screencasts.

8. Your school will pay for it of you promise to teach colleagues–or show the videos.

7. Many of these webtools are candidate-driven. You tell us what works best for you in achieving the class goals; we’ll adapt to you.

6. You want to meet new people.

5. You’re technophobic, but lately feel like teaching without technology is like looking at a landscape through a straw: You’re missing a lot. You want to change that.

4. You want personalized help. With all AATT Summer Learning classes, you get as much time as you need with the instructor to mentor and coach–even on topics not included in the syllabus.

3. Technology in education is the greatest show on earth. Well, at least in the classroom. You want to be part of it.

2.  You get CEUs (Continuing Education Units)–between 18 and 24 hours, depending upon the class you select (where applicable). You also get a Certificate listing all the activities you completed.

1. Albert Einstein said, “The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them.” Education’s fix requires technology. You’re ready for a new level of thinking.

 

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Top 10 Reasons to Sign Up for Summer Learning with Ask a Tech Teacher

T-i T preview 2If you haven’t yet made the decision to join me at Summer PD: Tech-infused Teacher for three-weeks of high-intensity tech integration, here are the Top Ten Reasons for signing up:

10. Tech in ed is a change agent. You like change.

9. You’ll have a bunch of tech ed skills you can now say ‘I know how to do that’. Like TwitterChats. And Google Hangouts. And screencasts.

8. Your school will pay for it of you promise to teach colleagues–or show the videos.

7. It’s fun.

6. You want to meet new people.

5. You’re technophobic, but lately feel like teaching without technology is like looking at a landscape through a straw. You want to change that.

4. Richard Sloma said, “Never try to solve all the problems at once — make them line up for you one-by-one.” You want your tech problems lined up in single file.

3. Technology in education is the greatest show on earth. Well, at least in the classroom. You want to be part of it.

2. Ashton Kutcher told teens, “Opportunity looks a lot like work.” You agree. Learning tech ed this summer is an opportunity you’re ready for.

1. Albert Einstein said, “The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them.” Education’s fix requires technology. You’re ready for a new level of thinking.

For more information, click here.

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169 Real-World Ways to Put Tech into Your Class–NOW

tech in the classroomIn about a month, I’ll be starting a new series of tech tips. These will be from my upcoming ebook, 169 Real-World Ways to Put Tech Into Your Class Now (expected publication date: August 2016) where I provide 1) an overview of the tech topics most important to your teaching, and 2) practical strategies to address common classroom tech problems. Each tip is less than a page long–many only a third of a page. The goal: Give you the tech you need to know without a long learning curve. Topics include iPads, Chromebooks, assessment, differentiation, social media, security, writing, and more.

Note: This is the updated version of 98 Tech Tips so if you’re considering purchasing 98 Tech Tips, wait a few weeks until 169 Real-World Ways to Put Tech Into Your Class Now is available. Or, just read them here, on Ask a Tech Teacher, though it will take more than three years to get through all of them!

OK, I see all the hands. You want a preview. Here are the top three solutions to any tech problem you encounter in your classroom:

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What’s a Tech Teacher Do With Their Summer Off?

summerSchool’s been out for at least a few weeks and I just finished up three online classes that started in June. Next week, I’ll feel like I have an endless span of hours to do all the activities that got sidelined by grading,  projects, training, and general ‘school’ stuff. Once I get through reading until I’m bored (or  I run out of food) and straightening up the house (I won’t get carried away), I’ll start on the meat of my summer activities. Truth, that list is more of an overstuffed file cabinet than a carefully-constructed To Do page, but here’s what it looks like:

  1. Finish a tech thriller I’ve been working on this for four years. I’m 99% there (10% to go). Of course, it has lots of cutting edge technology and a quirky AI named Otto (a palindrome). If you follow my blog, you know this is on my list every summer, as predictable as the Golf Channel. This time, I’m doing it!
  2. Under the file folder, “The world doesn’t change in front of your eyes; it changes behind your back,” I realize a few tech trends are passing me by. This includes 3D printing, Maker Spaces, and Google Classroom for starters. They are seeping into tech conversations regularly on my social media and there’s little I can contribute other than questions. I need to fix that this summer. Any suggestions?
  3. Learn a new tech tool every week. This also I do every summer. I’ll share a video, a project, and academic tie-in each week.
  4. Get back to my inquisitive, curious roots. I used to spend hours figuring out how to solve problems, find solutions, determine what made something tick. Now, I’m too busy. I can feel the rift in my spirit, my sapped energy, my fuzzy brain. This summer, I’m getting back to that. Here’s my promise:

When I see something techie I don’t understand, I’ll ask:

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A Day in the Life of a Tech Teacher

teacher-359311_640I love summer. I sit at home, reading, researching, chatting with friends. I make my own schedule, own my own time, start and finish a project without interruptions.

That is a massive high to me.

Why? I’m a tech teacher. That is like a geek+. I teach–yes–but I’m also the first line of defense (sometimes offense) for colleagues as they struggle to use the digital devices populating their classrooms. From the moment I step foot on campus, life spins out of my control. Here’s a typical day–does it sound familiar:

6:45    arrive at school

6:47    a student enters to use lab

6:48   I greet student with a friendly hi and begin work on a lesson plan

6:49    Student asks for help

7:00   Student finishes and leaves; I return to my lesson plan

7:02   Frantic teacher calls–her computer won’t boot up. She came in early to work and now what’s she supposed to do can I come right away?

7:03   I arrive in teacher classroom to help

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How to Teach a Tech Lesson–the Movie

I get lots of questions on how to deliver a tech class. What’s included? How do teachers blend it with other learning? How do you answer all the student questions?

Here’s a video with the answers to those questions and more. I’d love to hear how your tech class runs–add a comment at the bottom:

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Categories: Classroom management, Computer skills, Videos | Tags: , | 2 Comments

How to Organize Your Classroom–the Movie

Last week, I shared ideas on how to set up your tech classroom. Today, I want to share a video:

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How to set up your tech classroom

IMG_0103I’m reposting this for the start of a new school year–as a reminder to all my fellow tech teachers. Go geeks!

If you teach technology, you want to set the lab up so it’s inviting, non-intimidating, but doesn’t hide from the core ‘geek’ theme. In fact, from day one, exclaim that fact, be proud of your nerd roots. Even if you didn’t start out that way–say, you used to be a first grade teacher and suddenly your Admin in their infinite wisdom, moved you to the tech lab–you became a geek. You morphed into the go-to person for tech problems, computer quirks, crashes, and freezes. Your colleagues assumed you received an upload of data that allowed you to Know the answers to their every techie question. You are on a pedestal, their necks craned upward as they ask you, How do I get the Smartscreen to work? or We need the microphones working for a lesson I’m starting in three minutes. Can you please-please-please fix them?

As you organize your classroom, celebrate your geekiness. Flaunt it for students and colleagues. Play Minecraft. Use every new techie device you can get your hands on. That’s you now–you are sharp, quick-thinking. You tingle when you see an iPad. You wear a flash drive like jewelry. When your students walk into your class, they should start quivering with the excitement of, What new stuff will we experience today?

Here’s a summary of what happens your first day with a class. From this, you’ll figure out how to set up your classroom (no owl themes here. It’s all about bits and bytes):

  • Introduce yourself—establish your bona fides. Share your blog, your background, your awards. Give them website addresses or post them to the class internet start page. You want to be easy to find.
  • Tour the classroom with students. I walk K-2 around—they like getting out of their seats. Demystify any of the tech tools you will expect them to use—where they can get help in solving problems, what’s on the walls, where’s the printer/scanner/iPads/etc.

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Categories: Classroom management, Teacher resources | Tags: , | 2 Comments