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RE: [WWWEDU] Improviong the use of IT in the classroom.

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  • Elizabeth Sky-McIlvain
    In my experience, teachers will attend to something specific, before they will to general knowledge. Teachers will attend specifically to a presentation of a
    Message 1 of 9 , Apr 2, 2004
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      In my experience, teachers will attend to something specific, before
      they will to general knowledge. Teachers will attend specifically to
      a presentation of a typical class that uses technology to provide a
      value added scenario for in context teaching. Patrick Green

      I agree absolutely, but add this: Teachers attend most specifically
      if they are part of a class using the technology you are plugging.

      Use the tools as a teacher would yourself, and let your participants
      be the student users. Then you can discuss the exercise in the "how
      would you use this tool today for your class tomorrow" context.
      Elizabeth Sky-Mcilvain
      --
      Least Tern
      www.leasttern.com
      Georgetown, Maine
      Sea Cliff, NY

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    • Nancy Willard
      on 4/2/04 10:53 AM, Elizabeth Sky-McIlvain at esky@leasttern.com wrote: There are similar discussions occurring on both wwwedu and k12-admin. I just posted the
      Message 2 of 9 , Apr 2, 2004
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        on 4/2/04 10:53 AM, Elizabeth Sky-McIlvain at esky@... wrote:

        There are similar discussions occurring on both wwwedu and k12-admin. I just
        posted the following to k12, and figured I would send it along to my wwwedu
        friends. :-)

        (BTW, my book proposal is currently being reviewed by 8 of the nation's top
        publishers. So forgive any typos related to typing with crossed fingers.)

        Part of the problem with the integration of technology into education, I
        believe, is that people fail to understand some of the basic principles of
        the change cycle, especially in the context of technology.

        I highly recommend reading the book Inside the Tornado, by Geoffrey Moore --
        actually all you need to read is Chapter 2.

        What Moore points out, and what I have found in my activities over the last
        15 years, is that there is a significant difference between the first stage
        adopter folks he calls technology enthusiasts/visionaries, and the next
        group to be encountered on the technology adoption life cycle, who he calls
        the pragmatists. He calls this gap a chasm.

        The reason for this chasm is that even though these folks are right next to
        each other on the adoption of change life cycle, they function very
        differently. Visionaries are intuitive risk takers who feel comfortable
        moving forward when they can see about 75% of the picture. They fill in the
        blanks as they go along. Pragmatists are analytical risk managers who move
        forward only when there is a high probability of success and they feel that
        they can effectively manage any risk.

        On the other side of the bell curve adoption of change life cycle are the
        conservatives -- the risk avoiders -- who will not change until they see
        that the majority of folks already have, and the skeptics who will likely
        not ever change. ("Do not try to teach a pig to sing. It will not work and
        you will only end up bothering the pig." I am quoting someone; I can't
        remember who. Skeptics will retire before they will change.)

        Right now we are concerned with the activity around the chasm between the
        visionaries and the pragmatists. Later on within the portion of the
        pragmatist population we reach "the tornado." The tornado is the change of
        the the paradigm that visionaries can already see, but no one else can.

        Part of the problem is that the only people who trust visionaries are other
        visionaries. Everyone else thinks they are dangerous. But the other part of
        the problem is that visionaries do not understand pragmatists -- or what it
        will take to help pragmatists make changes.

        What most pragmatists need in order to change is a 100% solution that meets
        an identified need. We have lots of creative visionaries in the picture
        right now, but visionaries do not want to develop 100% solutions. They think
        that if they just talk enough about all of the excitement, pragmatists will
        be willing to take the same kinds of risks that they enjoy. Give a visionary
        a 100% solution and you can betcha the visionary will find some way to
        modify the solution to create more risk.

        I will also add that I have not ever, in all of my travels, met an
        administrator who is a true visionary. I do not mean to offend. I just do
        not think that administrators can survive in life or in their job as risk
        takers. This world, and school districts, can only take a limited number of
        visionaries. I suspect we are a bit dangerous. ;-)

        The best we can hope for with administrators is that they are really good
        risk managers who can learn to understand and appreciate visionaries. Really
        good administrators will find better ways to take advantage of the
        visionaries in their midst and help those visionaries see that to achieve
        the changes they desire they have to help the administrator create and
        implement 100% solutions (no manner how boring visionaries think this might
        be).

        As much as visionaries would love to be the change agents, it is the
        pragmatic risk managers who really accomplish change. Visionaries simply
        stir up things enough to push an organization in the new direction.

        The bottom line is that we simply have to focus on the creation of 100%
        solutions that make effective use of technology and provide the support
        necessary to those early stage pragmatists to be willing to try these
        solutions.

        Moore also has some recommendations about how to both bridge the gap and
        them move through the early stages of the pragmatist group to reach the
        tornado of paradigm change.

        Nancy

        --
        Nancy Willard, M.S., J.D.
        Center for Safe and Responsible Internet Use
        http://csriu.org
        nwillard@...
      • BBracey@aol.com
        In a message dated 4/2/2004 7:28:21 PM Eastern Standard Time, esky@leasttern.com writes: In my experience, teachers will attend to something specific, before
        Message 3 of 9 , Apr 3, 2004
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          In a message dated 4/2/2004 7:28:21 PM Eastern Standard Time,
          esky@... writes:
          In my experience, teachers will attend to something specific, before
          they will to general knowledge. Teachers will attend specifically to
          a presentation of a typical class that uses technology to provide a
          value added scenario for in context teaching. Patrick Green
          There are many ways to skin a cat, and there are individuals within the
          teaching profession who learn in many ways , as do the children.The talent of the
          person teaching and their approach also matter a lot. There are many factors
          that make people come to new learning experiences.



          Bonnie
          bbracey_aol.com
          Bonnie Bracey


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        • BBracey@aol.com
          In a message dated 4/2/2004 7:28:21 PM Eastern Standard Time, esky@leasttern.com writes: In my experience, teachers will attend to something specific, before
          Message 4 of 9 , Apr 3, 2004
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            In a message dated 4/2/2004 7:28:21 PM Eastern Standard Time,
            esky@... writes:
            In my experience, teachers will attend to something specific, before
            they will to general knowledge. Teachers will attend specifically to
            a presentation of a typical class that uses technology to provide a
            value added scenario for in context teaching. Patrick Green
            I go to congress on Monday to do a presentation on teachers and technology,
            my points will be

            ACCESS , there is still a digital divide( shhhhhhhh)

            KNOWLEDGE , there are people who teach people to use machines but not for
            educational purposes, for technical purposes. Being able to utilize hardware is
            not the same as making meaningful use of it. You know turning information into
            meaningful knowledge with
            footprints to continual learning.

            UNDERSTANDING , in the learning community, and in the educational community
            of the possibilities.
            Then the GENDER problem. We ignore people who are not necessarily in love
            with the box.
            I teach media as inquiry, communication, construction, and tool, but I found
            out the mantra because I was doing it without understanding philosophically..
            ( thanks to Chip Bruce and Henry Mitchell and other mentors too many to name),
            I understand that we enact the theory of learning for others. When we can
            share our ideas , in plain english and demonstration we can capture the attention
            of those who thought they never wanted to do technology. They in fact become
            the most avid adaptors, but it takes an understanding of where they are and
            what they go through.

            When we learn how to write manuals, and programs that are not puzzles and a
            pain in the rear , we will have more users and participants. When we are not
            confrontational with those who seek to learn technology, we will gather a larger
            group of people who embrace technology for educational purposes.


            TIME we all know that time is shoeboxed , and that it is a problem in
            classroom, I don't know about in colleges.

            PERMISSION from understanding administrators. Understanding from
            administrators who have some knowledge of the uses of technology.

            I know that I am hardwired to insults from being on K12 Listserv and from
            being minority. But it seems to me that a lot of bullying goes on openly in
            education. The bullying is in lots of places . Some of this translates into the
            behavior of some technologists. I don't think they mean to insult people but they
            do.Everyone says the kids know more about technology, so what? What we need
            to think about is what do the teachers need to know and why don't they readily
            adapt to the use of technology.

            There is a big difference in the ways in which teachers approach, get
            involved, get support and collegiality, in knowledgenetworks, or learning communities.

            Policy is one of the answers.

            Bonnie Bracey
            bbracey@...


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          • Steve Eskow
            Nancy Willard opens up a promising line of discussion with her citation of Moore s INSIDE THE TORNADO, one of a series of related books by him on this matter
            Message 5 of 9 , Apr 3, 2004
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              Nancy Willard opens up a promising line of discussion with her citation
              of Moore's INSIDE THE TORNADO, one of a series of related books by him
              on this matter of vision and change.

              Moore draws heavily on the early work of Everett Rogers in this field.
              Rogers' 1983 study listed these categories for the sequence leading to
              adoption and installation of an "innovation": innovators;early
              adopters;early majority;late majority;laggards.

              The Rogers model is often called the "diffusion" model: how and how long
              it takes for a new development to diffuse through a social system.

              It is, of course, tempting for enthusiasts for the many brands of
              educational "innovation" to apply the model to their particular brand of
              change, to see themselves (ourselves) as "visionaries" and "them" as
              resisters and laggards.

              One problem, of course, is that one person's vision is the next person's
              delusion.

              Consider, for example, team teaching. Or site-based management. Or any
              of the long list of visionary proposals which have been hailed by many,
              ignored by many. Which are, or were, genuine innovations that those of
              us who resisted or ignored were wrong to resist or ignore?

              Nancy also says this of administrators:

              <<I will also add that I have not ever, in all of my travels, met an
              administrator who is a true visionary. I do not mean to offend. I just
              do
              not think that administrators can survive in life or in their job as
              risk
              takers. This world, and school districts, can only take a limited number
              of
              visionaries. I suspect we are a bit dangerous. ;-)

              There is some research to suggest that it is indeed the administrators
              who are usually responsible for the successful installation and
              diffusion of change, and also the risk takers. Teachers in schools and
              colleges do not typically risk their jobs and careers when they
              experiment in their classrooms, while administrators are often risk all.

              My own experience has been largely at the college and university level,
              so it easier for me to document this with reference to those
              institutions.

              As long ago as 1970 Burton R. Clark published a study in depth of
              colleges that had created and sustained genuine educational innovation.
              His subjects were Antioch, Reed, and Swarthmore.

              Here is what he says about "administrators" and their role in the
              innovation process:

              "Examination...brings us directly to the role of the individual leader
              since in each of the colleges the innovating effort was conceived,
              enunciated, and put in motion by a strong-willed man in the president's
              chair."

              Although I know less about it, I suspect that the literature will
              support the thesis that successful school-wide or district wide
              innovation in schools usually involves an equally strong-willed school
              principal or superintendent of schools.

              Steve Eskow
              drseskow@...



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