Thursday, 25 September 2008

Some thoughts on professional development

I am liveblogging and so .....

It's the last day of term and professional development day for staff. I had been looking forward to learning some new things which I could mull over in the holidays and put to good use. - today is ICT centred PD. The session I'm in at the moment is giving me something to mull over but not what I had planned.

The session is on IWBs. We now have one in our library and I thought, having seen and heard all the inspirational people out there talk about smart boards and how they can be used in the classroom, that I should work out how we can use it. The session got me thinking not so much about interactive whiteboards but more about how we present these sorts of tools to teachers. The session has been showing us more about the basics of using a whiteboard and what it is, rather than showing us all the amazing things that can be done with the IWB. If I had not know anything about IWBs I would have learnt only that it is a glorified whiteboard / laptop screen / overhead projector; not what you can actually do with it - engage the students, have them involved in their own learning. Most teachers in the session are as switched off as the students often are - or completely off task (writing blog posts).

To attract teachers into using these tools, shouldn't we be showing the amazing things others have done - and that have worked. Shouldn't we be showing how they can engage the student, inspire the student, not simple update the chalk and talk to a "magic pen" and talk, talk, talk ...?

So what will I take away from my pd session on IWBs ?

  1. The IWB has a "magic pen".
  2. It is not necessarily the technology itself that is turning teachers away (or not pulling them in) but the way it is presented to teachers.
  3. I can learn so much more from an online PLN and from social networking / bookmarking sites / microblogging sites than any PD session; and this is ongoing - everyday, anywhere PD.
  4. I'm ready for a holiday - to catch up with some blogging and some professional development from the comfort of my own home.
Hopefully the after lunch sessions will be better.

1 comment:

mightymike said...

Great feedback here Jeppo. I heard the IWB session was a little sad. I am catching up on blogging too. I copied your "ShowYourself" gadget. Just what I need to keep track of this stuff ;)