Technology Integration for Learning

I had some free time during the holidays to work ahead in prepping for upcoming sessions that I’ll be facilitating in the new year. I’d been tagging and saving articles (read when you have time) in anticipation of a presentation at the Conference of Turkish Private Schools Association that is going to take place  7-9 February, 2013 in Antalya, Turkey on the theme ‘The New Education System and the Place and Importance of the Teacher in Digital Education’.


I’m building a presentation around my backwards planning process, identifying student achievement, then student and teacher behaviors, and then the role of teacher collaboration and leadership.

Here are two pieces that caught my attention:


First, Will Richardson’s writing for District Administration asks us to examine the “what” of student achievement.  His piece, “What Do Students Really Need to ‘Know’?” opens with a prediction of phone apps that translate foreign languages into the voice of the speaker…taking one right into conversation. As technology makes information and knowledge available instantly to everyone, does a school curriculum designed by a handful of university professors over a century ago make sense? Do processes like prediction, judgment, causation, and negotiation make more sense? (Richardson cites the work of Roger Schank in Teaching Minds.)

Secondly I, found the Arizona Technology Integration Matrix, which examines five characteristics of a meaningful learning environment.

Goal Directed

Within five levels of technology integration



Thus the matrix has 25 cells examining student and teacher behaviors. Example:


Active/Entry -Students receive content through the use of technology or use technology for drill and practice activities.

Active/Adaptation– Students choose or modify the technology-related tools most appropriate for developing learning tasks.


Active/Transformation– Students seamlessly organize the learning tasks and formulate products, discussions, or investigations using any appropriate technologies available.

Those of you facilitating teacher reflection on current practice and exploration of next steps will find the matrix very useable. The definitions for the elements of meaningful learning environments provide a great starting point for many PLC conversations.

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One Response to “ Technology Integration for Learning ”

  1. Michael Chirichello Says:

    Let’s begin with the end in mind… ask yourself why society school s its children. Once we can come to consensus on the answer, then we know what and how our children should learn. I would like to think that we send children to school to know how to learn but I am not sure that’s the outcome. The test-phobic school leaders and teachers have all but destroyed the desire to nurture how to learn. Our schools are preparing drones rather than dreamers. If you watch Shift Happens on YouTube, you will be amazed with the space between what should be and what is in our schools. People tend to equate schools with learning how to survive in a factory world. Perhaps they do this because the school resembled a factory to them- the pre-tech digital immigrants. When you think about schooling, there are the intermittent bells, the assembly line of the young being passed from one grade to another, the close monitoring, the regimented behavior, the standardization in making every school look like every other school even though the students come with a remarkable amount of variation. Maybe someone, somewhere, did have the factory in mind when s/he designed schools. But if our students must know how to learn, perhaps the implementation of the national core standards will take on a new meaning for school leaders if we abandon the assembly line, factory-like structure where we teach by singular subjects in a room that groups students by age. Maybe it has something to do with that space between what is and what should be. And no one teacher can do this. For this, we need technology integration into learning. Let’s begin with this end in mind. (Adapted from Rule 1 in Principals as Maverick Leaders: Rethinking Democratic Schools, co-authored by Michael and Sharron Walker and published in 2012 by Rowman Littlefield)

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