2 Steps Forward

Photo credit: niko si

Had a bit of a despondent moment last week, wondering whether I was making any difference to anyone with this staff initiative on technology PD. Although we have a good number of people turning up each week, it still seems we have such a long way to go. Perhaps I was (naively) thinking everyone would turn into IT aficionados overnight and they would think back to this PD as the tipping point that led them to a life of tech integration. Ha!

Reality check: teachers are beyond busy. I should know this. I AM one after all. Not only are they busy, but they have lives! Voluntary tech PD comes waaaay down on the list of priorities for most people.

Thankfully, a thoughtful colleague gave me a well-needed wake up call, telling me: “You have to re-adjust your success criteria… The fact that people are showing up is excellent.” He pointed out that even having a place to come to ask questions is more than they would normally have, so I should basically take a hard pill and get over it! [To be fair, he put it much more gently than that!]

So I did. Here are the things I am proud of:

  1. People have successfully signed up to Delicious. Even our entire Senior Management team (who redefine busy).
  2. People are actually USING Delicious to bookmark. I have gained a lot of great sites from my new connectingeast network.
  3. People have managed to get a network of people to follow – this has got to make life easier for them.
  4. People are turning up every Friday. That must mean they are keen to continue, surely!
  5. People now know about and have seen some TED talks. That’s great PD right there.
  6. Katie and I have managed to get something out every week (even if it’s late at night on a Tuesday, we’ve made every self-imposed deadline!)
  7. People are still starting – even though we’re 4 weeks in.
  8. People are still talking to us in the staff room!

My new success criteria is this: If, at the end of 10 weeks, people are aware of tools they didn’t know existed, have had a chance to play around with some of them, and have tried one new thing involving technology in the classroom, I think our efforts will have been well worth it. I will keep you posted…

2 thoughts on “2 Steps Forward

  1. I think that I could write the very same post about what I have been doing for several years with staff at my school. (Although, we haven’t ‘done’ delicious yet – we will, soon).
    I think you have many things to celebrate!
    I understand that teachers are busy, but I just struggle that they aren’t really passionate about what they can get their students to do with technology. It doesn’t take 100s of hours to transform practice. Or, maybe I’m forgetful about how much time I’ve spent to gain the skills I have.

    Regardless, I still think that they could commit a little more, just a little.


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