As an ed tech prof, nothing wrangles me like losing institutional access to a set of curated digital resources without warning! Last semester, my B.Ed. students worked tirelessly on many projects — including an e-book on social media integration in classrooms, Maker-inspired lessons and projects, and two-minute tech tip presentations that we then curated into a very useful spreadsheet, categorized by the pedagogical affordances and constraints of the tools each student had reviewed.
We did all of this work inside of Google Classroom — but today, when I went to access that space, I discovered that my Google Classrooms had disappeared from my institutional account. Without warning. This is one of many reasons that teachers hate technology. Systems and IT policies can undermine the real educational affordances of digital tools. I assumed — erroneously — that my students would always have access to the classroom we built together. And today, I found out the hard way that that wasn’t the case.
Students in the Teacher Education program at the University of Ottawa will be expected, for the first time this fall, to create a professional website that documents their development as teachers. Faculty members have piloted this project over the past couple of years and in the spring of 2017, we gathered some survey data from graduating students who created professional digital websites in courses and as part of cohort-based initiatives that has helped us to develop a guiding framework for the launch of this project program-wide. Here are some key take-aways from that survey.
Students tended to think of their digital hubs as an online CV rather than a digital identity text, or as a space for developing new understandings of themselves as teachers through curation, reflection and revision.
Students wanted more explicit direction from the program about what to include — at least at first.
Students who created a website did it because they had to as part of a course or because the program was expecting it of them in some way.
Students told us that, at first, they did not have the technical skill set required for the development of a professional digital hub. Many said they struggled to acquire these skills as they were also learning how to teach.
Students told us that they needed more support around issues of identity management, privacy and how to ethically and responsibly share their work and their students’ work on the open Internet.
Students entering our program this year will learn, at Orientation, about the Hub, its purpose, and the rationale driving our programmatic choice to integrate it as part of their professional preparation program. Broadly, we see the Digital Hub as one way for teacher candidates to develop foundational professional digital literacies skills while also curating a set of documents that reflect their emerging skills, values and competencies as teachers and teacher researchers.
Entre les mois de décembre 2015 et avril 2016, j’ai fait une étude préliminaire sur le contexte d’intégration d’un outil technopédagogique qui s’appelle WIGUP (While I Grow Up) dans un conseil scolaire dans l’est de l’Ontario. Au cours de notre enquête, les participant.e.s ont identifié plusieurs facteurs contextuels qui ont influencé leur choix d’intégrer ou de ne pas intégrer cet outil dans leur enseignement.
Je vais présenter aujourd’hui (le 29 mai) les analyses que j’ai faites avec mon collègue et assistant de recherche, Kamal Imikirene, à la réunion de la Société canadienne des études en éducation.
I’m thrilled to be presenting today at the Ontario Makers, Mentors and Innovators conference (ommic.ca). The focus of my talk is on Maker Mindset and how, in schools and in teacher education programs, we might provide professional learning experiences for teachers that will enable them to develop a sense of Maker Empowerment so that they can support their own students’ development as makers too. As part of the talk, I will invite participants to reflect on their own experiences in school and to give teachers advice on how to design learning that would support development of a maker mindset. We’ll do this here, in a simple Google Doc. If you have ideas to contribute, but were not at the conference, you are invited to contribute. Of course, we ask that your comments be on point and respectful, and that you consider the audience — teachers and teacher candidates — before contributing.
And, if you’re interested in viewing my slides, I’ve linked to them here. If you use these ideas in any derivative works, I ask that you not use my family photos. The presentation includes photos of my father and of his work as a maker and I reserve all rights for these photographs. All other work in this presentation however, is non-commercial CC 4.0 licensed, meaning that I ask you to share alike, and attribute appropriately.
Tomorrow, I’m leading an interactive workshop for graduate students in the Faculty of Education at the University of Ottawa on the creation of a digital professional presence. Cet atelier interactif et bilingue donnera aux participants l’occasion d’aborder la création d’une présence professionnelle numérique qui communique, à leurs réseaux professionnels, leurs contributions à la recherche, à l’enseignement et qui résume les services qu’ils rendent à la profession.
Thursday, October 6, 2016 | jeudi le 6 octobre 2016
10h00 à 11h30 Pavillon Louis-Pasteur 127-129
While cleaning out my youngest daughter’s backpack yesterday on the last day of school, I discovered this picture. For those who don’t read Kindergarten French, it says, “When I grow up… I will be a teacher.”
I thought I would share this here to say thank you to all of the teachers in my children’s lives who have inspired them, and also, to inspire all of the teacher candidates with whom I have the privilege to work.
There is no more important work in this world than to teach.
The Education Faculty of Education Forum in Toronto has given me an ideal opportunity to curate the set of initiatives that have started to take shape in this first year of my appointment at the University of Ottawa around the idea of “building capacity for innovation”. Around the poster, I have had several productive conversations with colleagues from around the province on the ways they are working to construct. Here’s the poster.