Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Running Low on Excuses - Discovering the Technology Integration Matrix

It's hard to believe, but at this late date in the year 2012, many of our schools still have a long way to go in terms of integrating technologies into our classrooms.  However, with the advent of new devices and web tools, along with a host of new research and publishing of best practices, the path is getting more obvious and accessible all the time.  Schools are running low on excuses for not taking the tech leap.

A new tool that really lays out a clear path is one I discovered last year, that I believe can become a really valuable resource to teachers, schools, and districts. It's called the Technology Integration Matrix. It was developed by the Florida Center for Instructional Technology, and the purpose of the matrix is to help teachers and schools of students in k-12 learn the stages of technology integration that seem to be most effective with student learning. I think that for teachers who struggle with technology - those who are tentative or fearful, a tool like this can be a real game changer.  In a sense, it is a tool that holds your hand through the process, and calms reservations and fears like, "am I doing this right?"

Even better is the interactive format in which the matrix is constructed.  Each cell in the matrix has at least one or more videos which illustrate the integration of technology in classrooms where only a few computers are available and/or classrooms where every student has access to a laptop computer. For schools or teachers who hesitate because of lack of access, this is a fantastic feature!

Besides just suggesting ideas, the matrix has built in models for teachers to explore specific ways technology can be integrated meaningfully into the classroom.

To date, this is one of the best resources I have found on the web for technology integration in education.  Please help get the word out to teachers and schools about this great resource! 

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