Technology ideas to improve the craft of teaching

Folks from the Shared Learning Collaborative met with a focus group of teachers to brainstorm new technology applications that would enhance their toolkits.  Here’s the resulting top 5 ed-tech needs (original post here).

  1. Grading & Planning: Teachers asked for consolidated views of student grades. Teachers told us they could more effectively plan upcoming lessons and assessments if they were able to easily see what was happening with their students over time.
  2. Student History: Along with grade history, teachers said a “one-stop shop” where they can see a history of interventions for each individual student would be useful for understanding where a struggling student is coming from and helping to keep that student from falling through the cracks.
  3. Single Login: With the numerous electronic learning tools, apps and systems they use on a daily basis, many teachers told us there is too much login information to remember. Whether to communicate with parents, report to the school district, or collect online homework submissions from students, to make these functions compatible with one login would be a huge #WIN.
  4. Individual Learning Maps: Teachers said a personalized learning environment for each student – where students can see an aggregated view of all class assignments and deadlines, and teachers can send private messages to students/parents – would promote productive, self-directed study.
  5. Communication, Collaboration, and Sharing Tools: We consistently heard that educators don’t have enough time to collaborate with other teachers, and to communicate with parents and students to share information. They need more effective ways to quickly and simply communicate with one another.

Oh man, how wonderful would these tools be?  For me, #3 wouldn’t be a game-changer, as logins are a fact of life that I adjust to – and #5 has largely been addressed by GoogleDocs (free by the way).  But 1, 2, & 4?  My inner nerd just squealed!


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