Educational Technology Specialist
“I think the hardest part when you are a teacher is finding the time to collaborate with your co-workers to create cohesive, rich units. This process has given us time to pull together technology resources, among other resources, for reading, writing, math, and science units. ”
- A. Raines
Portland Public Schools
Online and Blended Course Design for Flipping the Classroom
Managing Digital Learning Environments
Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) Services
CURIT Training occurs throughout the school year and consists of collaborative opportunities and push-in models where CREC specialists will co-plan with small groups of teachers and on occasion, shadow to provide coaching, modeling, and in-class support and assistance during implementation.
By supporting the teachers in this manner we can easily identify ways to deepen understanding for all learners through the infusion of technology tools and make immediate curriculum and pedagogical connections. Outcomes for this process are rich, revised, and new curricular documents with projects and high-quality performance assessments that seamlessly and authentically apply the use of technology.
The CURIT process leverages Schoology, a web-based, user-centric learning management solution that fosters and supports collaborative and blended opportunities. Schoology provides teachers with an online classroom containing materials and resources which can be quickly and easily aligned to Common Core and state standards using built-in features. Assignments, tests/quizzes, and more can be differentiated and designated to groups or individual students to support remediation and extension activities. Teachers will no longer need to search, copy, manually correct, and reference a curriculum binder because the content is immediately available in their online classroom. Educators will have the flexibility to access, modify, activate, deactivate, and deliver content in many ways (e.g., randomizing question order, number of questions to be displayed on tests/quizzes, open/close dates, hidden files/folders).
Schoology also contains the option to collect and store personal resources. This provides the opportunity to incorporate the practice of digital portfolios to increase students’ confidence, awareness, and personal responsibility for learning in addition offering post-secondary preparedness for college and the workforce. Collaborative tools like shared calendars, threaded discussions and resources can assist teachers with calibrating their pacing and pedagogy; however, this does not mean all lessons will be the same. Instead, this empowers teachers to share and co-develop lessons suited to the needs of specific students.
As a development platform, Schoology moves beyond the traditional model of curricular documents being placed in binders and housed on shelves and enables educators to completely transition to a digital learning environment. Curricular content such as essential questions, learning objectives, common assignments and assessments, and all resources would be placed into a course. Schoology would serve as the vehicle to design, revise, distribute, and assess curricula. This method is highly effective and efficient in that it supports all facets of blended learning and models how to harness the full capacity of a learning management system.
As a professional development model CURIT will completely transform the teaching and learning experience for educators and students alike. Teachers will gain a clear sense of when, how, why, and even if technology should be used as it relates to their content and students. This process will prepare and guide the process of transitioning teachers and administrators with the knowledge and resources to refine educational practices.
The CURIT model immerses teachers and students in use of digital-age technology tools and resources while remaining connected to the content. Teachers gain and understanding of how to manage, and support more student-led teaching opportunities, student-created instructional materials and project-based learning opportunities, on a consistent basis using Schoology. Teachers are easily able to address digital literacy, diversity awareness, global communication, and other social issues to build a healthier school climate and expand students’ knowledge and creativity.
CURIT fosters community-based, collaborative approaches that inspire teachers to learn, connect, explore, design, and expand upon their current instructional practices through the use of technology to make meaningful and enduring understandings and connections for all students.