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Educational Technology. EDU 545 Katie Hankinson. “Strengthening Educational Technology in K-8 Urban Schools and in Pre-service Teacher Education: A Practitioner-Faculty Collaborative Process ” -Karen L. Murphy, Judith Richards, Colleen Lewis, Elizabeth Carman

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educational technology

Educational Technology

EDU 545

Katie Hankinson


“Strengthening Educational Technology in K-8 Urban Schools and in Pre-service Teacher Education: A Practitioner-Faculty Collaborative Process”

-Karen L. Murphy, Judith Richards, Colleen Lewis, Elizabeth Carman

-Journal of Technology and Teacher Education

problems addressed
Problems Addressed
  • Widening gap between teacher preparation programs and children of 21st century.
  • For children to be empowered with the advantages technology can bring, schools must have teachers who are likewise empowered.
  • Teacher’s not only accomplished users of technology, but the integration into curriculum.
  • School’s make large-scale hardware purchases without changes in pedagogy.

Superintendent of Falmouth Schools Barbara Powers answered a question about her dreams for her school system and how money would be spent with an unlimited budget:

  • “….significant funds for professional development both during the school year and in the summer, when courses would continue to be offered using advanced tech. strategies”

Third grader Grace Boucher responded to a question about experiences in school with technology:

"I don't know what a smartboard is." (I described it the best I could) "No, I haven't seen a smartboard before. I do use computers for research. There are three computers in my class. I don't use them to type, I would rather write by hand than type. I'm really bad at typing!"


“When you go to the hardware store to buy a drill, you don’t actually want a drill, you want a hole. They don’t sell holes at the hardware store, but they do sell drills, which are the technology they used to make holes. We must not lose sight that technology, for the most part, is a tool and it should be used in applications which address educational concerns” – G. Fletcher

possible solution
Possible Solution
  • Large Collaborative partnership between urban school district and a college of education.
  • Classroom teachers/school district personnel met bimonthly with teacher education faculty for four academic years-TIG-Teacher Inquiry Group.
  • Initiated and funded by a grant from the U.S. Dept. of Education through Preparing Tomorrow’s Teachers to Use Technology (PT3) program.
  • TIG identified classroom teachers using educational technology effectively to share.
  • TIG members expected to initiate joint projects to expand knowledge base about and the use of effective educational technology.
  • A consistent theme in the feedback-the process of sharing best practices and co-investigating new practices created teachers who became leaders/mentors in their school communities with a recognized voice.
  • One school-the technology specialist’s time was doubled.
  • Results have been documented and disseminated to the wider field.

“Gender Inclusiveness in Educational Technology and Learning Experiences of Girls and Boys”

-Irma Heemskerk, Geert ten Dam, Monique Volman, WilfriedAdmiraal

-Journal of Research on Technology in Education

gender inclusiveness what does that mean
“Gender Inclusiveness”…What does that mean?
  • Gender differences as a matter of diversity.
  • Technological tools that appeal/cater to skills associated by both genders.
  • “Gender scripts” concept used by author
  • By understanding “gender scripts”, creator of any technological tools can adapt that tool and design it to suite a specific group of users.
  • ….Of course, this also means excluding other groups.—Herein lies the problem!

Important Questions for Educators to Keep in Mind

“Do the illustrations and graphics of the program represent male and female persons?”

“Are they represented in a non-

stereotypical way?”

“Are the preferences of girls and

boys taken into account in the

visual interface?”

comparing the genders
Comparing the Genders



Games/tools of competition

Games/tools that ask for dexterity

Programs with many choices

Boys report more ICT skills and greater ICT knowledge

  • Games/Tools facilitating cooperation
  • Games/Tools appealing to creativity
  • Programs with clear instructions
  • Girls report fewer ICT skills and less ICT knowledge

Be careful of stereotypes…

I think it is important to keep in mind, these “gender scripts” are also generalizations that not all students fall into. It is important not to perpetuate stereotypes and bias, or to confine any one to a role because “most” boys or “most” girls learn better a specific way, or have specific interests.

When interviewing Amy Boucher, a parent of three children, two girls and one boy her thoughts on the issue, she replied: “In my experiences, I do believe this date is accurate for my children, but not all girls or all boys”


“Assistive Technology for Young Children in Special Education: It Makes a Difference”

-Michael Behrmann

-The George Lucas Educational Foundation

benefits for children with disabilities
Benefits for Children with Disabilities
  • Nonverbal children can use a portable voice synthesizer to ask/respond to questions.
  • Sensor controls enable subtle motor movements to control mobility devices.
  • Amplification devices can filter extraneous noise from the background or pick up an FM signal from a microphone on a teacher’s lapel for students with hearing impairments.
  • Text and graphics enhancement software can enlarge sections of a monitor for students with vision impairments.

Assistive Technology Definition: “any item, piece of equipment, or product system whether acquired commercially off the shelf, modified, or customized, that is used to increase, maintain, or improve functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities.”(Behrmann 2012, p. 2)


Interview Question and Response with Eve Hurely, a Special Education Teacher

As a special education teacher, do you believe your students benefit more from advances in educational technology than others? Why?

“I do believe this, and I think it is especially true for kids on the autism spectrum. It just provides a more multisensory experience that is more likely to grab their attention and stick in their long term memory. It also just makes things more interesting and fun - and who doesn't learn better when they are interested instead of tuning out during a lecture?”


“My son has a severe speech delay, and through technology he has been able to implement many technology tools to assist in meeting his speech/IEP goals. For example, he uses an audio recording app on an IPad to record his speech, so he can in turn listen to the sound and recognize the accuracy of his speech. We can then use the same application at our home and practice the same skills, using the same language that his therapist is using during their sessions.”-Amy Boucher, parent of 3


Important Things to Remember

In order to motivate and engage children, it is important to understand their worlds. Don’t let there be such a huge gap between yourself and your students in terms of technology!

“Kids now live in such a media world, that when instruction is presented in a technological way they are immediately being hooked in - sort of like we're speaking their language and playing into their strengths. It also accommodates different learning styles and students with auditory processing issues. It really is a multisensory experience.”-Eve Hurley

“….change can be hard for veteran teachers who are used to teaching a certain way, but I think the research speaks for itself. As a profession, we have to focus on what is best for kids.”-Eve Hurely


Information and communication technology has become an inseparable part of human life and therefore an important skill to teach as an educator. We talk a lot about all of the advantages that technology brings to education, do you have any concerns for the future and what might be lost in this new digital world?

“We worry about interpersonal, face to face skills; preoccupation with all things digital; choppy communication given some text restraints; using google to cull information -- it's well known that google learns what you like and dislike and tends to feed you only things already in your belief system. Excellent digital citizenship is going to be critical and keeping tech. in perspective must be a constant.”-Barbara Powers, Superintendent


Do you have any advice?

“Yes, think of technology as a means to an end, not the end itself. When I was in school, it was all about teaching "thinking skills." Tech. is the same. Don't think about teaching it in isolation but rather has a highly effective means to offering differentiated learning experiences in math, reading, science, languages, social studies, etc. to your students. Also never lose sight of the very significant importance of relationships with students -- that personal connection that helps kids realize their potential and keep their humanity. It makes a world of difference!”-Barbara Powers