Training Begins at Home

It is hard to imagine a more important aspect of teaching with technology than professional development.

Access to ongoing training opportunities, relevant literature, subscriptions, mailing lists, blogs, webinars, discussion forums, among others, provide a wealth of entry points to keep abreast of developments. Gavin Dudeney articulates some central arguments in support of web-based Teacher Development accruing benefits for the successful implementation of technology in the classroon. Of these, training is key. We can have the latest technology but, if we haven't been trained in how to exploit technology from a pedagogical point of view , the best computer lab can go to wastage. The bottom line is blending technology and teaching. There are two training fronts then: practicing teachers and trainee teachers.

The web opens up a window to otherness : contact with materials, knowledge, members of communities. Nobody expects us to be Web 2.0 experts. The big issue is joining others, sharing, learning together, exploring. What we need to to have developed to begin with is the capacity to send an email and access the Internet. If so, we're ready to move beyond. We're going to gain all the rest by contact with people. We can all become 'the more tech savvy' in the future and give back a little something of what today's 'more advanced ed-tech gurus' are doing in the name of literacy. Communities lie at the core of teacher development. They are home to ideas, perspectives, inspiration and that's where training begins.

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