I have been trying to figure out a way to explain technology integration to my teachers. I starting thinking about tangible things that are easy to do or make. Ahh!, cupcakes come to mind. Yes, cupcakes, those small, little tasty morsels that can be consumed in just a couple of bites. Cupcakes, the basic version of a larger product if put in a larger baking pan. Cupcakes; fancy, different flavored, have lots of extravagance and detail and yet they can also be very simple. No matter what, they’re almost always good!
If I can use the idea of the cupcake to share the ingredients and directions for making a class rich with technology, then teachers may better understand how to use it as tool and not a separate entity.
The Digital Cupcake
When one wants cupcakes, there are three basic choices: make them yourself, get a box-mix and make them, or just buy them at a bakery or grocery store. Just like cupcakes being made, technology integration use can viewed at any level too, it’s just a matter of what you are comfortable with when teaching.
Technology Integration terms:
Homemade: You use technology through your entire process of teaching and learning as well as a final product.
Box-Mix: You use technology as tool to create a final product and use some technology tools to aid your teaching, but mainly you use traditional means to teach students.
Bakery or Store Bought: You use technology, maybe a video or powerpoint someone has created, to share content material with students. (Some may say this method is more lecture-style)
Where are you? Have you ever dreamed of making something from scratch? Would you ever buy store-bought cupcakes? Are you satisfied with your cupcake?
These are the questions you need to ask yourself as teacher when you think of technology integration.
At all levels of integration, quality teaching is needed and can be provided. The technology used is a tool that can enrich and empower the teaching and learning experience for all involved.
What kind of icing do you want?
The easiest way to show you are using technology is a culminating project. This can be done without seeing the learning and teaching process. Basically this is “icing” on a cake, it is what others will see.
The Final product (ICING) could include, but not limited to, a slide show, Photo Story, Voicethread, Video or Movie, a Wiki, Web page, document, Online Poster (glogster), a Twittery, or podcast.
Future Issues…. Making Homemade Cupcakes (planning an the entire unit’s learning and teaching to be rich with technology integration.)
…Box-Mix Can Be Rich and Delicious! (Using the best technology tools for your teaching-style and empowering students by allowing them technology access.)