The never-before-seen inside view of the survey monkey data collection process.
The initial survey results are in. 35% of the teachers employed in the North Slope Borough School District responded to my survey this week. I was pleased to see that the responses were evenly spread amongst all the grade levels. I hoped all the grade levels would be represented. The overall sense from the responses is that teachers use some kind of technology in their classroom about 70% of the time. Most classrooms in the North Slope are equipped with SMART boards, document cameras, and/or projectors to use with Mac laptops, so I anticipated the response to use in the classroom would be high. The response that surprised me the most is that most teachers felt the internet access is fairly dependable. Of course, this is a subjective answer. I wonder if their expectations of the access has been lowered to a more realistic expectation, or if there has been an increase in response time. This is a question I will pose during my interview portion of the data collection.
A report released by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation last April reported survey results of teacher attitudes about technology. 67% (of 400 respondents) indicated that they use technology in every class. These numbers were mirrored in a second survey put out by PBS media in January, 2013. The PBS survey indicated that the majority of teachers who had SMARTboards in their classrooms used them more than once a week to every day. The majority of the NSBSD respondents in my survey also indicated the regular use of SMARTboards.
Beyond the basic use of SMARTboards and computers in the classroom, my survey results indicated that there is a need for student creation and hands-on learning with technological devices. The need to create digital literacy was strongly apparent due to the survey response.
The need for digital literacy is central to our proposed project.
Dr. Doug Belshaw delivered a pointed Ted Talk where he speaks about digital literacies as a progressing structure for growth and evolution in technological skills. He suggests eight digital literacies, focusing on the element of remix.
The above Ted Talk caused me to come across a very helpful website which graphically illustrates how digital literacy can be embedded in the classroom. After giving the viewer several strategies to embed technology and connections to the common core standards, they issue the following demand: “First and foremost – encourage, request, even demand that teachers in your school district get EXTENSIVE (not just one workshop)training in the use of technology in the classroom…”
Our job is to design a tool that will help teachers do just this!
Belshaw, D. (Producer). (2012, March 22). TEDxWarwick – Doug Belshaw – The Essential Elements of Digital Literacies [Web Video]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8yQPoTcZ78
PBS learning media: Teacher technology usage. (2013, January 20). Retrieved from http://www.edweek.org/media/teachertechusagesurveyresults.pdf
Purposeful technology-constructing meaning in 21st century schools. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://purposefultechnology.weebly.com/how-can-we-embed-digital-literacy-in-the-classroom.html
Teacher attitudes toward tech. (2012, April). edSurge, Retrieved from https://www.edsurge.com/teacher-attitudes-toward-tech