Thursday, May 29, 2014

So What Exactly is an Innovative Teaching and Learning Specialist?

When I interviewed for my position back in the spring it was advertised as a "Technology Integration Specialist." Why? Because that is the title that most people are familiar with. However, it is actually quite misleading.  Basically, my job to help improve teaching and learning through the use and integration of technology and digital tools. 

While there are numerous teachers who have been immersed in the world of digital learning for a very long time, it is a brand new (and quite scary) world to many others. It is my job to make sure that as Gering Public Schools begins its move to 1:1, that all of the teachers have the skills and resources they need to make the most of the opportunities that they and their students will be given. Technology integration will become seamless and transparent instead of being a sometimes dreaded event where teachers cross their fingers and hope everything works as planned. My goal is to help teachers, students, and administrators become producers of content instead of just consumers. The focus will be on what we can do with the technology, not the technology itself. Learning will continue to be our number one goal.

If you are an educator in Gering here are just some of the things I can do for you: 
  • Assist you as you create your classroom website. Here are the templates I created for both junior high and high school teachers and for elementary teachers. 
  • Help you become a connected educator by showing you the art and science of Twitter and other social networks. Yes, I definitely believe networking is a combination of both! 
  • Work with you to create new and innovative ways for your students to demonstrate their knowledge of a particular topic or skills they have mastered through the use of technology. 
  • Show you how to organize your workflow using digital tools. (This doesn't seem like such a big deal, but knowing how to manage yourself in a digital world is crucial to both you and your students.) 
  • Work side-by-side with you in your classroom as you begin to start using technology with your students. For example, if you are having your students set up blogs I can be there to assist with the technical side of things. 
  • Show you how to use DonorsChoose so you can get great things for your classroom. 
  • Work with you one-on-one or in a small group to teach you about anything related to educational technology that you want to learn about. 
  • Provide you with a wealth of educational technology resources and show you how to begin curating your own resources. 

I am here to support you! Please don't ever think any question is too small or that I am too busy. I'm here to help YOU! Email me at or contact me using the Tech Ticket linked at the top of this page. 

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