bernajean.jpgData in a Day: Classroom Walk-Throughs Assessing Instructional Uses of Technology

Grappling with Accountability / Responsibility Questions: Accountability means everyone taking responsibility for doing WHATEVER it takes - everyone to keep lifting the "work" until the agreed upon vision or goals become a pervasive reality for ALL students. Critical elements need to be in place for schools to be capable of determining whether technology investments are impacting learning. Here are a few questions to determine your schools' "readiness" to respond to accountability/responsibility for ROI needs in your community.

Operating Assumption: Technology magnifies and makes visible what ever works in schools and what needs to work better - Bernajean Porter, 1989

√ Data in a Day Slides PDF

Getting Started

• What questions does your planning team have about accountability / responsibility? - TodaysMeet Backchannel for Bernajean

Bernajean Questions to Planning Team Organizing their Visions for Success

1. PRESENT VISION: So have you answered what do YOU want to be accountable / responsible for? Do you know where you are and where you are going? Is IT "urgent" for your community at large? Does IT have passion / zest and "fiery" commitment at large not just with in the planning committee?

2. VISION-DRIVEN PLANNING: Are you charting new territory for learning (vision) or funding a more expensive "status quo"? Are you creating NEW learning stories impossible or impaired without the technology resources or willing to fund/decorate OLD learning stories that already exist with or without the technology investments? WARNING - technology stories do not count! How collaboratively created or "shared" is your vision for this next round of plan

3. ASSESSMENT TOOLS: Have you identified the evidence needed to chart your successes in reaching the vision as well as determining when you can declare "mission accomplished?" Have you selected the assessment tools that will target evaluating learning NOT technology inventories, training successes or implementation strategies? Have you identified What / Who / How often will an evaluation process be needed / useful?

4. INSTRUCTIONAL PRACTICES: Does your planning purposefully activate the potential of technology to accelerate NEW practi
ces worth the time and investment dollars?

5. IMPLEMENTATION: Do your goals and implementation strategies have fidelity in targeting pervasive results for ALL students or are you still funding optional, "mood" uses of the technology resources being invested? How would you rank with the ESSENTIAL CONDITIONS?

6. ACCOUNTABILITY: Does your community have a “blank screen” in their understanding of the “added-value” that technology brings to all students? Are you sending the message that IT is about technology or about student learning?

7. RETURN ON INVESTMENT OR NOT? (ROI) There is strategic planning and then there is strategic timing - a readiness to be DOING the work not just TALKING. Are you using this process to gain broadly based urgency or commitment? Is your school ready to grapple with visible return-on-investments (ROI) that incorporate scalability, sustainability, equity, and accountability / responsibility in ways that will determine whether the results support continuing the investments in technology?

8. OVERALL Flight Check: Are you accountability/responsibility ready?

TodaysMeet backchannel discussion area for Bernajean's session (hashtag #lowfbernajean)

Keynote Conversations
Participants will explore how data can lend schools a helping hand in increasing the speed, depth and breadth of technology’s benefits and results for ALL students IF they know where they are heading! Following a brief Q& A discussion of the roles of assessment in planning and implementation processes, Bernajean will provide an informative data collection strategy using a "focused walk-through" process. Uses of technology help make visible information needed to aligning visions with results. Using blink-like observations, school leaders learn how to observe, code, and record “cognitive” snapshots of technology uses onto hand-held devices. These snapshots creates a “mosaic-like” pattern of strengths and weakness of instructional practices and learning values that forms the school’s pedagogical and intellectual culture. The data validates or redirects the use of technology resources in supporting school-wide goals. Leaders participating in the process along with reflecting on the findings ensures new initiatives are rolled out with more success; existing curriculum and pedagogy is refined and revised; professional learning goals are targeted; and a continuous dialogue is sustained on expectations for technology resources to directly support student results.

Group Task I: Group Pow-Wow on Planning Goals
Table teams will select one (or more if time) goal to determine whether goals under consideration represent Phase II aka First Order or . . . .Phase III aka Second Order? What's being measure? Efforts or Results? What is targeted - technology/adults OR learning/students?

PDF Handout: Reflecting on Goals

Group Task II: Where's the Flashlight?
Scenario: Let's take a simulated "walk-through" a neighboring district building. Twenty-one uses were observed - without time for interviewing - code each of these uses as mostly Literacy - Adapting or Transforming uses of Technology for Learning. You are looking for building patterns (qualitative assessment) of pedagogical practices. So have good conversations - be curious about perspectives with your table mates, and know that even IF you have a disagreement or two about how you would personally CODE the uses, a pattern for building culture will reveal itself.

TASK: Each table team member will want to use both the "H.E.A.T. Spectrum" AND the "Where's the Flashlight?" handout for this activity. You will be coding each simulated observation as either Literacy - Adapting - Transforming. To record your responses to the 21 technology Uses for Learning use the online form on the Where's the Flashlight Wiki Page.
• PDF Handout: Technology and Learning H.E.A.T. Spectrum for Literacy / Adapting / Transforming
• PDF Handout: Where's the Flashlight? Simulating a Walk-through w/ 21 Observations of Technology Uses for Learning
• Coding Results from the Group Walk-through

Group Task III: Using Student Digital Work as a Body of Evidence (Plus Staff Development Strategies)

Where's the Beef? Rigor and Relevance in Student Digital Work
Think RIGOR first! Effective communication skills start with an author’s capacity to develop content that is worthy of sharing first! Since “Where’s the Beef?” expression was first used in 1984 as a Wendy’s advertising slogan, it has become an all-purpose phrase questioning the substance of an idea, event, or product. So when reflecting on digital products in your classrooms or seeing student work created with technology tools demonstrated at conferences, let’s start peering past the technology glitz and begin asking questions about rigor. Does the content have substance worth sharing? Are your students’ digital products demonstrating what they know and deeply understand about the topic beyond existing facts? Or are their digital products primarily demonstrating the exploration and acquisition of technology skills?
Most adults are paper trained and certainly not prepared to assess these dynamic information products. With words and images “flying”, “dissolving”, or “crawling” onto the screens, objects spinning or flashing accompanied by varied fonts, backgrounds, transitions and sounds, teachers are left in a quandary about how to give grades to products beyond traditional words. These products bring a new challenge to our classrooms as national studies and organizations work to define quality work within the new 21st-century skills deemed essential for students to thrive in a digital economy.
Like a building walk-through - student digital work can be strategically gathered for coding Literacy / Adapting / Transforming. Click here to access the Wiki Page -->Using the Lens of Student Digital Work as Body of Evidence

Group Task IV: Table Conversations

IF you were to walk through your own buildings today - in your mind's eye and best reflections, what would be the percentage of technology uses for literacy, adapting and/or transforming? Make a quick pie chart to illustrate and share with your table mates?
• IF time, what would be the pie chart for your 2010 Vision headline? What is the gap between current reality and vision?

TodaysMeet backchannel discussion area for Bernajean's session (hashtag #lowfbernajean)

Suggested Readings and Resources

Bernajean's Articles and Book Resources URL

eMINTS Leadership Study of Collaboration PDF
• Beliefs and Practices of Teacher Study (Collaborative Learners) PDF
Focused Building Walk-through Form - Forsyth County Schools GA
• Technology and Accountability - Narrative of Phases (ISTE) PDF

First - Second Order Change Indicators URL
• Catalytic Approach to Data Collections PDF

• Roles for Technology in Assessment PDF
• Grappling with Accountability/Responsibility PDF

Visual Search Engines

Google WonderWheel
MsDewey (Futuristic - Rated Mature)

Tools in Use During this Session: