I admit that teachers are sometimes a very tough crowd to teach. As teachers we expect our classrooms to have a certain amount of discipline so that we can cover material, ask questions, clarify information and share knowledge. What happens when you get a group of teachers together for a professional development session?
So how is this all tech related? First I want to ask you a question. Q) What’s worse than teaching a room full of teachers? A) Teaching a room full of teachers with iPads in front of them. This was the task ahead of me a few weeks ago when I attempted to lead a group of teachers through a brief iPad tutorial.
The intention was to share a database-tracking program called Bento, by FileMaker Pro. I have found it tremendously helpful in my classroom and shared it with a few colleagues that thought it should be shared further. After some coordination with administration and nailing down a date I hosted an iPad sharing session in my room. I invited teachers with or without iPads to come down and take a look at some classroom applications.
The point of this post is not to get into the pros and cons of Bento, but to vent, a little, and seek advice. How does one successfully conduct a teacher directed workshop when technology is in front of each attendee? It seems especially hard when the piece of tech is something as fun as an iPad.
In the end, it’s hard to say if the session was successful. Motivation for using iPads in the classroom as a teacher tool seemed high, but I don’t feel like I was able to communicate my ideas with the iPad infatuated audience. I definitely need to refine my technique for teaching teachers; especially those with pieces of technology in front of them.
To all you IT teachers – I congratulate you, that is a tough position.