Seymour Hanfling - NETC Director
Now in the midst of our tenth and final year, NETC staff is busy providing technical assistance, professional development, and developing print and Web-based resources focused on effective uses of technology for learning and teaching. An Act of Congress cut funding for NETC and the entire network of Regional Technology in Education Consortia (RTEC). Congress is calling for a new and expanded Comprehensive Center Program that will absorb some of the RTEC functions.
To that end, U.S. Department of Education is conducting a regional, focused needs assessment to identify the technical assistance needs to be addressed by the new regional Comprehensive Centers. The Department invites you to help shape the Northwestern Comprehensive Center by sharing your thoughts on educational issues, especially those related to technology. The Northwestern Regional Advisory Committee (RAC) will be holding public meetings during the next few months to assess the educational needs within the region. We ask that you go to the Regional Advisory Committee Web site at http://www.rac-ed.org and select the Northwest regionis Public Forum link so that each of you can have important impact on the types of technical assistance support that will be available to you in the years to come.
Our focus in this issue of the NETC Circuit is on integrating technology into teaching and learning. We present two effective professional development models; a model of teaching information literacy and Internet research skills; a rubric to help conceptualize and assess the integration of technology; and a thoughtful article on that most prosaic of activitieso homework. "Peer Coaching in Edmonds, Washington" by Kim Mathey and "Standards-Based, Technology-Rich Teaching in Wyoming" by Mary Hoffman, offer indepth exploration of two highly successful professional development models. In 1998 as the newly appointed Instructional Technology Coordinator, Kim Mathey was charged with mentoring and training her districtis staff to integrate technology into their instructional practice. In her article, Kim describes the evolution of the peer coaching model at Edmonds and the growth, changes, and impact of this long-term journey on the districtwide integration of technology. Beginning in 2001, the state of Wyoming has been implementing a multi-year professional development initiative to train teachers to provide a standards-based education using technology-rich instructional practices. Mary Hoffman, a trainer for this statewide initiative, describes a coordinated program linked to standards that integrates supportive technologies to provide a wide range of opportunities that are having a powerful impact on teaching and learning.
In "Better Homework Through Technology," Mark Schmitt, a high school math teacher, presents perspectives on homework as a tool that many teachers may not have considered and describes how he uses technology to support this learning strategy. Markis approach opened my eyes to new applications that are available for those with access to technology and reminded me of the pedagogical strategies that must be at the heart of effective "homework."
Finally, the Circuit offers two resource articles. Kim Mathey applies the peer coaching model to "Training Information Literacy and Research Skills." Understanding the "grammar of the Web" is a critical skill in the age of ubiquitous information. In "Is Technology Integration Happening? How Can I Tell?" Don Holznagel explores the definition of technology integration and offers a classroom observation rubric that teachers and administrators can use when discussing what they mean by effective technology integration. In "New Developments at NETC" learn about a number of resources that are newly available to support implementing effective instructional practices using technology; assessing technology integration; best online K-12 teaching practices; and, strategic technology program planning, review, and evaluation.
Take these ideas, share them with your colleagues, and let us know how you use technology to empower teaching and learning.
Northwest Educational Technology Consortium http://www.netc.org