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Research Library

Decision making surrounding technology for the K-12 classroom has become a topic of great debate.  It was only a short time ago that colleges and universities faced the question of whether or not it was appropriate to allow students to bring their own computers and phones into the classroom.  Concerns about distractions and cheating initially limited their use, but quickly those concerns faded, leading to higher education classrooms today that are filled with multiple devices for each student.  K-12 schools now face a similar dilemma.  The percentage of children that have a mobile device is rapidly increasing. New educational curriculum is exploding into the market.  Textbooks are being transitioned to digital formats, including tools to annotate, collaborate and share information.  With the advent of these new and abundant sources of learning material, school leaders are faced with deciding how best to make the transition to a digital learning environment.  Will they provide devices to students to initiate a one-to-one environment, allow students to bring their own device (BYOD) or enact some blended approach?

The U.S. Department of Education’s National Education Technology Plan calls for “an alternative to the one-size-fits-all model of teaching and learning.” Championing personalized learning, the report goes on to explain, “Personalization refers to instruction that is paced to learning needs [i.e., individualized], tailored to learning preferences [i.e., differentiated], and tailored to the specific interests of different learners. In an environment that is fully personalized, the learning objectives and content as well as the method and pace may all vary.”1 From classrooms to legislatures, advocates for personalized learning are recognizing that online learning has the potential to advance educational opportunities for all students and to deliver on the  promise of personalization — at scale.

The Technology Implementation Practice Guide was developed as a companion document to be used in conjunction with the PowerUp WHAT WORKS website ( Whether you are a professional development coordinator, school or district administrator, technical assistance provider working with school personnel, or school specialist or teacher, this Practice Guide can help you strategically plan how to expand the use of technology tools to support classroom instruction, address the needs of struggling students, and improve teaching and learning for all students, including students with disabilities.

Funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, PowerUp is a free, comprehensive guide that supports your professional learning in using technology to differentiate instruction and personalize student learning in English language arts (ELA) and mathematics.

PowerUp has plenty of activities and content to support professional learning! You can explore:
1. The PowerUp Tech Matters Blog, which includes “grab-and-go” resources and ideas on how to use technology in your classroom.

2. Strategy Guides to help strengthen your practice and differentiate instruction in ELA and mathematics, including materials such as Teach With Tech, Strategies in Action, and Multimedia Supports.

3. Professional Development Materials to plan staff learning events on differentiating and personalizing student learning through evidence-based strategies and the use of technology.

4. Make Tech Happen, which provides up-to-date information about technology tools and trends, along with ideas for classroom use.

5. The Technology Implementation Practice Guide and Leadership Team Support Materials, which will help you to find everything you need to make technology work in your school and classrooms.

6. Related Research that provides the foundation for PowerUp evidence-based practices, materials, and resources.

This project-based learning resource, created as part of a partnership between the Pearson Foundation and the National Academy Foundation, focuses on digital storytelling as a tool and instructional best practice for Academies. The information included in this primer is designed to supplement three exciting, project-based digital arts opportunities available to schools in the NAF network:

*Capturing a Career – a project where students create brief “video resumes” that highlight their interests, skills, experiences, and career aspirations.

*Digital Storytelling – a project where students from any Academy or course develop and communicate insights about a topic through short video documentaries.

*Professional Development Technology Workshops – a “teacher as student” professional development opportunity where participants build teamwork and technology skills as they create a useful video products to support their own programs.

These technology projects provide accessible models of project-based learning and serve as powerful opportunities to advance broader school reform goals through engaging project work.

As technologies and broadband become more widely available and as the focus on integrating technology into learning increases, interest in Flipped Learning will likely continue to grow. In recognition of this interest, the Flipped Learning Network, with the support of Pearson Education and researchers at George Mason University, undertook a comprehensive review of relevant research.

In this review, we define and describe the Flipped Learning model, briefly note its historical foundations and address common misconceptions. We discuss learning theories that underlie the model and describe current, although limited empirical research findings. We also describe concerns that have been raised.

This report describes the initial findings of several workshops convened in 2009 to consider the future of education and in particular the role of technology and computer science in education. Through a series of facilitated collaborative workshops, leaders in several disciplines engaged in conversations that cast computers in the role of facilitating education in the future and recommended a research agenda for federal funding.

This project was guided by several fundamental values and beliefs, primarily the view that cyberspace can be a collaborative and cognitively supportive learning space and that global (online) education, based on customized teaching provides a powerful component of education for the 21st century. The participants suggested several pilot programs that should be funded to identify the education and technology challenges, for example, assessment and interoperability. They proposed coordinated pilot programs that provide concrete examples to inform our continuing discussions. Another belief is that the educational advances we propose can only be accomplished through intense, concerted, long-term efforts championed by federal agencies, led by committed researchers and involving breakthroughs in computational science, cognitive psychology, and the science of learning and education.

This report is not about predicting the future. Instead, our starting point was simply to consider some of the greatest challenges and opportunities for education in the 21st century. From there, we considered how computing and technology needs to, and can, play a vital role in realizing advances in education. Finally, we considered what needs to happen in computing and technology — as well as in education policy — to accelerate advances that can then help address key global challenges with a 20 year time horizon. Workshop participants identified educational needs, outlined perceived challenges, defined future impacts, and articulated a roadmap to achieve strong educational results.

In an effort to inform EdTech procurement decisions in schools and districts across the country whose leaders realize the potential of technology to personalize learning and improve high-quality educational opportunities, Digital Learning Now! brought together experts from Getting Smart, Curriculum Associates, and The Learning Accelerator to create the Smart Series Guide to EdTech Procurement.

The procurement process outlined is informed by the lessons gleaned from the collective experiences of the authors in working with hundreds of school districts  and across education policy matters in dozens of states. The authors have learned a great deal about the challenges that districts face when attempting to discern how best to integrate technology into their schools in a way that creates better environments for teachers to teach and students to learn.

They have heard consistent challenges articulated by educators around the country who are facing inter-related shifts in standards and assessments. In the race to meet these challenges, providers often market themselves in strikingly similar ways, even when their product and service offerings are very different. Frequently, the result is confusion and frustration from educational leaders who do not know where to begin.

This paper is the answer to a question: What would the education policies and practices of the United States be if they were based on the policies and practices of the countries that now lead the world in student performance? It is adapted from the last two chapters of a book to be published in September 2011 by Harvard Education Press. Other chapters in that book describe the specific strategies pursued by Canada (focusing on Ontario), China (focusing on Shanghai), Finland, Japan and Singapore, all of which are far ahead of the United States. The research on these countries was performed by a team assembled by the National Center on Education and the Economy, at the request of the OECD.

(3/1/2004) Two recent studies of schoolwide one-to-one computing initiatives--one in the United States and one in Canada--suggest that using laptops in the classroom can help improve students' writing skills and bolster overall academic success. The studies come as an increasing number of states and school districts are rolling out laptop programs of their own.

Research Projects Presented at Annual Research Forum

Wake Forest University
Department of Education
Winston-Salem, NC
December, 2009
Leah P.

The purpose of this study was to describe and identify Sedgwick High School’s teacher and student perceptions of the impact of one-to-one laptop computer access using an appreciative inquiry theoretical research perspective and the theoretical frameworks of change and paradigm shift.

Since the publication of the first Tablets for Schools literature review,1 which argued that there was still a significant gap in the literature on the impact of one-to-one Tablets in education, the interest in this area has continued to grow among academic researchers. An increasing number of publications have debated the effects these devices have on teachers and pupils in educational contexts ranging from nurseries to universities. This report will update the findings from the previous publication and discuss the findings from recent studies, as well as the limitations of the research to date. It will also discuss what, if anything, distinguishes Tablets from other technologies that have previously been introduced in schools, such as computers, laptops and netbooks.

No one knows teaching like teachers, so we asked more than 3,100 educators what kinds of digital instructional tools are essential to help their students be prepared for college and careers in the 21st century.

In surveys and interviews, teachers told us that they are looking for resources that can help their students meet new, more rigorous standards, including the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and Next Generation Science Standards. They also are optimistic that digital instructional tools can be useful. But even as the instructional market is going increasingly digital and a huge array of products exists, gaps remain: Certain types of products that teachers said they need for specific instructional purposes are simply not available; in other cases, there are products available, but teachers aren’t using them or don’t perceive them to be effective. These market gaps present opportunities for product developers to create new digital instructional tools or improve existing ones to better meet the needs of teachers and students.

In the coming years, schools will be hit with a trio of potent reforms: teacher evaluations that will include student test scores, widespread adoption of higher academic standards, and the development of high stakes standardized tests aligned with these new standards. Each of these reforms challenges the status quo, demanding that schools systematically and continuously improve student performance, marking and measuring their progress each and every step along the way.

The new reforms will require significant changes in the classroom. The Common Core State Standards that have been adopted by 46 states and the District of Columbia, represent a retreat from the traditional rote, fact-based style of instruction toward teaching that fosters critical thinking and problem solving. Even non-Common Core states are pursuing a college and career-ready agenda that calls for the development of these skills among students and holds schools accountable for doing so. To meet these new standards, teachers will have to learn new teaching practices.

This is not just about providing professional development but about providing effective professional development. Availability alone is not an issue. In fact, in a recent study, researchers found that while 90 percent of teachers reported participating in professional development, most of those teachers also reported that it was totally useless (Darling-Hammond et al, 2009). Thus, the real issue isn’t that teachers aren’t provided professional development, but
that the typical offerings are ineffective at changing teachers’ practice or student learning.

Television was once the newest technology in our homes, and then came videos and computers.  Today’s children are growing up in a rapidly changing digital age that is far different from that of their parents and grandparents.  A variety of technologies are all around us in our homes, offices, and schools.  When used wisely, technology and media can support learning and relationships.  Enjoyable and engaging shared experiences that optimize the potential for children’s learning and development can support children’s relationships both with adults and their peers.

Education technology—“Edtech”—has become an area of intense innovation and debate—with topics like Massive Open Online Courses, coding for kids, and tablets constantly attracting attention and sparking debate every day.

But how are teachers and students responding to the constant influx of new digital tools?

The latest Pew Research Center Internet and American Life survey of 2,500 Advanced Placement (AP) and National Writing Project (NWP) teachers from 6th to 12th grade suggests that while edtech is infiltrating classrooms, key disparities are affecting how teachers teach and how their students learn.

An Investigation of the First Year of 1:1 Computing in New Hampshire Middle Schools 5/1/2005


One-to-One Institute is an international non-profit committed to igniting
21st century education through the implementation of one-to-one technology
in K-12 education environments.

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