There are several ways to see, analyze and understand the integration of technological resources into education. These perspectives depend greatly on the pedagogical models and the infrastructure and tools of each individual educational institution, community, region or country. However, the primary resource still is, regardless of the model or material resources, the teacher.
The teacher figure as a promoter and manager of the educational change models is not only important, but fundamental and a priority. The demands of the educational modernization processes require that teachers, on top of being masters of their subjects and teaching practices, have the knowledge and skills related to the use of technological tools that can be integrated into the teaching process. Thus, it is not surprising that some teachers feel overwhelmed when facing this “new necessity” that society raises: integrating the use of new technologies in the teaching and learning processes.
However, the use of technology should not be seen as a burden that adds to the long list of responsibilities that teachers need to cover during their workday: lesson preparation, student skills and competencies management, creation, review and comparison of evaluation instruments, promotion of order and discipline in the classroom, etc., but as something completely opposite.
Intel offers educational technology solutions through Intel® Learning Series . These solutions promote, among other things:
a) A better distribution of effective class time;
b) More simplicity in the creation of questions and the subsequent evaluation of said questions;
c) Improvement in student motivation and participation by providing digital mediums that transform the classroom and create an enhancing and stimulating environment;
d) Administration and discipline tools that allow teachers to focus their efforts on the dynamics of the class and help them avoid exhaustion while looking for students’ attention and order.
If, as discussed, the benefits are plenty by integrating the solutions offered by Intel® Learning Series, the question is: How can we provide teachers with orientation that allows them to include, effectively and with increasing frequency, technology in their teaching practice? Some of these orientation options are described below:
1. Including a teacher development program that precedes and goes along every project related to the implementation of this type of tools. Depending on the unique characteristics of the group of teachers attending the course, it can include from basic computing subjects to content creation based on technological tools and solutions.
2. Creating guides, templates or work plans that teachers can easily review once the training program is over. These documents should point to the situations that teachers must anticipate in the planning and execution of classes using technological resources.
3. Handing out catalogs, brochures, e-mail addresses, etc., where teachers can look for applications and tools that these new technological solutions offer in order to enhance their professional practice. It is very important that both the solution and the relevant information are in the teacher’s language.
4. Promoting spaces among teachers to share and discuss their experiences on the use of technological resources. These spaces can not only generate a greater familiarization with the use of technological tools, but also, and above all, encourages continuous training on these subjects throughout the academic body.
5. Identifying such teachers that, due to their abilities in the use of technological resources and/or the results they have achieved with their students through this type of deployments, can testify to their peers, and at the same time, serve as promoters for an integration methodology of technological resources in the classrooms of their work centers.
An educational modernization plan that takes into account these orientation options as a part of the deployment process of Intel® Learning Series educational solutions will definitely see the teacher figure as a key element in the successful adoption of the new educational model. However, it should not be forgotten that there are other actors in this process: students, parents and educational authorities. Therefore, an educational project of technological inclusion in education that involves all and each of these parts in the process will be, in essence, a successful project.