Technology is transforming our world - and our classrooms. This article is a go-to guide for teachers looking to convince their school administrations to implement technology tools in the classroom.
Bring on the Tech
The presence of technology in today's classroom is expanding, and for good reason. It improves student outcomes, makes teachers' lives easier, and saves time for all parties involved. However, not all administrations are equally gung-ho about investing in technology tools, especially new or uncommon ones. If you're passionate about using technology in your classroom, here are our suggestions for how to persuade your administration to give tech tools a shot.
Start Early and Be Persistent
As with anything you might ask your administration for, it's easy for your technology request to be lost in the shuffle or not be taken seriously. But if you're serious about trying to create a positive change in your classroom, it's important to commit to your argument. If you can, try bringing it up as soon as possible: before the school year starts or, even better, toward the end of the year prior. This gives the administration more time to get used to the idea and allows you to respond to whatever objections might arise.
Furthermore, don't just drop your request after you make it known to the administration. Be sure to follow up at regular intervals and through different forms of communication. Send emails, give calls, and visit admins in person. Keep the idea alive rather than letting it slip off of the administration's radar. This also has the added bonus of demonstrating just how passionate you are about this matter.
Focus on Results
To make a successful argument, you must have compelling evidence. If you want to convince your administration to give tech tools a shot, you have to be prepared to offer several points as to how it will benefit your (and other's) classroom. Any of the following might work depending on the specific tech tool or tools you're championing:
- Technology allows students to take ownership of their learning, demonstrate independence, take charge of the pacing of their instruction, and follow their interests.
- Technology offers students flexibility. It allows them to choose a mode of instruction that best fits their learning style and gives them multiple options for when and where to study, encouraging lifelong learning.
- Students are already drawn to technology and using it for educational purposes meets them halfway, in a medium they are already comfortable with and enjoy using.
- Technology allows students to build connections with each other, with their instructors, and with the world around them, helping them to participate in important conversations.
- Technology allows teachers to assess student learning, differentiate instruction, and track progress.
Whatever your motivation for wanting to implement tech tools in your classroom, make sure that you are able to articulate it clearly and persuasively.
Nothing is more compelling than hard evidence like data and statistics. Consider sharing the following points from the University of Cincinnati with your administration to help them see the positive effect technology can (and does) have in the classroom.
- 92 percent of teachers say the internet has a major impact on their ability to access teaching resources and materials.
- 79 percent of teachers agree that technology encourages collaboration among students.
- 74 percent of teachers say technology allows them to reinforce and expand on content.
- 74 percent of students say technology motivates them to learn.
- 73 percent of teachers say that technology helps them reach students with different learning styles.
If your administration responds to specific case studies, consider pointing them to the story of Clintondale High School. After they moved their school to a flipped classroom model, failure rates dropped from 30 to 10 percent.
Get to Tech-ing
Remember: you're starting from a place of positively-motivated, forward-thinking goodwill, which will help guide you through the persuasion process. Our hope is that these suggestions allow you to make a compelling argument to your school administration for the implementation of tech tools so that all members of your school community are able to benefit in the many ways suggested above. Go get 'em!
Looking for a tech tool that will allow you to flip your classroom? Check out Study.com's Teacher Edition.