There is still, in many cases, the allowance of teachers to not possess the same technological aptitudes that are required in other industries which creates a teaching void. A void in that knowledge learned may not be applicable in modern career application.
We all understand that the basics of Mathematics, Science, Language and Social Studies must be in place but as a student advances through their educational journey, a whole different set of skills have to come into play. Communication and interacting with technology being the key players.
Teachers must adapt, learn and be able to teach with tools that speak this.
Here are a few tech skills every teacher must have:
1) OS. A teacher must understand basic operating systems (OS) for Mac and PC. This may seem odd but I cannot tell you how many times when working with schools and teachers over my career I have had to walk them through simple settings, files etc. After all, this is the basis for operation either way, and a must know.
2) Powerpoint and Word. Students need to understand how to build documents and presentations, but more importantly, how to make them powerful and stand out. Here is reality, our students do not write well anymore because they use a pile of technology and are void of the skill. Teach the skill through technology and then make it even better.
3) Social Media. Yes teachers. It is high time you learned and gained comfort with Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook. This is a touchy one as Social Media is considered the evil empire of education but lets look at it from this perspective. Twitter is now the top source for news. LinkedIn is the top networking and career site. Facebook is the top communication platform. If you are teaching your kids skills to become a productive member of society, wouldn’t it be beneficial to teach them to use the tools we use in the professional world to learn and communicate?
4) Google. Right now you are saying “I know how to use Google!” Do you? I bet you don’t truly know what Google fully has to offer or how to do a search that yields powerful results. Here….I can help. I have tips for Google Search and Google Tools here for you.
5) Mobile Devices. iPhone, iPad, Android, Android Tablets and so on. Not that anyone has to be a master of all these devices but do take time to understand the power these hold and the tools that you can implement through them. Here is a fact. Tablets and smart-phones are here to stay and will become what is used more and more in the future. Time to get comfortable with them.
That is a start.
What would you add? Are you a teacher and if so, how do you rank in the above?