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Jayne Morris, professional stress and well-being expert
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Jill Berry, former headteacher and education consultant

Teachers often believe more is better, that more technology in a classroom will yield a more learner-centered environment, while having less hardware impedes such an environment. Limited hardware is often cited by teachers as a rationale for not attempting more collaborative approaches. How am I supposed to do this? The "just enough" principles says whatever the in-class ratio of learners to computers is, it must be the same in the professional development sessions.

The sessions then focus on activities that emphasize collaboration and sharing of resources. Teachers, like students, have different learning needs and preferences. A just-in-time approach attempts to differentiate the instruction and support teachers receive so they can tailor instruction to particular students. This "just-in-time" and classroom-based support is most useful before and as the teacher does his activity.

Latency is often a major issue in professional development. Too much time elapses between teacher learning and implementation of learning.

By providing professional development close to the point of classroom implementation, this lag time and loss of learning is reduced. Just in Case The Indonesian teachers my organization has worked with have many fears about computers. What if they break down? What if students break them?

What if students cannot use or easily learn the software in question, particularly if the teacher also feels uncomfortable with the software? How can the teacher use one computer or two computers with 50 students? These concerns reflect larger fears about control that are not unique to teachers in one country or continent.

Technology "disrupts" the classroom equilibrium based on teacher control and expertise in all matters. Limited computers mean grouping, making it harder for teachers to control the class in general and unruly students in particular. Inability to help students with software or troubleshoot a technology problem might reveal teachers to be less than omniscient. Teachers everywhere fear that chaos will ensue.

This approach focuses on carefully planning the classroom activity. By remembering that computers are just one of many learning tools, teachers can reduce their chances of being caught unaware when computers fail technically or instructionally. By deliberately grouping students with varying technical expertise, teachers can delegate computer training to students, thus shifting some instructional responsibility to students.

Technology cannot save a poorly planned learning experience. Often, it just exacerbates the weaknesses. In this just-in-case approach, technology coaches help teachers plan and organize instruction in a more careful, detailed, and comprehensive fashion. By thinking through and planning for all contingencies, teachers will always have a plan just in case technology fails.

Just Try It Central to change is action, and this is where professional development often breaks down. Without application in the classroom, professional development is a waste of time, money, and effort. This is particularly true for online professional development. In the project in Indonesia, teachers knew that after every single professional development session, upon return to their classrooms, they would be expected to apply what they had learned and report the results to colleagues and their coaches.

Creating an ongoing practice of "open lessons" where teachers carry out a technology-based activity in front of colleagues. When they "just try it," teachers know that mistakes will be made. Errors and failure are a natural part of learning.

But when everyone in the school "just tries" technology, teachers can begin to help one another and build collaborative teams. Next, teachers should receive instruction in technology when not before they need it and follow-up support to plan their technology-related activity Just in time. We have had some fantastic responses to help make this year a positive one.

We look here at the challenges you may face in and offer you tips to help you make a success of it. To make sure backtoschool is as painless as possible we look at what you can do to manage your workload and avoid stress in the year ahead.

Come along to connect learn notice and volunteer. Maybe even some exercise as well Take our short stress test to find out what kinds of stress and wellbeing issues may be affecting you. Does it help with work-life balance? Before you can tackle stress you need to know what is stressing you out. Write a list detailing all the things that are causing you stress right now.

Divide your list into two columns: Now focus on finding solutions for the things you can control. From your list, pick the one that will have the biggest impact on your stress levels. What can you do to tackle this issue?

I think we sometimes get bogged down by the workload and forget the joy of teaching. Try to take one day at a time. I think a large number of teachers myself included are complete control freaks. So, if this applies to you: Talk about stress with colleagues: Schools need to encourage a dialogue about workload and stress management. We carried out a couple of surveys into well-being and stress and discussed the results at my school. We talked about what was a reasonable amount of work to do over a holiday.

But the main thing was trying to get people to see that actually we decide, ourselves, how hard we work. We do need to take control and accept responsibility for how we work.

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Could help provide information to schools so teachers know we are here to help when they need someone to turn to. £25 Could help answer the phone to a teacher who needs someone to talk to when it all gets too much. How to Help Teachers Use Technology in the Classroom The 5J Approach. By Mary Burns / September Print Email. In this just-in-case approach, technology coaches help teachers plan and organize instruction in a more careful, detailed, and comprehensive fashion. By thinking through and planning for all contingencies, teachers will always.

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