Infrastructure

Top Picks

September 12, 2007 3 min read

Technology Information Center for Administrative Leadership

This site clearly recognizes that school administrators are busy people who don’t have the time to surf the Internet indiscriminately for answers to their problems. It is a one-stop shop of content, expert advice, and interactive tools designed to solve problems or at least point ed. tech. leaders in the right direction. It includes numerous articles on a host of topics, such as relevant research on technology’s impact on education, what data-driven organizations look like, how to acquire technology through commercial partnerships, the best hand-held technologies for administrators, and how to find, hire, and keep skilled technology professionals. It also offers short profiles of more than 60 ed. tech. leaders, as well as a blog called TBLOGICAL, which has thoughtful but infrequent posts on topics such as multitasking, personalized learning, and the iPhone. One caution: The California Department of Education commissioned the creation of this site to serve the needs of school administrators in its state; as a result, much of the material is California-centric. Even so, ed. tech. leaders in other states would likely find that most of the material addresses their concerns, too.

dd

ISTE’s ‘Second Life’ Headquarters

The International Society for Technology in Education has developed an “island” on Second Life, the 3-D virtual world that allows users to create avatars, or virtual people, to explore places, interact with other people, and share ideas. Iste sees its Second Life outpost as a place to showcase best practices in online learning, for collaboration among educators on ideas and projects, and for professional networking. The site hosts weekly networking socials and topical events and sponsors a twice-monthly speaker series. Since the site is relatively new and it would take some time using it to appreciate its real possibilities, judgments about its usefulness are best left to the reader. But it’s at least worth checking out. It may unleash the computer gamer inside you.

National School Public Relations Association

To be sure, there is plenty of material on this site geared toward teaching school leaders how to spin the positive news about their districts. But in today’s high-tech world, having a good public-communication plan has quite a bit to do with how well your district understands the use of new technologies by students and parents, and then figures out how to harness those uses, especially in times of crisis. That’s why this site is worth running your eye over occasionally. A recent article on the site, titled “Online Wildfires: Coping With the Digital Media That Are Rewriting the Rules for Crisis Communication,” recounts how a lockdown at a New Jersey high school prompted intense media coverage and public complaints. Parents were apparently receiving text messages and cellphone calls from their children before school officials could explain what was going on. That was a useful article for school leaders, but the site itself probably could use more material that addresses how new technologies can be used to improve communication with parents and the community.

Computer Science Teachers Association

This site recently launched an online repository of computer science teaching materials, including lesson plans, learning modules, presentations, and course descriptions that might be useful for computer science teachers in your district. All the materials are in a searchable database that can be used to match resources with specific courses and student learning levels. It’s also worth noting that the site has a database to help teachers and administrators access computer science teacher-certification and -endorsement requirements across the country. One caveat: You have to be a CSTA member to use all the features in the databases.

Wikipedia: Educational Technology

For ed. tech. wonks who appreciate the big picture, it’s worth reading the educational technology page on Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia that is continually updated by Internet users from around the world. The definition of educational technology has been revised a number of times, and past versions are available from the site’s archives. The page offers a host of links to entries on issues such as technology integration, multiple-intelligences theory, constructivism and technology, and e-learning. Its list of societies and journals involved in educational technology is a bit thin, however, and could use updating. You might want to consider adding some content to the page.

Related Tags:

Compiled by Kevin Bushweller
A version of this article appeared in the September 12, 2007 edition of Digital Directions as Top Picks

Events

Student Well-Being Webinar Boosting Teacher and Student Motivation During the Pandemic: What It Takes
Join Alyson Klein and her expert guests for practical tips and discussion on how to keep students and teachers motivated as the pandemic drags on.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Well-Being Webinar
A Holistic Approach to Social-Emotional Learning
Register to learn about the components and benefits of holistically implemented SEL.
Content provided by Committee for Children
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Well-Being Webinar
How Principals Can Support Student Well-Being During COVID
Join this webinar for tips on how to support and prioritize student health and well-being during COVID.
Content provided by Unruly Studios

EdWeek Top School Jobs

CCLC Program Site Director
Thornton, CO, US
Adams 12 Five Star Schools
Customer Support Specialist, Tier 1
Portland, OR, US
Northwest Evaluation Association
Customer Support Specialist, Tier 1
Portland, OR, US
Northwest Evaluation Association
Customer Support Specialist, Tier 1
Portland, OR, US
Northwest Evaluation Association

Read Next

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Infrastructure Whitepaper
The Value of Automation in K-12 Schools Back Office
Download this eBook to learn more about how automation can help improve and streamline operations for K-12 school districts' back-office ...
Content provided by SAP Concur
Infrastructure Internet Access Is a Civil Rights Issue
In the world’s wealthiest country, why is broadband access denied to so many and in such high numbers? Mark Lieberman investigates.
7 min read
v40 6BI ML IMG
Illustration by Jamiel Law
Infrastructure Schools Handed Out Millions of Digital Devices Under COVID-19. Now, Thousands Are Missing
Some districts are scrambling to account for thousands of devices—a task made more urgent by the uncertainty over when students will be able to return to school buildings full-time.
5 min read
1 Laptops ARTICLE
Getty
Infrastructure How to Address Big Tech Equity Challenges
School districts are facing huge tech equity issues this school year, especially if schools return to full-time remote learning. Here’s how they are addressing those challenges.
7 min read
Sam Urban Wittrock, a history teacher at W.W. Samuell High School in Dallas, shows an example of one of the many WiFi hotspot devices his school district is giving to students. Schools nationwide are gearing up to do a better job this academic year making sure digital devices and WiFi access are available to all students.
Sam Urban Wittrock, a history teacher at W.W. Samuell High School in Dallas, shows an example of one of the many WiFi hotspot devices his school district is giving to students. Schools nationwide are gearing up to do a better job this academic year making sure digital devices and WiFi access are available to all students.
Tony Gutierrez/AP