Pertinent tutorials for tech.-unsavvy teachers

Problem: During the two years of the Education After-Degree BEAD program I was able to visit several schools, and was impressed with the abundance of available technologies, most notably all the laptops available in the classrooms.

However, it didn’t seem that they were being used to the point they could be. Armed with what I learned on my internship, and what I am learning in this class, I’ve decided to create a wiki that will demystify many of the applications on the mac and online. I hope that this project will:

a)      Allow me to create a familiarity with all the programs themselves, and

b)      provide well-established teachers an easy resource for bringing these apps into their classroom by:

  1. providing easy to understand video tutorials of the basics
  2. providing strengths (and possible weaknesses) to learning
  3. providing extra resources (links / articles) that will provide further instruction into their use/additional potentials

‘But how do you know whether the tutorials will be helpful to teachers?’

Good question! I am going to test them on my Mom, a teacher in her last year before retirement, and let’s just say she isn’t so proficient with computers. I will make the tutorial have my Mom grade it on a rubric we’ll make up together.

‘Aren’t there already a heap of tutorials widely available on the net?’

Well, sure there are. I just think that by myself making the tutorials I will be forcing myself to become competent enough to use these in the classes I hope to teach in the future.

The first video tutorial will be on…. Well, why don’t you tell me! Offer up your suggestions, and I will do it. Keep in mind these are applications available through use of a mac.

Looking forward to all the suggestions!!!

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7 thoughts on “Pertinent tutorials for tech.-unsavvy teachers

  1. Great idea – video tutorials are excellent resources for self-paced on demand learning.
    One suggestion:
    If you choose web-based apps you can reach a broader audience.

  2. Make sure you get yourself a good USB mic, a quiet room, and a copy of techsmith camtasia. As a developer of educational software I find that program invaluable. Camtasia helps me communicate instructions to my potential users, and, as a bonus, the videos are really easy to produce.
    Good luck with the project.

  3. Don’t know much about Macs (what I do know is from my students), but how about something on how to record classes? Might be geared towards teachers of older age groups, but it might be something fun to start with. 🙂

    I echo Emory’s suggestion – if you go web-based, more people will be able to use them; Mac or not.

  4. I would maybe start with programs that you’ve found useful yourself. For example, if you are using an RSS reader to organize the blogs/websites you read, you might explain that to people. Perhaps you could even do tutorials like, “What is the Facebook all about?” since you seem to be aiming towards the tech unsavvy.

    I’m not sure how possible this is in your current situation, but I’ve always found it extremely effective if you can shoot off a tutorial for a tool/process for someone right when they need it instead of having a static library of tutorials sitting around.

    Sounds like an interesting project!

  5. Awesome idea Jeremy! Make sure you pass on the link to me, I would love to see it! What a great way to keep all of the programs that we have been learning about in a place that in the future you can use. When we get into the classroom it is going to be hectic and sometimes we forget about all of these wonderful tools that we have been learning about. This is a great way to remember all of the tools and more importantly how to use them! good luck my friend!

  6. Thanks to all your comments! My mom is super excited about the project. I thought we’d first start with something she wanted to learn more about; Skype. So, this being pretty easy, I’ll get through this as sort of a tutorial for myself. Thanks Michael for your advice. I’ll try and use the software/hardware you recommend!
    I’ll be providing a link to the wiki asap!

    Thanks!

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