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What is a "techy" teacher at this point?

I recently came across a resume in which the applicant indicated that they were "Very well versed within technology." For me personally, I realized I was not impressed by this claim anymore, but then wondered if perhaps there would still be other administrators that would see this as a trait that would significantly set them apart. I have reached the point that I see technology in a classroom as something that should be ubiquitous. In other words, a teacher doesn't "do technology" but instead their instruction is "aligned within technology."

The evolution of the definition of a "techy" teacher is an interesting concept to consider. A long while ago a school principal could have been blown away at the idea of a teacher utilizing email correspondence to communicate with students as a cutting edge practice. At another point in time, a school principal may have been impressed with the idea of using blogs to narrate reflective reactions to a piece of literature. I am wondering now what would even really impress me if a teacher was discussing their technology incorporation. Instead, I would just presume that using technology should be an unspoken and obvious expectation.

Technology is a resource. It is not a curriculum or a classroom management tool, but I see these terms being used interchangeably and that isn't appropriate. Ultimately, I just think we as educators need to realize that technology usage should be an expectation, and it doesn't necessarily equate to someone being a fantastic teacher. If someone walked into a classroom, and saw all students mindlessly copying notes from a book to a piece of paper the reactions would probably align to conclusions that this teacher was not engaging. There really should not be a difference when you replace the piece of paper with a powerpoint presentation on a laptop.

At this point, in my opinion, a "techy" teacher is someone that uses technology to extend learning and provide student autonomy. Using technology should not be an "event." Instead, it should be a part of a 21st century classroom "atmosphere."

About the Author

Dr. Sutton is a veteran educator and a current district superintendent. His passion and background align best with middle school grade levels and instructional best practices.

My book Make Professional Development Matter is meant to be a guide for educators to ensure professional learning aligns with improving instruction. I share past experiences that support and create my core values as an educator, and the research that correlates to them.

Twitter - @DrNickSutton

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