Title

21st Century Teacher Preparation for Youth-at-Risk

First Presenter's Institution

Kennesaw State University

Second Presenter's Institution

NA

Third Presenter's Institution

NA

Fourth Presenter's Institution

NA

Fifth Presenter's Institution

NA

Strand #1

Academic Achievement & School Leadership

Strand #2

Social & Emotional Skills

Relevance

School systems that marshal the strengths of technology tools and implement their correlation to curriculum reform will stimulate students to cultivate critical thinking, problem solving, collaborating with others, taking initiative and increasing the likelihood of students’ successful performance in the world beyond the classroom. Moreover, the socio–political and educational context of school-aged children is under a period of redefinition and redesign, requiring fundamental transformations in the ways that teachers teach and children learn in schools. Sociopolitical consciousness invites the kind of culturally relevant pedagogy that enables youth-at-risk students the ability to take learning beyond the confines of the classroom using school knowledge and skills to identify, analyze, and solve real world problems. The need to equip students with the technology skills required in their future lives is particularly crucial in urban schools and communities in order to foster greater diversity in the field of information technology and widen the potential sources of employment for disadvantaged students

Brief Program Description

This presentation demonstrates how TPACK and problem based learning evidences (1) a successful teacher preparation course project engaging teacher candidates to design interdisciplinary learning strategies to resolve “real world” problems that stimulate at-risk students' ability to cultivate critical thinking, problem solving, collaborating with others, taking initiative and increasing the likelihood of students’ successful performance in the world beyond the classroom and (2) an authentic opportunity for teacher candidates to create and witness examples of what this kind of teaching looks like in practice.

Summary

Since youth-at-risk students entering schools today differ from those of the past in terms of their technological literacy and educational experiences, educators must discover relevant curriculum that enables “real world”, technology rich, authentic pedagogy and assessment that address national content standards to impact the learning of all students. It is imperative that colleges of education committed to teacher preparation for youth-at-risk design comprehensive programs including the kind of technological pedagogical content knowledge that accommodates diverse skills and abilities, cultivates multiple intelligences, draws upon students’ individual learning skills, and utilizes digital tools. The intersection of the guiding principles of Universal Design for Learning and Multiple Intelligence literature provide well-founded reasoning for using TPACK (Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge) to prepare pre-service teachers in the craft of differentiating instruction for all learners. Furthermore, the TPACK framework leverages a groundswell of opportunity for instantiating culturally relevant pedagogy in a problem based learning environment. Nevertheless, evidence indicates that teachers’ integration of digital tools into instruction remains sporadic and less than optimal. Implementing a new definition of effective teaching requires teacher knowledge change, teacher beliefs change, and teacher culture change. What is more, teachers need to “own” this new definition. Involving teachers in the visioning process, either through teacher participatory efforts or through teacher education and professional development efforts, is essential. Finally, the cultures in which teachers learn and work must embrace and nurture this new definition. Once this new definition has been established, teachers need to see examples of what this kind of teaching looks like in practice.

Evidence

According to The Association for Middle Level Education (formerly National Middle School Association) (NMSA, 2010), educators must discover relevant curriculum that enables constructivist pedagogy and “real world”, technology rich, authentic assessment that address national content standards to impact the learning of all students. Additionally, if educators value youth-at-risk and thoroughly participate in the necessary preparation to teach them, then students and teachers must engage in active, purposeful learning that is challenging, exploratory, integrative, and culturally relevant. It is imperative that colleges of education committed to young adolescent teacher preparation design comprehensive programs including the kind of technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPACK) (Koehler and Mishra, 2008) that accommodates diverse skills and abilities, cultivates multiple intelligences, draws upon students’ individual learning skills, and utilizes digital tools (NMSA, 2010).

Furthermore, technology has the promise of engaging previously under stimulated areas of the brain (Jensen, 2009) impacted by the effects of poverty. According to the U.S. Department of Education (2010), effective use of technology in teaching is an essential skill for teachers because it can help make complex subject matter ideas more accessible to students while preparing them for the demands of the modern technological workplace and the reality of their future. Additionally, school systems that marshal the strengths of technology tools and implement their correlation to curriculum reform will stimulate students to cultivate critical thinking, problem solving, collaborating with others, taking initiative and increasing the likelihood of students’ successful performance in the world beyond the classroom. The issue is no longer whether teachers should integrate technology in their existing practices, but how to use technology to transform their teaching with technology and create new opportunities for learning (Angeli and Valanides, 2009).

Moreover, the socio–political and educational context of school-aged children is under a period of redefinition and redesign, requiring fundamental transformations in the ways that teachers teach and children learn in schools (Sefton-Green, 2006). Sociopolitical consciousness invites the kind of culturally relevant pedagogy (Ladson-Billings, 1995) that enables youth-at-risk the ability to take learning beyond the confines of the classroom using school knowledge and skills to identify, analyze, and solve real world problems. The need to equip students with the technology skills required in their future lives is particularly crucial in urban schools and communities in order to foster greater diversity in the field of information technology and widen the potential sources of employment for disadvantaged students (Tettegah & Mayo, 2005). Nevertheless, evidence indicates that teachers’ integration of digital tools into instruction remains sporadic and less than optimal (Ertmer & Ottenbreit-Leftwich, 2010). According to Ertmer and Ottenbreit-Leftwich (2010), implementing a new definition of effective teaching requires teacher knowledge change, teacher beliefs change, and teacher culture change. What is more, teachers need to “own” this new definition. Involving teachers in the visioning process, either through teacher participatory efforts or through teacher education and professional development efforts, is essential. Finally, the cultures in which teachers learn and work must embrace and nurture this new definition. Once this new definition has been established, teachers need to see examples of what this kind of teaching looks like in practice.

References

Angeli, C. & Valanides, N. (2009). Epistemological and methodological issues for the conceptualization, development, and assessment of ICT-TPCK; Advances in technological pedagogical content knowledge. Computers & Education, Vol. 52, pp. 154-168.

Ertmer, P. and Ottenbreit-Leftwich, A. (2010). Teacher technology change: How knowledge, confidence, beliefs and culture intersect. Journal of Research on Technology in Education. Vol. 42, No.3. Pp.255-284

Jensen, E. (2009). Teaching with Poverty in mind: What being poor does to kids’ brains and what schools can do about it. ASCD: Alexandria, Va.

Koehler, M, & Mishra, P (2008). Handbook of technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPCK) for educators. New York: Routledge.

Ladson-Billings, G. (Autumn, 1995). Toward a theory of culturally relevant pedagogy. American Educational Research Journal, Vol. 32, No.3, pp. 465-4

National Middle School Association. (2010). This we believe: Keys to educating young adolescents. Westerville, OH: Auth

Sefton-Green, J. (2006). Youth, technology, and media cutures. Review of Research in Education, 30, pp. 279-306

Tettegah, S. and Mayo, C. (July, 2005). Urban education and technology in the digital age. Urban Education, 40, pp 363-3

U.S. Department of Education, Office of Educational Technology (2016). Future ready learning: Reimagining the role of technology in education. National Education Technology Plan. http://tech.ed.gov/netp/

Format

Individual Presentation

Biographical Sketch

Dr. Mark Warner has taught social studies, curriculum and assessment, research methodology, and technology integration courses at the university level for 20 years. His primary research interest is integrating problem based learning and technology into the 21stcentury classroom. Prior to his work in higher education, Dr. Warner was a school principal and taught grades 5-8 math, social studies, and language arts for 15 years in urban and rural settings including high concentrations of youth-at-risk. Additionally, as a former football and baseball coach, Dr. Warner has focused considerable energy to empower student leadership skills, character development, self-esteem, and positive identity development. Currently Dr. Warner volunteers at a local after school program where he tutors at-risk youth in math and sports activities that focus on good sportsmanship.

Keyword Descriptors

differentiated instruction, instructional technology, problem-based learning, culturally relevant curriculum

Presentation Year

2018

Start Date

3-6-2018 1:00 PM

End Date

3-6-2018 4:00 PM

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Mar 6th, 1:00 PM Mar 6th, 4:00 PM

21st Century Teacher Preparation for Youth-at-Risk

This presentation demonstrates how TPACK and problem based learning evidences (1) a successful teacher preparation course project engaging teacher candidates to design interdisciplinary learning strategies to resolve “real world” problems that stimulate at-risk students' ability to cultivate critical thinking, problem solving, collaborating with others, taking initiative and increasing the likelihood of students’ successful performance in the world beyond the classroom and (2) an authentic opportunity for teacher candidates to create and witness examples of what this kind of teaching looks like in practice.