In the June/July 2011 issue of Learning & Leading with Technology, the feature article by Arne Duncan, the U.S. secretary of education , tells us how we can “Harness the Power of Technology” in the classroom.
As I read the article, I felt challenged as a religious educator! Classrooms all around us are changing! Yet, the methodology we use for religious education is changing very slowly.
Allow me to highlight several of the article comments for you. You may even want to substitute “catechist” for the term “teacher.”
Innovative teachers like you are leading this technological transformation in our classrooms today. You use powerful resources to engage students, deepen their understanding, expand their creativity, and help them solve problems. Because you have the passion, knowledge, and experience, you can prepare your colleagues to follow your lead and play a pivotal role in our national effort to transform our schools into innovative learning environments.
I understand that you face considerable challenges as you create digital learning environments. Some schools are rich with technology but are still stuck in the 20th century model of teaching and learning. Some teachers still see technology as an add-on to their lesson plans rather than integral to the process of teaching and learning.
Much like the printing press allowed people to learn from books as well as teachers, digital technology offers learners powerful new environments that include simulations, animations, scaffolded and guided practice sets, and experts who may be far away. With your firsthand experiences, you are uniquely qualified to articulate, showcase, and explore the power of technologies for learning.
So, how will catechetical leaders harness the power of technology in their teaching the faith? Where are the current stories? Perhaps you will share your story. In addition –
Let’s have a chat about the following this week –
- Are we ready for this classroom transformation?
- What is holding us back from moving into becoming a 21st Century catechist?
- How do we immerse ourselves in the transformation that is already taking place around us?
Let us begin a conversation to see what we are thinking and feeling!
Copyright ©2011 Caroline Cerveny