Tag Archives: teacher training

Does the cascade model work for technology training for teachers?

When we think of a cascade in nature we have a vision of big quantities of water rushing down a river.  In education this image has become a metaphor for a particular training model: one teacher from a school (or a district) is trained; the newly trained one trains a few more; each one of them trains a few more, until all have received the training.

The cascade training model is an attempt to fast-track training of great numbers of teachers.  Cost saving is one of the perceived benefits of this approach – only one teacher needs to attend an expensive training course.  The knowledge gained on the course can then be passed on progressively to all in the organization.

When you introduce technology into your school and have the need to train all teachers in its use, this may be a tempting strategy.  In theory the cascade training model seems to be cost and time effective.  But does it work?

In a cascade in nature the force of gravity ensures that the all the water reaches the bottom.  The force of gravity – a pull from below – is not operative when you try to empower all your teachers with technology skills.

You probably would select the most qualified person in terms of passion and affinity to technology, as well as training ability, to be at the top of the cascade.  If the members of the first group who receive training are less qualified, the effectiveness of the training they offer to subsequent groups will be diluted.  They can only pass on what they themselves value, remember and understand.

In many cases the envisaged cascade is reduced to a mere trickle of knowledge when it reaches the last teachers.

Trickle
Minimal knowledge may reach the teachers at the bottom

The cascade model may be useful for creating initial technology awareness among all staff members.  When more intensive training is required, you can’t depend on this model.  Teachers are at different levels of technical competency; a one-size-fits-all training approach will not yield desired results.

If you want technology training of your teachers to be effective, don’t just put a ‘model’ in place, hoping it will work.  Ensure that each teacher receives all the training, coaching and support they need to make them skilled users of technology teaching tools.

UNDER WHAT CIRCUMSTANCES DOES TECHNOLOGY AS A TEACHING TOOL NOT LEAD TO SUCCESS?

Technology does not always lead to success in education– it does not automatically lead to improved teaching and learning.

The introduction of technology in the business world only yields results when it supports the objectives of the organization. A good organization structure must be present. Throwing a lot of technology at a problem will not make it disappear if the establishment itself is dysfunctional.

The same principle is true in a school environment. Attractive as the use of technology may appear when face-to-face teaching is disrupted, it is unlikely to add much value under the following circumstances:

Poor leadership: Where the principal, management team and governing body do not give clear direction in general educational matters, it is doubtful that they will do so when it comes to the use of technology as a teaching and learning tool. If sound leadership is lacking, this matter must be addressed before you even think of introducing technology.

Dysfunctional schools: Sadly, some schools fall into this category. Some schools struggled to persuade learners and their teacher to be in the same classroom at the same time during the pre-pandemic period. One could hardly expect technology to make a difference in such schools now.

Unwilling teachers: Where teachers resisted the use of technology in the classroom in the past, one can hardly expect results now. Hesitancy to use technology now may be a result of a lack of exposure to technology in the past.

Technical support: Nothing is as disheartening to teachers (and to learners) as when the technology fails when they try to use it. Planning to use technology as a teaching and a learning tool must include some form of maintenance and support.

Training is not available: If no training is available, technology may end up missing the purpose of using it. Along with the technology, adequate training for teachers must be provided. A lack of training is perhaps the biggest reason why technology fails as a teaching and learning tool.

There is ample evidence that technology can lead to improved teaching and learning – success depends on the environment in which you try to embed it.

ADESSA welcomes ITHUTHUKO (CPTD-ONLINE)

We welcome Ithuthuko (CPTD-Online), the latest company that has joined the ranks of ADESSA members.

Ithuthuko hosts an online platform, CPTD-online, where participants can complete their continuous professional development. This platform is the result of collaboration between passionate individuals who experienced the challenges associated with earning CPTD points.  Participants can complete their continuous professional development in the most convenient way. The intention of the course content is to equip teachers to deal with issues they encounter daily as part of teaching. All points contribute to SACE level 3.

Logo CPTD online 002

CPTD-online is an excellent place for teachers to earn CPTD points:

  • Convenience:  Teachers can gain access through their phones, laptops and tablets, anywhere and anytime.
  • All courses are relevant: Facilitators and course authors are experts in their fields and the course content originates from experience.
  • SACE compliant: All reporting to SACE is done on a regular basis.
  • Affordable:  A subscription model applies, whereby participants pay a once-off subsidised fee of R650 per year (R450 till March 2020). This allows them access to all the courses on the platform.
  • Sound administration processes in place: A tax invoice is available on request. Our company is Level 4 BEE.

For more information, see  https://cptd-online.co.za/

Snapplify launches Teacher Benefits programme for educators

Snapplify expands its offering to better support teachers using its e-learning platform

CAPE TOWN, 20 January 2020

Snapplify Engage has been internationally lauded as ‘one of the most innovative solutions in its space’. At the beginning of the last academic year, Snapplify opened up access to its award-winning e-learning platform to schools by launching a free version of the Snapplify Engage educational platform – thus making Snapplify’s world-class digital education tools accessible to schools across Africa, for the first time.

Now, with thousands of African schools registered on the platform, Snapplify is expanding their offering to better support teachers. Over the course of the first academic term, the edtech company is launching a new Teacher Benefits programme which consolidates their valuable teacher tools to empower and uplift educators.

Snapplify Teacher Benefits changes the way that teachers access and share educational resources, and includes wide promotional discounts and giveaways. Earlier this month, The Answer Series joined the programme to offer their study guides to all South African teachers for FREE, via the platform.

‘We know that teachers are on the front line when it comes to preparing the next generation for success. In their quest, educators feel enormous pressure to ensure that their students perform well. We are pleased to be supporting teachers and, in turn, their students, by increasing access to top-notch e-textbooks, teaching guides and more,’ said Snapplify CEO, Wesley Lynch.

Teacher Benefits is a feature of Engage – Snapplify’s award-winning e-learning and digital library solution. Once schools have signed up, for free, to Engage, registered teachers can log in to the platform and claim as many free and discounted ebooks as they need.

Thousands of schools have already joined the Snapplify Engage family. Register online for free today to get access to teacher benefits and other incredible educational tools.

Email hello@snapplify.com to chat about your specific needs.

Snapplify Wesley Lynch
Wesley Lynch – CEO of Snapplify

From obstacles to opportunities – making the adoption of digital education easy

 

Snapplify’s Shaun Marshall urges schools to see how easy it can be to embrace digital learning, saying the following:

The development of digital technology has been of enormous importance to the education environment. It opens possibilities for teachers and students, transforming the classroom in a multitude of ways.  Yet, despite its benefits, digital education is not always eagerly embraced by schools and educators. The reasons for this can present as real challenges, but I believe that they are not insurmountable.

Snapplify Shaun
Shaun Marshall

At Snapplify we work hard alongside institutions and educators to create solutions that serve education best, regardless of infrastructural challenges. We’ve addressed this challenge with the Snappbox, our award-winning hardware distribution solution for digital educational content. The Snappbox is an effective way to include the core elements of e-learning in unconnected classrooms. In rural Cofimbama in the Eastern Cape, we used the Snappbox to preload over 2000 school tablets with the Snapplify ebook Reader app and over 300 ebooks from leading publishers. These tablets are being shared among 4000 students in 11 schools. Using the Snappbox has saved institutions like this one over R600 000 in bandwidth costs, and approximately 4000 hours (166 days) in download time – meaning more time for teaching.

A common challenge many schools face when bringing digital education into their classrooms is resistance or reluctance from educators. This most often comes from a lack of confidence.  Teachers sometimes feel intimidated – not only by the technology itself, but by their students, who are au fait with this technology.

With this skills gap in many schools, it becomes important to ensure that educators have the training and support that they need to incorporate technology into their pedagogy. In fact, this is so integral to the success of digital education that we’ve incorporated teacher training into our initial rollout for schools signing up with Snapplify, with the option of further training during the year, depending on an individual school’s requirements. Snapplify is committed to supporting our schools and an essential part of this is supporting educators.

Ultimately, the move to embrace digital education is not as daunting as some initially believe it to be. Whatever the ICT setup and skills level, you can make digital education a reality in your school by choosing the correct digital education partner.

Email education@snapplify.com to chat about your specific needs and how we can work together.

We believe that digital learning is the future. Keep up to date with what we’re doing in education by signing up to our mailing list: http://eepurl.com/bPlsaL

ICT for Educators’ skills training

Parrot Dec 2016 1Parrot Interactive believes in educators’ continuously practicing how to incorporate technology in the classroom to enhance their teaching style and  learning needs.  With this in view, the company is  running a special training programme.

For educators to be comfortable with technology use in the classroom, there is need for continuous use of  the devices or software, sharing information with fellow educators, support from the school authorities and seeing the benefits of technology in the classroom.   These needs will be explored on the course.

For more information on quotations and training availability contact Parrot Products at 086 126 2737 or pitraining@parrot.co.za

Welcome to Active Digital Education

ADESSA welcomes on board Active Digital Education  (ADE)!

Strictly speaking, ADE is not an entirely new member.  When one door closes, a new one opens and that is exactly what happened in order for Active Digital Education to be established.

Logo - ADEKagiso Activ closed its doors in Feb 2016 which led to Active Digital Education (ADE) being born! ADE now contains the products, training methodologies and staff expertise from the previous company which allows it to provide a service which benefits from all the years of success in Teacher Training.

The two flagship products are eSkills 4 All and eSkills 4 Teachers.

  • Both products are totally South African with simple English being used for second language users
  • They have been developed for self-paced learning to make them more affordable but can also be used in a blended approach
  • Thousands of interactive exercises built in
  • A quiz to test your knowledge after every Unit
  • Both products have automated tests so that successful learners can receive certificates
  • Both products are SACE accredited so educators will receive 25 or 35 CPTD points
  • eSkills 4 All covers: Operating a PC, Windows, File and Folder Management, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Internet and Email (NQF Levels 1 – 4)
  • eSkills 4 Teachers covers: Computers in Teaching Practice, Input devices tutorial, Intro to computers, Word processing, Spreadsheets, Presentations, Internet and Email

Contact Celeste at celestek@activedigitaleducation.co.za or on 011 084 6000 for further information.