Sunday, April 15, 2012


Photo posted at Triangle Coalition
As we roll out Mercy 2.0, we are taking the matter of professional development very seriously. Our consultant, Lucy Gray, has made a suggestion that I find very compelling. As we introduce the iPad to our staff, it would be tempting to pull everyone together and show off all the cool new things the gadget can do. I certainly hope that mobile devices continual to our instructional paradigm, but I think it makes sense not to end the year and introduce the device by focusing on all the different things it can do.

Instead, when we begin p.d. in April, Lucy is going to meet with our departments individually in order to discuss their particular questions and issues. In advance of those meetings, she is asking them to consider their standard workflow. In other words, let's first consider how the iPad might integrate to greater advantage in the work that you do on a daily basis.  This does not merely mean that we should find ways to substitute the iPad for our current technology.  In addition, we can ask, how might the iPad enhance instruction and support?  As an administrator, I think that this will be a daily eye-opening experience for some of my colleagues who use desk top computers (I've had the advantage of tooling around on my own person iPad 1 for the school year).

Though I am used to going to technology presentations where change is the theme, I think there is a lot to be said for identifying the ways a new tool can improve the familiar. After everyone has had a summer to become acquainted with the device, we will be better positioned to stretch it out and show some bells and whistles when we reconvene in August.  At that point I am imagining that as a collective staff we will be more prepared to reimagining how we deliver and support education with the new iPads.

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