After several staff moaning about how they don't use their smart boards for anything more than a glorified black board I've decided to set up weekly 'tips' emails. The idea is to have short (10 min max) videos showing how to do a certain task or use a certain feature of Notebook 11. There are plenty of videos on youtube but they vary in quality. Rather than pick ones out at random does anyone know of a coherent set that gradually cover all areas of using the software? I've looked on the Smart site and they only have about 5 2 minute videos on notebook 10. I also know Lynda.com is going to be doing a course on it (and about time) but if there is a free alternative it would be really good to know about.
I know we can get in a Smart trainer but they're expensive and most of the teachers will have forgotten what they'd heard about within a week! At least with short videos they can see them several times and refer back to them in the future.
Last edited by rbjames; 15th January 2014 at 09:44 AM.
Before you spend time setting it all up, I'd trial it. Get an intro video, create your first sample email send it out and use a bit of software to monitor just how many viewers you get. Its likely to only be a small percentage of staff (if, im wrong here, i'll apologise in advance).
"I know we can get in a Smart trainer but they're expensive and most of the teachers will have forgotten what they'd heard about within a week! At least with short videos they can see them several times and refer back to them in the future."
If the teaching staff struggle to retain info from a physical course, based of my experiences in the training industry, they aren't likely to pick an awful lot up from a video, let alone put the training in to action.
Possible solutions: Work with those who are complaining first (as they want to know more)
Next door neighbor syndrome - If you're going to invest time, you should try and pull in as many staff as you can.
Quite simply, if you can get a few teachers embrace the interactive boards and start to really excel in a more in interactive/blended approach, you'll have more success. The other teaching staff will find out about it and want to know more. This changes the motive for training/learning entirely, from training for the sake of it, trough to training to be as good at something as their peers. No one likes to be bottom of the class
The approach I'm about to suggest, will take you more up front time but its better than you wasting your time on a project that is potentially doomed to failure.
Work with a select number of the teaching staff to develop some lessons (just a few). Be careful how you pitch the idea, it has to sound easy, run through that you will be investing your (or someones) time in to making this as painless as possible for the teacher(s) in question. Teach them on the job, whilst developing material with them so that they learn, without any pressure, in the subject they teach.
The other thing is to pick your teachers wisely. People will naturally come up with an excuse to not do something, for example - Head of IT, is perhaps not the right evangelist, not because of their knowledge, not because the wouldn't pick it up quickly, but because of the subject they teach. The teaching staff will expect "insert name here" to do great interactive lessons because they are an IT teacher. So others will simply think, that's because x is good at IT!
I would also look to get teachers from different departments if possible and not just work with one department.
After this you have to see what happens, but i reckon your training vids and any extra support will go down far better!
If its allowed, you could always film a teacher at your school using the lessons you have helped create, to introduce what can be done. Might be a nice project for a School film/media club to get involved with.
As for vids, i will drop an email a colleague for you and see if there are any that are especially good.
Sorry for the essay!
Last edited by Leeoakley; 15th January 2014 at 10:42 AM.
I completely agree with most of what you say and we do indeed have 3 or 4 teachers who really embrace it. I know exactly what you mean about not using the IT teacher as one of the trainers - he doesn't use a smart board in any case. What I was thinking of doing after sending out the video on a Monday was to (light heatedly of course) approach the teachers and ask them how they'd used what they'd learnt in the video - it would be nice for me to be able to nag them for once!
As it happens we're looking to set up a media club very soon so that's a great idea. I think it may well just a case of me learning the notebook software back to front and coming up with some videos. Once we start the media club we could even get the pupils to come up with training videos themselves and then they could also nag the staff!