ISTE Live 2023 was a whirlwind of innovation, collaboration, and inspiring ideas. As an educator passionate about leveraging technology to enhance learning experiences, I was thrilled to participate in this event. In this blog post, I'll share some key takeaways from ISTE Live 2023 and how they can empower educators to harness the power of technology in their classrooms.
1. AI is here to stay
At ISTE Live 2023, it became evident that artificial intelligence (AI) has become an integral part of the education landscape. From adaptive learning platforms to intelligent tutoring systems, AI is transforming the way we personalize instruction and provide targeted support to students. Teachers can now leverage AI-powered tools to tailor their teaching approaches, identify student strengths and weaknesses, and deliver personalized feedback. The possibilities are truly endless! One particular thing that interested me was how companies are trying to create AI tools to truly lighten the load that teachers have to carry. For example, creating an entire presentation using AI with one click or differentiation of reading passages. While AI technology is fairly new in the educational space, I am excited to see what tools are going to be created to help both students and teachers.
2. Do not assume it is research-based
One of the key lessons I learned at ISTE Live 2023 is the importance of critically evaluating educational technology. While there are countless tools and apps available, not all of them are research-based or aligned with best practices in pedagogy. As educators, it is crucial to carefully assess the educational value, evidence of efficacy, and alignment with learning objectives before integrating any technology into the classroom. Let's prioritize quality over quantity when selecting tech tools for our students. I was honestly surprised about the lack of educator voice, knowledge, or experience of some of the companies selling educational products. I’m not going to name names, but let’s just say a HUGE company I talked to didn’t even include math in all of their STEAM lessons! This is why I am so passionate about making our videos research-based and standards-aligned. You need to be evaluating EVERY company that sells you an education solution (big and small).
3. Teachers need to be in the conversations
ISTE Live 2023 emphasized the significance of educators actively participating in conversations about technology in education. As the primary facilitators of learning, teachers bring invaluable insights and experiences to the table. It's vital for us to be involved in the development and implementation of edtech solutions. By voicing our needs, concerns, and suggestions, we can shape the future of educational technology and ensure it serves the best interests of our students. To solve the issue of lackluster products that aren’t backed by the research mentioned above, I truly believe teachers are the solution. Teachers are experts in their subject matter and field. We should truly be included in every conversation being had about the educational products being made in the edtech sector. Not sure if a company you are using has teachers on their team? Ask them! If they don't, push for a change. Teachers should be at the heart of every educational product designed.
4. Tech can be a powerful learning tool
ISTE Live 2023 reaffirmed that technology when used purposefully and thoughtfully, can be a powerful tool to enhance teaching and learning. It provides opportunities for collaboration, creativity, and real-world connections. From virtual reality simulations to multimedia presentations, technology enables students to explore, experiment, and engage with content in ways that were previously unimaginable. Let's embrace the possibilities and leverage technology to create meaningful learning experiences for our students. What was most exciting to me was all of the platforms that are including interactive video tools for teachers!
ISTE Live 2023 was an incredible journey that left me inspired and motivated to push the boundaries of technology integration in education. I have big plans for Doodles and Digits to help positively shape the future of tech and math education. Have any ideas or needs? Let me know! You (the teacher) will always be in the conversation here at Doodles and Digits.