The Antoon Schellenscollege came up with a step-by-step plan to tackle inhouse training. So, not by an external party, but training provided by a fellow member of staff. “We have a far better view of what our colleagues are capable of and what they do.”
Dealing with innovation
“Since last year, every pupil and teacher at our school works with an iPad”, explains Rhea Flohr, geography and media sciences teacher. “At the introduction, it turned out that many teachers had questions about the basic skills required to use it properly. Instead of offering them a course, which hasn’t always led to the desired results in the past, we chose to start developing inhouse training facilities. In order to do so, we wanted to have more insight in the support needs the teachers had.”
Step 1: Take a baseline measurement
Team leader Marion Intven: “We started by performing a baseline measurement. It consisted of a questionnaire. The questions where on basic digital skills (‘I can administer files’) and didactic practice (‘I’m familiar with various digital ways of working and can apply these effectively’). The generated reports were used as a basis for the scope of the training, supplemented with the colleagues wishes.”
Step 2: Chose your focus points
“We chose five subjects: learning with tablets, differentiating with ICT in your lessons, applying ICT during instruction, activating digital didactical skills and making learning visible with ICT”, says Rhea.
Step 3: Provide space and time
“The team Education and Innovation were given space and time to develop the training. The training focused on immediate use in the lessons and was provided by colleagues who are knowledgeable on the subject. You could participate at various moments and groups were small so that everybody could get started while still leaving enough room for individual questions.”
Step 4: Anticipate on the knowledge that is present
In general, the teachers are content with the new training afternoon. “Sharing inhouse knowledge leads to a positive and tangible result. We’re far more appreciative of what our colleagues know and can do!”, Marion tells us enthusiastically. Rhea: “Four years ago, training played a completely different role within the educational system. You were overwhelmed with information that you might have already had or that you weren’t ready for yet. Nowadays, training is far more in line with the teachers’ desires and knowledge levels.”
Step 5: Evaluate
Rhea: “Of course, not all teachers see it as a positive thing. They perceive the training as a peak load because a lot of ground is covered in little time. In future, we’re taking a broader approach towards training moments. And the timing wasn’t ideal for all the teachers as they weren’t working with the iPads in class yet.” Even the most enthusiastic reactions had a downside. Marion: “The results are that there are now so many initiatives that we’re losing sight. This coming year, we’ll be bringing the sharing of knowledge more into balance.”
Summary of the step-by-step plan
- Step 1: Begin at a starting point (such as a baseline measurement) so that you know where everyone stands and what needs they have.
- Step 2: Choose your focal points: which basic ICT skills are crucial to using the iPads in class?
- Step 3: Proved time and space: facilitate teachers who are setting up the inhouse training.
- Step 4: Apply any knowledge and expertise at hand.
- Step 5: Draw up a balance. What went well and what didn’t go so well?
Marion: “The positive experience we had with our step-by-step plan will certainly be given a follow-up. For next year, we aim to set up a helpdesk team for and by colleagues. We also want to offer more courses that elaborate on ICT applications and skills.’’