One great way to increase support for technology integration and encourage teachers to think about how technology can improve their lessons is to provide a regularly-published newsletter. The newsletter is an excellent way to share great ideas about new websites, apps, or teaching ideas that can improve the use of technology within classrooms. Here are some additional uses of the technology newsletter:
- Share important tech updates from the Technology Department. Rather than send out a host of emails, I simply add everything to the newsletter.
- Garner support for your newsletter from your principal! They need to set the expectation that the newsletter must be read!
- Include timely topics. For instance, at our campus, we are participating in BYOT (Bring Your Own Technology) so we include a section on BYOT ideas in the newsletter.
- Seek out campus teachers to write articles for the newsletter. Teachers enjoy reading articles from their peers. At our school, we have been featuring articles from teachers sharing on Apple apps.
- Use media in your newsletter. Model the kinds of integration teachers can use with students. For instance, create a VOKI and use it as your newsletter header welcoming readers to the newsletter.
- Consider writing a newsletter to be published to several schools with the same grade levels. In our district, we have 4 high school campuses and we are all working to publish the iTech Newsletter to them all.
- Keep an archive of newsletters accessible on a web or through your newsletter publisher to ensure that teachers can find great resources you have in previous issues.
- Include a free “gift” in the newsletter to encourage teachers to read it. For example, give a free flash drive or stylus to the first five people to respond to a hidden challenge in one of the articles. This increases reading motivation and builds positive relationships with your readers.
To see an example of a technology newsletter, please take a look at the iTech News that we publish at Deer Park High School campuses at http://deerparkhighschools.presspublisher.org/. The Campus Technology Integration Specialist (CTIS) publish the newsletter. We use Press Publisher for our newsletter but this can also be created in LiveBinder or a similar program. Microsoft Word can also provide great templates for newsletters!
Do you publish a newsletter? Share it by commenting here!