Teacher PD in a 1:1 World

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December 5, 2015 by Dr. Robbie Barber

Here’s one of the problems: If you are reading this, then I’m probably preaching to the choir.

Definition: 1:1 means a school-provided device for each student and each teacher in a school building.

Too often, school systems get on the 1:1 bandwagon without considering a simple fact that teachers control how, when, where devices are used in teaching and learning.  Therefore, the most important thing in a 1:1 school is teach the teachers.

Think of it this way, professional development (PD) can all fit in one of three categories: Formal, Informal, & Independent (Jones & Dexter, 2014).  But these aren’t silos – each of the forms of PD are interrelated.  When you are planning PD, plan time to experiment, collaborate, and play.  Have prizes for the first teacher to break the software and show how s/he did it.  Have prizes the first teacher to lose battery power because s/he forgot to plug in.  Can the teachers make a silly video that has nothing to do with the curriculum?  It’s important to find the fun! And, slowly but surely, dispel the fear of the new.

PDchart for blog

Teacher Professional Development Types & Their Relationships to Each Other


Jones, W. M., & Dexter, S. (2014). How teachers learn: The roles of formal, informal, and independent learning. Educational Technology Research and Development, 62(3), 367–384.

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