The Career Connection to Teaching with Technology (CCTT) project is a geographically diverse endeavor by a consortium of schools, districts, curriculum experts, and partners. This project is creating a national collection of best practices, curriculum content, educational resources, and professional development online tools.
Mission Statement: CCTT seeks to develop standards-based curriculum materials and deliver them to the educational community through integrated technologies.
The focus of the project is on creation of curriculum materials and models for creating materials. The means for accomplishing this are online. Expansion of this online work is a technological innovation. CCTT currently is working with Apple Learning Interchange (ALI) to program the second version of a web site that will combine resources from CCTT and 19 other Learning Interchange partners.
- Technology is positively changing the teaching and learning environment.
- Technology positively impacts student achievement.
- Students and teachers are partners in learning.
- Technology empowers teachers and students to become authors and publishers.
- There is strength in diversity.
- Authentic career applications enhance opportunities for students.
- The use of research findings on teaching and learning provides a greater depth and breadth to professional development.
Curriculum products include lessons, units, educational resources, and entire courses of instruction. Tools for teachers include an “ActiveClassroom” web site which allows development of class calendars, notes, activities, and links to active pages and curriculum resources. Teachers are trained in the use of tools and curriculum development at all five hubsites and at workshops in such venues as the Florida Educational Technology Conference (FETC).
Objective 1: Identify reading, writing, mathematics and science achievement standards, benchmarks and accountability measures for students.
National standards are first and foremost in the design of curriculum units and lessons. Hubsite managers have been trained and teachers are being shown how to focus on a standard and a fundamental idea which is core to their discipline. Content specialists from the major curriculum organizations, NCTM, NSTA, NCSS, and NCTE are reviewing teachers’ work and providing guidance including working with teachers during the CCTT National Institutes to develop lessons and units. Assessment is built into the units and lessons and centers on what students are to be able to do. Teachers are asked to edit or provide other examples of assessment used in their classrooms as their work is reviewed.
Objective 2: Create a career connection to integrated core academic studies that increases the relevancy and authenticity of learning.
An advisory committee of business, government, and educational leaders has been formed and meets annually to provide input to the hubsite managers. The career connections which are based upon the SCANS report are incorporated into all units and lessons. Several online courses are being developed in conjunction with school-to-work programs in the high schools. These include Web Site design, graphics design, chemistry, physics, and CISCO networking.
Objective 3: Train teachers and students to access and utilize existing technologies, to create original instructional materials, and to collaborate with business partners in codevelopment of resources.
CCTT has developed an institute used at the hubsites as well as conferences such as FETC. This provides teachers guidance in submitting and developing curriculum online. The Apple Learning Interchange has worked behind the scenes with CCTT personnel to customize the web site to CCTT specifications. Help screens for online “professional development” have been added and reviewers can comment online regarding lessons and units. Over 100 units and 400 lessons are in various stages of development and field testing. Teachers are working this summer of 2001 to edit their work and enhance student activities. Several online courses, mentioned in Objective 2, will be refined and enhanced this summer and fall.
Objective 4: Contribute to national educational networks using telecommunications to disseminate products and best practices.
Authoring systems and a template for both unit and lesson development are available online for teachers to use. Teachers can view other work as well as develop their own in an online environment. The Apple Learning Interchange site is being used to house lessons and resources at http://ali.apple.com/cgli. This site is being updated as ALI creates version two of its web tools and works with CCTT personnel to customize the online environment CCTT has changed method of distribution, as originally planned in the grant proposal. A satellite network distributing content to dedicated servers proved not to be cost effective. As the Internet becomes for efficient and web sites become more powerful, the distribution of materials and educational resources is being accomplished through a partnership with Apple Learning Interchange. Resources and lessons can be searched and connections to other Learning Interchange partners provides additional materials.
The review and field testing process has proven to be a complicated and time-consuming venture. For this reason, although several hundred lessons and units have been developed, little is available in final form, available for public use. The process of finalizing materials and resources is ongoing, involving teachers, students, hubsite managers, content specialists, and online tools.
CCTT in its final year is focusing on two particular products: the CCTT Writing Institute and ActiveClassroom. The Institute prepares and guides teachers through writing and editing curriculum aligned to national standards online. ActiveClassroom is an online curriculum management and organizing tool for teachers and for students, parents, and district personnel to see agendas, course outlines, and calendar. CCTT will be working hard to put these two products into best form in year 5 of the project. A corporation formed by some existing project participants and other educators will take on some of the work of moving these two products into final form and trying to sustain the project and its best efforts beyond the 5 year time period 1997-2001.
Copyright © 1997-2003
Career Connection to Teaching with Technology
USDOE Technology Innovation Challenge Grant
Marshall Ransom, Project Manager
All rights reserved.