Introducing techie brekkies in my school is one of my best EdTech achievments. I say this because in the term that I have run techie brekkies, staff confidence in using technology with their class has skyrocketed. They are still one of the first things I recommend when helping establish a positive and authentic EdTech culture in a school.
Despite this, it took me two terms to establish them. The reason for this is, as a new school, we were introducing lots of new things and it really wasn’t the time to be introducing yet another thing for staff to worry about. By Term 3, however, the school’s approach to teaching and learning was more established, and so we could begin to introduce new ideas, apps and strategies. This is something to keep in mind when first establishing techie brekkies: it may not be the right time, but keep it in the back of your mind for when the right opportunity presents itself.
While it seems silly, make sure you don’t forget the breakfast side, and offer something yummy for people to eat. Techie brekkies are early, and not everyone is a morning person. Offering something delicious and lots of coffee adds an incentive for people attending the first few times. After that, the atmosphere has been created and you can do some wonderful things together.
On the same note, because techie brekkies are early, you probably do not want to hold them every week. People get tired from waking up that much earlier, or have other things they need to have done. I run techie brekkies every fortnight, but have also seen them run once a month, or three times a term. Find a routine that works for you school and stick with it. If they are not regular, people are likely to forget about them, or may have other things on. With regular techie brekkies, you may a few new faces each time, as people work around their own schedule.
Finally, keep the atmosphere positive. It is easy for techie brekkie (or any EdTech session!) to become a place just to voice complaints about technology, especially if the people who are attending are not confident with technology. Food actually helps this, as ‘breaking bread’ together helps form a bond between presenter and attendees. The more practical the techie brekkie, the better. This is not the time to break out your knowledge of TPACK or SAMR. Share how you use particular apps in the classroom, how you troubleshoot when things go wrong, and tips for making everything go smoothly. Practical tips always help calm the nerves of people not confident with technology.
How have you introduced techie brekkies in your school? What else have you found works well?