HHS teacher gets tech certification
Ken McLemore, Hope Public Schools

HOPE – Hope High School social studies teacher and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) team leader Kathy Knight has been certified as a New Tech Network teacher.

The NTN certification requires development of expertise in Project Based Learning using the NTN model over a course of five master components involving project design/implementation process; best classroom practices; differentiated technology use in the classroom; integration of literacy mastery; and effective use of standards-based rubric planning.

“For each badge the teacher needs to not only show they can meet the criteria, but must give examples and also include a reflection piece on what worked, what didn’t, and what changes will be made in the future,” Knight said.

Knight has employed the NTN model in her classroom since 2012, she said.

“Being an NTN Certified Teacher means that I know how to create projects that are differentiated and engaging for students,” Knight said. “It also allows me to attend Train the Trainer Conference this summer.”

Knight said current district plans call for the development of the concept in the Hope High School Ninth Grade Academy. Use of the model allows teachers to draw upon multiple online resources to customize and personalize learning opportunities for students.

According to Dr. Debra Howe, writing for NTN online, the model uses project-based learning at the heart of engaging students to become “really adaptable” in the post-education workplace by engaging them in the critical thinking and collaboration that project-based learning requires.

“The New Tech Network advocates the PBL approach using one to one technology integration and inquiry to engage students in relevant experiences,” Dr. Howe wrote. “Students think in complex ways and apply their knowledge and skills in integrated and cross-disciplinary projects to create solutions and take action that further develops their skills and knowledge.”

Established in the Napa Valley of California in the mid-1990s, the NTN was created as a non-profit organization with support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to support the application of the model in public schools. Additional support with growth has been provided by the KnowledgeWorks Foundation, William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, and the Carnegie Corporation.