Technology and Innovation in Education
Toronto District School Board
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Technology and Innovation in Education



CREATIVITY AND INNOVATION IN TEACHING AND LEARNING: A FOCUS ON INNOVATIVE INTELLIGENCE (I2Q) PILOT PROGRAM: The Toronto District School Board (TDSB) currently nurtures creativity and innovation through many pockets of innovative programs in educational technology, entrepreneurial thinking, and global learning and competencies. The present research studied the first year implementation of the Innovative Intelligence (I2Q) Pilot Program. The I2Q Pilot Program, which runs in the TDSB’s Model Schools for Inner Cities (MSIC), is filled with explicit training for teachers and administrators on teaching children the skills and behaviors of innovative thinking. In doing so, in this report we are reporting on the Grade 5 and 7 TDSB students’ innovative characteristics, the TDSB teachers’ and administrators’ perceptions, conceptions, and teaching strategies about creativity and innovative teaching, and the school/district support of creativity and innovation. We also studied the empirical research on the best instructional practices promoting the students’ creativity, innovation, and innovative thinking and the current trends in learning sciences. To provide recommendations to TDSB educators, policy decision makers, and researchers, we triangulated all of the findings with this focus-intervention study. Click here for the full report (2017).

STEM OR STEAM: KEY STAKEHOLDERS VIEWPOINTS ON THE FUTURE DIRECTIONS OF STEM: Over the last three years the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) has been conducting studies affiliated with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). Some of the topical areas covered have included professional learning in STEM, global competencies, deeper learning, and scaling STEM up across the school board. As part of the STEM and Global Competencies research series, educators were asked whether they prefer STEM to remain as STEM or for it to be modified to STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, ART, and Mathematics). This mixed method research study triangulates key stakeholders viewpoints on the future directions of STEM. Click here for the full report (2017).

TORONTO DISTRICT SCHOOL BOARD (TDSB) DIGITAL LEAD LEARNERS AS SYSTEM-WIDE CHANGE AGENTS PROMOTING GLOBAL COMPETENCIES AND DEEP LEARNING ACROSS THE BOARD: Digital Lead Learners (DLLS) are leading teachers who explore new practices in technology and ICT and bring this knowledge into their schools to teach others (TDSB, 2014). This report presents the results of the effectiveness of professional learning offered to Digital Lead Learners (DLLs) at the TDSB measured by pre-and post-surveys. In doing so, we investigated the perceptions of DLLs’ Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK), Technology Integration and perceptions of their role as DLLs. Pre and Post survey results triangulated with the current research literature to inform theory, practice and policy. Click here for the full report (2018).

Click here for the Visual Infographic (2018) of the Digital Lead Learners Report.

Click here for the Visual Infographic (2017) of the Fostering Global Competencies and Deeper Learning with Digitial Technologies Research Series: Compelling Research Findings.

FOSTERING ENTREPRENEURIAL THINKING AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP LEARNING IN THE TORONTO DISTRICT SCHOOL BOARD: ASSESSING TEACHERS’ AND ADMINISTRATORS’ ATTITUDES, PERCEPTIONS, KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND PRACTICES AND STUDENTS’ MINDSET AND SELF-EFFICACY: This study focuses on evaluation of the first phase of the Entrepreneurial Thinking (ET)  program through the analysis of surveys designed to elicit feedback on participants’ perceptions, attitudes, knowledge, and practices regarding ET teaching and learning, as well as the quality and effectiveness of the professional learning activities and resources offered in the program. It also provides comprehensive research literature in the area of ET in K-12 schooling. Click here for the full report (2015).

GLOBAL LEARNING AND TEACHING WITH EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY IN THE TORONTO DISTRICT SCHOOL BOARD: This report has been written to provide a foundation and to inform the strategies in  the area of global competencies and educational technology. It can be used to inform effective integration of educational technology into teaching and learning and curriculum. Click here for the full report (2014).

K-12 PROFESSIONAL LEARNING STRATEGY: INCORPORATING THE ARTS IN TO STEM: This fact sheet has been written to inform policy decisions in regards to the TDSB’s Improving School Effectiveness and Student Achievement & Well Being through Learning Centres Strategy. Click here for the fact sheet (2016).

KEYBOARDING INSTRUCTION AT THE TORONTO DISTRICT SCHOOL BOARD PILOT STUDY 2016-17: RECOMMENDATIONS FOR POLICY AND PRACTICE: This report describes the results from the evaluation of the keyboarding pilot program in 2016-17. The purpose of the evaluation was to inform decisions regarding the integration of keyboarding instruction into the TDSB curriculum. The study involved a quasi-experimental, mixed methods research design, with before and after online surveys completed by students, administrators, and teachers as the primary data collection methods. This study indicates statistically significant improvements in students’ keyboarding knowledge and practices and accuracy from before to after the Keyboarding Pilot Program. Please refer to the full report for detailed findings and recommendations for policy and practice. Click here for the full report (2017).

Click here for the Visual Infographic of the Keyboarding Instruction Report (2017).

PRE-PILOT KNOWLEDGE BUILDING PROJECT: YEAR ONE REPORT: This study provides empirical findings that can be instrumental for educators and policy decision-makers to identify the effectiveness of Knowledge Building (KB) in K-12 schooling and inform current and future KB initiatives. Click here for the full report (2014).

RESEARCH SERIES ON SCHOOL EFFECTIVENESS AND SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT: CREATING ACHIEVEMENT GOALS WITH AN UNDERSTANDING OF DEEP LEARNING AND TECHNOLOGY: In this research series on School Effectiveness and School Improvement we are focusing on informing school improvement practices on “creating achievement goals with an understanding of deep learning and technology”. Click here for the research paper (2016).

STEM TEACHING AND LEARNING IN THE TORONTO DISTRICT SCHOOL BOARD: TOWARDS A STRONG THEORETICAL FOUNDATION AND SCALING UP FROM INITIAL IMPLEMENTATION OF THE K-12 STEM STRATEGY RESEARCH SERIES I: Using longitudinal research design this “use-inspired developmental evaluation” study examines the system-wide STEM implementation in the Toronto District School Board (TDSB). At the end of the first year of implementation of the STEM Strategy, our research revealed important findings about administrator, teacher, coaches, and student attitudes towards STEM education, STEM teaching and learning practices, and STEM professional learning practices. This research study provides comprehensive empirical data to track outcomes for teachers, administrators, coaches and students’ learning and involved a longitudinal STEM strategy over three years to improve educational opportunities, decrease marginalization and improve school outcomes for all learners. This report also includes comprehensive literature on STEM pedagogy, trans-disciplinary STEM education, robotics and STEM education, characteristics of effective professional learning communities, and coaching. Click here for the full report (2016).

Click here for the STEM FACT SHEET I: Impact on Teachers (2017)

Click here for the STEM FACT SHEET II: Impact on Learning Coaches (2017)

Click here for the STEM FACT SHEET III: Impact on Administrators (2017)

STEM TEACHING AND LEARNING IN THE TORONTO DISTRICT SCHOOL BOARD RESEARCH SERIES II: Deepening, Sustaining, Building Coherence and Fostering Student Learning and Equity: The purpose of this study was to examine the implementation of the Toronto District School Board’s (TDSB) Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) K-12 Strategy and track outcomes for administrators, teachers, and students involved in this strategy. As part of the second year of implementation data was collected through interviews with system leaders on STEM, school administrators, teachers, and STEM coaches as well as classroom visits to examine perceptions of STEM, planning and implementation for the STEM initiative, collaboration efforts, supports provided, successes, issues and challenges, impact, recommendations for scaling-up, and achievement results. Click here for the full report (2017).

UNPACKING THE TDSB’S VISION FOR LEARNING: RESEARCH BRIEF ON DIGITAL FLUENCY: The Toronto District School Board (TDSB) has recently set forth an innovative vision for learning, and this research brief will unpack this vision for learning, focusing on a core aspect of digital fluency. By doing so, we are targeting to inform recent practices and policies regarding digital fluency across the board and the province. Digital fluency is an essential part of global competencies and an important part of preparing young Canadians for a strong future. It is the hope that this research brief will motivate you to think about ways to better support digital fluency. Click here for the research brief (2016).

UNPACKING THE TDSB’S VISION FOR LEARNING: RESEARCH BRIEF ON GLOBAL CITIZENSHIP AND CHARACTER: The Toronto District School Board (TDSB) is committed to preparing all learners to succeed in the ever-changing competitive global environment. As such, the TDSB has identified five foundational skills and competencies that are important for student success. They are: (1) global citizenship and character, (2) communication, (3) critical thinking and problem-solving, (4) collaboration and leadership, and (5) creativity, inquiry and entrepreneurship. In this research brief we are targeting recent practices and policies regarding Global Citizenship and Character. Click here for the research brief (2016).





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