Customized Technology Staff Development:
Teaching Teachers to Use Technology through Student Projects
Collaboration between Foothill College Center for Innovation and the San Francisco 49er Academy, Ravenswood School District, East Palo
Linda K. Taber Ullah, M.Ed 
Teacher in Residence 
Foothill College Center for Innovation, Los Altos Hills, CA
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Project Summary


Front End Analysis

Project Plan




Student Decision Making


Real World Connection

Extended Time Frame


Events of Instruction


Integrating Technology into a Standards Based Curriculum

Project Based Learning Supported by Multimedia


About the Author

Other Projects by Linda Ullah

PBL Resources



Parent Letter

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Week 5

Week 6

Student Work

Standards Met By Project
California Content Standards  (Grades 6, 7, 8)

English Language Arts

2.0 Reading Comprehension (Focus on Informational Materials)

Comprehension and Analysis of Grade-Level-Appropriate Text: 

2.3. connect and clarify main ideas, identifying their relationship to other sources and related topics

2.4 clarify understanding of texts by creating outlines, logical notes, summaries, or reports

1.0 Writing Strategies

Organization and Focus: 

1.1 Choose the form of writing (e.g., personal letter, letter to the editor, review, poem, report, narrative) that best suits the intended purpose. 

1.3 Use a variety of effective and coherent organizational patterns, including comparison and contrast; organization by categories; and arrangement by spatial order, order of importance, or climactic order. 

Research and Technology: 

1.4. use organizational features of electronic text (e.g., bulletin boards, databases, keyword searches, e-mail addresses) to locate information

1.5. compose documents with appropriate formatting by using word- processing skills and principles of design (e.g., margins, tabs, spacing, columns, page orientation)

Revising and Evaluating Writing: 

1.6. revise writing to improve organization and consistency of ideas within and between paragraphs

Social Studies

Historical and Social Analysis Skills

Chronological and Spatial Thinking

1.Students explain how major events are related to one another in time. 

2.Students construct various time lines of key events, people, and periods of the historical era they are studying. 

Historical Research, Evidence, and Point of View

1.Students frame questions that can be answered by historical study and research. 

 2.Students distinguish fact from opinion in historical narratives and stories. 

 3.Students distinguish relevant from irrelevant information, essential from incidental information, and verifiable from unverifiable information in historical narratives and stories. 

4.Students assess the credibility of primary and secondary sources and draw sound conclusions from them. 

Historical Interpretation

2.Students understand and distinguish cause, effect, sequence, and correlation in historical events, including the long- and short-term causal relations. 

3.Students explain the sources of historical continuity and how the combination of ideas and events explains the emergence of new patterns.


Physical Science

9. Scientific progress is made by asking meaningful questions and conducting careful investigations.

b. evaluate the accuracy and reproducibility of data. 

e. construct appropriate graphs from data and develop quantitative statements about the relationships between variables. 


Mathematical Reasoning 

1.0 Students make decisions about how to approach problems:

1.1 Analyze problems by identifying relationships, distinguishing relevant from irrelevant information, identifying missing information, sequencing and prioritizing information, and observing patterns.

 Information Literacy Standards

Information Literacy

Standard 1: The student who is information literate accesses information efficiently and effectively.

Standard 2: The student who is information literate evaluates information critically and competently.

Standard 3: The student who is information literate uses information accurately and creatively.

Independent Learning

Standard 4: The student who is an independent learner is information literate and pursues information related to personal interests.

Standard 6: The student who is an independent learner is information literate and strives for excellence in information seeking and knowledge generation.

Social Responsibility

Standard 8: The student who contributes positively to the learning community and to society is information literate and practices ethical behavior in regard to information and information technology.

Standard 9: The student who contributes positively to the learning community and to society is information literate and participates effectively in groups to pursue and generate information.

National Educational Technology Standards for Students

Technology Foundation Standards for Students 

1.Basic operations and concepts 

Students demonstrate a sound understanding of the nature and operation of technology systems. 

2.Social, ethical, and human issues 

Students understand the ethical, cultural, and societal issues related to technology. 

Students practice responsible use of technology systems, information, and software. 

Students develop positive attitudes toward technology uses that support lifelong learning, collaboration, personal pursuits, and productivity.

3.Technology productivity tools 

Students use technology tools to enhance learning, increase productivity, and promote creativity. 

Students use productivity tools to collaborate in constructing technology-enhanced models, prepare publications, and produce other creative works. 

4.Technology communications tools 

Students use a variety of media and formats to communicate information and ideas effectively to multiple audiences. 

5.Technology research tools  Students use technology to locate, evaluate, and collect information from a variety of sources. 

Calfiornia Department of Education Technology Standards for Teacher Credentialling

Level 1

General Knowledge and Skills

1. Each candidate demonstrates knowledge of current basic computer hardware and software terminology

2. Each candidate demonstrates competency in the operation and care of computer related hardware (e.g., cleaning input devices, avoiding proximity to magnets, proper startup and shut down sequences, scanning for viruses, and formatting storage media).

3. Each candidate implements basic troubleshooting techniques for computer systems and related peripheral devices (e.g., checking the connections, isolating the problem components, distinguishing between software and hardware problems) before accessing the appropriate avenue of technical support.

4. Each candidate demonstrates knowledge and understanding of the legal and ethical issues concerned with the use of computer-based technology.

5. Each candidate demonstrates knowledge and understanding of the appropriate use of computer-based technology in teaching and learning.

Specific Knowledge and Skills

7. Each candidate uses computers to communicate through printed media (e.g., newsletters incorporating graphics and charts, course descriptions, and student reports).

10. Each candidate examines a variety of current educational digital media and uses established selection criteria to evaluate materials, for example, multimedia, Internet resources, telecommunications, computer-assisted instruction, and productivity and presentation tools. (See California Instructional Technology Software guidelines and evaluations).

11. Each candidate chooses software for its relevance, effectiveness, alignment with content standards, and value added to student learning.

12. Each candidate demonstrates competence in the use of electronic research tools (e.g., access the Internet to search for and retrieve information).

13. Each candidate demonstrates the ability to assess the authenticity, reliability, and bias of the data gathered.

14. Each candidate identifies student learning styles and determines appropriate technological resources to improve learning.

15. Each candidate considers the content to be taught and selects the best technological resources to support, manage, and enhance learning.

16. Each candidate demonstrates an ability to create and maintain effective learning environments using computer-based technology.

17. Each candidate analyzes best practices and research findings on the use of technology and designs lessons accordingly.

18. Each candidate demonstrates knowledge of copyright issues (e.g., distribution of copyrighted materials and proper citing of sources).

19. Each candidate demonstrates knowledge of privacy, security, and safety issues (e.g., appropriate use of chat rooms, confidentiality of records including graded student work, publishing names and pictures of minors, and Acceptable Use Policies).

20. The program meets other factors related to this standard of quality brought to the attention of the team by the program.

Level II

2. Each candidate communicates through a variety of electronic media (e.g., presentations incorporating images and sound, web pages, and portfolios).

4. Each candidate demonstrates competence in evaluating the authenticity, reliability; bias of the data gathered; determines outcomes and evaluates the success or effectiveness of the process used.

5. Each candidate optimizes lessons based upon the technological resources available in the classroom, school library media centers, computer labs, district and county facilities, and other locations.

6. Each candidate designs, adapts, and uses lessons which address the studentsÕ needs to develop information literacy and problem solving skills as tools for lifelong learning.

7. Each candidate creates or makes use of learning environments inside the classroom, as well as in library media centers or computer labs, that promote effective use of technology aligned with the curriculum.

8. Each candidate uses technology in lessons to increase each studentÕs ability to plan, locate, evaluate, select, and use information to solve problems and draw conclusions.

10. Each candidate frequently monitors and reflects upon the results of using technology in instruction and adapts lessons accordingly.

11. Each candidate collaborates with other teachers, mentors, librarians, resource specialists, and other experts to support technology-enhanced curriculum. For example, they may collaborate on interdisciplinary lessons or cross grade level projects.

12. Each candidate contributes to site-based planning or local decision making regarding the use of technology and acquisition of technological resources.

The program meets other factors related to this standard of quality brought to the attention of the team by the program