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Ministry of Education.
Kaua e rangiruatia te hāpai o te hoe; e kore to tātou waka e ū ki uta

So you're teaching technology

These six introductory modules present some key concepts, resources, and insights from research for you to explore with your colleagues or on your own.

They may be particularly useful for teachers who are new to technology education (or to teaching technology in New Zealand) and for teachers in charge of technology.

Module 2: Teacher knowledge

Class analysing biscuits

Teachers of technology are learners too – to be effective they need to build their own knowledge.

Knowledgeable teachers are less likely to:

  • encourage misconceptions (as a result of inadequate or outdated knowledge)
  • limit their teaching to things or aspects of the curriculum that they feel confident about.

Teacher confidence and competence are closely linked to teacher knowledge: content knowledge (what to teach) and pedagogical content knowledge (how to teach it).

Teachers with appropriate knowledge are able to:

  • choose suitable, interesting contexts
  • provide effective teaching activities that enhance student skills and knowledge in all three curriculum strands
  • plan a coherent teaching and learning programme that incorporates all eight curriculum components over a specified timeframe
  • recognise and exploit teaching moments that arise unexpectedly
  • assess what students already know (prior learning) or have learned.

See Module 3 for key resources to help grow your own knowledge.

Questions to think about or discuss

  • Looking at the technology curriculum (at the level[s] appropriate for your students), what strengths in your own content knowledge can you identify?
  • Looking at the technology curriculum (at the level[s] appropriate for your students), what weaknesses in your own content knowledge can you identify?
  • Which of the above bulleted points are areas that you need to prioritise for personal professional development?
  • What concrete steps could you take to grow your own knowledge, understanding, or skills – either individually, or working with others?

Module 1: What is technological literacy? | Module 2: Teacher knowledge | Module 3: Key resources | Module 4: A coherent teaching programme across levels | Module 5: Insights from research | Module 6: Next steps  

Useful resources

Tracking coverage and learning across a school

Columba College has a 3 year technology plan for their primary school. Dorothy Hutton, the teacher-in-charge of years 0–6 technology, works with the teachers to ensure the plan is implemented and to share knowledge.


Raising achievement in years 7–10 Technology

Toni Tippet at St Peters Gore has grown teacher knowledge of the curriculum by teachers planning, developing workbooks, and moderating student work as a team.

Introducing shared planning and recording from year 7

Kathleen Hepburn at the South Otago high School and Chrisitne Elder at the technology centre worked with all of the technology teachers to plan a coherent programme and grow teacher knowledge. Christine has established meetings with some of the client primary schools to develop their curriculum understandings.

School–Industry relationship cuts both ways

The relationship between St John's College and The Fibreglass Shop has benefits for them both. Industry links can help to grow teacher and student knowledge. 

Pushing the boundaries with materials

Students and teachers can learn together about working with materials. 

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