Light Offerings

Surfing the digital light fantastic in education

Posted by jturner56 on October 30, 2012

jt1

School is about the relationship between education as a society set of expectations and learning as a personal construct. Digital has potential to enhance this.

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Doing Projects is not Project Based Learning…but we can learn a lot from both

Posted by jturner56 on September 16, 2018

As a teacher whose work with digital in the classroom has involved projects for over thirty years I continue to be interested in the intersection of school, projects and learning.

Of particular interest this week was a Grade 7 Design project. Its purpose is to introduce students to the four stages of Design problem solving process (Analyse & Inquire, Generate Ideas, Create, and Evaluate). The technological focus is creating personal brand logos (to enable Adobe Illustrator skills to be updated or introduced (there being students new to the school involved)) and to embed said logo into a student generated Virtual Reality movie (thus supporting Digital Literacy (adaptability, problem solving, creating) developments. Students are required to keep a journal of evidence of their analysis, ideas, skills and evaluations. They are provided with teacher generated guided questions.

As I looked at progress I was struck by the following

  1. Students would just be getting into the project when the school timetabled kicked in and they were required to go to the next scheduled class.
  2. Some students preferred to go straight to the Create stage and make their own choices on support provided. Is this acceptable? How should assessment feedback consider this?
  3. The so-called 21st century soft or success skills (collaboration, time management, etc) emerge from a well structured project. It also helps identify those students with areas of need. Teacher feedback is an important part of this.
  4. Where does this it into Project / PBL considerations?

On the first point, if schools are truly committed to projects they need to provide a structure to enable students to work on projects unencumbered by any need to move to the next teacher. A balance between core skills and opportunities to apply in problem-solving situation, balancing teacher direction with student responsibility for their learning is needed. Perhaps school needs to be less teacher-centric and more open ton students taking responsibility for their learning?

The second point puzzles me with it contradictions of teachers as directing guides up against student centrality. In an age of entitlement and student digital options the work of the teacher may have changed, but is no less important.

On the third point, as students have used digital technologies more at earlier years in supportive environments they are developing stronger collaborative and problem solving skills before entering Grade 7. This is also the case with their digital understanding, something that I have noticed and had to respond to for over three decades. This provides grounds for deeper learning opportunities to be provided. Hence the VR choice.

tptFinally, calling on Jonassen’s (2000) Taxonomy of Problems, my project appears to me to be an example of “Rule-using Induction problem”, towards the structured end but with clear intent to provide a set of rules that will enable students to take on more ill-structured problems. There is some evidence that this can be seen in Personal Projects that students take on in later years of their schooling. It is also why opportunities for students to take more responsibility for their learning is behind Innovation Fairs for younger students.

But is it a good example of Project-Based Learning? Using the BIE checklist (2018) a good example would include:

  1. Challenging pblProblem
    VR and Design Concepts appear to be engaging and challenging
  2. Sustained Inquiry
    Apart from short teacher introductions students are free to work at their own pace.
  3. Authenticity
    There is a personal aspect, although more could be provided on wider application. What is provided is an introduction to skills that are at the cutting edge of future storytelling needs (say for gaming or advertising).
  4. Student Voice and Choice
    Students have choice on what the logo will represent about themselves, although they will have to justify against design principles.
  5. Reflections
    Redrafting and alternative ideas are part of the Design process.
  6. Critic and Revision
    Students have to justify and incorporate critical feedback from others. Teacher formal feedback is provided at milestone points.
  7. Public Product
    As indicated, this is probably the weakest area of this project. But its purpose is to provide skills and processes that can be applied in wider contexts.
  8. Key knowledge, Understanding and Success Skills
    It is this area, which BIE had to update from its original thinking, that best justifies the teachers important role in projects, be it introducing important concepts, following up with conversations and feedback, as well as identifying and supporting stragglers.

I can see the project satisfies most elements, but like all projects it is a piece of work under constant revision.  This is the second year for this project and some adjustments have been made(particularly in clarifying the design concepts and providing better feedback).

From experience projects undergo three iterations. First time through has risk (if it is to be challenging). Second time sees adjustments and clarification. Third time through is hopefully refinement. With the fast changing nature of digital technologies few projects last more than three to four years without significant updating. Teaching with projects is like learning through projects. Always seeking to go deeper while constantly responding to new challenges and problems.

B.I.E. 2018. What is is Project Based Learning? Available at https://www.bie.org/about/what_pbl
David H. Jonassen. 2000. Toward a design theory of problem solving. Available at https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/BF02300500

 

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Why is Digital still on the “outside” of School Education?

Posted by jturner56 on September 10, 2018

In World Class: How to build a 21st-century school system (2018) Andreas Schleicher looks at how industrial structures and vested interests can hold back needed change within schools and school systems. Schleicher, a founder of the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) project calls on schools to build change capacity to take on innovation risks or continue to be left further behind. While acknowledging the complex nature of educational ecosystems and the at-times hostile elements to progress that can be encountered within schools, he nevertheless calls for community collective action as a way forward, with digital a key driver for shaping better futures.

 

Yet when it comes to digital we seem to be perennially trying to play “catch-up” without actually forging ahead. Not to worry. There’s always someone who can provide “if only” justification or market this or that “innovation”, “innovative educator” or “edtech solution.” This adds to digital as a bridge too far for many, fueling echo chambers,  serving conserve-focused leadership and bureaucratic change approaches.

I thought I would try and look at this differently. From experience I have and still are in a position of having to justify digital to a system that has at its heart changed little over the last 30 years plus despite many idea cycles. By “outside” I mean if digital went away school could carry on undiminished in many eyes. One can always see this with an intermittent or inaccessible Internet within a school.

So why is this so?

  1. Cost
    In schools digital continues to be treated primarily as a teaching add-on for consideration after the basic costs (that being teachers) has been factored in. Even when different approaches are attempted, class size and timetable structures regress to the mean of standardised conserving school expectations (Cuban 2018). Unlike just about every other area of human endeavour and enterprise in what is a digitally-powered ages, Schools stand as was.
  2. Cost (2)
    The fast changing nature of digital requires reinvestments on levels previously unimaginable. Add to this the support structures and implementation costs. Even the most well resourced school is stretched to keep up with opportunities. Within the contemporary approach to Schooling promoting digital as an efficiency tool is misdirection. In such circumstances superficial considerations and marketing are often is used to cover the deep considerations required. New required paradigms are yet to emerge.
  3. Cost (3)
    What is the cost of change? At what point does the no change option become unacceptable. For how long can one get by by collecting low hanging fruit, such only assessing that with can be assessed easily? Focusing principally on that which can be standardised?
  4. Gatekeepers
    School administrators and system bureaucrats are of the system, by the system, for the system. Conservatives rule over progressive thinking even if they see themselves as dynamic (Cuban 2018). Their power lies in the status quo, what Arendt would term the banality of bureaucracy (Caswell 2010).
  5. Understanding
    The core tenets of digital in education have been with us for over thirty years. Is digital a tool, an empowering medium, a learning manager, or some combination? Research cannot keep up with fast changing technologies, particularly when the basics tenets are still in conflict. This makes digital in education prone to ideological priming. System success is measured by the gatekeepers up against research ideologues and idea provocateurs. This is evident in advocacy of digital as a teaching tool bereft of new learning implications.
  6. Teacher Capability
    There are many great teachers making magic happen with digital. But there are also many teachers with one or two years experience who are still trying to find their way. They have to meet gatekeeper expectations first. In what is a complex milieu those who might survive and flourish with digital as a learning empowering medium may well have to fight the system until they can no more (or use short term thinking to propel past bureaucratic gates through self-promotion).
  7. Student Learning
    Much of what passes as required learning is based on students being treated as blank slates (shout out to John Stuart Mill and his tabula rasa). Or schools treated as evil institutions (shout out to Jean Jacque Rousseau). Transmission trumps empowerment too often. Students as active agents of their own learning can easily become merely bureaucratic jargon.
  8. Teaching
    At its core School is a teacher centric system. 30%  of the influence on student learning comes from teachers (Hattie 2003). Home, Schools and Peers all 5-10%, Student themselves 50%. This signifies the importance of the teacher-student relationships. Student digital lives have increasingly led to gaps with their in-school experiences. Teachers have had to continually reset their use of digital, including adapting to new digital ecosystems when changing schools. Teaching is in a constant state of catch-up (or denial) when it comes to digital. Yet Schleicher (2018) calls for teachers becoming active agents for change, not just in implementing technological innovations, but in designing them too. Teaching as a profession with power still has a long way to go, although opportunities for subversion as a force for good (Postman & Weingartner 1969) remains part of any teacher’s repertoire.
  9. School Communities
    School communities have to meet the needs of a diverse group of stakeholders regardless of where located or positioned. School are a social bedrock. Those who seek to undermine through advocating ‘solutions’ in isolation do everyone a disservice. What is needed though is a commitment to digital as part of everyone’s life requiring educational adjustments. Not throwing out the baby with the bathwater, or replacing the bathwater with unnecessary elan.
  10. Inequalities
    Inequities have been accepted as a product of the neoliberal agendas that have swept political discourse. Education as a commercially defined commodity enables dealing, dealers and political power plays. This serves the powers that be as opportunities for themselves and their fellow elite. For the losers, teacher needs and 21st Century learning requirements are a price that they have been unwilling to overcome.
  11. Digital for Learning
    What then does digital have to offer? Beyond the tool, tutor, tutee dynamic (Taylor 1980), the fundamental difference between digital learning and school learning is that while school learning provides a teacher managed system to ‘educate’ according to systemised structures, digital provides a cognitive loop that can support and even empower personal learning. Digital for learning is a personal connection. This is evident in gaps between ‘Youtube’ as a learning medium (Dickson 2018) and the long form writing (including hand-written examinations under one-draft time stipulations) that is so prized by School education.
  12. The Problem with Knowledge
    There are strong forces who see school learning as a closed knowledge set, a precursor to application within the wider world. A lab for scientific manipulation over a web community. Granted digital has a core set too, but this includes processes that enable learners to adapt faster than ever before, to get ideas out there, and to make new connections with knowledge, people and the environment and to problem solve in new ways. Information literacy has been redefined by the Internet. Inquiry is part of the required response. Yet driving assessment values have changed little.

Are these problems with digital in school education unsurmountable? No, but they require a willingness to rethink what learning is valued in schools and in what ways. Interestingly, when I looked at this question I was channelled back to Bransford et al’s How People Learn: Brain, Mind, Experience, and School (1999). Here one finds the importance of addressing learning (and learners), knowledge, assessment and communities coming together in new ways  (with an interesting take on television as a two-sided technology effect on education). Critical to this is Trust. Trust for student to play, to explore, to learning from their mistakes and failures, and in our young to find their own way with others. Trust which means different things to a five year old compared to an eighteen year old. Trust that can only come from positive relationships. None of which data-driven scientism could ever achieve.

Until all of these factors can be addressed in a united way we will continue as is in unbalanced ways.

A new balance is needed.

 

Bransford, John, Ann L. Brown, and Rodney R. Cocking. 1999. How people learn: brain, mind, experience, and school. Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press.

Caswell,M. 2010. Hannah Arendt’s world: Bureaucracy, documentation, and banal evil. Available at https://www.researchgate.net/publication/290780445_Hannah_Arendt%27s_world_Bureaucracy_documentation_and_banal_evil

Cuban, L. 2018. Creating New Schools: Regression To the Mean. Avaliable at https://larrycuban.wordpress.com/2018/06/21/creating-new-schools-regression-to-the-mean-part-1/

Cuban, L. 2018. Schools as Conservative Institutions. Available at https://larrycuban.wordpress.com/2018/09/04/schools-as-conservative-institutions/

Dickson, J. 2018. Study: Gen Z prefers YouTube over books for learning. Available at http://kidscreen.com/2018/08/27/study-gen-z-prefers-youtube-over-books-for-learning/

Hattie, J. 2003. Teachers Make a Difference, What is the research evidence? Available at https://research.acer.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1003&context=research_conference_2003

Neil Postman & Charles Weingartner. 1969. Teaching as a Subversive Activity. New York: Delacorte Press.

Schleicher, A. 2018. World Class: How to Build a 21st-Century School System. Available at http://www.oecd.org/education/world-class-9789264300002-en.htm

Taylor, R. 1980. The Computer in School: Tutor, Tool, Tutee. Available through http://www.citejournal.org/volume-3/issue-2-03/seminal-articles/the-computer-in-school-tutor-tool-tutee

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A Digital Classroom Checklist

Posted by jturner56 on August 22, 2018

As part of curriculum development to advance mobile learning I have developed a checklist (based in part on John & Wheeler (2008)) that can be used to evaluate digital offering and identify areas for development.

  Yes No
The approach to digital extends the classroom offerings, interactions and opportunities?    
24/7 access is provided to cater for student diversity in learning needs    
Virtual Learning opportunities are included    
Digital Resources are provided    
Online Feedback is provided    
Digital literacies (planning, adapting, information literacy, problem solving, creating, collaborating, citizenship) are advanced    
Media literacies, information literacies and digital life principles are advanced    
Opportunities for experiential and reflective learning are provided    
Collaborative learning support is included    
Connections to other learning communities are included    
Opportunities for cognitive empowerment

Some I would call first level offerings where digital is used to extend whatever is going on in the classroom. When I see a textbook provided in digital form I see access and resources provided but not much more, except maybe some media literacies if the textbook is at least interactive.

Some are second level, in that they extend what can be achieved when digital is used to extend. Blended approaches to feedback, collaboration and approach to learning communities fit in here. Online virtual learning through sites such as Youtube or mini-MOOCs can also fit here. Experiential and reflective learning likewise, although with digital now an extension of personality the extent to which this is pursued can vary widely.

And third level offerings are where only through digital would such objectives be achievable. Digital Literacies (which I have written about previous) and Digital Life (which you will hear more on in the near future) are obvious to this)

And finally fourth level offerings are those where digital enables students to go deeper, go further, go higher than non-digital education. Cognitive bootstrapping through advanced searching approaches, vr/ar storytelling, and app making and 3D/laser printing that addresses some social need are areas that spring to mind from my small part of the world.

Where are you on this?

Reference: John, P. & Wheeler, S. 2008 Digital Classroom: Harnessing technology for the future. New York, NY: Routledge

 

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Is it best to put all your eggs in one basket?

Posted by jturner56 on August 16, 2018

Is it best to put all your eggs in one basket?….how can you tel the difference?

or put each egg in its own individual basket?……now where was that egg?

or just put one egg on display?……and not worry about the other eggs?

or let the eggs roll free?…..is that yolk on your sole?

or hard boil the eggs to better secure them?……bad luck about scrambling later

or lock away all your eggs so no-one can get at them?……..what’s that smell?

or……

How do you look after your students (sorry…eggs)

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What is Digital Infusion in Schools really about?

Posted by jturner56 on August 9, 2018

Sometime in education one encounters an ah-ha moment when a light switches on (not always for the better of course). But such was the case as I considered the question: What does digital infusion mean for a school?

This lead to two possibilities. Firstly, it can reflect an Outside-In view. This means digital change is introduced depending on the school system’s aptitude and attitude towards the digital. But the converse also holds. Inside-Out would mean considering that all change has a digital consideration because digital is integral to all changes.

In business inside-out thinking has led to some transformative outcomes, such as booking airline seats and media distribution systems. As with the ever-changing nature of digital such transformations still have a way to go.

Yet Outside-In thinking in school education remains dominant to the point of alternatives treated at best as outliers. While some such as Mal Lee see an inevitability in school’s having to change as they increasingly are overwhelmed by digital inevitability this systematically is yet to pass.

In part this is seen in efforts by schools to ensure backward-looking control of any digital change (what Seymour Paper in the 1980s referred to as assimilation, channeling his best Piagetian language.) Part and parcel of this is segmenting digital into a tight box, treating it as optional, and/or marketing ‘exemplars’ even as the energy expended by some educators to demonstrate what might be possible is expended. This Outside-In approach over time has also led to increasing learning gaps between school and the outside world as first home computing, then personal smartphones resulted in young and old using digital to access  at hand learning environments such as Youtube and its like.

So where does your school lie in its approach? To what extent Outside-In, and how far advanced on Inside-Out. I get the impression we still have some significant hurdles to learn before gaps can even start receding.

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What did you learn over summer (or winter in my case)?

Posted by jturner56 on August 7, 2018

In the northern hemisphere the long summer break for school provides a well earned break for students and teachers. It also provides an opportunity to broaden knowledge and experiences. In my case to catch-up with some reading.

This year my takeaways included

  • The increasing power of tech companies and how social pressure has much to learn if it is not to be swept away by digital capitalism and/or digital control.
  • For in modern societies productivity has plateaued even as we consume the earth beyond its capabilities.
  • While in school education ‘innovations’ and ‘solutions’ invariably regress to the mean of school’s historical expectations. The gaps are getting wider, between schools, and between school and societal needs.
  • Part of the problem lies in the stresses placed on teachers, individually and as a profession, as they continue to be viewed as industrial units and not partners.
  • Digital in Education continues to be an enigma as claims of transformative ‘solutions’ run up against anxieties about change, all within a constricting mix of standardised systems and personal hopes. The smartphone is the current representation of this, while data algorithms and cognitive enhancements await.
  • In all this there is much to be learned from Hannah Arendt’s take on bureaucratic banality and active learning

This I hopefully will be able to use as I work on integrating Digital Life and Digital Classroom principles in school life. More on this to come.

As we commence a new school year up-north (or enter the trudge zone down south) all the best to school communities, teachers and students. We all are relying on you to help us move through and hopefully beyond a post-truth view of the world.

Postscript
Some readings to consider from the above

UnSelfie: Why Empathetic Kids Succeed in Our All-About-Me World
Michele Borba 2018
The Tyranny of Metrics
Jerry Z. Muller 2018
The Well-Educated Mind: A Guide to the Classical Education You Never Had (Updated and Expanded)
Susan Wise Bauer 2016
Australia Reimagined: Towards a More Compassionate, Less Anxious Society
Hugh Mackay 2018
Age of Anger: A History of the Present
Pankaj Mishra 2017

 

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On Robots, Learning and Papert/Plato

Posted by jturner56 on June 5, 2018

“We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.”

Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.
T. E. Eliot

I know at times I go too big picture in an effort to try and understand the interplay between digital and School. Today I go back to my micro-roots to try and explain why digital for learning means so much to me.

What better starting point than a simple mathematical shape, the Square.

ias

When I first started teaching Mathematics (armed only with a textbook) I provided Platoic definitions that could be tested easily (multiple-choice anyone). Evolving patterns that required 51% understanding to ‘pass’.
(image from http://students.norledgemaths.com/interior-angles-in-regular-polygons.html)

Then I discovered programming (in thosesquare days with Logo) that enabled investigation, instant feedback systems and an opportunity to go further with mathematical inquiry (which provided non-judgemental assessments of understanding). Understanding how to program a Square led to everything from Geometric Art to Recursion, Chaos Theory to the Tower of Hanoi, Computer Poetry to Differentiation . Today this is still available in a Logo descendant, Scratch. What is different is that the Platoic educational requirement is for internal angles, whereas Scratch uses turning angles. What’s the difference apart from School seeing this as an existential threat?

To more current timmb3es and my work with a mBot Robot. Now to program the robot to create a square an investigation of speed and turn torque is needed. This results in an imperfect square (some teachers were up in arms about this) but opens questions of friction and technological imperfections (that raised in my mind Einstein’s theories that required several years if not decades of machine development before they could be confirmed).

Robot Square video is here.rs
Robots can be used to support creative learning – such as fashion shows – scientific problem solving – such as understanding of space and simple machines, to empowerment of innovative thinking through student choice and agency. A student in a robot-making, coding environment can be a powerful learner. More on this here.

So Schools remains at loggerheads catering for Platoic elitism (which serves some even as the bottom falls out) while technology allows the individual to strike out in their own learning journeys. Digital Age learning should embrace learner agency through digital explorations and ownership. Multiple-Choice testing and understanding driven by data measurement through tech-control serves only the diminishing elite, defensive gatekeepers and those fortunate to have pathways laid out for them.

As Seymour Papert, who worked with robots while developing Logo in the 1970s, explained, computers should be approached to unlock children’s “powerful ideas.” Students learning through construction is a powerful, well articulated idea that carries through to Making advocacy today. It is a backbone of the 1:1 robot approach we have pursued – to empower students to make, personalise and extend their learning.

One of the weaknesses of this ‘confliction in priorities’ is that it is treated as an either-or issue. What it should be is finding ways through to engage, enable and empower students as learners within learning environments dedicated to advance the 5 21C attributes (creativity, collaboration, communication, critical thinking and community). A strong base serves the student well, but in the absence of context and wider inquiry opportunities beyond  regurgitation  we are left with a diminished educational structure.

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GRADE 7 INNOVATION FAIR: IDEAS, DIGITAL POWER AND STUDENT AGENCY IN ACTION

Posted by jturner56 on June 4, 2018

Innovation Fair 2018 Medals (Larson) - 1A cross-post this week as have been working on my school’s Grade 7 Innovation Fair which culminated on Friday. Check it out here

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The Digital Classroom

Posted by jturner56 on May 27, 2018

How do you use digital to extend learning? Peter D John & Steve Wheeler in The Digital Classroom: Harnessing technology for the future (2008) provide a good list to drawn upon. How well, then, does your use of digital:

  1. extend the classroom
  2. provide 24/7 access
  3. integrate Real Life with Virtual Life  learning
  4. provide access to digital resources
  5. help streamline feedback (including formative & summative assessments)
  6. advance digital literacies (planning, adapting, information literacy, problem solving, creating, collaborating, citizenship)
  7. advance media literacies, information literacies and digital life principles
  8. provide opportunities for experiential and reflective learning
  9. support each student’s learning progress
  10. extend & connect learning communities

We use this as a conversation focus as we develop and support the use of digital as an integral part of school education. The software choice is not the most important choice; what is done with it is much more important. Use needs to be able to:

develop Digital literacy
– support Subject learning / Curriculum objectives (including inquiry, ‘21C Skills’…)
– Engage, Enable, Empower (through digital -based creativity)
– support Home Learning
– cover for closed school days to maintain learning continuity

How effective is your digital classroom?

 

 

 

 

 

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Grammar of the School Year: Looking Forward & Backward

Posted by jturner56 on May 20, 2018

As the end of the (northern) school year fast approaches it is a time to reflect on what has been achieved over the school year, to look forward to the new year of hope and renewal, and to consider the state of play.

In the southern school year this is a time for decision-making as pieces are moved or not moved depending on a complex interplay of parts. (In the northern school year this would be in November, coinciding with the impeding end of the southern school year).

It is these three systemic considerations (decisions, evaluation, renewal) that underpin an important part of the grammar of schooling. A term put forward by Tyack and Tobin in 1994, it denotes the pattern of schooling that defines boundaries for change. For those like Larry Cuban it still defines the dominant structure of schooling through age-grading and a “machinery of instruction.”

Up against this the constant change of digital presents a challenge. Being involved in this  means constantly being willing to challenge both understanding and a domineering status quo. Evaluation, Progress and Renewal are key driving forces:

Evaluation (which is personal judgement up against systemic demands)

From the inside there are five levels one can work on

  1. Raising awareness and understanding: on potential value of new technologies for the system, teacher and hopefully the student
  2. Achieving inclusion. Perhaps only a foothold or some space and time segmented out. Held there by energy that like a rubber band can quickly retract when such energy is removed
  3. Advancement: within the school structures through connecting footholds and sections
  4. Connecting: to change structures through breaching school gates guarded emphatically by their gatekeepers
  5. Embedding / Entrenching: to an extent that the change agent can depart and the change will endure.

Progress (which is never as far as one hope, but hopefully far enough to see some light)

Like technology, school change is two-sided. Sometimes one-step forward, two-steps back. Other times two-steps forward, one-step back. Using the Evaluation levels progress can be charted. For this year

  1. Raising Awareness and Understanding: on the Digital Life of students as mobile phones become a more integrated part of self. Also VR projects to provide opportunities to adapt new technologies into creative outcomes.
  2. Inclusion: of MYP Design as a subject to enable students deeper learning opportunities as coders, publishers and creators.
  3. Advancing: of Digital Literacy frameworks as part of curriculum design and delivery. And of Innovation through student-freed Innovation Fairs dedicated to letting them go higher and deeper in their learning and its application.
  4. Connecting: expertise such as learning technologist, librarian, curriculum gatekeeper and makers (with guidance support to come) as a driving force
  5. Embedding: 1:1 iRobots (i for integration) across grade levels where each students will be able to make, code and extend their own robot.

Renewal (which with digital is always there if one looks)

Of course there are battles lost and battles continuing. The battle of the digital classroom, built on principles and teacher drive is at the forefront of this. So too seeing digital as a personal learning part of self.

Up against this ongoing battles against closed systems that see technology as most cost effective when use is minimised, those who see power and comfort in a Taylorist school system, and those who see digital in the hands of students only in term of technocentric externalised controls.

In this one example stands out. A colleague asked what questions he should ask the education technology administrators at the new school where he was soon to move. This led me to respond with the following

  1. What do you want to achieve? Why?
  2. What are you willing to do to achieve this?
  3. What’s stopping you?
  4. …and afterward, what have you learned from this reflection?

I was perturbed, but not surprised, that their answer was that they wanted to achieve a 1:2 approach to computers in the classroom. Say no more.

How was your year and what and you looking forward to? For me it is always a combination of

Eliot

We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.”

Socrates

“True knowledge exists in knowing that you know nothing.

and a bit of Riddler

“The human mind always has questions.

And in the end there is the teacher, working with 20-30 students of various dispositions, and a myriad of external, shifting influences. In a structure that both inhibits and provides opportunities others can hardly understanding. Yet the grammar of school  allows for renewal if we wish. We forget this too often.

 

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