Showing posts from September, 2010

Living and Learning Responsibly in the Digital World

Well, here it is, September 2010.  We knew this was coming… We are addressing a couple of pretty serious needs related to the digital world in our School District.  We need to reduce online activities that don’t have an obvious use for learning, teaching, or administration and provide guidance to teachers, students, administrators, and parents for using digital tools and spaces appropriately.  Additionally, our online capacity (bandwidth) has become unusable at times, students are increasingly using online tools for social and inappropriate purposes, and more teachers are taking their students out into the public Internet space.  I think I will focus this particular post on students responsible use and other issues such as bandwidth and privacy in future posts.  Let’s start with a recent example that has been in the news.  At a rave party in Maple Ridge, BC a teenage (underage) girl was, according to police reports, gang raped.  Bystanders took pictures with their cell phones and pos

What Homework Should Be

I have three grown sons (22, 21, 18) with my last son having graduated high school in June 2010.  Parents have a tough job raising kids these days.  I’d like to focus on one aspect of this job: homework.  I don’t know about you but as a parent I found it progressively more difficult to motivate and help my kids as they climbed the years through their K12 education.  Homework was that dreaded task that we had to encourage, bride, coerce, force, argue about, etc. with our kids.  My kids grade 8-12 years were in a self-directed school which made this process even more interesting and difficult.  I always found it frustrating that my kids had to push through content before they “got it” at various stages.  Homework often further reinforced what they already felt, that they didn’t understand the concepts yet.  By doing more problems, tasks, etc. at night they got progressively more frustrated with what they didn’t understand. I just read a refreshing and encouraging article in the Septemb

Stephanie’s First Day of School in 2020

It’s Tuesday, Sep. 8, 2020, the first day in the new school year and Stephanie is excited.  Being 11 years old and having demonstrated leadership skills in her learning portfolio last year, she knows that she gets to take on more leadership roles with her peers and the younger kids. Stephanie is already waiting in her mom’s car eager to get to school.  She’s already tapped into her Communicator to update her status and check with her friends to see where they’ll meet-up.  Her mom finally gets in.  They have one of those new 2020 solar powered Hyundai Genesis coupes with the onboard self-drive navigation system.  Her mom asks her car to take them to Stephanie’s school and they’re off, the car driving itself in constant communication with the intelligent road system while Stephanie and her mom talk about the day. Arriving at the school 10 minutes later, Stephanie seeing her friends Jordon, Blake, Sophie, and Raj, jumps out and runs up to the entrance to join them.  They talk excitedl

Michael’s First Day of College in 2020

Andrew Barras is a guest poster on my blog. He and I agreed to each write a post about the 1st day of school in 2020.  His is based in a higher education setting while mine is for K12.  Please enjoy Andrew's story today - mine will be posted tomorrow. Michael blearily pressed snooze on his alarm and looked at the clock.  It was 10:05am on September 16 th , 2020.  He knew he had to get up but he was up late last night attending a synchronous session from his Biology professor.  Actually his teacher wasn’t a professor at all.  He was a researcher at the University of New Delhi in India teaching a course for a little extra money.  Since Michael lived in Florida, it was a rough time difference. Groaning, Michael sat up in bed and grabbed his VR glasses off the nightstand. Slipping them on, he activated his info streams.  Studies have shown that a normal person can manage between 5 to 7 pieces of information simultaneously.  His glasses were rather full this morning. “Good morning

Personalized Learning and Technology

There seems to a buzz building around Personalized Learning in British Columbia (BC).  We’ve heard bits and pieces here and there  and that there are “secret” meetings in Victoria about this and the coming education agenda.  Intriguing isn’t it.  I’m looking forward to hearing more and to being a participant. Our Superintendent recently shared a video from New Brunswick at our Welcome Back meeting.  It’s a pretty exciting vision of 21st century education.  Technology is certainly a key lever to these changes. From Wikipedia “ Personalized Learning is the tailoring of pedagogy , curriculum and learning support to meet the needs and aspirations of individual learners”.  The article goes on to suggest that personalized learning gives the learner more choice about what is learned and how and when it is learned.  In other words, it is learner focused, not teacher focused.  Alberta Education has produced an Inspiring Education resource to share their vision for the future of education i