The VITTA (Victorian Institute of Technology Teachers Association) held their annual conference early this week. It was fascinating, inspiring, frustrating and challenging. Some of the presenters were:
Louise Duncan: Louise has been teaching in secondary schools in the Goulburn Valley of Victoria since 1988. A leading teacher at Shepparton High School since 2003, she led a team designing a new learning space and personal learning program. The use of iPod touches within this program allowed for the exploration of personal mobile devices to improve student learning. For this, she was awarded the Lindsay Thompson Fellowship in 2009. Louise is a member of the Slide2Learn team and shares her knowledge and experience nationally through a Ning and annual event. http://slidetolearn.ning.com/ and @LouiseEDuncan
Daniel Garcia – a generous secondary teacher with a passion for connected learning and global citizenship. Definitely have a look at his blog - http://theonlineclass.wordpress.com/ developed for the conference.
Nathan Jones: He’s “a passionate Primary Educator from Melbourne, Australia. He teaches Upper Primary students at an Independent School. Just recently he was selected as an Apple Distinguished Educator. His other role at school is E-Learning Co-ordination and he teachs an Upper Primary Class that is a 1:1 iPad environment.
His website http://theipad2011.webs.com shares ideas about the iPad and 1 to 1 learning.
There is a lot to be excited about and all of the presenters provided access to new applications, new tools to engage, present, poll, share, network and collaborate. I’ve come away with lists (on Evernote :)) to refer, analyse, share and apply.
In the back of my mind I kept thinking about you, the teachers I have the privilege to work with and meet. There is a bridge that is being built between us and the near future. There are some schools that with access to resources have 1:1 ipads or tablets, netbooks or laptops and they seem to be have built their bridges wider or longer then yours. Many of the presenters reinforced that the decisions they were making in how they and their students were using technology to provoke learning was to do with their school / community context. 1:1 ipads may not be the right fit for you or your students. Marc Prensky a Tech commentator reinforced last year that it’s important to spend the time to ask the students “if we had iPads how would our learning have been changed?” Many teachers are using technology but they are simply substituting the pen for a tablet word document.
Sylvia Tolisano has some wonderful criteria’s / rubrics for analysing how to choose App’s for learning, http://www.langwitches.org/
While I was looking at Louise Duncan’s Slide to Learn website I came across Wayan Vota who presented at their 2011 conference.
Wayan is a technology expert focused on using appropriate information and communication technologies (ICT) to accelerate the social and economic advancement of the developing world. His presentation provided me with a global perspective on technology in education.
I would be really interested in hearing what you think about the challenges and perspective you have after watching it.
The way we communicate with each is going to continue to change. I am excited by the learning opportunities that we and our students have that has the capacity to bring us closer together as humans. We can share, collaborate, problem solve and help each other make the world a better place for everyone.
ICT helps us not only to provoke but to unveil opportunities for hope.