eLearning Heresy

I have taken up ranks within a new school. I am looking forward to change of scenery, working within a new community and starting fresh. The new year will be a new beginning.

For many years I have been an advocate of technology believing it offers extraordinary learning opportunities. I have played a major role in introducing iPad technology as 1:1 and have provided coaching and mentoring for staff locally, regionally and nationally. After having received a new teaching appointment, people have asked whether I would encourage 1:1 access.

I believe not. Why? 1:1 is no longer unique and the ratio doesn't support collaboration as advised. 1:1 requires unprecedented technical support and continual education. Both of which are highly underestimated. To ensure 1:1 success resources must be available otherwise undesired results are inevitable. Although the Australian Curriculum identifies the use of technology within education, it doesn't mandate for every child to have a device. Makey Makey and Maker Faire provide new approaches to dealing with curriculum demands. I believe parents are interested in schools that can provide unique learning opportunities that don't use technology as a sales pitch and learning crux.

Many schools are becoming 1:1 and replicating teaching methodologies. 21st Century Learning is becoming a cliché and recipe for learning design. Schools should offer something unique and refreshing, absence of technology and classrooms promoting hands on activities are becoming increasingly desirable. I believe technology has its place within the classroom, however, less may be more... more or less. Study of NAPLAN results and cross referencing these with schools having 1:1 programs would be a very interesting investigation.

During 2014 I attended EduTech. I enjoyed the presentations by Sir Ken Robinson, however, Sugata Mitra challenged my thinking most. He suggested that 1:1 does not promote collaboration as desired and students working together on projects and tasks is more engaging, educationally stimulating and socially beneficial.

It must be remembered that just because 1:1 is happening... doesn't mean learning is.

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