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Nigel Coutts

What truly drives change in Education? - The Learner's Way - 3 views

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    You do not need to look very hard to find a report claiming that schools and education needs to change. But real change needs more than teacher blaming and increased accountability. What will drive real change is . . .
Nigel Coutts

Why such a rapid pace of change? - The Learner's Way - 7 views

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    I am currently reading "Thank you for being late: An optimist's guide to thriving in the age of accelerations" and have found in this the answer to these questions. In essence we are confronting two types of change, one that we have always faced and one that is unique to our current times. 
Nigel Coutts

The BIG Three for Managing Change - The Learner's Way - 6 views

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    Understanding responses to change is critical and with the predicted future of education increasingly being linked to innovative practices which prepare students for an unknown future change is a central theme
Nigel Coutts

Embracing the complexity of change - The Learner's Way - 10 views

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    The potential for reliably predicting the outcome of any change effort is surely difficult if not even impossible once the number of influences becomes large. Acknowledging the complexity that exists and seeing the potential for growth, creativity and innovation that can exist within an organisation at 'the edge of chaos' are useful strategies as schools face a period of unprecedented change. 
Nigel Coutts

Change, culture and Cultural Change in Education - The Learner's Way - 6 views

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     Embedded in the very weave of the organisation, culture is the most difficult aspect of an organisation to change and the hardest form of change to sustain 'That's because transforming a culture requires influencing people's deepest beliefs and most habitual behaviours' (Rogers, Meehan & Tanne 2006 p5). Rogers et al indicate that as little as 10% of all organisations that set out to develop a high performing culture achieve their goal.
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    Agreed. Education is controlled by the academics since it became a savior for leaving the middle class. Our best civic leaders have a different idea.
    http://www.textbooksfree.org/Leaders%20Educational%20Advise.htm
Nigel Coutts

Valuing and responding to resistance to change - The Learner's Way - 8 views

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    Change is something that we fear or embrace. It is widely considered as the one constant in our lives. For education at present we face a deluge of reports that the pace of change shall only accelerate and its scale become more absolute. No wonder then that many teachers feel now is a good time for a move out of the profession. For others the changing face of education is seen as bringing exciting new possibilities wrapped in engaging challenges. Regardless of how reliable predictions for change may prove to be it is worth considering how individuals and groups respond to it.
Steve Ransom

Peter T. Coleman, PhD: The Consequences of Our Games - 2 views

  • "At a time when games are becoming ever more realistic, reality is becoming more gamelike."
  • The problem is not that games are inconsistent with many aspects of our lives; it is that they provide a limited and skewed lens on the world
  • Seeing more and more aspects of our lives as games to win through maximization has a sort of self-perpetuating effect with perverse consequences, not the least of which is the impairment of what Diesing terms social rationality; the cherishing of unique relationships, personal connectedness, cooperative functioning, solidarity and sentiment.
  • ...6 more annotations...
  • It stresses the strategic interdependent interests of humans and assumes that in games there is always a rational choice which is the best counter-choice to your opponent's.
  • If winning efficiently is the goal, then the rules (ethical, moral, legal, and spiritual), are essentially obstacles to game.
  • In our schools, competition for access to elite preschools, for grades, for social status, in sports, over positions of leadership, and for admission to exclusive colleges transforms one of our most basic institutions for fostering community, ethics and learning into competitive, individualistic corporate training-grounds. In these settings, the importance of competitive sports becomes paramount, for both financial and training purposes, and the artistry of cheating (see this year's Stuyvesant High School cheating scandal) and rule-bending (see Joe Paterno) revered. Such intense competition encourages the professionalization of parenting -- through tutors, highly-educated nannies, prep courses, and professional training camps (such as investment camps). You can imagine the deleterious effects these trends have on the ethos of care and moral responsibility in our families and schools, a critical buffer against bullying and violence in the lives of our children.
  • We become hyper-connected through technologies, boasting our number of "friends" on Facebook, and have less and less intimacy.
  • We choose friends with benefits or Internet porn over romantic relationships as they are less messy, more efficient.
  • Life is a race and we are losing.
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    A great piece worth the time to reflect on. Mindfulness needs to be practiced frequently.
Phil Taylor

The Google Glass feature no one is talking about - Creative Good - 55 views

  • Google Glass experience is not the user experience – it’s the experience of everyone else. The experience of being a citizen, in public, is about to change.
Steve Ransom

If You Build It, They Will Come - 56 views

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    If You Build It, They Will Come

    -Great post by Ryan Bretag, @ryanbretag
Steve Ransom

The Relationship Status of Teachers and Educational Technology: It's Complicated - Rick... - 58 views

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    The teacher perspective. It's not always because they hate to learn, hate technology, and love worksheets.
Steve Ransom

Khan Academy does not constitute an education revolution, but I'll tell you w... - 40 views

  • The curriculum in these classes is typically irrelevant to their lives, except for the need to earn grades good enough to placate their parents and impress college admissions officers. When the academic content assigned has no meaning to them, and their engagement with it is solely to attain extrinsic rewards, of course they’re not going to retain it.
Steve Ransom

Technology in Schools Faces Questions on Value - NYTimes.com - 9 views

  • Critics counter that, absent clear proof, schools are being motivated by a blind faith in technology and an overemphasis on digital skills — like using PowerPoint and multimedia tools — at the expense of math, reading and writing fundamentals. They say the technology advocates have it backward when they press to upgrade first and ask questions later.
    • Steve Ransom
       
      A valid criticism when technology implementation is decoupled from meaningful and effective pedagogy. You can't buy measurable change/improvement.
  • district was innovating
  • how the district was innovating.
    • Steve Ransom
       
      Again, this is very different than how TEACHERS are innovating their PRACTICES. It's much more challenging than making a slick brochure that communicates how much technology your district has.
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  • there is no good way to quantify those achievements — putting them in a tough spot with voters deciding whether to bankroll this approach again
  • “We’ve jumped on bandwagons for different eras without knowing fully what we’re doing. This might just be the new bandwagon,” he said. “I hope not.”
    • Steve Ransom
       
      There's a confidence building statement for you....
  • $46.3 million for laptops, classroom projectors, networking gear and other technology for teachers and administrators.
    • Steve Ransom
       
      Exactly... and how much was spent on equipping teachers to change their practices to effectively leverage this new infrastructure?
  • If we know something works
    • Steve Ransom
       
      And what is that "something"? New technology? If so, you missed the boat.
  • it is hard to separate the effect of the laptops from the effect of the teacher training
  • The high-level analyses that sum up these various studies, not surprisingly, give researchers pause about whether big investments in technology make sense.
    • Steve Ransom
       
      Why does the argument for making schools relevant and using current cultural tools need to be backed with performance data? Give politicians and superintendents horses instead of cars and see how long that lasts.
  • Good teachers, he said, can make good use of computers, while bad teachers won’t, and they and their students could wind up becoming distracted by the technology.
    • Steve Ransom
       
      Finally, a valid point.
  • “Test scores are the same, but look at all the other things students are doing: learning to use the Internet to research, learning to organize their work, learning to use professional writing tools, learning to collaborate with others.”
    • Steve Ransom
       
      Exactly. But somehow, "value" has been equated with test scores alone. Do we have a strong body of research on pencil effectiveness or clay effectiveness or chair effectiveness?
  • “It’s not the stuff that counts — it’s what you do with it that matters.”
  • “There is a connection between the physical hand on the paper and the words on the page,” she said. “It’s intimate.”
  • “They’re inundated with 24/7 media, so they expect it,”
    • Steve Ransom
       
      And you expect them to always engage enthusiastically with tools that are no longer relevant in their culture?
  • The 30 students in the classroom held wireless clickers into which they punched their answers. Seconds later, a pie chart appeared on the screen: 23 percent answered “True,” 70 percent “False,” and 6 percent didn’t know.
    • Steve Ransom
       
      Okay... and you follow up with a totally trivial example of the power of technology in learning.
  • term” that can slide past critical analysis.
  • engagement is a “fluffy
    • Steve Ransom
       
      Very true
  • rofessor Cuban at Stanford argues that keeping children engaged requires an environment of constant novelty, which cannot be sustained.
    • Steve Ransom
       
      If that is so, why not back up your claim by linking to the source here. I have a feeling he has been misquoted and taken out of context here.
  • that computers can distract and not instruct.
    • Steve Ransom
       
      Computers don't really "instruct". That's why we have teachers who are supposed to know what they are doing and why they are doing it... and monitoring kids while keeping learning meaningful.
  • guide on the side.
    • Steve Ransom
       
      But many teachers are simply not prepared for how to do this effectively. To ignore this fact is just naive.
  • Professor Cuban at Stanford
    • Steve Ransom
       
      Are they in love with Cuban or something? Perhaps they should actually look at the research... or interview other authorities. Isn't that what reporting is all about? I think this reporter must be a product of too much Google, right?
  • But she loves the fact that her two children, a fourth-grader and first-grader, are learning technology, including PowerPoint
    • Steve Ransom
       
      Again, the fact that any supporter is happy that their kids are learning PowerPoint illustrates the degree of naiveté in their understanding of technology's role in learning.
  • creating an impetus to rethink education entirely
  • Mr. Share bases his buying decisions on two main factors: what his teachers tell him they need, and his experience. For instance, he said he resisted getting the interactive whiteboards sold as Smart Boards until, one day in 2008, he saw a teacher trying to mimic the product with a jury-rigged projector setup.

    “It was an ‘Aha!’ moment,” he said, leading him to buy Smart Boards, made by a company called Smart Technologies.

    • Steve Ransom
       
      Herein lies another huge problem. Mr. Director of Technology seems to base no decisions on what the learning and technology literature have to say... nor does he consult those who would be considered authorities on technology infused learning (emphasis on learning here)
  • This is big business.
    • Steve Ransom
       
      No kidding.
  • “Do we really need technology to learn?” she said. “It’s a very valid time to ask the question, right before this goes on the ballot.”
    • Steve Ransom
       
      Anyone who asks that should volunteer to have their home and work computer confiscated. After all, it's just a distraction, right?
Steve Ransom

Education Week: The Classroom Is Obsolete: It's Time for Something New - 17 views

  • The following is a fairly universal list of education design principles for tomorrow’s schools, though it would be tailored to the needs of particular communities: (1) personalized; (2) safe and secure; (3) inquiry-based; (4) student-directed; (5) collaborative; (6) interdisciplinary; (7) rigorous and hands-on; (8) embodying a culture of excellence and high expectations; (9) environmentally conscious; (10) offering strong connections to the local community and business; (11) globally networked; and (12) setting the stage for lifelong learning.
  • we still think that yesterday’s classroom equals tomorrow’s school.
  • These initiatives would not necessarily get rid of classrooms, but instead redesign and refurbish them to operate as “learning studios” and “learning suites” alongside common areas reclaimed from hallways that vastly expand available space and allow better teaching and learning.
Elizabeth Bowden

17 Signs Your Classroom is Behind the Times - SimpleK12 - 6 views

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    Excellent, might apply more to upper grades than elementary.
Steve Ransom

AESA Keynote - 41 views

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    The type of learning that we all want... Do we all have the will and the courage to make it happen? Listen to Kevin's message and re-imagine what school/learning can be.
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    Just watched the entire Keynote! Have exactly the same start of conference buzz that I'd usually be feeling, without the out of pocket expense! Awesome. I hadn't had the chance to hear him present - love his original use of phrases and stories. You can tell he's a writer... has that gift with words. Some of my favourites - "she had never seen me before - not as a learner" "have you ever seen a kid launch" and "most kids are not braver than blisters. Are there cognitive blisters?" Thanks Steve for sharing - just what I needed before the start of a new week - I'm fired up and ready to go! :-)
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