Friday, 23 March 2007

Connect, Communicate, Create, Collaborate @ Tuanz

Sheryl helps Lynley give birth to a new blog :-)
What a great keynote Sheryl very stirring & passionately delivered. I think all of the teachers in the room today would have been inspired to change the way they teach using technology OR think about early retirement…(which maybe not such a bad thing for our kids ;-) The future is not only just on the horizon, it is here already & the kids that are starting out in our schools now were not even born in the 20th C they are truly 21st C children. The need to change the way we teach is urgent – open up your eyes to the incredible changes and opportunities that are happening now and use them to extend the learning horizons for our children. We have a responsibility to engage them using the technology of our times. We particularly have this responsibility to help close the digital divide for our children who don’t have the same level of access in their homes. These are the children who have the most to gain from the world of opportunities just a click-beat away.

It really struck a nerve with me to hear Sheryl echo what I have said before about the difference between primary & secondary school teachers. Secondary teachers will say they teach English or maths (subjects) and Primary teacher teach students. Without wanting to put down my Secondary colleagues (I know I work in both sectors) I think they face a whole other layer of barriers which we don’t find in our Primary Schools. Our Secondary schools are most fertile ground for change.
Content is not king anymore we have to redefine what it is important to learn. We should focus on the learning process and the skills involved: numeracy, literacy, information literacy, media literacy and I think most importantly social literacy as more and more we are interacting with others in an online global learning community. Our kids need to learn how to be socially responsible global citizens. It was interesting to hear Sheryl’s perspective of Web 1.0, 2.0 & 3.0. 3.0 being the virtual worlds we inhabit that cross over into our real world through our social networks, work & school and now have an economic life that is growing. (for example Second Life) I see this happening already with my own kids, Sophie especially inhabits a number of virtual communities & shes still only 10!
Other pearlers from today was Suzie talking about Generation C – a perfect fit for the 4 C’s Connect, Communicate, Create, Collaborate though I am sure you could add to this list or express it in different ways. A starter for discussion was this video taken on a student cellphone of a Krumping battle at school & uploaded to YouTube.

The discussion never really reached the point I thought it could have gone & seemed to revolve more about behavioural standards & management in schools and not so much the creation of media online and the potential issues surrounding this. Maybe this next clip might have woken them up to this idea. Here we have another Krump battle in a NZ school this time a teacher arrives on the scene probably still ignorant to the fact they are making a cameo appearance in a You Tube video. More food for thought.
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