Saturday, March 6, 2010

Ready for 1 to 1?

In the geographic area of Iowa there has been a lot of conversation over the past few years about 1 to 1 technology in schools.  Apple has done a nice job of getting their foot in the door and creating opportunities for several school districts to make the move to having a computer in the hands of each student that enters their door.  Now that the PC revolution has followed suit with making notebooks inexpensive enough to be considered, the race is on.  Moving to 1 to 1 status is more than a financial outlay and setting up simple policies for care of the computer and access to the internet both at school and at home, however.  It is about a new way of thinking in the classroom and teaching and learning at an incredible pace.  It is about letting down the guard to some level and yet protecting students.  It is about finding the balance of safety and learning.  It is about being comfortable with something that may be foreign.  It is about students being more familiar and expert at the tools than those charged with leading the learning.  It is about finding a wealth of tools available and at our disposal that weren't there before.  It is about collaboration.  It is about stretch learning.  It is about 21st Century learning.  It is about shared learning.  It is about learning...for all.

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11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Just posted a mind blowing comment on the 1 to 1 technology idea. Unless you are psychic you will never read it. Why tech problems on the blog site. Okay this is a concern with 1 to 1. Now multiply this by 23 students. Stress for students stress for the teacher and a tech person shared between two buildings?

Anonymous said...

Lets do some learning!!! Staff get ready for a challenge. What makes me ready and willing to embrace 1 to 1 technology? A challenge that it won't work and a refusal to even consider it. Nothing makes teachers say yes to an initiative faster then telling them they can't do it and won't be allowed to do it. This is a great strategy for administrators . Let the game and learning begin.

Kastendieck said...

1 to 1 technology is different than mobile technology. I did not realize the difference. Read some interesting stuff at this site.http://www.mcmel.org/MLLS/1to1PR/cows.html
Great questions on this site that deals with the network system needed for 1 to 1 technology.
http://www.techlearning.com/article/5844
So how long does it take to get this initiative up and ready to be successful...well bet it is not less than a year. Is it possible to throw a project at a school system as big as 1 to 1 technology without preplanning and teacher training. The reasonable side of teaching says ...hell no how unprofessional would that be!!! Well looking at initiatives such as guided reading and differentiated learning did two years of staff trainings get everyone on board who weren't already on board? So this 1 to 1 is about technology. If it takes two years to organize and plan we will be three years behind the technology we are trying to embrace and getting further behind expotentially. The students know the tech let them lead us if we can not lead ourselves.

Marshall said...

With your post, Tina, I think you now are understanding why my concern is less about putting the technology in front of students and the $$ that will take as the learning that must occur. My original post included, "Moving to 1 to 1 status is more than a financial outlay and setting up simple policies for care of the computer and access to the internet both at school and at home..." as well as a litany of what it DOES include. Getting the building, the faculty, the students, and processes all in place is more than it probably appears to anyone. The biggest key is getting a firm belief on philosophy and then preparing teachers for a better way of teaching. As any school moves in this direction, it is my hope that these bases are covered and not lost in the excitement of "we're getting laptops" that may exist with those making the decision.

Kastendieck said...

The students will be 'yeah we are getting lap tops!" A few teachers might echo that, maybe a few parents, but I think the more general statement from staff and parents will be WTH the kids all have laptops. I think the philosophy of 1 to 1 is the main component we don't have and perhaps the kids think they have. What philosophy of 1 to 1 do you expound? Exposure to the world through hands on technology? Leveling social and economic educational barriers by supplying hands on technology (I like this one but it is not true). Creating teaching techniques that engage students with technology. Creating space in a down sizing school system by giving laptops to students while pretending to embrace technology. 1 to 1 technology makes Iowa look good and on the edge so any school district superintendent or administrator who also embraces it is helping the students in the state and perhaps the country as well. (say no to that)....

Anonymous said...

I love technology in schools. I work for a college that gives each student a laptop. Great idea and helps enrollment. We have looked at Apple, BUT it is more expensive to maintain and provide tech support. We have all Dell laptops right now and we can get out tech support team certificated to work on the machines (on location) for a minimal price. With Apple, the priced for certification is much, much greater or we'd have to send the laptops to Sioux City to be fixed. There are ups and downs to both ways, but technology in schools is a plus!

Marshall said...

So it seems to work at the college level, just the bang for the buck thing. How about at the HS where I work? The biggest hesitation from teachers is the "what will they (students) do when they have this freedom" factor. For me it is the combination of the "how will we train everyone (adults)" and "how will we (adults) effectively use it" factors. The other parts are no more scary than allowing the use of scissors in the classroom. We still have to supervise how tools are used.

Anonymous said...

Just a note today after running with my lap top through a high school hallway. Hard not to drop it... I think we should have a positive behavior award for those students and perhaps staff who make it through the school year without breaking the lap tops. I also think lap top contests could be part of the curriculum. Contests could be like...How fast you can rush to the outlet to get a plug in since your battery is dead. How many times you have to restart. How many students in a class at one time cannot get on line. Last but not least who wants the lap top next that was just used by the kid who had mono yesterday. Do you also know lap tops can be spun on the floor, desk, and even the head.

Kastendieck said...

President Barack Obama via http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/05/09/obama-ipad-xbox-turn-info_n_569289.html
Read this post... if the president says it is so it must be so. what would Scott say? Interesting take on technology admittingly from a person that does not know how to use it. This is also a person who embraced technology in his election and used it to win. Hypocrasy or the plain truth or the truth as one person sees it.

Kastendieck said...

http://derondurflinger.blogspot.com/2010/06/student-post-it-is-exciting-to-come-to.html

I want to know more about how this school system does this and gets this response from a student. what do you think?

Anonymous said...

I would recommend at least one year of research and staff prep before doing any 1 to 1 initiative. Tech is fast moving and hard to keep up with but what is even harder to keep up with is the down side of tech. Down side such as
-Server overload
-rushed purchases that are incompatible or just bad
-legal issues not checked or even thought out (you can only copy and paste so much before it is not a valid document)
-security issues and blocks that are costly and do not work with every situation
-parents not prepared(what responsiblities they have to their child,yes they do have responsibilities.
-students not prepared (you bet they can use the computer but how and for what is important to go over)
-staff not prepared ( How do you turn it on is not something everyone knows, don't assume, and now that it is here how is it a tool and not a babysitter)
-administration (what is expected and how can top down management be included)
Remember that students have lots of time to work on the computer when you go 1 to 1 and will figure out how to get around any block and I mean ANY. So think of that before you roll out the computers.
We have the responsibility of being educational professionals. This does not mean dragging our feet for 5 years but also does not mean jumping in and letting students and staff try to swim.
Just like driving a car. We would not give the car keys to a 14 year old without training and lots of driving practice, and then we give temporary lisences as to age and use. We still know a student may break the driving rules and even cause harm to themselves and others. That is why we have fines , patrol cars that monitor roads randomly, and parent control (no keys for you).
So take this analogy to the 1 to 1 roll out.
Make it happen but make it happen in a educationally professional way.

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