Sunday, October 23, 2011

Wireless Edtech 2011

Last week, I had the privilege of attending Wireless Edtech2011 in D.C with a colleague.  I had no idea what to expect as we headed to the conference, although I knew I was intrigued by the following:
  1. The diverse group of attendees (leaders in business, education and government) 
  2. The topic (reforming education and breaking through barriers to enable mobile broadband for all learners)
  3.  The cost (it was FREE!)

I am blogging about my experience with the hope that you can benefit from the resources I gathered.

Memorable quotes:
  • "We don’t bank the way we used to bank or shop the way we used to shop, but we teach the way we used to teach." - Kaya Henderson, Chancellor of DC Public Schools
  • "It's not about 'how do I use this technology' but 'what do I build?'" - Kathy Spencer, Onslow County Schools Superintendent (NC)
  • "We don’t want more laptops - we want engaging learning environments for kids."
  • "We have to get past doing more (in the classroom) and start doing things differently.
  • "We used to have to go to school to learn.  We don’t have to do that anymore." - Matt Spathas, Parent and Community Leader, San Diego
  • "What is the purpose of the Dewey Decimal System?" - HS Student
  • "We don’t just need new gadgets, we need new business models."
  • "One thing NCLB has taught us is that what you assess is what gets taught." - Chris Dede, the Timothy E. Wirth Professor in Learning Technologies at Harvard's Graduate School of Education
  • "The learning environment outside of schools is more powerful than the learning environment we currently have in schools." -Tom Carroll, President of the National Commission on Teaching and America's Future
  • "We are moving from an 'I Teach' to a 'We Learn' paradigm." - Elliot Soloway, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor, University of Michigan 
  • "We cannot put a jet engine on a stagecoach and expect good results" - Chris Dede
  • "The need to memorize is a 20th century skill. The need to navigate and trust information is a 21st century skill." - Pearson
  • "Being digitally literate is essential to participate in our economy"- Julius Genachowski, Chairman of the FCC

Valuable Links:

New Learners of the 21st Century - Short, powerful video about today's learners

Speak Up Survey - A national research project that your district can participate in!  Act quickly - this year's survey closes 12/23/11.  This project provides FREE surveys to gather data about 21st century learning from all district stakeholders.  After February, your district can access the results and compare them with the national findings.

Office of Innovation and Improvement - Did you know this existed in the U.S. Dept. of Ed?

Educational Assessment Technology Standards - HALLELUJAH!  Glad to know this is in the works!!

Digital Learning Now - Recently started in 2010, this is a national campaign to advance policies that will create a high quality digital learning environment to better prepare students with the knowledge and skills to succeed in college and careers.  Check out your state's digital learning report card!

State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA) - Forum for inter-state collaboration, cooperation and best practices.  The SETDA Projects tab is informative.

World Bank EduTech Blog - A World Blank blog on ICT use in education.  It's interesting to see how technology is being harnessed in developing countries.    

Friday Institute for Educational Innovation The mission of the Friday Institute is to advance education through innovation in teaching, learning, and leadership.  Click on the "21st Century Teaching and Learning" tab so see all the projects in development.

Maine Learning Technology Initiative - Maine seems to have it all together.  This site is filled with all kinds of educational resources.  I like the MLTI Minute.

CoSN Mobile Learning Initiative - Great resources for planning to integrate mobile devices in your school district.

My biggest takeway from the conference is that my district needs to specify what it wants students to know and be able to do.  Notice how I didn't mention technology.  Once we set student goals, then we can discuss the infrastructure needed to support their achievement.

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