I recently visited New Zealand schools with a few other teacher educators. I was amazed at how well technology has been integrated into the curriculum. Students are not "learning computers". Technology is an authentic teaching and learning tool. What struck me is the way that common teaching and learning practices have been transitioned into a technological medium. Book talks, book reviews. bulletin boards and oral presentations have been given a new look via 21st century technology. In one school,  I saw a book talk conducted as a video conference between two students in different rooms. Books reviews were carried out in the form of podcasts with blog introductions accompanied by short movies. So the reader/listener's senses are fully engaged. They are reading the introduction, watching the movie as they listen to the podcast and finally have the opportunity to post a comment. It's brillant. Universal design for learning at its best. Every learner can participate.

 

I am certain that these advances are not isolated to New Zealand.  This particular school was in one of the country's poorest areas. So it was not about being in an affluent neighborhood. It was because the school administration and the teachers were innovative. More importantly they are dedicated to improving teaching and learning for their students. Technology is a means to that end.  Please share how your school age students are being engaged with technology in authentic and meaning ways. Also share the process because the end products may seem so complex and advanced that many teachers may continue to see technology integration as out of reach.

 

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Dear Linda
I am Epiphane from Benin in West Africa. I graduated from the University of Abomey-Calavi in my country as an EFL teacher. I am very much interested in ICT-in-EDUCATION. Your testimony is very encouraging as we are wondering what is the actual usefulness of integrating the technologies into education if it fails to acheive educational goals and objectives to the utmost benefits of students.
I am learning about the topic and hope to be able to share my knowledge to my country men and fellow teachers. As you might know it Benin is a French speaking country and French speaking countries seem far way behind in the adoption and use of ICT in education. So, I am trying at my level to take up the challenges by making use of my English language skill to acquire first and then transmit to people around.
So I am very much interested in exchanging knowledge with you practioners of the tool. Would you mind if I add you to my friend list
looking forward to hearing from you

Epiphane ADJADJI
Benin, West Africa
I did come across this.and Nz, UK and so many more countries have started having a 'regulated usage' of cellphones and other mobile devices in classes.

Ref: http://is.gd/4CeEd

You should check out new 21st century Mobile technology products and apps which enable and aid mlearning.

Check out www.mobl21.com, quite a cool idea!
Hello Daniel
I am joning the discussion without invitation. may I should introduce myself first. I am from Benin, West Africa. I'm an EFL teacher and ICT-in Education researcher.

Could you tell me about what virtual Classroom is all about? I'd like to know about this.

Regards
Epiphane
Benin, West Africa
Hi Daniel,

A few thoughts come to mind, but I am not sure if I am correct. Please elaborate to guide my thinking. What are Virtual Classrooms? How are they being used in the elementary classroom?

@ ADJADJI Your input is most welcome. Please view any posting by me as an open invitation for your participation. I was hoping to start an informative discussion.

@ Jeremy Thanks for the link. Cell phones are potentially powerful teaching and learning devices. This site gives you a medium for uploading quizzes, multimedia, and flashcards.It sounds great in theory. I signed up but I will have to spend some time playing with it. Have you used it yet?
I was recommended by my friend, I found it useful and innovative as a learner(Phd candidate) and as Teacher as well( I perform dual roles:).

Some schools have adopted it in Tennessee, I believe.
Good afternoon everyone!

Please let me introduce myself, I am Gary Miller from Denton, Texas, USA. I am a former elementary school principal (10 years) and now the Instruction Technology Coordinator for Elementary here in Denton ISD. It is a new position for our district and our goal is to bridge the instruction/curriculum - technology gap (to make technology an authentic teaching and learning tool -- as stated above, well said, by the way).

I would be greatful to hear your stories.

And, I will share mine as the school year progresses.

Best wishes,
Gary
Hi Gary
I'm Epiphane from Benin, in West Africa. I have just found about the EPICT-The European Pedagogical ICT Licence is a comprehensive, flexible and efficient in-service training course introducing a European quality standard for the continued professional development of teachers in the pedagogical integration of information, media and communication technologies (ICT) in education.
I'm an EFL teacher but very much interested i ICT-in Education. May be those guys can help you in anyway. I look forward to learning from you and keep good contact with you. As a Principal of an elementary school you surely have more to share on using ICT into an elementary school. My objectives is to play a role of raising awareness of how useful the integration of instruction Technologies can improve teaching in schools here in my Country. so, I think you might be a resource person.
I look forward to hearing from you
Epiphane
Benin

Hello Gary!

 

You have quite the undertaking this year!  I work for a company that strives to do exactly what you are doing within your district, bridge the technology gap!  Many of the visual learning tools/educational technology are fantastic, Interactive White Boards, Inspiration/Kidspiration, and the list goes on! A difficult challenge facing educators today is: integrating these tools into instruction effectively.  For all practical purposes, the purchase is new educational technology comes with good intentions, however, new technology tools without supporting educators can lead to these tools reinforcing old methods of teaching, nullifying the intentions for these tools.   If you have a free minute, visit our website, there is some great info!  www.sublimelearning.com

 

Best of luck with your endeavor this year!! 

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