Pedagogically driven…?

Over the past few  years I’ve frequently heard the comments; “It’s not about the technology, it’s about the pedagogy”, or in relation to the advent of ultrafast broadband; “we’ve got to drive it from the teaching and learning.” These are well intended sentiments, but why is it that the technology still dominates much of the discussion, and so often becomes the starting point by default? And just what do we mean by letting the teaching and learning lead? How would you explain that to someone outside of education – or, for that matter, someone inside? I’ve been thinking about this … Continue reading Pedagogically driven…?

BYOC

An article in this morning’s Herald titled “Hate your work? Then bring your own PC” comes as a timely reminder of one of the big issues schools will face in the coming few years – the provision an support of computer equipment for staff and students. I see this as the convergence of two key drivers: the increasing cost to schools of providing students with access to up-to-date computers, and of maintaining these and the software installed on them; and the increasing personalisation of all things in education, including the choice of where, when and with what students (and teachers) … Continue reading BYOC

When disaster strikes

A number of years ago I had the misfortune to be caught in a heavy rain shower on my way to work. Not only did the water penetrate the raincoat I was wearing, leaving me totally saturated, but it also ‘drowned’ my laptop, leading to problems occurring when I tried to start it up, resulting in the hard drive being completely unusable and nothing able to be retrieved from it. Fortunately I worked in an organisation that allowed me to send daily backups of my laptop across the network to be stored on the server. Within a few hours I … Continue reading When disaster strikes

Clouds and silver linings

Concerns about business continuity are top of mind for many business owners in Christchurch at the moment. With the CBD locked down, and the prospect of gaining entry to access essential files and servers unlikely to happen for possibly weeks yet, the concept of a workplace as being a place bound by four walls and containing all the essential services is being reviewed. In recent years I have been a strong advocate of schools looking to cloud computing as a solution for many of the issues they face in terms of data storage, backup, version control, support etc. etc. Putting … Continue reading Clouds and silver linings

Google and the cloud

Further to my recent post about the 100 ways Google can make you a better educator, Google themselves have published a comprehensive overview of support, tips and tutorials for using the Google apps in education all neatly presented on a LiveBinder. This will be an essential bookmarked site I’d imagine for any teacher who is keen on exploring ways of using these apps with educative purpose. There’s a host of tutorials in the form of video and text, some of which are also graded for beginner, intermediate and advanced. This binder brings together all of the things that you’d otherwise … Continue reading Google and the cloud

100 Ways Google Can Make You a Better Educator

Seems that Google’s suite of tools and applications are being adopted by educators in ever increasing numbers – two reasons spring immediately to mind; they are cloud-based (which means they can be accessed from anywhere, at any time etc.) and they are free! Means that for students wanting to follow up on their work at home cost and access are not an issue. So it’s with interest that I browsed the list of 100 Ways Google Can Make You a Better Educator, compiled by the keepers of the Online Education Database. The list is neatly broken down under headings, classifying … Continue reading 100 Ways Google Can Make You a Better Educator

A “G-Cloud” for England?

News just out here in the UK is of plans to develop project to build a shared cloud infrastructure for all government departments – announced yesterday at the Future of the Data Centre conference happening over here at the moment. According to the release the UK government’s Cabinet Office plans to create a so-called ‘skunk works’ team to develop better ways to manage IT projects.The proposal was revealed in a strategy document published this week, entitled the ‘Structural Reform Plan’’, which proposes a number of IT-related reforms. This will be an interesting development to watch – thanks Malcolm for the … Continue reading A “G-Cloud” for England?

Mighty Meeting

I’m sitting at the airport waiting for my flight to London, and came across this great little app while surfing. Called MightMeeting, it allows you to manage a library of PowerPoint presentations directly from your smartphone or tablet. You can share them via email, blog, Twitter, or Facebook. You can start or join web meetings directly from your laptop, iPhone, iPad, or an Android phone. I’ve managed to create an account and upload a trial presentation. Was very intuitive and user friendly. The process of setting up a meeting is also straight forward – simply select the file you want, … Continue reading Mighty Meeting

Creating a regional school’s network

I had the opportunity today to visit the Warwickshire Education Services in Warwick, and their ICT Development Services team who provide a “one-stop-shop” for  ICT services for schools in the Warwickshire Local Authority. The authority provides services to 249 schools (36 Secondary and 213 primary, nursery and specialist schools) – a total of around 80,000 learners and 15,500 teaching and support staff. I was generously hosted by Chris Page who has worked as Technical Development Manager there for more than 15 years, during which time the authority has seen a lot of development in terms of the ICT systems and … Continue reading Creating a regional school’s network

CORE’s ten trends for 2010

Today I presented CORE’s ten trends for 2010 to an audience of around 400 delegates at the Learning@School conference in Rotorua. The ten trends are a collection of themes and issues that have been identified by CORE staff as trends in education that we imagine will impact on the work of teachers and leaders in early childhood centres, schools, and tertiary institutions in NZ in the coming year. While our focus is on the bigger picture of education, there is a focus on trends associated with the use of ICTs in education, reflecting the fact that we are living in … Continue reading CORE’s ten trends for 2010