First quarter reflection

Friday marked the end to the first quarter of the school year at ISB. As my first quarter here comes to a close I’ve started to reflect on the experience so far.

There is a reason why international schools make you sign a two year contract. It takes at least a year to get your feet on the ground, to figure out where you belong in the school, and acclimate to the your new host country.

Personally Thailand is feeling more like home daily. Our stuff has arrived from Shanghai and our apartment is feeling more like home every day. We’re slowly figuring out the language, the customs and just how to live. It takes time to adjust. It takes time to find the right milk brand, the fruit you want, the stores with the best prices, etc.

On the school front I’m feeling a little disjointed at the moment. I feel behind the scenes we’re doing some good stuff.

  • We’ve created a school YouTube account and already have 31 videos uploaded.
  • We’ve bought a Flickr account for ES, MS, and HS. The elementary has already uploaded over 1,000 pictures.
  • We’ve launched PantherNet

PantherNet will be our educational portal when it is complete. When complete the image below depicts what will be in place for teachers and students.

ISB e-learning portal by you.

Moodle is already up and running, Elgg and WordPress MU should be in place before 2nd Semester and the wiki by the end of the year at the lastest. By the end of this year the school should have an e-learning portal in place that if it chooses to go 1:1 will be able to support the use of laptops in and out of school.

 
Even though the school has the hardware, human resources, and the e-learning space in place. It is still trying to wrap it’s head around this new learning landscape we now find ourselves in. What does learning look like?

We’ve moved past trying to integrate technology, and looking at what learning looks like in 2008 and beyond.

I think ISB is ready for that transition. We have the systems in place, we have the resources in place now we just need to take that leap and change our teaching methods and our learning outcomes to match the skills and ideas that students will need for their future and not our past.

6 Comments

  1. Totally in awe! You have a good problem on your hand. It is a good place to be. We are all watching to see how it transpires. Thank you for sharing. It gives us hope.

    You have eliminated the excuses and now can tackle the real work. Would love to be a part of it! Kudos and continued success – we are all in need of it.

  2. New word for me today: elgg. Is an elgg like a ning–but non-public? I’ve been having trouble with ning getting through filter, maybe elgg is the solution?

    • Think of Elgg as a Facebook that you host and control. You can make things public, private or for just members. A safe place to teach students about social networks. :)

  3. Thanks for posting this graphic illustrating your webportal at your school. This is exactly what I need to accomplish with my school in preparation for our 1 to 1 implementation next year..

  4. Hey Jeff
    I started teaching tech last year in Shanghai and had no idea what the hell was going on. I’ve seen you speak a couple of times and have started to follow to follow some others in the ed tech world(David Warrlick, Alen November) and now I understand nearly everything that you talk about in this post. I even started my own blog with my own domain name and everything.

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