What Do You Want Students To Do?

One of the rare non-Apple laptops seen in an otherwise cool park full of cool people by Ed Yourdon.Yesterday in our cohort reflecting session at the EARCOS Admin Conference we talked a lot about 1:1 programs. Everyone trying to figure out what works, what doesn’t, where to start, and the questions go on and on.

I do think we can learn from each other as schools continue to strive to use technology at a true learning tool in the classroom. But, I do think we need to remember that especially in the international world….every school is different and every school will have to “Just Do It” at some point.

There are some questions that I think schools can be asking as they move forward. The key, in my opinion is to ask yourself questions that focus on students and student learning.

1. What do we expect students to do?
Don’t start your discussions with PC or Mac start them with what are the ways you see students interacting with the technology. Do you want them creating videos, podcasts, etc? Or are you more concerned with them having access to the Internet and being able to type…..or all of the above.

By taking time as a school to think about what experiences you expect students to have with the technology will lead you to the hardware that is best for your school.

2. What are Teacher expectations?
Have a discussion around how you expect teachers to use the technology in the classroom. Do you expect it to replace textbooks, enhance textbooks, or are you focused on completely new experiences interacting with content in ways that were not possible before every student had a laptop.

Taking time to discuss what as a school you expect from your teachers will help to plan PD sessions and focus on where teachers will be supported.

These are just two questions that I believe will help a school start the discussions around 1:1….but at the end of the day we can discuss, plan, and discuss some more about implementing a 1:1, but at some point you just have to do it!

Thoughts?