MindShare Musings (Oct)–We are on the Cusp of a Digital Revolution!

Game faces!! MindShare Publisher snaps photo of his other passion coaching in a fun hockey tournment recently in Niagara Falls

It is an exciting time to be in education. The pace of change and the innovation now available at our fingertips has the capacity to transform learning like never before. Case in point,
Rodd Lucier, Consultant with the London Catholic School Board shared that his district recently adopted a B.Y.O.D (Bring Your Own Device) policy. Rodd tells me it’s been some two years in the making. I’d love to visit the district to learn more. I presume research will be wrapped around the rollout to gage the impact on student success.

Speaking of devices, the tablet phenomenon reminds me of a phrase that stuck with me courtesy of my high school consumer studies teacher-Caveat Emptor, Latin for “Let the buyer beware”. In speaking with my many education and industry friends, the jury is still out as to whether tablets are truly ready for prime time in education. If content is king, then we have a ways to go. There’s already a massive underutilization of exciting technology in schools. The notion of BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) is definitely gaining traction as noted above. This will require a whole shift in the way school districts and post-secondary institutions operate.

While the jury is still out as to how Microsoft will monetize Skype, I still love the tool and was impressed by this recent challenge– Skype CEO: Our Goal Is to Connect 1 Million Classrooms

Dr. Ron Owston, Director, Institute for Research on Learning Technology, York University and MSL Advisory board member kindly shared his Future Campus website –Rethinking Higher Education in the Age of Technology. It contains some great resources around blended learning.

Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablet vs. the iPad, one tablet does not fit all. Do your homework! Here’s a link drawing a comparison between the two aforementioned devices.

As you know, I’m a BIG fan of twitter. Here’s a recent tweet that gives you a sense of the growth and magnitude of this tool: MindShare Learning
Twitter now has 100 million active users http://reut.rs/njltMx via @Reuters
New report from People for Education. Parents may not be doing what matters most for student success http://ning.it/n7KZ4O via @Anniekidder

Here’s another golden nugget from my twitterverse, courtesy of Chris Kennedy, Superintendent of West Vancouver School District…
Via @chrskennedy tweet of the month and his blog….. http://wp.me/p12KPy-FQ

Dr. Michael Fullan also shared a list of key practices that district leaders need to focus on:

  • Change in district culture
  • Building district leadership
  • Small number of core priorities
  • Focus on assessment – instruction
  • Non-judgmental
  • Transparency of data
  • Principals as instructional leaders
  • Proactive re: provincial agenda

Tell the NY Times EdTech DOES Work-You may have read the article a few weeks ago questioning the value of ICT in education. Kudos to the folks at School CIO mag who started a campaign to prove the NY Times the value of using ICT to engage students.
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Hail to the Victors! The ComputED Gazette is pleased to announce winners of its 16th Annual Education Software Review Awards. The Awards target innovative and content-rich programs and websites that augment the classroom curriculum and improve teacher productivity, providing parents and teachers with the technology to foster educational excellence.
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This just in….
Book publishers in Canada should be breathing a little easier with this recent news — Clear Language on Fair Dealing will make long awaited Copyright Bill more Balanced
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Here’s to a great month of learning and innovation ahead! Until next time, walk the digital talk! Cheers, R.