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  1. It’s only the beginning…

    October 12, 2017 by meghastie

    What can learning look like if we take always all the assumptions, if we broke free of the obsession with  high-stakes testing and actually focussed on learning to learn? A question that has driven me for many years, and that has led me through my Masters. I am keen to break free of the neo-rationalist paradigm on “preparing for the world of work” and ask how can I be involved in helping foster kinder, passionate, engaged and more creative young people? How can I be that myself? I have been reminded throughout this course that being a teacher means being a learner, means being open, willing to participate. This is the nature of digital scholarship (Weller 2011). It requires a shift in thinking about learning – it takes time, it needs prioritising, it means being willing to be vulnerable and be seen to make mistakes.

    The Digital Futures Colloquium has reconnected me to education research and the broader community. The colloquia have been an essential time to explore theory located in practice.  Keith Dixon asked my favourite question- what is learning and why don’t we really know? His comments on spending time unpacking this concept as a learning community resonated, as did his provocation regarding misalignment between our practices and beliefs. This complex interplay between beliefs and practices is what I returned to in my final case study, situated in the context of ICT integration in my school.

    I also was challenged by both Hourahaine’s exciting initiative, reconnecting me to the ideas engaged in during INF536, and the groundbreaking work of GELP (2015), Leadbeater (2012 ),  Mitra (2012) and Hannon (et al 2014). Hearing about one school’s journey towards transformation through Madelaine’s discussion of her school in the peer colloquia was both exciting and daunting. I have been continually reminded of the elephant-eating metaphor – one bite at a time.

     

     

    The case study was a  wonderful and frightening opportunity to test it all out and put it into practice. Flexibility and adaptability became the catchcry! My initial case study focus was on the online NAPLAN readiness tests, but was crushed by the reality of context – my careful timetable was destroyed by a combination of the worst flu season to hit, external school events that impacted the calendar and staffing. Fortunately I was able to work one aspect of the study – a preexisitng survey on staff perceptions and behaviours on ICT integration into a longitudinal study, supported by other data sources. This was my initial area of interest, so the “accident of timing played into my hands and I am now left with some great directions ahead for my staff. Ultimately my final research focus has more direct impact and a greater capacity for implementing change than my original.

    I have already begun my “post-study” reading list – all the interesting ideas that I came across not quite related to the current assignment or task, but looking interesting! I’m keen to follow up assessment in the digital world especially the work of ATC21S (Melbourne University’s Assessment and Teaching of 21st Century Skills project) and to foster my Fullan fandom through rereading his works focusing on “deeper learning”  (Fullan 1992, 2011, 2013, Fullan, hill and Crevola 2011, Fullan and Langworthy 2014). I’m keen to learn more about games in education – I didn’t do this elective and everyone’s comments makes me regret it!!

    from New Pedagogies for Deep Learning 2014

     

    What does it mean to be open, connected and participatory, especially once the enforced discipline of the semester is gone? I have loved the challenge of the Gutenberg Parenthesis – ultimately we are social beings, and my challenge is to take the perceptions and beliefs, and to live them. The connection between philosophy and learning grows tighter the more I learn. For me, the big picture of the future has been reawakened, and the moral imperative to connect through learning has been reignited

     

     

    References

    Fullan, Michael (1992) Successful School Improvement: The Implementation Perspective and Beyond, Milton Keynes: Open University Press

    Fullan, Michael (2011) Choosing the wrong drivers for whole system reform, Centre for Strategic Education Seminar Series Paper No. 204, May 2011, accessed http://edsource.org/wp-content/uploads/Fullan-Wrong-Drivers1.pdf

    Fullan, Michael (2013) Stratosphere: Integrating technology, pedagogy and change knowledge, Toronto: Pearson,

    Fullan, Michael, Hill, Peter & Crévola, Carmel (2011) Breakthrough, Moorabbin: Hawker Brownlow Education,

    Fullan, M., & Langworthy, M. (2014). A rich seam: How new pedagogies find deep learning. London, UK: Pearson.

    The Global Education Leaders’ Program Innovation unit (2013) Redesigning education:Shaping learning systems around the globe, Booktrope editions[Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

    Hannon, Valerie, Gillinson Sarah, Shanksm Leonie and Reza (2012) , Learning a Living: Radical Innovation in Education for Work , London: Bloomsbury Academic

    Leadbeater, C. (2012). Innovation in Education: Lessons from Pioneers around the World. WISE.

    Mitra, Sugata (2012) Beyond the Hole in the Wall: Discover the Power of Self-Organized Learning (Kindle Single) (TED Books) Kindle Edition, www.amazon.com.au

    Thomas, Douglas, and Seely Brown, John (2011) A new culture of learning: cultivating the imagination for a world of constant change [Lexington, Ky. : CreateSpace],

    Weller, M. (2011). The digital scholar: How technology is transforming scholarly practice. A&C Black.

    Wenger, E. (2011). Communities of practice: A brief introduction. Retrieved from https://scholarsbank.uoregon.edu/xmlui/handle/1794/11736

     


  2. Jumping on the learning train

    July 23, 2017 by meghastie

    Back on the rollercoaster of the Masters! I’m both excited that this is my final module, and also recognising that I will miss the  intense interaction with ideas, research and people.

    Our first colloquium was led by Bruce Dixon, and provided an opportunity to go back to the very beginning and ask some of the big questions around learning in a digital age.

     

    A crucial note that the discussion opened with was the elephant in the room when we talk about the interaction between technology and education – if we thought digital / technology was going to change education we were mistaken. Despite the utopic vision presented by many experts and academics, the relationship between learning and technology is problematic, often affected by issues around access, equity and training. Despite the billions that have been spent by governments around the world, the impact of technology on learning is patchy, uneven and poorly understood. Despite the fact that in the western world our children’s lives are shaped by technology, we are not really sure of exactly what the impact is, whether it has really changed their brains (or not), and what the long-term effects of it are.

    We just don’t know.

    But we do know that things are different.

    Equally, if we are to engage in a discussion of the impact of technology on learning, we need to go back to an even more fundamental question, what is learning, and what does it look like.

     

    What do we mean by “learning”?

    How do students learn?

     

    It’s a little like jumping on a train, without knowing your destination. 

    This seemingly simple question is one that most schools don’t really engage with, meaning that the way they then engage with technology is consequently poorly thought-through. If we don’t tackle the question of what learning is, then we can’t effectively employ technology to enhance it. Just because we’re using technology,  doesn’t mean the learning is transformational or powerful.

    So the next question should be –

    How can technology enable more powerful learning?

    “Our goal must be to find ways in which children can use technology as a constructive medium to do things that they could not do before; to do things at a level of complexity that was not previously accessible to children” Prof Seymour Paper

    What other skills do students need to flourish?

    One thing that we do seem to be increasingly sure of is that the “soft” skills are the ones that schools should be focussing on, the skills of learning how to learn, to be able to ask questions, and know how to go about finding answers, to do that collaboratively, to be able to communicate. Schools were traditionally set up to teach hard skills, discrete skill sets for the future world of work they were heading into, but many of those skills are now irrelevant, and it is the capacity to be flexible and adaptable that students need to thrive.

    Students need to be given greater ownership of their learning – but let’s also be real and  acknowledge they need to be re-engaged, to care and to be taught how to direct their own learning. We hear in the media that students are increasingly disengaged, particularly boys. Perhaps the reason so many students are not engaged is for that reason – they are powerless, they cannot connect what they are learning at school, with their lives or their future.

     

    Much of this has to do with moving out of the industrial mode of schools that creates a dichotomy between teachers as powerful and students as passive. We need to reshape our thinking to see that everyone in the school is a learner, that it is a community of learners.

    Our current schooling structures in Australia are test and results-driven and are not conducive to such discussions, but I would contend that good learning can occur alongside this system. That the two are not mutually exclusive, but that it takes a deliberate and concerted effort to shift a school’s focus on the learning that lasts beyond the NAPLAN and ATAR reporting.

    Some final questions to think through, to keep coming back to, that I will keep asking not only throughout this final module, but that will shape my professional journey in education are –


  3. Good learning is technology-agnostic

    June 8, 2015 by meghastie

    I said at the beginning of this course that it was like jumping off a cliff and it has been – into a sea of new ideas, new knowledge and new ways of learning.  Coming from an English teaching background, beyond the pedagogical discussions, most of the readings around information and knowledge building were all new to me.

    It’s been intense…

    With the constant rush of new information in this course, I found it refreshing to read Ford’s summation (2008) of a range of educational philosophies and pedagogical frameworks that underpin – although sometimes contradict – our process of learning design.  What was particularly helpful was to reflect on my own philosophy. Like most of us in the post-post-modern world, I would say I’m a happy mishmash of progressive humanist radicalism.  In that I strongly believe in the role of learning to empower and free individuals, groups and societies, and to drive important change. I also equally believe in the power of education to enhance the lives of individuals and to help us grow in our understanding of ourselves and our world around us. I have previoulsy noted that many of these ideas have been around since the time of Dewey – they are not really new; however the digital world has completely changed what that might look like in the classroom.  A significant aspect from this was the discussion around supplementing metacognitive strategies with metacognitive self-regulation through the ideas of versatility and autonomy – students knowing which intervention to apply according to the specific context.

    Having said that, I am challenged by what Siemens and Downes have to say about the role that technology has played in shifting the way we learn, the way we interact with knowledge and the way we communicate – ultimately the way we live.  Certainly if we are middle class and live in a “connected” country. The research around the emerging fields of education informatics and information seeking behaviours was significant (Bawden 2012).  The role that digital media has played in democratising information access, has created an even greater need for students to be carefully taught how to navigate through this world and build deep knowledge.  This again tapped into popular fears around the concept of googlisation and students become more superficial in their researching processes.  Interestingly, JISC (2008) noted that it is not just students- it’s adults as well.  That age is not a determinant factor in how effectively people research. Many of the popular misnomers such as “digital natives” have been eroded during this course, once challenged.  I have certainly come out of the course with a deeper appreciation of the way digital world has changed the way students approach learning, but equally a more nuanced understanding of the complexity of learning across all ages and social groups, and educational paradigms.

    The false dichotomies of education (from Barber et al 2012)

     

    Having said that, a growing body of research such as New pedagogies for deep learning and Connected learning as well as Education 3.0 seek to address these concerns regarding the trend towards superficial and unquestioning adoption of information.  All advocate a coherent pedagogical paradigm that promotes deep learning, and the centrality of collaborative processes, creative and critical thinking, digital literacy or transliteracies as a central tenet of futures-focussed learning.  at the hear of each is a critical understanding of the crucial role of teacher as activator, as defined by Hattie (2008, 2011).

    Possibly my most significant revelation was about the way that digital media opens up a world of social and participatory learning (Conole 2010, Ito et al 2010,).  The capacity to now dynamically rethink assessment is the big challenge facing schools.  The Assessment and Teaching of 21st Century Skills project (ATC21S) has made some  significant inroads into this process, but until systems seriously engage with the sustained effort and cost needed for the transformation into education 3.0, then we are condemned to simply continue to move forward in a piecemeal manner.

    The two areas that I returned to again and again was just that – how do we make the leap forward. Both my first scholarly book review and my final assignment tackled various aspects of the question – the first from a systemic angle, the second focussed on the role of teachers as agents of change.

    Undoubtedly my final response is that innovation is needed on the macro and the micro level simulataneously.  For change to be truly embedded it needs to happen when that teacher is working with the learner on a daily basis, but across a whole system and ultimately globally.  It’s what GELP called the “split-screen” model of innovation – the daily development of schools and lessons alongside the overhaul of the global education frameworks. The text Redesigning education (GELP 2013) also opened up a much more diverse world of how education can be done, through introducing me the work of Leadbeater (2010, 2012) and the various papers produced out the OECD (2011, 2013). The need to step out from under the controlling of the policy makers and to be creative, to seek out new relationships outside the traditional education frameworks to open up creative opportunities for learning.

     

    My next step is to venture further into this area, exploring new ways of engaging with creativity, with being creative to make learning.  I also want to take advantage of my new understanding of the open social and participatory nature of knowledge, that I relaly didn’t grasp during the course.  My own engagement in blogging and sharing on forums etc was somewhat limited because of my own time limitations, and also a misunderstanding of the purpose – a “polished product” approach kept me from getting involved.   Although I am having a semester off as I’m starting a new job (ably assisted in my application by the new knowledge and understandings gained from this course!), I will come back next year with a clearer understanding of how to engage in this open and networked world of learning.

     

     

    I came into this course thinking I was going to walk out with a whole bunch of digital tools to use on the classroom.  Well, I have.  I have tried, especially through my final assignment to take a risk and do something a little different.  But more significantly – and more importantly as those tools come and go – it is the concepts and practices that the course is named after that have reshaped my understanding of what it means to be a teacher, and a leader of teachers.  This course has not romanticised the role and capacity of digital technologies.  There have been plenty of opportunities to question challenge and interrogate their efficacy in education.  I have come away strengthened in the understanding that good teaching is what changes learners’ lives.  Good learning design, challenging activating of students’ powers (Hattie 2008, 2011) is what makes the difference. An engaged, passionate, creative, humble and knowledgable teacher is the heart of the student learning.

     

    I learn. What’s your SuperPower? by venspired, on Flickr
    Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.0 Generic License   by  venspired 

    good learning is technology-agnostic

     

     

    Not a bibliography

    The texts across the course that have informed me…

    Auld, Glenn, Holkner, Bernard, Fernando, Anthony, Henderson, Michael, Romeo, Geoff Russell, Glenn Seah, Wee Tiong Edwards, Suzy (2008) Exemplar schools using innovative learning technologies, Centre for Educational Multimedia (CEMM), http://acce.edu.au/conferences/2008/papers/exemplar-schools-using-innovative-learning-technologies

     

    Barber, Michael Donnelly Katelyn and Rizvi Saad (2012) Oceans of Innovation: The Atlantic, the Pacific, global leadership and the future of education, Institute for Public Policy Research

    Http://www.ippr.org/assets/media/images/media/files/publication/2012/08/oceans-of-innovation_Aug2012_9543.pdf?Noredirect=1

    Cuban, L. (2001). Oversold and underused: Computers in the classroom. Cambridge, MA:

    Harvard University Press.

     

    Cuban, Larry (2013) Inside the black box of classroom practice: Change without reform in American education, Cambridge Massachusetts: Harvard University Press,  [Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

    Davies, A., Fidler, D., & Gorbis. M. (2011). Future work skills 2020. Institute for the Future for the University of Phoenix Research Institute: California

     

    De Freitas, Sara & Conole, Granine (2010) The influence of pervasive and integrative tools on Learners’ experiences and expectations of study in Rethinking learning for a digital age: How learners are shaping their own experiences (eds Sharpe, Rhona, Beetham, Helen and de Freitas Sara), (2010) New York, Taylor& Francis elibrary edition [Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

     

    Dumont, Hanna, Istance, David and Benavides, Francisco (eds.) (2010) The Nature of Learning: Using research to inspire practice, OECD Publications, http://www.oecd.org/edu/ceri/50300814.pdf

     

    Ford, N. (2008). Education. In Web-based learning through educational informatics: Information science meets educational computing (pp. 75-109). Hershey, PA: IGI Global. Retrieved from: http://www.igi-global.com.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/gateway/chapter/full-text-pdf/31399

     

    Ertmer, Peggy A. (2005) Teacher Pedagogical Beliefs: The Final Frontier in Our Quest for Technology Integration? Educational technology research and development, Vol. 53, No. 4, 2005, pp. 25–39

     

    Fullan, Michael (1992) Successful School Improvement: The Implementation Perspective and Beyond, Milton Keynes: Open University Press

    Fullan, Michael (2011) Choosing the wrong drivers for whole system reform, Centre for Strategic Education Seminar Series Paper No. 204, May 2011, accessed http://edsource.org/wp-content/uploads/Fullan-Wrong-Drivers1.pdf

     

    Fullan, Michael (2013a) Stratosphere: Integrating technology, pedagogy and change knowledge, Toronto: Pearson,

     

    Fullan, Michael (2013b) The Principal: Three keys to maximising impact, San Francisco: John Wiley &Sons,

     

    Fullan, Michael, Hill, Peter & Crévola, Carmel (2011) Breakthrough, Moorabbin: Hawker Brownlow Education,

     

    Fullan, Michael (2013a) Stratosphere: Integrating technology, pedagogy and change knowledge, Toronto: Pearson,

     

    Fullan, Michael (2013b) The Principal: Three keys to maximising impact, San Francisco: John Wiley &Sons,

     

    Fullan, Michael & Langworthy, Maria (2013), Towards a New End: New Pedagogies For Deep Learning, Collaborative Impact Seattle, www.newpedagogies.org

    Hall, Gene E. (2013),Evaluating change processes, Journal of Educational dministration, 51, 264 – 289, http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/09578231311311474

    Gerstein, Jackie (2013) Schools are doing Education 1.0; talking about doing Education 2.0; when they should be planning Education 3.0

    From <https://usergeneratededucation.wordpress.com/2013/03/22/schools-are-doing-education-1-0-talking-about-doing-education-2-0-when-they-should-be-planning-education-3-0/>   accessed 17th April 2015

     

    The Global Education Leaders’ Program Innovation unit (2013) Redesigning education:Shaping learning systems around the globe, Booktrope editions[Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

     

    Hannon, Valerie, Gillinson Sarah, Shanksm Leonie and Reza (2012) , Learning a Living: Radical Innovation in Education for Work , London: Bloomsbury Academic

     

     

    Hattie, J. (2008) Visible learning: A Synthesis of Over 800 Meta-Analyses Relating to Achievement London Routledge

    Hattie, J. (2011). Visible learning for teachers: Maximizing impact on learning. London:Routledge.

    Heppell, Stephen,  Chapman Carole, Millwood, Richard, Constable Mark ,Furness, Jonathan, (2004), Building learning futures…a research project at Ultralab, available at http://rubble.heppell.net/cabe/final_report.pdf

    Ito, Mizuko, Gutiérrez, , Livingstone, Sonia, Penuel, Bill, Rhodes, Jean Salen, Katie, Schor, Juliet, Sefton-Green, Julian, Watkins S. Craig,. (2013). Connected Learning: An Agenda for Research and Design. Digital Media and Learning Research Hub, http://clrn.dmlhub.net/publications/connected-learning-an-agenda-for-research-and-design

    Ito, Mizuko, Antin, Judd, Finn, Megan,  Law, Arthur  Manion, Annie, Mitnick, Sarai Schlossberg, David Yardi Sarita (2013) Hanging Out, Messing Around, and Geeking Out: Kids Living and Learning with New Media  John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Series on Digital Media and Learning Cambridge Mass: MIT Press

    Jenkins, Lee, (2013) Permission to forget: And nine other root causes of America’s frustration  with education (10th anniversary edition) Milwaukee: American Society for Quality Press [Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

     

    Jensen, B and Reichl, J (2011) Better Teacher Appraisal and Feedback: Improving Performance, Grattan Institute, Melbourne. http://grattan.edu.au/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/081_report_teacher_appraisal.pdf

     

    Leadbeater, C. (2012). Innovation in Education: Lessons from Pioneers around the World. WISE.

     

    Levy, P., Ford, N., Foster, J., Madden, A., Miller, D., Nunes, M. B., McPherson, M, & Webber, S. (2003). Educational informatics: An emerging research agenda. Journal of Information Science, 29(4), 298-310. Retrievedhttp://jis.sagepub.com.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/content/29/4/298.full.pdf+html

     

    Mourshed, M, Chinezi, C and Barber, M (2010) How the World’s Most Improved School Systems Keep Getting Better,  London: McKinsey and Company

     

     

    National Research Council (2012) Education for Life and Work Developing Transferable Knowledge and Skills in the 21st Century, http://www7.national-academies.org/

    Bota/Education_for_Life_and_Work_report_brief.pdf.

     

    Oblinger Diana G &. Oblinger, James L (Eds) (2005) Educating the Net Generation EDUCAUSE. Available electronically at www.educause.edu/educatingthenetgen/

     

    OECD (2011) Building a High-quality Teaching Profession: Lessons from Around the World, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Paris. http://www.oecd.org/edu/school/programmeforinternationalstudentassessmentpisa/buildingahigh-qualityteachingprofessionlessonsfromaroundtheworld.htm

     

    OECD (2013), Innovative Learning Environments, Educational Research and Innovation, OECD Publishing. http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264203488-en

    Sharpe, Rhona, Beetham, Helen  Benfield, Greg, de Cicco, Eta &  Lessner, Ellen (2009) Learners Experiences of e­learning Synthesis Report: Explaining Learner Differences JISC,

    Http://www.webarchive.org.uk/wayback/archive/20140615122341/http://www.jisc.ac.uk/media/documents/programmes/elearningpedagogy/lxp2finalsynthesis.pdf

     

    Ritchart, Ron, Church, Mark & Morrison, Karin (2011) Making Thinking Visible: How to Promote Engagement, Understanding, and Independence for All Learners, Jossey-Bass Teacher, Chichester

     

    Sharpe, Rhona, Beetham, Helen and de Freitas Sara (eds), (2010) Rethinking learning for a digital age: How learners are shaping their own experiences New York, Taylor& Francis elibrary edition [Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

    Strong-Wilson, Teresa (ed.) (2012) Envisioning New Technologies in Teacher Practice

    Moving Forward, Circling Back using a Teacher Action Research Approach,  Series: New Literacies and Digital Epistemologies – Volume 47 New York

     

    Sheninger, Eric, (2014) Digital Leadership: Changing paradigms for changing times, Thousand Oaks: Corwin Press [Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

     

     

    Siemens, G. (2006). Knowing knowledge. Lulu. com.

     

    Starkey, L. (2011). Evaluating learning in the 21st century: A digital age learning matrixTechnology, Pedagogy and Education, 20(1), 19-39.

     

    Strong-Wilson, Teresa, Pasinato, Manuela, Ryan, Kelly, Thomas, Bob, Mongrain, Nicole, Harju, Maija-Liisa & Doucet, Richard (2007) Line Up Your Ducks! Teachers First!: Teachers and Students Learning With Laptops in a Teacher Action Research Project, Learning Landscapes 1(1), 2007 199-220

     

    Thomas, D., & Brown, J. S. (2011). A new culture of learning: Cultivating the imagination for a world of constant change, Lexington: CreateSpace.

     

    Van Der Ark, Tom & Schneider, Carri (2012) How Digital Learning Contributes to Deeper Learning
    http://gettingsmart.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/Digital-Learning-Deeper-Learning-Full-White-Paper.pdf

     

    Willms, J. D., Friesen, S. & Milton, P. (2009). What did you do in school today? Transforming classrooms through social, academic, and intellectual engagement. (First National Report) Toronto: Canadian Education Association, http://www.cea-ace.ca/sites/default/files/cea-2009-wdydist.pdf

     

    World Economic Forum Global Education Initiative, (2009), Educating the next wave of entrepreneurs: Unlocking entrepreneurial capabilities to meet the global challenges of the 21st Century, Switzerland,

    Wagner, Tony, (2010) The Global Achievement Gap: Why Even Our Best Schools Don’t Teach the New Survival Skills Our Children Need – And What We Can Do About it New York:Basic Books,

     

    Wagner, Tony (2014) Creating Innovators: The Making of Young People Who Will Change the World, New York: Scribner

     

    Zhao, Yong (2013) World Class Learners: Educating creative and entrepreneurial students, Thousand Oaks: Corwin Press [Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

     

     


  4. Teachers as co-learners – helping teachers lead change

    June 8, 2015 by meghastie

    Change won’t occur until the individuals within the organisation implement the new way. For individuals, change is a personal experience, and individuals have different feelings, perceptions and capacities to change to the desired outcome (Hall 2013, Fullan 2013a, OECD 2005, Shin et al 2014, Ertmer & Ottenbreit-Leftwich 2010, Inan & Lowther 2010).. Change always requires individual growth of self-confidence and competence, and consequently within any organisation there are varied responses to the proposed change and the individual’s new role (Hall 2013). Three aspects of change cause concern – how it affects the self, the task and its potential impact.  Central to developing an environment conducive to educational change is the way teachers are professionally developed.  Systems need to draw upon the same techniques being advocated for student learners.  Professional development starts with helping create a sense of agency for teachers, highlighting teacher voice and leading to leadership (UNESCO 2008). However concepts of teacher agency are frequently undertheorised and often misconstrued so that agency and change are conflated and seen synonymously as positive. This agency is not about the lone teacher, but reinforces an ecological construct of teacher agency that includes not only teachers, but also students, administrators, the community and non-human aspects such as infrastructure (Strong-Wilson et al 2013).  It requires a flexible and networked capacity, moving away from the powerpoint lecture style of much traditional teacher professional development.

    implementing change

    From Fullan & Langworthy (2013)

     

    Similarly, creating an environment where teachers learn by doing, and then engage in communal reflective practices around their own learning is vital to strengthening change (Reading & Doyle 2010, Kriejns et al 2013, Kreijns et al 2014, Preistley et al 2012, Strong-Wilson et al 2007, Strong-Wilson et al 2013). Training needs to provide opportunities for teachers to engage deeply with the complex realities of the learning process (Hibbert et al 2008, Lankshear & Snyder 2000). It models the need to build from current knowledge and practices, and allows a search for discrepancies between their beliefs and practices, as well as supporting their pursuit of their own questions in order to generate their pedagogical knowledge.  By fostering collaborative and creative contextual learning, teachers own practice not only reflects the new environments they are seeking to build, but this system has been demonstrated to be much more effective in embedding new pedagogical beliefs and practice.

    change 1

    From Fullan & Langworthy (2013)

     

    Systems and schools need to allow time and practical support that promotes this networked approach that advocates dialogue, shared practice, and evaluation.  Administrators seeking change need to acknowledge that knowledge production is time-consuming and complex work that requires an investment.  This contradicts the quick fix mentality of “lead teacher” approach that locks teachers into hierarchical roles in the process. It assumes teachers only need to be taught how to implement change rather than think, learn and adopt themselves.

     

    REFERENCES

    Auld, Glenn, Holkner, Bernard, Fernando, Anthony, Henderson, Michael, Romeo, Geoff Russell, Glenn Seah, Wee Tiong Edwards, Suzy (2008) Exemplar schools using innovative learning technologies, Centre for Educational Multimedia (CEMM), http://acce.edu.au/conferences/2008/papers/exemplar-schools-using-innovative-learning-technologies

    Ertmer, P. A., & Ottenbreit-Leftwich, A. T. (2010). Teacher technology change: How knowledge, confidence beliefs, and culture intersect. Journal of Research on Technology in Education, 42(3), 255-284.

    Eyal, L. (2012). Digital Assessment Literacy—the Core Role of the Teacher in a Digital Environment. Educational Technology & Society, 15 (2), 37–49.

    Fullan, Michael (2011) Choosing the wrong drivers for whole system reform, Centre for Strategic Education Seminar Series Paper No. 204, May 2011, accessed http://edsource.org/wp-content/uploads/Fullan-Wrong-Drivers1.pdf

    Fullan, Michael (2013a) Stratosphere: Integrating technology, pedagogy and change knowledge, Toronto: Pearson,

    Fullan, Michael (2013b) The Principal: Three keys to maximising impact, San Francisco: John Wiley &Sons,

    Fullan, Michael & Langworthy, Maria (2013), Towards a New End: New Pedagogies For Deep Learning, Collaborative Impact Seattle, www.newpedagogies.org

    Hall, Gene E. (2013),Evaluating change processes, Journal of Educational dministration, 51, 264 – 289, http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/09578231311311474

    Hibbert, Kathryn M, Heydon, Rachel M. & Rich Sharon J.(2008) Beacons of light, rays, or sun catchers? A case study of the positioning of literacy teachers and their knowledge in neoliberal times Teaching and Teacher Education 24  303–315

    Inan, F. A., & Lowther, D. L. (2010). Factors affecting technology integration in K-12 classrooms: A path model. Educational Technology Research and Development, 58(2), 137-154. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11423-009-9132-y

    Kreijns, Karel, Vermeulen, Marjan, Kirschner, Paul A. van Buuren, Hans & Van Acker, Frederik (2013) Adopting the Integrative Model of Behaviour Prediction to explain Teachers’ willingness to use ICT: a perspective for research on teachers’ ICT usage in pedagogical practices, Technology, Pedagogy and Education, 22:1, 55-71, DOI: 10.1080/1475939X.2012.754371

    Kreijns, Karel, Vermeulen, Marjan, Van Acker Frederik & van Buuren Hans (2014) Predicting teachers’ use of digital learning materials: combining self-determination theory and the Integrative model of behaviour prediction, European Journal of Teacher Education, 37:4, 465-478, DOI: 10.1080/02619768.2014.882308

    Lankshear, C., & Snyder, I. (2000). Teachers and Technoliteracy: Managing literacy, technology and learning in schools. Crows Nest, Australia: Allen & Unwin.

    Laurillard, D. (2012). Teaching as a Design Science: Building Pedagogical Patterns for Learning and Technology. New York City: Routledge.

    Matzen, N. J., & Edmunds, J. A. (2007). Technology as a catalyst for change: The role of professional development. Journal of Research on Technology in Education, 39(4), 417-430.

    OECD (2011) Building a High-quality Teaching Profession: Lessons from Around the World, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Paris. http://www.oecd.org/edu/school/programmeforinternationalstudentassessmentpisa/buildingahigh-qualityteachingprofessionlessonsfromaroundtheworld.htm

    Priestley, Mark, Edwards, Richard, Priestley Andrea & Miller Kate (2012) Teacher Agency in Curriculum Making: Agents of Change and Spaces for Manoeuvre, Curriculum Inquiry, 42:2, 191-214

    Reading, Chris & Doyle, Helen (2013) Teacher Educators As Learners: Enabling Learning While Developing Innovative Practice In ICT-Rich Education, Australian Educational Computing 27(3) 109-116

    Shin, Won Sug, Han, Insook & Kim Insuk (2014) Teachers’ Technology Use and the Change of Their Pedagogical Beliefs in Korean Educational Context International Education Studies, 7 (8),11-22

    Strong-Wilson, Teresa, Pasinato, Manuela, Ryan, Kelly, Thomas, Bob, Mongrain, Nicole, Harju, Maija-Liisa & Doucet, Richard (2007) Line Up Your Ducks! Teachers First!: Teachers and Students Learning With Laptops in a Teacher Action Research Project, Learning Landscapes 1(1), 2007 199-220

    Strong-Wilson Teresa & Smith-Gilman Sheryl & Bonneville Penny Albrant (2013) Re-forming Networks Through “Looping”: An Ecological Approach to a Teacher’s Incorporation of New Technologies in Early Childhood, Learning Landscapes 6 (2), 369-384


  5. BLOG TASK #3 – learning how to share online

    May 7, 2015 by meghastie

    This is probably the area that I have struggled most with – mainly because I have been chronically running behind throughout the course.  I’ve felt that by the time I’ve got onto the whole feedback and discussion cycle, either it’s all been said, or there’;s no one listening anymore!

    #firstworldproblems

    My new resolution is to pick up this aspect of my learning, and I’m now getting what it means to be part of an online community – something new for me.  I did learn a LOT hearing other more experienced people both from our course and who have completed the course talking about it.

    So here are my main contributions to other people’s posts (in no particular order)…

     Comment 1

    http://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/fromheretothere/2015/04/25/says-who/comment-page-1/#comment-21

    Same same!!

    My job this year has been to (among a number of other things), to get innovative pedagogy “happening” in my school and help staff make better use of the learning management system we have just utilised.  A few weeks ago, i was feeling a little downhearted, like I hadn’t had much traction, but now I’m starting to question a umber of assumptions in my role.  Yes, learning needs to be more engaging, and we need to be more innovative and willing to develop more “21st century” learning.  However, the other side of the job – to focus on digital technology, I’m now starting to ask a whole lot more questions, and I want to encourage the senior executive and staff too.  As you say – “who says?” tech will make learning better?  I know teaching students to collaborate more, to be critical and creative thinkers will.  teaching them to make their way gainfully through the internet and to be more able to effectively read and critique what they find there.

    But there are no longer any assumptions that doing it digitally will be better.

    Yes there are some wonderful tools out there.  Yes, we can help students engage more creatively and even collaboratively.  But I’m taking it much slower than I did, and interrogating everything.  Teaching and learning innovation is my job title – great learning is my goal – by whatever means, hifi or lofi!

     

     Comment 2

    http://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/informativeflights/2015/04/29/open-social-and-participatory-media-in-education/comment-page-1/#comment-40

     

    I was also sent this article by a fellow teacher friend through Facebook. If there’s one thing I’ve learned during this course and through my own experiences and those of fellow teachers, it’s that the teacher is more important than ever. At the heart of this article is the assumption that because the knowledge can be found online, then the teacher is useless. This is fuelled by the paradigm that a teacher’s job is about content delivery, rather than designing learning experiences.
    If this person has read any of the research they’d see that the role of the teacher and personal relationships are identified as being even more important than before. Yes there’s lots of good stuff on the Internet – mixed in with way too much other stuff. Personal engagement happens through relationships. Our role as content researcher and curator has changed – although it’s not disappeared it’s just changed. Metacognition, literacy (all types) numeracy, extension and support can’t happen outside of an experts knowledge of an individual student. Teaching collaboration, sharing…!
    Fundamental principles behind 21st century learning / Education 3.0 or look at Connected Learning – all rely on personal connections guidance and support.
    All the people serious about the future of schools emphasise the crucial role of teachers – he just can’t stand up and bore kids stupid about Dickens…! I say that as an English teacher!!
    Bit I agree with you in that teachers are not involved in this debate. Having said that, the best researchers such as Fullan, or work coming from bodies such as WISE or Cisco, all see that teacher training in good pedagogy and learning, lies at the heart of any systemic or school transformation

     

     Comment 3

    http://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/lisa/2015/04/21/inf530-scholarly-book-review-invent-to-learn/comment-page-1/#comment-51

    A very thoughtful review – thanks for that. I find makerspaces a very exciting concept, and a number of people at my school are interested in making it happen, but it’s getting the project going that’s always hard – shifting people from interest to commitment!. This book sounds like a great place to start looking at more practical strategies.
    I also appreciated your discussion in your conclusion about the importance of the balance between instruction / guidance and opportunities to create. That’s sometimes the harder thing – to help students be disciplined to move beyond just tinkering and into truly creative spaces

     

     Comment 4

    http://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/rachelthomason/2015/04/30/whats-new-about-a-new-culture-of-learning/comment-page-1/#comment-14

    I would agree with you in that not a lot of these ideas are “new”. Nevertheless, I love their idea that play is about sense-making and responding to the world. Play is valuable, and not some vague experience, but a structured imaginative process, not just a vague floating “waste of time. Teaching students to “play’ I think starts with teaching the teachers how to play – not many of us get to do that any more. not many of us are brave enough to take risks any more. Yet, like so much of teaching, it’s in the modelling and empathy that we give our students a sense of authenticity to what we are expounding.

     


  6. DIGITAL ESSAY PROPOSAL #participatorylearning

    May 7, 2015 by meghastie

    Here are my proposed ideas.

    Yes, I have two at this stage. Some may call it indecisive (eg my husband), others would call it having wide-ranging passions and an endless curiosity (eg me)…

    The readings  I’ve included come from the course outline mainly – my attempt to demonstrate where it’s all coming from in the course.

    Topic 1

    1. I am planning to look at the role of teachers and their professional development in the rapidly changing educational context.  It would focus on discussions around the intersection between pedagogy, digital literacy and digital implementation against a backdrop of the concepts around contemporary youth and futures education.

    Rationale – The reason why I would choose this topic is that a foundational element of changing learning and education is identifying and supporting teachers as the core change agents / sources of innovation in schools and learning. My real passions are pedagogy, how learning happens, educational spaces and innovation  –  I know, that’s a lot!!   The intersection with digital literacy and its implementation is new for me, particularly the focus on moving beyond the latest exciting products, and into the discussion of how technology enables learning, and the evidence for that.  In particular some of the issues surrounding concepts such as “digital natives”, and the youth culture – moving from generalisations to evidence.  I’m aware that I will need to hone this topic down, but I’m wanting to start reading broadly, chasing a few rabbits down holes before narrowing down the field.

    I’m taking one aspect where I have current knowledge and interest – pedagogy and learning – and marrying it with some of the new ideas and research coming directly out of this course. I love exploring the ideas of what education could look like – or should look like –  if we were to respond courageously and authentically to what research is telling us about learning, globalisation and our world.  I’m also keen to explore some of the research-based understandings we now have from neuroscience etc, about teenagers and the research on information-seeking behaviour.

    Where my project becomes riskier for me is that I want the form of the digital essay to mirror the ideas of future learning, even though this is not my area of familiarity.  I loved the way the Kafka essay worked – that was amazing!!

    Key research foundations –

    Work of Michael Fullan and associates,

    Work of Larry Cuban

    Brabazon, T., Dear, Z., Greene, G., & Purdy, A. (2009). Why the Google generation will not speak: The invention of digital natives. Nebula, 6. Retrieved from http://www.iiav.nl/ezines/IAV_607294/IAV_607294_2010_3/BDGP.pdf

    Philip, T. M., & Garcia, A. D. (2013). The Importance of still teaching the iGeneration: New technologies and the centrality of pedagogy. Harvard Educational Review, 83(2), 300–319,400–401. Retrieved fromhttp://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/docview/1399327199?accountid=10344

    K. Williamson, V. Bernath, S. Wright, J. Sullivan, “Research students in the electronic age:

    impacts of changing information behaviour on information literacy needs,” Communications in

    Information Literacy, Volume 1, Issue 2, Fall 2007.

    Bonk, C. J. (2009). The world is open: How web technology is revolutionizing education. John Wiley & Sons.

    S. Bennett, K. Maton and L. Kervin, “The ‘digital natives’ debate: A critical review of the

    evidence,” The British Journal of Educational Technology, Vol. 39, No. 5, pp. 775-786

    Bridget Dalton and Dana Grisham

    “Taking a position on integrating literacy and technology in the curriculum,” Reading Online,

    March 2001,

    http://www.readingonline.org/editorial/edit_index.asp?HREF=/editorial/march2002/index.html

    Sharpe, Rhona; Beetham, Helen; de Freitas, Sara (2010). Rethinking learning for a digital age : How learners are shaping their own experiences. eBook available from CSU Library.

    PEW Internet and American Life, http://www.pewinternet.org/

    32 Media Literacy Audit: Adults, Ofcom, March 2, 2006,

    http://www.ofcom.org.uk/advice/media_literacy/medlitpub/medlitpubrss/medialit_audit/

    medialit_audit.pdf and Media Literacy Audit: Report on Media Literacy amongst

    children, Ofcom, May 2, 2006,

    http://www.ofcom.org.uk/advice/media_literacy/medlitpub/medlitpubrss/children/childre

    n.pdf

    JISC, Information behaviour of the researcher of the future, CIBER briefing paper, (London:

    UCL, 2007),

    http://www.jisc.ac.uk/media/documents/programmes/reppres/gg_final_keynote_11012008.pdf

     

    Topic 2

    My other choice would be to look at creativity in the 21st century learning world, and how to teach / enhance it in the digital context.

    Rationale –  I am equally as interested in this topic.  Again, it’s about how to take such a nebulous concept as creativity, and explore why it is currently so popular, why it should be valued, the educational  / neuroscience research behind it,  and then how that fits in the context of futures learning.  Again, I love exploring the intersection between the concept of creativity and then how that is made authentic throughout the whole learning experience.  The question of how (or even whether you can teach it / enhance it – what’s the evidence for it) to teach creativity  and then how you assess creativity in education 3.0.

    Key research

    The works of Ken Robinson

    Thomas, D., & Brown, J. S. (2011). A new culture of learning: Cultivating the imagination for a world of constant change (Vol. 219). Lexington, KY: CreateSpace.

    Sefton-Green, J. (2015). How might creative youth cultures understand the nature of ‘creativity’? [Web log post]DML Central

    Shaheen, R. (2010). Creativity and education. Online Submission, 1(3), 166-169. Retrieved fromhttp://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED521875.pdf

    Floridi, L. (2012). The fourth revolution. The Philosophers’ Magazine, (57), 96-101.

    Heick, T. (2013). 30 incredible ways technology will change education by 2028. [Weblog post] Retrieved fromhttp://www.teachthought.com/trends/30-incredible-ways-technology-will-change-education-by-2028/

    Philip, T. M., & Garcia, A. D. (2013). The importance of still teaching the iGeneration: New technologies and the centrality of pedagogy. Harvard Educational Review, 83(2), 300–319,400–401.

    Sharpe, Rhona; Beetham, Helen; de Freitas, Sara (2010). Rethinking learning for a digital age : How learners are shaping their own experiences. eBook available from CSU Library.

    Craft, A. (2003). The limits to creativity in education: Dilemmas for the educator. British Journal of Educational Studies, 51(2), 113-127. Retrieved fromhttp://web.nsboro.k12.ma.us/algonquin/faculty/socialstudiesteachers/smith/documents/thelimitsofcreativityineducationarticle.pdf

    Craft, A. (2005). Creativity in schools: Tensions and dilemmas. London: Routledge.

    Creative Commons and Culture: https://creativecommons.org/culture

    Davies, D., Jindal-Snape, D., Collier, C., Digby, R., Hay, P., & Howe, A. (2013). Creative learning environments in education—A systematic literature review. Thinking Skills and Creativity, 8, 80-91.

    Langer, J. (2012). The interplay of creative and critical thinking in instruction. In Dai, D. Y. (Ed.). (2012). Design research on learning and thinking in educational settings: Enhancing intellectual growth and functioning. Routledge.

    Lassig, C. J. (2013). Approaches to creativity: How adolescents engage in the creative process. Thinking Skills and Creativity, (10)3-12. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tsc.2013.05.002

    Ravenscroft, A., Wegerif, R., & Hartley, R. (2007). Reclaiming thinking: dialectic, dialogic and learning in the digital age. BJEP Monograph Series II, Number 5-Learning through Digital Technologies, 1(1), 39-57.

    Ravenscroft, A. (2011). Dialogue and connectivism: A new approach to understanding and promoting dialogue-rich networked learning. International Review of Research in Open & Distance Learning, 12(3). Retrieved fromhttp://www.irrodl.org/index.php/irrodl/article/view/934/1676

    Bonk, C. J. (2009). The world is open: How web technology is revolutionizing education. John Wiley & Sons.

     

    Proposed platform

    This is NOT my area of expertise.  I am deciding between just using my course blog space (thinkspace), and trying one of the examples we’ve seen – storify, trackk or blendspace.  I still need to investigate this. Part of the process for me will actually be experimenting with the HOW – big learning curve.  If I took the creativity option, I again, would like my form / mode to reflect the creativity aspect.  This would be a much more risky option, as I would be playing with form much more – both in the essay format as well as the digital mode.

     

    I know!!

    I am aware that they are big topics at the moment, and part of my researching would be to refine them down.  As bits “drop off”, I’d probably pop them in other blogposts, either to be used as part of the broader discussion, or just for my own sake.

    I’ve found since being online with the “old dogs” the other night and also hearing some of my more experienced cohort chat about the blogging process / online community and world, I’m having a considerable shift in terms of my own understanding regarding the whole shebang.

    FEEL FREE TO MAKE COMMENTS AND SUGGESTIONS ON YOUR PREFERRED TOPIC – I’M ALL EARS!!

     #participatorylearning

     


  7. Redesigning education – Education 3.0 – Scholarly book review

    May 3, 2015 by meghastie

    I loved the book review process – the actual reviewing of the book. Writing it all up was less pleasurable and like many of us I thought I wouldn’t make it.  This side of submission, the pain was worth it.  I particularly enjoyed the whole concept of rethinking learning, rethinking and challenging current systems and ways we teach by enfolding current alternates and new ideas.

    The big new adventure for me was to work with ebooks.  I’ve never had any before, but they made purchasing the texts so cheap and quick! I know, I know, there’s lots of issues around kindle etc.  I don’t think I’d like to read novels in electronic form.  But for the sheer ease and transportability, it was wonderful.

    So here ’tis…

    The Global Education Leaders’ Program Innovation unit (2013) Redesigning education: Shaping learning systems around the globe, Booktrope editions[Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

    Schools are doing Education 1.0; talking about doing Education 2.0; when they should be planning Education 3.0

    (Gerstein 2013) 

     

    The Global Education Leaders Program’s (GELP) publication Redesigning education: Shaping learning systems around the world is a bold attempt to direct discussions on how we not only lead reform in education, but bring about systemic, global transformation. GELP is a social enterprise comprised of key education system leaders, policy-makers and consultants collaborating to reinvent education at local, national and international levels (GELP 2015). Their concerns reflect that of international bodies such as the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the World Innovation Summit for Education (WISE), and World Economic Forum (WEF). All see education as the fundamental transformative power in the global community, especially for emerging economies. GELP’s publication primarily targets system and school leaders, policy makers, education experts and advocates as it tackles 21st century learning – or “Education 3.0”.  The book addresses the challenges raised by the seismic shifts in society – globalisation, demographic shift and the technological revolution (Davies, Fidler & Gorbis 2011, We are Social, 2015).  But despite widespread interest, education innovation has been unevenly distributed, and whole-scale educational reform has never been successful (eg Fullan 2011, Cuban 2013 & 2015, Heppell 2012, Siemens 2004). GELP claims that schooling systems are notoriously conservative, but counters this by exploding myths surrounding reform implementation, and proposes models, principles and practices to overcome these barriers.  Firstly, building vision for change, and mobilising capacity through training, and creating “nested communities” for collaboration within and across learning communities to scale up the restructuring. Finally, it emphasises engaging with the community to create a social movement that pressures relevant authorising bodies. But no matter how idealistic the aims of the book, it claims to be “rooted in practice” (GELP Intro).

    The key ideas and challenges explored through the text are

    1. The need to engage new players to challenge and enliven traditional education
    2. Using design principles to actualise powerful 21st century learning and better learning experiences
    3. Scaling and diffusing innovation within and through systems
    4. Transforming systems and creating transformational leadership (GELP 2013)

     

    This book sits at the nexus of two sub-genres of education publications regarding the future of learning.  Firstly, whilst GELP draws on their findings, it sets itself apart from “school improvement” models such as Fullan’s early works (eg 1992),  pedagogically-driven works (eg Hattie 2008; McTighe & Wiggins 2005; Claxton 2008; Thomas & Brown 2011 ), and approaches such as Harvard’s Project Zero (Ritchart, Church & Morrison 2011).  The changes these groups propose are largely pedagogical and endogenous – transformation within the current system and structures to improve learning and better equip students. GELP looks beyond what happens in classrooms, to transform education globally– and this concept is the dominant paradigm of the text. To succeed where previous reforms have failed, GELP probes much more widely than the educational field, drawing on innovation in a range of arenas and industries.  In particular, it appropriates Christensen’s disruptive innovation theory (1997, 2011), whereby it’s the outliers, those who draw in previous non-consumers, who can reinvigorate by exploiting new markets and approaches.  Redesigning education is ambitious, as it aims to not only change schools in affluent societies, but be employed by schooling systems in developing countries.

    The other style of educational work influencing the text focusses more broadly on exogenous change. The work of educators such as Heppell (2007, 2012) Leadbeater (2012), Wagner (2008, 2012) Zhao (2013) and Fullan’s more recent work (eg 2011, 2013a, 2013b), as well as futures-focussed studies by the OECD (eg 2010, 2012), WISE (Dumont et.at 2010, Brown-Martin 2015) and WEF (2009). These are more comprehensive attempts to use innovation and design principles to reinvent the structures of schooling, including the environments and the relationships between those offering learning experiences, governments and learners within their community. GELP’s work is risky here – they look to transform education globally by developing not only tools, but creating networks and communities that reach across economic and cultural barriers. But, as they acknowledge, this area is weak in terms of research basis for holistic planning and prior examples of success (chap.3). To support their case, they reference schools working in partnership with GELP, and use this anecdotal evidence to provide some confirmation for their model.

    Structurally, the book moves from a comprehensive overview of the issues, by setting out principles that both underpin 21st century learning, and follow this by outlining their 16-element “Roadmap” for transformation.  The Roadmap, however, is less prescriptive than it sounds. Although it advocates that the various elements must be all employed, it clearly states that the order and process should be contextually responsive (chap 5), and the examples of schools and systems support this.  It would have been helpful for readers to have been directed more explicitly to the project’s website (GELP 2015), which includes extra resources and research updates that further amplifies the versatility of the system.  Whilst in the eBook version the footnotes were hyperlinked, and there were some url’s included in the chapter endnotes, it could have been more seamlessly embedded.  If part of GELP’s goal is to apply Web 3.0 principles, then employing a more flexible book design would have endorsed their repudiation of entrenched 20th century structures.  A more coherent example of this is Wagner’s new eBook version of Creating innovators (2012) – it utilises embedded QR tags and url’s into the body of the text.

    The text explores the realities of how and why systemic change is problematic and complex. It reinforces the complicated relationships involved, by drawing on Moore’s work (1995) on the triangular interplay between the authorising environment, the value propositions of the change and the operational capacity to enact it (chap.7).  It repeatedly reinforces that innovation agendas are consequently fraught. GELP’s Roadmap has the potential to work because it supports plurality in innovation, and values contextual responsiveness. Firstly, 10 elements are generic to any system change – as noted, GELP has turned to a range of other industries and organisations such as health and business; secondly three elements are specifically educational– curriculum, pedagogy and assessment; finally, three innovative aspects – the non-linear process of designing and iterating that again, are not education-specific.  This is reinforced by GELP’s unique “split-screen” approach to managing transformation – bridging the gap between present realities coinciding with redesigning the future system.  They recognise the importance of having this dual approach to both keep the current system meeting needs of students, whilst at the same time working towards the new. GELP claims both evolution and revolution are needed (GELP chap.3); few books deal adequately with this tension.

     

    Reimagining the role of government is a core aspect of GELP’s future world of education. Instead of driving and mandating educational reforms, they should become the platform that provides opportunities, structures and frameworks for a growing group of organisations to build their schools and systems upon.  As Fullan (2011) and others have noted (eg Cuban 2015, Jenkins 2013), too frequently governments and systems choose the wrong drivers for change – using accountability and standardised assessment or technology roll-outs.  But these methods tend to push teachers and schools towards superficial compliance, rather than embedding new practices and coaching towards enduring transformation (Mourshed et al 2010, Fullan & Crevola 2013, Tyre 2015).  In GELP’s view governments will no longer be the primary provider. Their role is to attract new groups to take part in building systems – primarily philanthropists, for-profit organisations and entrepreneurs – to break through conventional difficulties encountered.  This directly challenges traditional approaches to education that focus on the primacy of public education, and these arguments are carefully countered.  The research work of Leadbeater (2012, also Leadbeater & Wong 2010) and Heppell (2004, 2012) are crucial, highlighting how the “extremes” can shape future constructs of education. Similarly, by exploring some of the current “alternate schooling” systems within western democracies, and how they are succeeding with disenfranchised learners, GELP presents mechanisms to make learning more engaging for all learners.  GELP’s Education 3.0 seeks to enfold their techniques, as well as endorsing them, as this is central to devolving monolithic schooling structures. Furthermore, endorsing emerging models around blended and connected learning (Siemens, 2004, Ito et al 2013), and utilising the power of technology facilitates the dismantling of the “four walls” concept of learning (Heppell 2007) to create a more responsive education paradigm.

     

    The text engages with a broader societal debate – whilst technology has the capacity to accelerate transformation, it is seen as a central aspect of infrastructure to enable learning, rather than an end in itself (Horn 2013, Tyre 2015, Cuban 2015, Candler 2015).   Technology-fuelled education can be more accessible, more equitable and more accelerated, but Education 3.0 is about a broader set of student skills such as creative thinking, problem-solving, metacognition, and collaboration that can be placed at the heart of school transformation in developed and emerging countries alike, utilising principles such as personalised learning and real-world applicability.  Making learning personal – having deep relationship between teachers and students is a core component of their learning principles.   GELP are certainly not the first to explore the contested role of technology in leveraging change (eg Cuban 2001, 2015, Sheninger 2014, Collins & Halverston 2009, Ertmer 2005, Horn 2013), however, they do denote, like many others (We are social 2015, that it has a ubiquitous role in changing the nature of our society.

     

    The text finishes by highlighting the primacy of people as change agents.  Firstly, the leaders and the values that should shape them. Current leadership ideals have been too individualistic, and that for systemic transformation there needs to be a systemic approach to developing leaders (Fullan 2013b, Hopkins 2007). GELP’s expectations of leaders’ skill-set is daunting, but is contextualised by the incipient power of collaboration for leverage.  Finally, at the core are the teachers – significant emphasis is placed on targeted training, motivation and involvement. This again, matches broader discussion around change management in education – without comprehensive retraining of teachers, significant changes will not be widespread or lasting (OECD 2011, Jensen & Reichl 2011)

    The book is brutal at times in its honesty, to the point where the average teacher may feel overwhelmed.  In the hands of leaders and those truly seeking new directions ahead, this rectitude is helpful.  The complexity of the Roadmap system similarly, is somewhat daunting.  In its scrupulous approach, it highlights both the time transformation will take, as well as it labyrinthine nature.  Certainly, other contemporary texts such offer much more simplistic processes (eg Lengel 2013, Collins & Halverston 2009).  Perhaps their vision is not quite so grand.  And herein lies the real strength of this book – its dream to transform educational systems globally, but by working contextually. Whilst the methodologies are sound, as they have been tested in other industries, the GELP team acknowledge they are unable to “prove” that they will be successful in education, simply that this is the best chance.  To that end, there is no “conclusion”; just a promise that GELP will continue to pursue an “exciting learning future for the next generation” (GELP chap.7)

     

    The book has a grand vision to transform education.  It proposes a series of principles and models based on a broad body of research, including that of partner schools and systems in their endeavour.  Its grasp of the imperative to transform education to more effectively engage learners and communities in Education 3.0, is impressive.  However, its honesty and the ambiguity inherent in its process is also what might ultimately dishearten the average teacher or leader.  If nothing else, it makes leaders realise that collaboration, one of the central underpinnings of 21st century learning, is essential for education systems and schools as well as our students. It is this focus on people – the leaders, the teacher and communities of learners – that validates its thesis.  As Fullan has said, without carefully managing the change by inspiring and equipping the key people who must implement it, it is all pointless.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

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    Reference list

    Brown-Martin Graham (2015) Learning Reimagined, London:  Bloomsbury Academic Press,

    Candler, Matt (April 7 2015) Three Ways to Improve Technology-Assisted Learning: Innovation in education requires cheap iteration, great listening skills, and “exaptation.” <https://medium.com/bright/three-ways-to-improve-technology-assisted-learning-a5b451f6bef4>

    Christensen, Clayton M. (1997), The innovators dilemma: when new technologies cause great firms to fail,  Boston: Harvard Business School Press

    Christensen, Clayton M. (2011), Disrupting class: How disruptive ionnovation will change the way the world learns, New York, McGraw-Hill [Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

    Claxton, G. (2008). What’s the point of school? Oxford: Oneworld

    Collins, Allan & Halverston Richard (2009) Rethinking education in the age of technology: The digital revolution and schooling in America, New York, Teachers College Press

    Cuban, L. (2001). Oversold and underused: Computers in the classroom. Cambridge, MA:

    Harvard University Press.

    Cuban, Larry (2013) Inside the black box of classroom practice: Change without reform in American education, Cambridge Massachusetts: Harvard University Press,  [Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

    Cuban, Larry (April 18 2015) iPads and Teachers: A Response (Matt Candler) https://larrycuban.wordpress.com/

    Davies, A., Fidler, D., & Gorbis. M. (2011). Future work skills 2020. Institute for the Future for the University of Phoenix Research Institute: California

    Dumont, Hanna, Istance, David and Benavides, Francisco (eds.) (2010) The Nature of Learning: Using research to inspire practice, OECD Publications, http://www.oecd.org/edu/ceri/50300814.pdf

    Ertmer, Peggy A. (2005) Teacher Pedagogical Beliefs: The Final Frontier in Our Quest for Technology Integration? Educational technology research and development, Vol. 53, No. 4, 2005, pp. 25–39

    Fullan, Michael (1992) Successful School Improvement: The Implementation Perspective and Beyond, Milton Keynes: Open University Press

    Fullan, Michael (2011) Choosing the wrong drivers for whole system reform, Centre for Strategic Education Seminar Series Paper No. 204, May 2011, accessed http://edsource.org/wp-content/uploads/Fullan-Wrong-Drivers1.pdf

    Fullan, Michael (2013a) Stratosphere: Integrating technology, pedagogy and change knowledge, Toronto: Pearson,

    Fullan, Michael (2013b) The Principal: Three keys to maximising impact, San Francisco: John Wiley &Sons,

    Fullan, Michael, Hill, Peter & Crévola, Carmel (2011) Breakthrough, Moorabbin: Hawker Brownlow Education,

    Gerstein, Jackie (2013) Schools are doing Education 1.0; talking about doing Education 2.0; when they should be planning Education 3.0

    From <https://usergeneratededucation.wordpress.com/2013/03/22/schools-are-doing-education-1-0-talking-about-doing-education-2-0-when-they-should-be-planning-education-3-0/>   accessed 17th April 2015

    The Global Education Leaders’ Program Innovation unit (2013) Redesigning education:Shaping learning systems around the globe, Booktrope editions[Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

    Hannon, Valerie, Gillinson Sarah, Shanksm Leonie and Reza (2012) , Learning a Living: Radical Innovation in Education for Work , London: Bloomsbury Academic

    Hargreaves, Andy and Fullan  Michael (2012) Professional Capital, Teacher’s College Press

    Harris, Amy (2005) School Effectiveness and School Improvement: Alternate Perspectives, London: Continuum International Publishing

    Hattie, J. (2008) Visible learning: A Synthesis of Over 800 Meta-Analyses Relating to Achievement London Routledge

    Heppell, Stephen,  Chapman Carole, Millwood, Richard, Constable Mark ,Furness, Jonathan, (2004), Building learning futures…a research project at Ultralab, available at http://rubble.heppell.net/cabe/final_report.pdf

    Heppell, S. (2007). Assessment and new technology: new straightjackets or new opportunities?  Professor Heppell’s weblog. Retrieved from http://www.heppell.netweblog/stephen/

    Hopkins, David (2007) Every School a Great School: Realizing the Potential of System Leadership London: McGraw-Hill Education

    Horn, Michael B. (2013) As Digital Learning Draws New Users, Transformation Will Occur, Education Next Vol 13:1, http://educationnext.org/as-digital-learning-draws-new-users-transformation-will-occur/#.VS24EmzQqFs.mailto accessed 14th April 2015

    Ito, Mizuko, Gutiérrez, , Livingstone, Sonia, Penuel, Bill, Rhodes, Jean Salen, Katie, Schor, Juliet, Sefton-Green, Julian, Watkins S. Craig,. (2013). Connected Learning: An Agenda for Research and Design. Digital Media and Learning Research Hub, http://clrn.dmlhub.net/publications/connected-learning-an-agenda-for-research-and-design Accessed September 1st 2014

    Jenkins, Lee, (2013) Permission to forget: And nine other root causes of America’s frustration  with education (10th anniversary edition) Milwaukee: American Society for Quality Press [Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

    Jensen, B and Reichl, J (2011) Better Teacher Appraisal and Feedback: Improving Performance, Grattan Institute, Melbourne. http://grattan.edu.au/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/081_report_teacher_appraisal.pdf

    Leadbeater, C. (2010, April). Education Innovation in the slums, TED.com. Retrieved from:http://www.ted.com/talks/charles_leadbeater_on_education

    Leadbeater, C. (2012). Innovation in Education: Lessons from Pioneers around the World. WISE.

    Leadbeater, C. & Wong, A. (2010). Learning from the Extremes. Cisco. Retrieved from:http://www.cisco.com/web/about/citizenship/socio-economic/docs/LearningfromExtremes_WhitePaper.pdf

    Lengel, James G. (2013) Education 3.0: Seven steps to better schools, New York: Teachers College Press [Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

    Malone, Helen Janc  (Ed.) (2013) Leading Educational Change: Global Issues, Challenges, and Lessons on Whole-System Reform, New York, Teachers’ College Press

    McTighe, Jay & Wiggins, Grant P., (2005) Understanding by Design (2nd Ed.), Upper Saddle River: Pearson Education

    Mourshed, M, Chinezi, C and Barber, M (2010) How the World’s Most Improved School Systems Keep Getting Better,  London: McKinsey and Company

    OECD (2011) Building a High-quality Teaching Profession: Lessons from Around the World,

    Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Paris. http://www.oecd.org/edu/school/programmeforinternationalstudentassessmentpisa/buildingahigh-qualityteachingprofessionlessonsfromaroundtheworld.htm

    OECD (2013), Innovative Learning Environments, Educational Research and Innovation, OECD Publishing. http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264203488-en

    Ritchart, Ron, Church, Mark & Morrison, Karin (2011) Making Thinking Visible: How to Promote Engagement, Understanding, and Independence for All Learners, Jossey-Bass Teacher, Chichester

    Sheninger, Eric, (2014) Digital Leadership: Changing paradigms for changing times, Thousand Oaks: Corwin Press [Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

    Thomas, D., & Brown, J. S. (2011). A new culture of learning: Cultivating the imagination for a world of constant change, Lexington: CreateSpace.

    We are Social, (2015), Digital, Social and Mobile in 2015

    http://www.slideshare.net/sagacious/we-are-social-digital-social-mobile-in-2015

    World Economic Forum Global Education Initiative, (2009), Educating the next wave of entrepreneurs: Unlocking entrepreneurial capabilities to meet the global challenges of the 21st Century, Switzerland,

    Siemens, G. (2006). Knowing knowledge. Lulu. com.

    Siemens, G. (2008). Learning and knowing in networks: Changing roles for educators and designers.

    Tyre, Peg (April 6 2015) Ipads and Teachers: Why technology-assisted learning will never, on its own, solve our education crisis.https://medium.com/bright/ipads-teachers-e51896af3930

    Wagner, Tony, (2010) The Global Achievement Gap: Why Even Our Best Schools Don’t Teach the New Survival Skills Our Children Need – And What We Can Do About it New York:Basic Books,

    Wagner, Tony (2014) Creating Innovators: The Making of Young People Who Will Change the World, New York: Scribner

    Zhao, Yong (2013) World Class Learners: Educating creative and entrepreneurial students, Thousand Oaks: Corwin Press [Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au


  8. Dewey’s digital age? Blog task 2

    April 29, 2015 by meghastie

    The dream of wellbeing, dreamt until now by a few, is not sustainable for all. We have to change. We have to learn to live better, consuming fewer environmental resources and regenerating the contexts of life. (Manzini, 2009)

     

    Questions around the skills students need to survive, thrive and flourish in society is one that has been under increasing discussion.  Whether called “literacies” “skills” or “fluencies” (Crockett et al 2011), educators, governments, and business alike, identify the necessity of shifting our understanding of how and what we learn.   Whilst some of our core values—inquiry, creativity,  critical thinking, research, collaboration, presentation, and reflection—are not specifically digital values, our context and the rapid rate of technological advance has caused there to be a disconnect with more traditional modes of learning and skillsets, as the graphic below suggests.

     

    From John Seely Brown (2006) New Learning Environments for the 21st Century: Exploring the Edge, Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning, 38:5, 18-24, DOI: 10.3200/CHNG.38.5.18-24

    From John Seely Brown (2006) New Learning Environments for the 21st Century: Exploring the Edge, Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning, 38:5, 18-24, DOI: 10.3200/CHNG.38.5.18-24

    What does it means to learn in the 21st century?

    Terms such as digital literacy, 21st century learning skills, connected learning and Education 3.0 are amongst the terms used to try and encapsulate how and what schools and learning should look like, and the types of skills we want students to walk out into the world with.  What are the “survival skills” as Wagner (2008) coins it, or to frame it more positively the skills student need to thrive?  The new ways of learning and teaching, the “new pedagogies” as Fullan and Langworthy call them (2014) are more than teaching strategies:

     “They are powerful models of teaching and learning, enabled and accelerated by increasingly pervasive digital tools and resources, taking hold within learning environments that measure and support deep learning at all levels of the education system.”

     

    What skills?

    As indicated, there has been a significant shift from teacher and schools as repositories of knowledge, to facilitators of skills and attitudes.  But what skills do students need?  Again, there has been a significant transition from fairly linear approaches to information literacy and Bloom’s taxonomy  to a more fluid and complex concept of around 21st century skills, digital literacy, connected learning and  Education 3.0 is emerging.

    Not only are we surrounded by advocates for digital literacy, embracing new technologies and the ubiquitous nature of the internet and connectedness, but we are once again thrown back into a discussion around values.  Whilst information and early models of digital literacy had a strong focus on technical skills (Bawden 2008), a parallel paradigm has run from Gilster (1997 quoted in Bawden 2008) through to the likes of Eshet-Alkalaia (2004), Meyers, Erickson & Small (2009),  Eschet (2012)  and Ng (2012).  Their works all highlight not only the technical aspects, but also the affective, socio-emotional and ethical aspects of digital literacy. These are skills that are beyond a value-free view of the world and promote a heightened engagement with issues such as equity, access, transparency, honesty, collaboration and sharing.

     

    Values-driven learning

    One of the most interesting aspects of the research around the new ways of envisioning learning through Education 3.0 is that personalised learning centred on the relationship between the mentor / teacher and the learner, is pivotal.  On the discussions around connected learning is the vitality of collaboration and the capacity to work in groups – whether physically or virtually present.  Similarly, the prioritising of ethical and moral aspects of digital literacy learning may seem surprising to any who went through teacher’s colleges in the mid-late 20th century, where neo-Marxist attitudes around faith, spiritualty and ethics were derided as outmoded thought structures of the Eurocentric patriarchal hegemony.

     “Deep learning’, in the way we will describe it, develops the learning, creating and ‘doing’ dispositions that young people need to thrive now and in their futures. Premised on the unique powers of human inquiry, creativity, and purpose, new pedagogies are unleashing students and teachers’ energy and excitement in new learning partnerships that find, activate and cultivate the deep learning potential in all of us.”  (Langworthy & Fullan 2014)

    After several decades where such values have been dismissed in the great experiments of free education, they are suddenly front and centre of education debate.  It has become increasingly clear that without values, without some sense of citizenship, of having a responsibility to broader community.  As Tett (2009) noted the dominant capitalist values of consumption (as an end in itself) and greed drove the Global Financial Crisis.  Those who created this situation – the now disgraced business and financial leaders – are successful products of our schooling systems, not its failures.   Over a decade earlier, Postman (1995) suggested that the current educational system had failed to provide students with a translucent, unifying “narrative” like those that inspired earlier generations. Instead, today’s schools promote the false “gods” of economic utility, consumerism, and resentment. Postman defines literacy as “the set of skills that enable individuals to encode and decode knowledge and power via speech, writing, printing and collective action, and which, when learned, introduce the individual to a community. In this construct, literacy links technology and sociality” (Rheingold 2013).  He takes this further by calling this new approach a “participative pedagogy”, leveraged by digital media and networked communities. The goal is to activate, inspire, nourish, facilitate, and guide literacies essential to individual and collective life in the 21st century.

    Just as importantly, some of the significant international organisations such as the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the World Economic Forum (WEF) also recognise the need to globally challenge the traditional structures of schooling, particularly if we are to bring global equality.  They advocate that education is the fundamental transformative power in the global community, especially for emerging economies. Numerous social entrepreneurial bodies, such as the World Innovation Summit for Education (WISE),  and the Global Education Leaders’ Project (GELP) have been established to explore innovation in these (and other) areas that helps challenge traditional ideas of schooling, by drawing in experiences from outside of education and learning from some of the innovative explorations globally of how to “do education” in poor, badly-resource economies.  The work of Charles Leadbeater (eg 2008, 2012), is amongst the most significant, as well as exploring how alternate models of education such as schools such as School of Everything, Eastfeast and High Tech High break through the education disconnect felt by so many marginalised groups in the western world (Hannon 2009)

    It has been noted that unlike the developing world where the drive to learn is dominant as a way to escape disaster, students in the first world have become progressively more disengaged with learning, as its relevance to their daily lives seems increasingly remote.  Again, part of the solution to this woe is seen to make learning authentic, real-world consequences and public.  Again, as Brown (2006) observedJean Lave’s theory of situated cognition focuses on learning as enculturation into a practice, often through the process of “legitimate peripheral participation.”  Anyone who has been around for long enough will hear the echoes of the old apprenticeship system of times past.  However, learners are no longer limited by time and space, nor the need to adhere to a single “master”.  The connectivity and flexibility is central to these kinds of learning.

    Important ways of transforming education through concepts such as connectvisim, (as developed by Siemens and Downes) comes the more formalised concept of “Connected Learning”.  This came from research by the Digital Media and Research Learning Hub (DMRLH). Unlike constructivism, that locates the initial motivation to learn within the individual, Connected Learning highlights that learning is a social activity and intrinsically embedded within culture (Ito et al. 2013).  The “disconnect” for many modern teenagers is that the current education models do not reflect their reality, resulting in disengagement. Ito asks formative questions such as “Why do we assume that kids socialising and play is not a part of learning?”  “Why can’t schools have a spirit of entertainment and play as a part of what they do?” (DMRLH 2011)

    DMRLH’s research explores how to employ new media in ways that connect young people to their passions, and supportive communities to foster academically challenging learning.  As an approach, it is still in its infancy and the case studies cited follow individuals, a collection of interest groups and a small number of innovative schools.  Connected Learning carefully contrast themselves from blended learning their aim is to not just make school-based learning available in a range of environments, rather it is about  “connecting and translating between in-school and out-of-school learning (p46) to create rigorous student engagement.  It is a direct challenge to the behaviourist modes of education that focus on extrinsic and standardised inputs, rewards and testing, that mediate most of our current schooling exit-points.  Whether this model can gain traction in an education forum where governments increasingly develop policy and practices that are oriented around standardized testing as a process of validation, is yet to be seen. Additionally, this paradigm challenges popular opinion that digital technologies isolate and detract from social relationships; this is also supported by Hattie’s work that advocates the benefits of utilizing digital technologies – when employed collaboratively (Hattie & Yates 2013 p195ff).

    As noted in Connected Learning (2013) “Rather than center on a top-down design of a specific product, technology or curriculum …. [21st century] learning environments are a complex alchemy of designed and emergent elements in a process of experimentation and flux” (p63).  The education system in the Western world is at a critical junction.  The rate of technological and social change is exponential and the ways new technologies will continue to interact with culture is unpredictable. Ironically, just as some aspects of time seem to “speed-up” the time allowed to thoughtfully adjust to these changes must be increased.

    After a decade of focussing on how technology might drive the change, pedagogy has been put back in its’ rightful place as an important agent, a tool, but not the source of change.  Repeatedly, the qualities valued – curiosity, inquiry, creativity, collaboration, problem-solving and reflection (Seely Brown 2006)

    “What needs to happen is that we take advantage of the huge potential the digital technologies offers in terms of the variety of learning opportunities, formats for creation, and spaces for expression for independent and interdependent learning and production that were not previously available” (Brown 2006)

     

    Hannon (2009) envisions that we can now start to use connected learning to support

    “A different vision of the good life, based on community, equity and values of spiritual awareness and reverence for the planet, presents new challenges for how schools regard their objectives and, in turn, how they motivate and connect with young people today.”

    “Education used to be a wheel – the instructor was the hub of the wheel. Well, the instructor is still vital, but it’s not the same…” George Siemens

     

    REFERENCES

    Bawden, D. (2008). Digital literacies: concepts, policies & practices,  Peter Lang Publishing, Inc.

    Brown, John Seely (2006) New Learning Environments for the 21st Century: Exploring the Edge, in Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning, 38:5, 18-24, DOI: 10.3200/CHNG.38.5.18-24

    Chase, Zac and Laufenberg, Diana (2011) Digital literacies: Embracing the Squishiness of Digital Literacy, Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy 54(7) pp. 535–537 doi:10.1598/JAAL.54.7.7

    Crockett, Lee, Churches, Andrew and Jukes, Ian (2011), Literacy is Not Enough: 21st Century Fluencies for the Digital Age, Thousand oaks: Corwin Press

    DMLresearch Hub, (2011) Cultural Anthropologist Mimi Ito on Connected Learning, Children, and Digital Media Retrieved from: http://youtu.be/xuV7zcXigAI

    Eschet, Y. (2012). Thinking in the digital era: A revised model for digital literacy. Issues in Informing Science & Information Technology, 9, 267–276.

    Eshet-Alkalai, Yoram  (2004) Digital Literacy: A Conceptual Framework for Survival Skills in the Digital Era, Journal of Educational Multimedia and Hypermedia 13(1),93-106

    Fullan, M. & Langworthy, M. (2014) A Rich Seam: How New Pedagogies Find Deep Learning, London: Pearson.

    The Global Education Leaders’ Program Innovation unit (2013) Redesigning education:Shaping learning systems around the globe, Booktrope editions[Kindle Digital Version] from http://www.amazon.com.au

    Hannon, Valerie (2009) ‘Only Connect!’: A new paradigm for learning innovation in the 21st century, Centre for strategic education Melbourne available at

    http://apo.org.au/research/only-connect-new-paradigm-learning-innovation-21st-century

    Hattie, J & Yates G. C. R. (2013). Visible learning and the science of how we learn. London: Routledge.

    Ito, Mizuko, Gutiérrez, , Livingstone, Sonia, Penuel, Bill, Rhodes, Jean Salen, Katie, Schor, Juliet, Sefton-Green, Julian, Watkins S. Craig,. (2013). Connected Learning: An Agenda for Research and Design. Digital Media and Learning Research Hub, http://clrn.dmlhub.net/publications/connected-learning-an-agenda-for-research-and-design Accessed September 1st 2014

    Leadbeater, C. (2010, April). Education Innovation in the slums, TED.com. Retrieved from:http://www.ted.com/talks/charles_leadbeater_on_education

    Leadbeater, C. (2012). Innovation in Education: Lessons from Pioneers around the World. WISE.

    Leadbeater, C. & Wong, A. (2010). Learning from the Extremes. Cisco. Retrieved from:http://www.cisco.com/web/about/citizenship/socio-economic/docs/LearningfromExtremes_WhitePaper.pdf

    Manzini, E (2009) Sustainable Everyday Project, Ezio Manzini’s Blog, accessible at www.sustainable-everyday.net/manzini

    Meyers, E. M., Erickson, I., & Small, R. V. (2013). Digital literacy and informal learning environments: an introduction.Learning, Media and Technology, (ahead-of-print), 1-13.

    Ng, W. (2012). Can we teach digital natives digital literacy? Computers & Education, 59(3), 1065–1078. doi:10.1016/j.compedu.2012.04.016

    OECD (2011) Building a High-quality Teaching Profession: Lessons from Around the World,

    Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Paris. http://www.oecd.org/edu/school/programmeforinternationalstudentassessmentpisa/buildingahigh-qualityteachingprofessionlessonsfromaroundtheworld.htm

    OECD (2013), Innovative Learning Environments, Educational Research and Innovation, OECD Publishing. http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264203488-en

    Postman, Neil, (1995) The End of Education: Redefining the Value of School, New York: Vintage Books

    Rheingold, Howard (2013) Participative Pedagogy for a Literacy of Literacies in The Particpatory Cultures Handbook Delwiche, Aaron & Henderson, Jennifer Jacobs (eds.) New York: Routledge

    Siemens, G. (2006). Knowing knowledge. Lulu. com.

    Siemens, G. (2008). Learning and knowing in networks: Changing roles for educators and designers.

    Tett, G (2009) Fool’s Gold: How Unrestrained Greed Corrupted a Dream, Shattered Global Markets and Unleashed a Catastrophe, Little, Brown Book Group, London.

    Wagner, Tony, (2010) The Global Achievement Gap: Why Even Our Best Schools Don’t Teach the New Survival Skills Our Children Need – And What We Can Do About it New York:Basic Books,

    World Economic Forum Global Education Initiative, (2009), Educating the next wave of entrepreneurs: Unlocking entrepreneurial capabilities to meet the global challenges of the 21st Century, Switzerland,


  9. Creativity, flexibility and the digital world – Task #1

    April 6, 2015 by meghastie

    What I know so far…

    I am passionate about learning and creating vibrant learning communities for students and teachers. How students learn has been my passion for a number of years.  I have always seen technology as an important tool but one that should be guided by good learning.  Whilst I still hold strongly to that, it is becoming increasingly important to engage creatively with how to use technology to help foster lifelong learners who are creative, collaborative, resilient and flexible.

    I love the work of Thomas and Brown (2011), who focus on the importance of play, creativity and imagination – at the time when many people are obsessing with technology, they explore the paradigms that need to shape learning for the future.

    Each day that passes, it seems to me we cannot deny how essential it is to engage with the digital environment.  There is a need to envision a more complex relationship than we have previously with the digital world in learning, and to explore more actively how learning can be enhanced through the digital environment.

    One of my biggest concerns is that in many schools I have seen (and experienced) that the digital roll-out has been poorly integrated into the learning of the school.  That staff (and students) have not been adequately prepared, and the results have been to create cynical and suspicious staff.  Similarly, the technology has been conceived simply as a replacement to paper and pen, failing to see the bigger changes in learning that are inevitable working with students who are immersed in digital worlds, and where the rate of technology change is astronomical.

    I am at a school in its second year of a 1:1 .laptop program in the High school, and where a whole school (Pre-K – 12) Learning Management System is  now a central platform for delivering learning and communicating with families.   I have also found myself in a new role this year where I am helping drive pedagogical frameworks in learning – across all aspects of the school from learning enrichment (support and extension) through to the library and the digital programs, and probably most critically, staff professional development.

     

    What I’ve learned so far….

    I have always struggled with the simplicity of the division between “digital natives” and “digital immigrants”. It was a comfort to read  Kuehne’s observations (2012), and hear someone articulate more clearly than I could, some of the questions and queries I have had around this idea – students today may be comfortable using technology, but they are not necessarily adept at navigating it critically or creating digital products.  I have noted in my own life that some of my older friends are far more comfortable using technology than some of my students – in fact some students hate it – or hate using it for learning anyway!  Kuehne also comes up with a non-age-specific terminology of “Visitors” and “Residents” – I’m yet to commit to that!  Additionally, other researchers have identified  that many younger people are often are not skilled in using IT for learning, and without the adequate technical assistance some students won’t engage (Nasser, Cherif & Romanowski 2011, ECAR 2007).

    In the reading so far, I have been fascinated by some of the discussions around storing and managing knowledge in the digital era.  As I am not working in the information management field, these were new ideas to me – I had assumed that the digital world had made it easier than ever to store and manage our documents. Whilst the wonderful work of the Vatican demonstrated the wonderful capacity to make some very old documents available to the present world, it became increasingly obvious just how much information we are now having to navigate and therefore how easy it is to lose control of our past.

    As a student and teacher  of literature and history, the importance of maintaining our texts, our key to the past, of keeping records has been a real passion of mine.  Our past is our key to our future.

    I have also been encouraged by the concepts that creativity, flexibility and critical thinking are central to future-focussed learning.  These are not reliant on any technology, and have been a core platform of my pedagogical focus.  These core metacognitive skills are still at the heart of good learning for life.

    Equally as fascinating has been reading the work of the Institute for the future on Future 2020 that explores the requirements of workers for the future and change agents such as the ageing workforce, smart technologies – the graphic tells the whole picture.

    future work skills

     

    Similarly Haste’s explorations of young people’s need to be tool-users  and the essential  “five competencies”  they need for the future (2009) also highlight the need for adaptability and complexity.  Significantly, these are character traits rather than technical competencies. Having said that, the digital world opens up so many more possibilities to help students be creative, be imaginative, produce wonderful new ideas collaboratively and share them easily.   This is particularly true with technology – staff need to be regularly supported and trained (Sutherland et al 2013, Buchan 2009).

    As I’m fairly new to the digital concepts and practices, I found Bawden’s (2208) discussion around the nature and complexity of digital literacy very helpful. His discussion on Gilster’s early but seminal work helped frame my understanding of the “squishiness” of the concept.  Particularly his observation –

    Digital literacy in this sense is a framework for integrating various other literacies and skill-sets, though it does not need to encompass them all; as Martin (2006a) puts it, we do not need “one literacy to rule them all.”…

    Following on from this, another key reading for me in this early stage was Downes and Bishop’s 2012 study on integrating technology into learning.  They also confirmed the importance of training staff in the integration of new learning technologies, drawing on the work of Norris and Soloway (2010)  and Cuban (2003), identifying phenomena I have seen on a number of occasions across a number of schools –

    While there certainly have been effective attempts at educational technology integration, school reformers too often expect educators to know instinctively how to incorporate technology into their teaching.… [Furthermore] poorly implemented technology integration is unlikely to benefit learners and, in fact, can detract from proven, less expensive, and more readily applied education reforms.

    Yet again, ignoring staff training and staff preparation is dangerous in introducing systemic, technological or pedagogical change (see also the works of Fullan eg 1991, 2013).

    I hope to learn by the end of the course…

    Some of my personal goals for this subject are to

    1. Forge a stronger connection between my current pedagogical knowledge and innovative concepts and technologies that can be used to enhance learning
    2. Take some risks in exploring new approaches and new ways to learn in a digital world
    3. Gain a stronger sense of familiarity with a range of digital tools
    4. Stronger insight into the nature of the how knowledge is stored and maintained in a digital environment

    My ultimate goal is to

    Gain a clearer insight into planning today’s learning for a future-focussed learning environment.  That means being able to articulate and help lead school-wide and systemic change by training and equipping staff in

    1.  how the digital environment can enhance creative and imaginative learning
    2. how to create more flexible learning experiences for students through the digital environment

    As always, I dream big, but need to start small and plan effectively…

     

     

    References  

    Bawden, D. (2008). CHAPTER ONE: Origins and concepts of digital literacy. In Digital literacies: concepts, policies & practices (pp. 17–32). Peter Lang Publishing, Inc.

    Bollacker, K. D. (2010). Avoiding a digital dark age. American Scientist, 98(2), 106-110.

    Buchan, J. (2008), Tools for survival in a changing educational technology environment. Where are you now in the landscape of educational technology? Proceedings Ascilite Melbourne 2008 Melbourne. http://www.ascilite.org.au/conferences/melbourne08/procs/buchan.pdfCuban, L. (2003). Oversold and underused: Computers in the classroom. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

    Dahlstrom, Eden, Davies J.D., Dziuban, Charles, (2013), ECAR Study of Computer use in education, Educause, http://educause.edu/ecar

    Davies, A., Fidler, D., & Gorbis. M. (2011). Future work skills 2020. Institute for the Future for the University of Phoenix Research Institute: California

    Downes, J. M., & Bishop, P. (2012). Educators engage digital natives and learn from their experiences with technologyMiddle School Journal, 43(5), 6–15.

    Fullan, M.G., (1991), The new meaning of educational change. 2nd edition. London: Cassel Education Ltd

    (2013) Stratosphere: Integrating technology, pedagogy and change knowledge , Pearson, Toronto

    Haste, Helen (2009) – Technology and Youth

                           Problem-Solver Vs Tool User (Part 1 of 4), Harvard Education,  Retrieved from: http://youtu.be/YZRoS5QlJ44

                           Five competencies (Part 3 of 4), Harvard Education, Retrieved from: http://youtu.be/pqt3ZmtBTOE

    Ito, Mizuko, Gutiérrez, , Livingstone, Sonia, Penuel, Bill, Rhodes, Jean Salen, Katie, Schor, Juliet, Sefton-Green, Julian, Watkins S. Craig,. (2013). Connected Learning: An Agenda for Research and Design. Digital Media and Learning Research Hub, http://clrn.dmlhub.net/publications/connected-learning-an-agenda-for-research-and-design

    Kuehn, L. (2012). No more “Digital Natives” and “Digital Immigrants.” Our Schools / Our Selves, 21(2), 129–132.

    Nasser, Ramzi; Cherif, Maha; Romanowski, Michael. Factors that impact student usage of the learning management system in Qatari schools. The International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning, [S.l.], v. 12, n. 6, p. 39-62, sep. 2011. ISSN 1492-3831. Available at: <http://www.irrodl.org/index.php/irrodl/article/view/985/1956>. Date accessed: 02 Oct. 2014.

    Norris, C., & Soloway, E. (2010). One-to-one computing has failed our expectations: The laptops are being used as add-ons to existing curriculum [Electronic Version]. District Administration, Retrieved from http://www.districtadministration.com/viewarticle.aspx?articleid=2405

    Siemens, G. (2005). Connectivism: A learning theory for digital age. Retrieved from http://www.elearnspace.org/Articles/connectivism.htm

    Sutherland, R., Sutherland, J., Fellner, C., Siccolo, M. & Clark, L. (2014). Schools for the future: subtle shift or seismic change? Technology, Pedagogy and Education, 23(1), 19-37. doi: 10.1080/1475939X.2013.869975

    Thomas, D., & Brown, J. S. (2011).  A new culture of learning: Cultivating the imagination for a world of constant change (Vol. 219). Lexington, KY: CreateSpace.


  10. Leaping off that cliff again…

    March 10, 2015 by meghastie

    cliff jumperWell, here goes!

    After a successful re-entry to the world of post-grad learning in Semester 2 2014, I’ve come back for more. It’s a little like childbirth – you forget about the pain until you’re back there in the hospital.  Suddenly recalling how I had no life last semester, all those hours at the computer…

    Having said that, it was also the most exhilarating and mind-expanding experience.  Whilst I love the opportunities that technology and the digital world offers to learners, I’m not a tech-head, not an early adopter, not a geek. But, neither am I a luddite; more like someone visiting a foreign land, where the dialect they’re speaking sounds familiar, but it’s not quite…

    But what would happen if you never left the comfort of your own home?

    So, new adventures, new visions of the world, new ways of imagining learning.

    Where is that cliff?

    elephant on cliff

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Image credits

    Inmagine, n.d, http://images.inmagine.com/400nwm/auroraphotos/aurs024/aurs4383400008.jpg, accessed 10th March 2015

    Ceslas, Vane, October 8 2012, Vane’s First World Problems, http://www.addictinginfo.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/jump_off_cliff.jpg, accessed 10th March 2015

     


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