Ariel Norling here. I write about education, technology, and my adventures in entrepreneurship- i.e. everything that I've learned outside of a classroom's walls. I am often sarcastic, sometimes serious, but always infinitely curious.
I just found this amazing program made by Google which is basically an interactive body for you to study the human anatomy with. I wish we had programs like this when I took human anatomy in high school instead of just random bones and plastic organs. Check it out…but it doesn’t work with Internet Explorer!
“We are treating students like cogs in a factory, not like the unique individuals they actually are. We push students forward, without ever really addressing their individual needs, until many become disengaged and give up. And while most of the debate focuses on the “under-performing” students, I would argue that we’re not exactly doing a great job with the students who seem to be passing by fine. Many of them are never pushed to their true abilities, and they quickly lose their natural enthusiasm for learning.”
#140edu is starting tomorrow! I’m excited to finally meet some of my fellow education tumblrs. Just a warning, either I’m going to be hyperactive about blogging for the next couple of days, or I’m going to be absent because I’m so busy live tweeting. The second is probably more likely. Be sure to follow #140edu on Twitter! Also, the conference will be broadcast live on Ustream!
The 140 Characters Conference (#140conf) is all about exploring the effects of real-time technology on our world and providing a platform for the social media community to listen, connect, share, and engage with each other. The #140conf in New York City had presentations about social media’s impacts on education such as Syracuse University’s Professor Anthony Rotolo’s talk about “College in Real Time.” The #140edu conference promises even more discussion about education in real time. The list of speakers covers a large range of individuals involved in education, representing superintendents, social media managers, educators, parents, activists, foundation leaders, and more. The schedule of speakers and topics has been released. The themes of the #140edu conference (as I have identified) are:
• Changing the School Model: Topics range from hacking to sustainability, but the core message is reimagining schools for the 21st century as places where students build skills and learn about what matters to the world and to them, not just a scantron.
• Building Community: Engaging communities and increasing involvement are providing outlets for education reformers, schools, and parents to have meaningful discussions and change student outcomes.
• Changing the Education Paradigm: What students learn and how students learn it is center stage at #140edu, especially with a large part of the conversation happening around the value of a college education and what the changing landscape for education outside of school means for the field of education. The cherry on top is having Chris Lehmann, Principal of the Science Leadership Academy in Philadelphia and TEDx speaker, as the partner for the event. The #140edu conference is taking place August 2nd and 3rd at the 92nd Street Y. Student tickets are $15, regular 2 day passes are $140 until August 1st, and educators can apply to purchase a ticket for $1.40. Attending the conference, regardless of the ticket price, will be well worth the cost.
“President Obama may be content using a slightly outdated (though admittedly secure) BlackBerry while on the go, but it seems that he’s far more disappointed in the technology at the White House itself. Speaking at a fundraiser in Chicago this week, Obama said that “when it comes to technology, we are like 30 years behind,” and he’s not just just talking about some ancient Windows desktops left over from the previous administration in the West Wing. He went on to complain about the lack of “really cool phones and stuff,” saying, “I’m the president of the United States. Where’s the fancy buttons and stuff and the big screen comes up? It doesn’t happen.” Maybe he can get some of his new tech industry friends to help him out with that if manages to settle in for a second term.” [Engadget]
The office that handles tech support for Congress just approved Apple computers for government use last summer. And they thought tech support was bad before?
I wonder what the president thinks of the state of technology in classrooms.
Young students who are exposed to technology with drill and practice type activities (the overwhelming majority of offerings in educational technology) have shown decreases in children’s creativity and motivation.
Yes, increases in reading levels are obviously necessary, but there are other ways to tighten budgets without sacrificing the characteristics necessary for meaningful employment and economic growth in the future, or the things that make childhood great. If anything, this is a call for entrepreneurs to develop learning programs that go beyond drill and practice and help children to develop their creativity and nurture their sense of wonder.
My EdLab blog post about the problems with teaching younger children via blended learning. Teaching reading, but sacrificing activity and creativity.