The Royal Wedding

harryandmeghan.jpgWhether you were interested or not in the royal wedding is of no consequence. What is important is that in terms of connectivity and the internet it was a ground breaking event which demonstrated just how much we want to connect and how powerful that is. There were 3.4 million tweets sent during the ceremony. It is how we interact with each other these days which has been highlighted. On Friday morning there was enough traffic to break the BBC site and so the interest in the event was beyond the capacity of one of the world’s biggest broadcasters and that site would be used to dealing with large numbers in terms of traffic. There were 2.7 million mentions of the royal wedding on social media in 24 hours. The statistics are still being collated and collected but there are powerful numbers there to show how much we can achieve in 2018 in terms of connecting with each other. The BBC has compiled some interesting statistics for the royal wedding. There is some discussion about the number of global viewers and then comparisons with Kate and William’s wedding and Charles and Diana’s wedding. During that time frame we have had more and better access to tablets and smartphones and that needs to be taken into account.  The statistics will be updated in about a week’s time because it is important to know what we can achieve globally.

Firstly, we need to understand what pulls people into that passionate need to connect. Secondly we need to know if we have the capacity to deal with it in terms of hardware and software. We need to know if we can do it better and we need to look at the benefits and the pitfalls. That kind of capacity to involve and connect is powerful in terms of education,  engagement and problem solving for the planet. Our plastic problem would disappear if we could all engage and involve ourselves like we did for the royal wedding. Do we have a way of looking at the impact? Do we have data which would show us whether our powerful capacity to connect is of good value to us? Can we think it forward and use it to solve some of the world’s biggest issues?

World Event Log

world disasters

 

 

The world top stories are being logged and mapped at mapreport. They are categorised under the headings of Disaster, Politics, Crime , Business, Sports, War and Army. They are then further categorised by region and country. You can get a run down of the last 24 hours, week etc and you can also see what is on the agenda for planned events. It is extremely comprehensive.

I’ve got an iPod Dock

iPod DockOkay, so, for most of you this is not earth shattering news. No big deal. Not for you, but for me, this is another iPod Touch revelation! My daughter was determined to show me the value of an iPod Touch and gave me her old one when she took on her shiny new one. She spent the afternoon with me making sure I could use iTunes, made sure she knew some apps I could find and love and showed me how to get my music on there. Now she has got in early for Mothers’ Day next month and we went shopping for an iPod dock. She was certain I would love it. She was right. Mine is one, neat unit and the sound is amazing. We didn’t spend a lot because it was for my sewing room. It was just going to be there so I had my iPod and radio to listen to as I quilted! I couldn’t believe the clarity and power of the sound, the fact it had an inbuilt radio and the fact I can play my apps with sound as well. That got me thinking! I am a teacher. Everything I touch turns into classroom wizardry. I was thinking an iPod dock would easily replace CD players and old cassette players at a very reasonable cost. They are much neater units and could be stored securely and conveniently. The apps available could be played to my class. Podcasts could be played to my class. This was the 21st century. So then I got to thinking some more. 21st century classrooms should have iPod docks built into desks and areas. So many students and staff have iPod Touches and iPhones. They are ubiquitous and then there could be a tray of iPod Touches for loan which could be distributed as they distribute graphic calculators and the like. Students could play podcasts, use apps for learning, share their creations on an iPod/iPhone across the class and work in small groups to use educational apps and create their own digital learning. They could read e-books. Students are very comfortable with this technology. They are also pleased to be able to use their mobile technology for learning. They have changed. They want in the pocket learning and a dock would facilitate sharing . I love my dock. My classroom would too!

Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy

bloom's digital taxonomyWhen applying Bloom’s Taxonomy in a technology setting it is good to have an idea of what that looks like. Educational-origami is a wiki space which has already done a lot of thinking along those lines and some of the resources have been translated into Spanish. We are revisiting the new Bloom’s Taxonomy this year at school and need to make it a focus so I am thinking that looking at the digital application of it would be a worthwhile pursuit. The thing which appealed to me the most is the digital technology summary map. It looks at the taxonomy and then applies it in a practical way to the technology possibilities which we could then consider for classroom use. My own personal mission, I think, will be to see how many of those communication skills I can achieve with my students this year. Technology is about communication and the more far reaching and profound the communication the better our local and global connections and collaboration will be. This wiki has a list of global visitors on the side so when you are there looking at it , take note of how many people from how many places have been using this site to help support their classroom teaching and learning. There is so much more to this site than I have mentioned so please take a look for yourselves.

Teacher Education and 21st Century Skills

I found this video on the Educational Learning and Mobile Technology and it is certainly something we have been thinking about in our school. Teachers are aware there is a big change coming and it might be true as this video points out that society will force us to change. Bit by bit we are going with the change because that is what people do. They have adapted to trains, planes, electricity, fire, phones. Humanity has a great capacity to change. The point this video makes is we have to change the sort of teachers we are because nothing is cut and dried anymore and it is difficult to articulate what exactly it is we are now dealing with and what it is we are preparing our students for. We do have to teach them to think and adapt as we have done ourselves. The more I work with technology in a classroom the less I am concerned with lessons and the more I am concerned with delivering the skills, knowledge and tools students need to create something which will both reinforce and extend their learning. I have become a team leader. I have had to work out ways that students can safely input without taking us too far off task and the set curriculum. We are still teaching to exams and standardised tests.Students can be taught how to contribute validly and purposefully to a team and they like that. They like sharing their knowledge. They like trouble shooting and they like team learning. Then they like to be left alone to get on with the job but be allowed to ask whatever it is they need to do/learn to complete the task. The video gives us a way of thinking about what we need to be doing and how we need to be changing . What is clear is team work really highlights the students who are non contributors who then drift off. There is a risk these students will become underskilled and isolated. We need to create a way of linking those students back in and I think it is the one to one and the one on one which will become increasingly more important, yet that is a very expensive way to deliver education – or is it?

Josefine Grimm-Blenk

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