Sunday, August 4, 2013

Quotes to teach by...

"You cannot apply new technology to old pedagogy"

"Quotes" - I found this quote the other day as I was reading through an article about modern learning environments and flipped classrooms. I love it because it hits to the heart of what we are trying to create in Room 8 with our modern technology and learning space. I have not taken much notice of quotes before but this quote though just jumped out at me and made me not only rethink what I was doing as a teacher and leader but it also made me think about how others may have been holding me back with what we are trying to achieve. Through no fault of their own unless you have been in this environment, embrace the change that iPads in a classroom can bring or have the opportunity to teach in this way you may always be held back by old pedagogy and ways.

I have been worried lately about what an iPad classroom may or may not be doing for my class. Should they be hand writing ? Should they be draft writing in exercise books more ? I have had doubts about wether or not what they are doing is right. Facilitators have questioned what we are doing in particular the fact that at a year 3/4 level more handwriting needs to be done, typing is slower than writing and work output is less than if hand written. This again is the opinion of people who have not taught in this way or been immersed in this environment. The way maths can be 'DONE' with iPads has also been questioned again from people who have not taught in this environment.

Through this 1 to 1 journey I have built up a confidence as a teacher in the belief that I am part of a modern and futuristic way of thinking, learning and teaching. I believe the students have also gained a new confidence and they are learning within an environment that they are not only suited to but SHOULD be within.

So am I right !!! or are things moving too quickly ? Should we still be teaching handwriting and making sure book work is at the centre of everything we teach and do ?

Having professional discussions has led me to the conclusion that as a school what we are trying to achieve is amazing and not at all ahead of our time but actually right on time. Others in fact may just need to catch up. It amazes me that money is still being suck into the wrong areas. We are here for the kids after all and technology HAS to be at the fore front. So I am proud to believe that we are on the right track and I know that what I am doing is right and is potentially what OTHERS should be doing as well. It has been terrifying at times but also exhilarating and I strongly believe we as a school, class and myself as a teacher are helping to carve out the next pathways in learning for all NZ kids.

Being challenged is a good thing, it makes you think and gets your mind racing. But being challenged when others who have not been apart of what they are challenging is just FRUSTRATING.


  1. Thanks for this post Ben. I am a teacher at a school in Taumarunui and we are on the journey of setting up one, possibly two, digital classes next year - 1:1 ipad classes. We have had a lot of the same questions that you bring up in your post and it is interesting to see your thoughts. I have bookmarked this blog so we can get ideas!
    Happy if I bombard you with questions also?
    Turaki Primary School

    1. It is so important to bounce ideas off others and ask questions so ask away. We made contact with the couple schools that we knew were doing 1 to 1 stuff and I was disgusted that one school wanted money in return for info.

      Twitter, VLN and establishing a PLN ( Personal Learning Network) have been brilliant, but we have also stood on our own two feet and this has been a great learning curve.

    2. Thanks Ben. I can't believe they expected payment! The VLN is an amazing resource for sure! Have added your blog to our class links so we can check back and see what you are up to.


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