When educators combine the modern smartphone with wireless internet access and the remarkable number of cheap and free mobile apps now available, they become truly amazing pocket-sized learning devices. Teacher Jennifer Carey tells how she’s using smartphones in her classroom: to charge up lessons, promote research and fact-checking, and harness powerful mobile apps to expand learning.
This week, we’re helping celebrate the launch of Powerful Learning Press — a unique publishing venture from Powerful Learning Practice LLC — by giving away a free interactive eBook that we believe will inspire more educators to become connected learners. The 22 helpful articles in Powering Up first appeared here in our Voices from the Learning Revolution group blog.
In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, New Jersey teacher Arwen Kuttner found herself teaching second graders in the dim light of a family’s living room. After reading the children a picture book from the Pay It Forward Foundation, she asked two questions: “Is there anyone here who has had to help any one else this week?” and “Is there anyone here who has needed help and gotten it?” The answers came pouring out.
Teacher Jen Carey left the first iPad Summit, held at the Harvard Medical School, with three takeaways: the iPad is just a remarkable piece of hardware; iPad implementation requires large-scale professional development; and if iPad implementation doesn’t redefine the way educators use technology to create and perform tasks, it’s not worth the investment.
I used to think I was a pretty good teacher. Now I realize that I did the best I could with the knowledge I had, but my classroom was woefully inadequate for many of my students. I failed to equip them with what they needed. I now believe my students are competent to show me what they need, if only I take the time to listen and ask authentic questions. I’m becoming a better teacher by giving up a lot of what I used to think.
In our technological world we have, for the first time, the capability to teach students how to use the strengths and passions of their inner world to make the outer world a better place. This is why the experience of art, music, drama, dance and sports education is essential. It is up to adults to help students make keys for the door of their inner world; to show them how to find the personal energy to address the why’s and the how’s of today’s challenges.