Monday, May 04, 2009

Edith's View

As the euphoria around the Rose Review, with its 52 mentions of ICT,continues to gather pace, it seems like a good time to post this video from TeachmeetNEL. Here Edith, a year nine pupil from Essex, gives us here view on ICT education. It is worth watching this and reading Miller's posts on ICT and Esafety, over on Terry Freedman's blog.

Edith calls for more ICT across the curriculum, and is quite down on try hard teachers and Micorosoft Office. I agreed with many of Edith's points and I share her frustration at a limited curriculum, one that does not always take account for what children can do and how even a lesson involving the ICT suite can be dull. I am saddened that all her lessons involving Accees and Excel seemed to be repetitive and dull. Clearly there are many teenagers and Key Stage 2 children around like Edith, who are very able and who are under estimated in ICT. So our response to this should not be to throw out the 'cool applications like Microsoft Office', they are powerful tools which allow us to manipulate, sort and interrogate data, and while we learn to use these we gain skills in problem solving, programming and logic. There isn't a mashup or google app that replicates these just yet, they do take effort to master. They do need to be presented meaningfully and the activities need to be move beyond simple party cost calculators, but I realise I am speaking from a primary perspective here and I know little about Secondary ICT.

I have also embedded another, more established thinker in this post, Marc Prensky clarifies his views on the whole digital native/immigrant thing in his interview at a conference in Cardiff. I find the definition that he presents here slightly more palatable than the simple polarisation that is peddled by many speakers, who present it like its an original concept. However his assertion that teachers should not use whiteboards, the children should is frankly ill-thought out.


Terry Freedman said...

Anthony, thanks for posting this. Edith was brilliant, and I am looking forward to listenig to her again. It might be worth my mentioning that, following the Teachmeet, Edith agreed to be interviewed about her views, and I will be posting that on my website very soon.

Thanks for mentioning my website too

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Linda said...

Is the whiteboard comment that ill thought out? Yes we want teachers to use whiteboards but surely not just as replacement as so often happens, and I include in that replacement with a website on screen rather than a white background.

Prensky talks a lot these days about old mode and new mode - giving the whiteboard to the pupils (or at least giving some time to pupils)would perhaps help break the 'old mode' model.

How often do you observe lessons where the whiteboard is used intensively for introduction/modelling then left dormant whilst pupils work in their books?????

Anthony Evans said...

Linda - I agree with Prensky and yourself that pupils should use the whiteboard - particularly when it is left dormant - as we know there is a role here for the TA.
What i find annoying is that virtually all our schools now have this technology and it is not so easily replaced by the next trendy idea. So if I have this hunk of plastic on my wall I need to know how I can use it to teach effectively, not just relinquish it for the students. There are many lessons I see that are chalk annd talk in digital form but equally many lessons where the use of an image or manipulative has really brought a topic to life, thank you Flickr!.

Just think its easy to knock whiteboards but harder to address how teachers use them.

Also think they could be used far more by pupils in Foundation stage as a creative too/instrument/canvas, but this harder to do/less appropriate in year 6.

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Anonymous said...

thanks for posting this.Just think its easy to knock whiteboards but harder to address how teachers use them.....nice blog

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