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Ed Podesta

Web 2.0 - Collaborative Teaching and Learning

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Here's the presentation file for my talk at Heerlen.

http://www.podesta.org.uk/downloads/e-help/heerlen.swf

Please pm me if you need the original file.

I have also made a post at my blog about the expericence. Thanks all, once again, for inviting me, and for providing such a great weekend of CPD.

Ed.

The link to your presentation seems to have changed. Could you post the new URL?

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Hi all,

John has asked me to update you all on the kinds of things that I’ve been doing since giving my talk at Heerlen in, wow, 2006!

Firstly I’d like to write about the effect that the Heerlen visit had on my teaching, and on the way that I thought about ICT for learning. In short it was an extremely engaging and informative weekend. I left with a hundred ideas, and having had some of the most interesting professional conversations that I’d ever had. In particular I was delighted to find myself listening to experienced teachers who, without cynicism, and with enthusiasm, could reflect on their work, its value and on how that work could be understood and used by others.

Since then I’ve been re-evaluating my own work using ICT. I’ve moved classrooms, and now teach in a room with 19 PC terminals, which work using Ultra-Thin Client technology, meaning that a classroom can be kitted out with computers that work very well for text and internet work, but not so well for media manipulation, for relatively little money.

In school I have also taken on more responsibility for helping other teachers use ICT for teaching and learning, and I’ve just been appointed as an SSAT Lead Practitioner for ICT. In that work I’ve noticed a real fear in many teachers, which makes them reluctant to use complex ICT in their lessons.

In addition, much of the internet that offers web-2.0 functionality has been blocked by the filters used by the LEA – which means that many exciting new online opportunities cannot be taken in the short term by me, or by teachers that I help to train.

All of which is a round-about way of saying that I’ve more and more been using ‘word’, ‘excel’, and other ‘bog-standard’ pieces of software to help teaching and learning.

Attached to this post is a transcript of a video that I use when training teachers, which tells you about the way that I think about using ICT with classes. I’m also attaching a document that I ask teachers to use when thinking about the application of ICT for the teaching and learning of their subject. You will also find a copy of a file I recently wrote entitled ’51 great ideas for ICT in your classroom’, which is supposed to offer things that ‘everyday’ teachers might use ‘everyday’ in a normal classroom with PCS.

Finally, I’m attaching a lesson plan file which also contains a history lesson in which bog-standard ICT is used to facilitate learning about how to assess the significance of an event.

My original talk was about web 2.0 – wikis and blogs – and I still use these in my teaching. My use of wikis has not been the ground-breaking, earth shattering success that I hoped, which is what has partly made me re-assess the use of ICT in the classroom as a whole. However, at the moment I’m taking part in some lessons with a colleague from Oxford University, Jane Shuyska, who is investigating the use of wikis for learning in the history classroom.

I’m ever so grateful for the opportunity you guys gave me in 2006, and I wish you all the best for the future.

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Since then I’ve been re-evaluating my own work using ICT. I’ve moved classrooms, and now teach in a room with 19 PC terminals, which work using Ultra-Thin Client technology, meaning that a classroom can be kitted out with computers that work very well for text and internet work, but not so well for media manipulation, for relatively little money.

In addition, much of the internet that offers web-2.0 functionality has been blocked by the filters used by the LEA – which means that many exciting new online opportunities cannot be taken in the short term by me, or by teachers that I help to train.

Two observations that struck a note with me.

When I joined the school in Bratislava 15 months ago every computer in the school was a thin client. They look great and are cheap, therefore everyone in marketing and management are delighted with them. But it effectively meant that the students were on the same diet of MS Office every lesson.

In my recent Bratislava History Project, neither of the schools in the UK could fully participate because this forum and the student education forum were blocked by the local LEA. Even the intervention of the head teacher and the promise of a meeting with the Queen would not budge the LEA. Madness.

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When I joined the school in Bratislava 15 months ago every computer in the school was a thin client. They look great and are cheap, therefore everyone in marketing and management are delighted with them. But it effectively meant that the students were on the same diet of MS Office every lesson.

In my recent Bratislava History Project, neither of the schools in the UK could fully participate because this forum and the student education forum were blocked by the local LEA. Even the intervention of the head teacher and the promise of a meeting with the Queen would not budge the LEA. Madness.

I agree that is total madness. Filter problems however can be overcome with a 2 minute conversation with a competent network manager. UK internet filters tend to be borderline ferocious but are perfectly manageable. I cannot believe an LEA would behave like that. I also cannot believe that a school would have such limited influence over an ISP...... quite literally madness B)

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