Vision Statement

Image Credit: Lisa Andres

There has been a shift in the world of education that has created both new needs and new opportunities.  The fact that many students now live their lives in a world in which technology is so pervasive has created a reality to which our educational systems must adapt.  While, as Collins and Halverson note, “the school system has evolved to adapt to incremental changes,” (62) the world has been changing at an incredible pace.  The time has come for students to be prepared for a new world and it is up to the educational systems to adapt and meet this need.

Edutopia points out that “The acceptance of change is a major requirement for technology integration.”  Our educational system must begin to understand that change is not only inevitable, it also can be seen as an enormous opportunity.  There is no doubt that many can see the need for our students to improve in order to keep pace with their peers from other nations.  The National Education Technology Plan 2010 (NETP) makes clear reference to this point.  Technology integration, when done properly, helps students to develop the skills they will need in their ever-changing world.

Moreover, technology goes well beyond need to opportunity.  The rapid evolution of means of connecting with people from around the world has opened up possibilities that students and teachers of previous generation could not have imagined.  Students today can play the role of learner and teacher.  Their work can be shared globally, just as they can tap into resources of experts and peers throughout the world.  Bonk points out that this “sudden trend towards sharing educational resources…is fueling change in education and opening new doors to optimism and human potential” (15).

Making technology an integral part of the learning process serves everyone.  Students are able to learn to effectively and responsibly utilize various forms of technology in their lives to enrich their world experience.  Teachers are able to better meet individual needs and to keep focus on learning rather than the plethora of tasks that pull them away from that objective.  As a whole, the nation and the world become better able to connect and to learn from one another.  The time to embrace the opportunity at our feet has come.

Resources:

Bonk, Curtis J. The World Is Open: How Web Technology Is Revolutionizing Education. San Francisco, Calif: Jossey-Bass, 2009. Print.

Collins, Allan, and Richard Halverson. Rethinking Education in the Age of Technology: The Digital Revolution and Schooling in America. New York: Teachers College Press, 2009. Print.

Edutopia. (n.d.). What is technology integration? Retrieved from http://www.edutopia.org/technology-integration-guide-importance

Edutopia. (n.d.). Why do we need technology integration? Retrieved from http://www.edutopia.org/technology-integration-guide-description

U.S. Department of Education. (2010) National Education Technology Plan 2010 Executive Summary. Retrieved from http://www.ed.gov/technology/netp-2010

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4 responses

  1. OK, so I have to be honest. The picture of your pup is what brought me to your blog. Anyone who loves a pup must have something very important to say, and I was right! From the very start with the picture symbolizing the shift in education to your points about enormous opportunity this change brings, global learning opportunities, as well as providing students with opportunities to enrich their lives and futures, your blog was well constructed with a meaningful theme.

    One of my biggest concerns is that many teachers are intimidated by technology and those who do take a step out of their comfort zones wind up regressing back to the “traditional” methods because they don’t feel they have the adequate knowledge to meet learning expectations with technology they are not familiar enough with. Frequent and thorough teacher training is essential in order to be able to utilize technology to meet the varying needs of the students in our classrooms. I do everything in my power on my own time to help anyone in my building who wants to learn technology from holding small group sessions before school or one-on-one training after school. Just like they say about raising a child, “It takes a village” so does it to make such a paradigm shift!

    Looking forward to working with you this semester!

  2. jenniefinafrock

    I strongly agree with the point you made about our students being teachers as well as learners. I feel that this shift will help to excite our students to take a more active role in their education. If they feel that what they have to say is important enough to be shared with the world then I am sure they will strive to have something worth sharing.

    I thought your statement was very well organized and thoguht out. Great job!

  3. I liked your point about the difference in the pace of change between the outside world and the classroom. In many places, classrooms still look much the same as they always have even though the education field is always calling for innovation and more professional development training for teachers.

    I also liked your point about technology changing the role of students in the learning process. Being a digital native does not necessarily mean that students know how to make the best use of technology, but it certainly does give them the confidence to jump in and try to use the tools that teachers are so often afraid of. Teachers need to give students the guidance to make the best use of those tools to develop critical thinking skills.

    Good job!

  4. I also used the Edutopia quote in my vision statement. With the constant changes in the world, it is definitely hard to keep up. However, we must deal with it constantly. Whether it be a new technology, new software package, or a last minute troubleshooting issue (we know those rarely happen with technology), changes are a constant in our world. As you mention, we must take these OPPORTUNITIES to teach our students how to adapt in this always-evolving world.

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