The challenge for educators, especially directors of educational technology, is not to limit how our teachers teach, but to focus on the foundational skills and provide a clear and concrete formula for how different technological devices and applications will enhance these skills in order to give a learner the ability to create a product that will change the world.
If educational technology and 1:1 education are going to thrive, school leaders must be focused on constantly employing the best practices and tools in relation to the most pressing needs of their students. Managing and sustaining these programs means that the big choices don’t stop after a platform has been selected.
Many schools and educators are using the iPad to make teaching more efficient and deliver content in a streamlined, interactive format. But one of the most interesting uses of the iPad is to transport students outside the classroom.
The rush to purchase iPads often precedes the careful planning and preparation that’s so crucial to their success as educational tools. Technology alone is never the answer. Instead, iPad use needs to be integrated within a holistic approach to 21st-century education that encompasses a thorough and ongoing review of the skills and competencies required in our rapidly changing society and the educational processes that best help students acquire them.
As more school districts roll out tablet computers to students, they're debating how much to restrict access to certain websites and games. Some districts shut down wide parts of the Internet, but others are trying to take a more nuanced approach.
Schools have begun to recognize the importance of multimedia use in education. Fortunately, with its built-in microphone, camera, and a host of multimedia apps, the iPad is an extraordinary tool for creating and integrating multimedia into education.
One of California's poorest school districts, the Coachella Valley Unified southeast of Los Angeles, is currently rolling out iPads to every student, pre-K through high school. It's an ambitious effort that administrators and parents hope will transform how kids learn, boost achievement and narrow the digital divide with wealthier districts.