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(R)evolution in Limburg. Visiting a Distinguished School

Today I had the wonderful opportunity to visit Sint-Ursula School in Horn, Limburg, The Netherlands together with fellow Belgian and Dutch ADEs. This school has been awarded the title Apple Distinguished School recently and has a 4 year history of implementing iPad devices 1:1 to students.

The story of learning at Sint-Ursula

Not all students at Sint-Ursula are part of the 1:1-scheme; it is a choice they make. Very important to know is that being part of an “iPad class” does implement much more than just having a device on your desk during the lessons. The emphasis is not on the device but on the way the students are activated during the lessons; technology empowers the students to learn more self-paced and less teacher-driven.

Indicators for success

At the beginning of the 1:1-project, school leaders set goals to measure if the implementation of technology is beneficial for the students. These were the following:

  • Does the student show a positive attitude towards learning?
  • Does the student experience the use of the device as an added value to the learning process?
  • Are test results as good or better than those of their peers that are not part of the project?
  • Do teachers experience an added value?
  • Do parents experience an added value?

Ongoing challenges

In the first year the project had 27 students and 15 teachers. Today there are more than 250 students and more than 60 teachers involved. This puts some challenges in the spotlight:

  • Tech
  • Skills
  • Distractions

It’s obvious every IT implementation in any circumstances poses technology problems. Scaling up only enforces these
Teachers, coaches and students all need thorough technology training. Don’t forget TPACK!!

Professional learning

At Sint-Ursula iCoaches help teachers, students and parents with their questions regarding the iPad-project. This group of coaches consists of students and teachers. They are present at school, but also online.

Learning spaces

Where before all learning took place inside a classroom with desks and chairs in rows, this has changed dramatically, not only inside the classrooms, but also in corridors and the media library. The library has been turned into an open-all-day learning space where collaborative work as well as individual work in silence is promoted.

In corridors, individual tables and comfy sofas foster learning outside of the classroom. Inside the classroom, flexible seating and table positioning is applied.

Class visits

After the introduction by Mark van de Mortel, Team leader and Apple Distinguished Educator, we went on a tour in the school with class visits. Here are some takeaways:

Video Analysis in PE

In the gym hall, students were practising Shot Put. Students got their instruction from a slowmotion video explaining the technique. Four benches divided the hall and from the center, 4 students threw. All students were in pairs, so the one not throwing was filming the other one with an app called Motion Shot. This app makes analysing the movements very easy.

A Math classroom without students

Only the teacher was present in the classroom. His students were on a digital scavenger hunt using a service called seppo. The teacher made a math quiz on geometry with real-life geometry problems hidden around the school where students had to measure corners. On the students device is a map with hotspots indicating where to go and find the questions. All results where send to the teacher in real-time.

Language Escape Room

This was AWESOME! This teacher (I’m so sorry I forgot her name …) made a digital escape room in Google Drive by hiding passphrases in quizzes in a shared folder. In order to open all the documents, students needed to find all passphrases. Such a great idea and such a buzz in the classroom!

Role play video in English language class

Students created a menu for a restaurant in English and passed these around. In a next tasks, they had to write a scenario for a role play and record this conversation. All files where uploaded to a shared Google Drive folder for the teacher to grade the results.
This might seem like a daunting task (especially editing and sharing the video) but on the iPad, this is fairly easy.

From revolution to evolution

What I learned about this visit is that this school did take a very radical decision in their didactical thinking, but implemented this with a real long term vision. They set their goals and evaluate the project on a regular basis. Also very important is the scale of the project: they started small with only a selected and motivated team of teachers and students. Everyone in this 1:1-project has opted in. But there is a clear evolution towards a bigger part of the school being involved and already a critical mass has been achieved; next school year the project will grow even further.

Many thanks to Mark, Vivian and Robin for having us and a big thank you to all the teachers that opened up their classrooms for us today.

Icelandic inspiration

A few weeks ago, Apple announced the applicants who got selected to join the Apple Distinguished Educators program. As I was browsing the list, I noticed a familiar name. It was Ingvi Hrannar Ómarsson from Iceland. Seeing his name reminded me of an article he wrote in 2014 on how we organise school, classes and classrooms. It was titled 14 things that are obsolete in 21st century schools. The article is a good starting point to reflect on how your school is organised and what you can do to get it up to date.


  • Teachers that don’t share what they do. learn what you can do about it here
  • All students get the same.
  • Standardised tests.
  • Starting school at 8 o’clock for teenagers.
  • Isolated subjects for 40-80 minutes. (my favourite!)

Ingvi really builds a strong case to encourage every school leader and teacher to rethink education and challenge the status-quo.

Read the article here.

There is a follow-up with 10 more obsolete things.

Follow Ingvi on Twitter

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My blog workflow

Yesterday I wrote about Why every teacher should blog and almost instantly a friend who is also a teacher asked me about my blogging setup. So here goes:

The blog

The blog is part of my website. You’re visiting it now. A blog can be hosted on any blogging service like, tumblr or even twitter (if 144 characters is sufficient to tell your story). I chose to get the Full Monty and incorporate my blog on a professionally looking website.


Every website lives on a server. Although I have a home server (for backups and media sharing), I would never rely on it to host my website on. So I picked a Dutch web hosting company called versio and subscribed for some space on their servers. They provide all the support I need and are very cheap. Your server space is only an IP address so you also need a …

Domain name

I already own several domain names including this one ( I registered it with the same company for a very very reasonable yearly price. Next step was to hook up the domain name to the webhosting. The instructions from versio are very straight forward and dummy proof.


Next you need to start building the website. I chose WordPress as a platform. The installation literally takes 4 minutes, choose a theme and tweak whatever you want.

Gradually I added more static pages to the site: a home page, contact page and other bla-bla-bla. Categories for blog posts came later.

Drafting the text

You can write your text straight into the WordPress admin pages, but I almost never complete a blog post in one session. That’s why I searched for an app or service to make drafts in. As you know, my device setup is a MacBook Pro, iPad and iPhone. At first, I just used the Notes app and copy-pasted the text in WordPress. I then did some layout in WordPress online.

Recently I heard about Markdown. In essence, Markdown is the most readable code on the planet. HTML (what is used on most web sites) is a language that you need to learn. It is also totally not dummy proof: making any small mistake can completely ruining your page.

In Markdown you can just type your text and use really simple syntax to outline your text.

I’ve said it before, but I write the text in an app called iWriter Pro because of its lack of distracting features, support for iCloud syncing and support for Markdown.


Be a good digital citizen so don’t steal. All images are either my own or licensed for non-commercial reuse. The latter are fairly easy to find: is a great website with amazing images and Google Image Search lets you filter images on usage rights. Wikimedia is also a great resource for imagery. All assets on Wikimedia carry clear instructions on how to use them in your publications.


A lot of my work in iOS relies on one amazing app: WorkFlow. It was recently acquired by Apple and enables automation on iOS. For blogging I use a workflow that I created after getting inspired by Brian Foutty. The workflow accepts plain text (in this case with Markdown syntax) and publishes it to my blog. It’s magic.

Find the workflow here

Spread the word

Social media is your friend. People will not just find your blog so you have to spread word about it. Browse Twitter to find what hashtags are trending in your topic area. Tag people on social media that you know benefit from your opinions and ask for feedback. Ask the same people to retweet or share your post. Make your message go viral.

Good luck!

image credit: – license: CC0

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Waarom elke leraar een blog zou moeten hebben

Digitale portfolio’s zijn heden ten dage een hot topic. Ze geven leerlingen de kans om authentieke auteurs te zijn en hun leertraject vast te leggen. Één van de eenvoudigste manieren om een digitaal portfolio te maken is in een blog. Maar laat je niet verrassen: een blog is ook één van de krachtigste tools die een leerling kan hebben om zijn leren te documenteren. Op een blog kan je zowat alles kwijt: platte tekst maar ook afbeeldingen, video en andere online inhouden.

Geef het goede voorbeeld

Als we het erover eens zijn dat een blog een power tool is voor leerlingen, waarom omarmen we het medium dan niet zelf als leraar? Ik wil dan ook een sterk pleidooi houden om leraars aan het bloggen te zetten.

Is de dag van een leraar nog niet vol genoeg? En nu wil je dat we ook nog een blog online gaan zetten?!

Als we willen dat onze leerlingen online publiceren, moeten we dat zelf ook doen. Laat me toe om enkele redenen op te sommen waarom dat een goed idee is.

1. Deel je passie

Jij bent een expert en je toont jouw expertise elke dag in de klas met je leerlingen. Ik vind het frappant te merken hoe weinig leerkrachten hun werk en ervaringen delen met collega’s, laat staan delen buiten de school. In Vlaanderen moeten leerkrachten elke les rapporteren wat ze gedaan hebben met het oog op inspecties. Veel leerkrachten vinden dit overbodige administratie. Waarom maken we dit niet zinvoller door dit ook buiten de schoolagenda te delen? En er kan ook meer gedeeld worden: wat werkte en wat niet, heb je ergens een boeiende nascholing gevolgd, toon het werk van je leerlingen en andere dingen waar jij trots op bent. Stellen dat je niet interessants te delen hebt is onzin.

2. Reflectie

Voor mij persoonlijk is het schrijven van een blogpost een manier om te reflecteren over mijn werk. Ik wil voor mezelf evalueren waar ik mee bezig ben, hoe ik dingen aanpakte en vooral waarom ik dingen doe. De feedback die ik daarbij van lezers krijg is een vitaal deel van dit reflectieproces.

Wat me nog het meest helpt, is dat ik ook feedback krijg van mensen die buiten mijn onderwijscocon leven.

Op school krijgen we dagelijks een massa indrukken en ideeën toegeschoven. Zo veel dat ik ’s avonds nood heb om mijn hoofd “lege te maken”. Schrijven zorgt ervoor dat ik even kan reflecteren en bovendien die ideeën deftig registreer voor later.

3. Professionele ontwikkeling

Ik schrijf niet alleen, ik lees ook veel. Dat is een logisch gevolg van het maken van een blog. Uiteraard lees ik veel educatieve content, zowel in het Engels als Nederlands.

4. Breid je netwerk uit

Ik vermeldde daarnet de onderwijscocon al. Online publiceren en delen met de wereld doorbreekt die. Als ik een tweet stuur met een nieuw artikel bereik ik daarmee een immens potentieel publiek. Heel wat van de volgers ken ik persoonlijk en sommigen heb ik ook al mogen ontmoeten maar de overgrote meerderheid van de mensen uit mijn persoonlijk leernetwerk hebben namen die beginnen met een ‘@‘. Waarschijnlijk is het uitbouwen van dit globale netwerk wel het meest waardevolle aan bloggen.

Hoe begin je er nu aan?

Mijn blog staat op een zelf-gehost domein en gebruikt het platform WordPress. Om artikels te schrijven, gebruik ik iWriter Pro (op iOS en macOS). Ik heb deze app gekozen o.w.v. zijn cleane interface, zijn mogelijkheid om te syncen tussen al mijn toestellen en omdat-ie markdown ondersteunt (zoek dat maar eens op met Google, je zal er weg van zijn).

Als je op zoek bent naar een “Bloggen voor dummies”-oplossing, kijk dan eens naar of

afbeelding: – licentie: CC0

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A Learning Device For Every Student – Part III – Getting everyone on board

So we decided that 1:1 iPad was the way to go Read here how we made this decision.

Next step was the most important step to take: plan. What do you need to think of before you welcome students with iPad in your class? A lot!

Apple provides with a good framework to bring an iPad implementation to a good end. They call it ‘Eight Elements for Success’ and they’ve published it as a free resource on the iBookstore.

The book guides your team through essential questions you need to answer before and during your implementation.

Let’s discuss some of the elements.

Professional Learning

On the pedagogical side, it is quite obvious that staff needs to be trained in the use of iPad.

Before you train your staff, they need to get a device. We agreed that iPad is the best suitable solution for our students. We don’t agree that it is the best device for a teacher. There are some tasks where a teacher benefits more from using a desktop class computer. Nevertheless, we need to give each teachers an iPad: they need to build expertise in the use of it. To build this expertise, we created a PD program that started right after our Christmas break (teachers received their iPad just before the break). The program is not compulsory and consists of small lunch break sessions, workshops that last 90 minutes or three hours, walk in 1:1 training, a website with loads of inspiration, apps and other things.

These sessions include what we’ve called First Aid With iPad, a course for novice iPad users (yes, we have loads of them) with essential skills like personalising the device, camera use, getting to know the keyboard, accessibility features and much more. It also included SOS with iPad: What if it goes wrong?: a brief course on troubleshooting tech issues.

Much more important is pedagogical training: How do we design new learning activities with iPad? How do we create better learning experiences?

Thankfully great assistance is available. I’d like to give a big shout out to the team behind The Joy Of Professional Learning. They create amazing resources on providing the best professional learning. We also have loads of help from the ICT Atelier team in Belgium. These trainers are the best you can get.

Community (and communication) & Team

You need to get as much people that are ‘affected’ by the program involved as possible. That’s why we expanded our internal task force twice, informed the complete staff a month before we did the teacher roll-out and informed the students and parents half way through our preparation period.

It was surprising how little resistance we had. Personally, I was very anxious about the response we’d get from colleagues and especially parents. Some colleagues surprised me (in positive and other ways), but I was struck by the good reception we had from parents.

In our planning we decided that staring with the whole school was a little bit of a too big step. So we selected our first grade (12y olds) and fourth grade to be the pioneers in this project. The first graders are new students to our school. Last Sunday we started the enrolment for next school year during our Open School Day. Surprisingly all seats were filled after a few hours. I guess this means parents are backing our decision!

We also created a web page to inform anyone about our 1:1 initiative. You can read it here in Dutch. It includes a video of the event we did for our third grade parents and FAQs.

Environment Design

IT infrastructure. Yes, you might think it is boring, but it is essential. Don’t slim down on WiFi. You need it and you need a lot of bandwidth. Use Caching Server too.

But it is more than that: rethink classrooms and your school lay-out. Do we have need for rows of tables? A blackboard in front of the classroom? Do we want to project the iPad screens?

And then software: how do we manage the iPads? MDM is your friend! We chose Zuludesk to manage our devices. Apple provides with good guidelines on MDM to help you.

Student Learning

I cannot repeat it enough: it’s not about the device, it’s about the learning. How do we create a culture of learning, bring intrinsic motivation to students?

We don’t want forget this item, but for the moment it seems we are stuck in finding apps and ways to enhance our existing teaching strategies. It is imperative that our teaching activities evolve . We are already seeing great initiatives, so we are confident that this train is also starting to roll. But like any train, they don’t take a jump start.

Next time: planning the roll-out. Yes, my dear tech geeks: this one’s for you!!

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Has the word processor gone obsolete in education?

We have done it like that for a long time

At the moment we are having a discussion at school about productivity suites in our school. Until now we have taught our students the latest version of Microsoft Word on Windows. Without a doubt, MS Word is the mainstream word processor in education, at home and business.

We will be a 1:1-iPad school starting from next September and need to decide what software we will be teaching our students in class. The Flemish curriculum does not specify any brand, so schools and teachers are free to choose a productivity suite.

Personally, I feel reluctant to choose MS Word as the word processor to stick to: it has a fairly steep learning curve en we have noticed that the skills students acquire in the first and third grade are almost never used in other subject areas so they get lost. Let me clarify: in the first year of secondary school, students learn MS Word to write short text and create a lay-out. They do learn a lot: text wrapping, styles, numbering, etc. In the third grade in computer science, they build upon this knowledge with sections, headers and footers, citations and footnotes, … The whole shebang. When students reach the fifth grade, they need to use these skills intensively to write a high school equivalent of a thesis.

Every year we notice that the knowledge and skills they learned in the first and third year have disappeared by the time they really need them.

So the question arises whether this learning path with MS Word is the way to go.

Can we postpone the instruction on advanced features of the word processor to a later moment in the school career?

Writing skills and motivation

Apparently students don’t “play by the rules” when they use a word processor for their writing assignments and they don’t have the attitude to use styles, sections and other useful tools to avoid turning writing a text a living hell. Probably they don’t see the advantage.

And is it really necessary to get every writing assignment printed on a sheet of paper and dropped in the teachers’ inbox at the teachers’ lounge? This text most certainly not: I’m publishing it to the web. I won’t print it because I will reach a much smaller audience than when I publish it on the internet. Even more: I don’t need a word processor for most of my writings. The user interface is distracting and I have no need for all these tools (I wrote this in iWriter on my iPad).

I also don’t care a lot about text formatting: your browser (and my markdown-syntax) will do it. I bring structure to the text with a title, headers and an occasional block quote like this one:

What do we want to teach? A product or a skill?

Each student who is intrinsically motivated, learns better. Can we all agree on that? The odds are rather small that there are many students in your class who get intrinsically motivated by writing an essay and handing it in to you. Of course there are some letter crunchers that go crazy on writing a 600 word book essay, but this is a small minority.

What does work? Connecting with others. Yes, I will go and have a look at the visitor stats of this blog post tomorrow and I will rejoice if my tweets get retweeted and posts get liked. It pushes me to write better articles.

And does every writing assignment have to produce a written text? No! Is drafting a scenario for a video not a writing assignment? Or what about creating a digital portfolio in a blog?

A learning environment with technology allows for new tasks to be developed that could not be completed in a tech-free learning environment. Do a Google Search on SAMR, please.

And what about the “mini thesis”?

Of course students will benefit from learning the skills to deliver a long text with great text formatting. But let’s teach it when they need it and are going to use it. Or even better: probably your student will have watched a series on YouTube: “How to edit text in MS Word”.

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Is de tekstverwerker overbodig geworden?

De platgetreden paden bewandelen of niet?

Momenteel hebben we op school een discussie over welke productiviteitssuite (en meer bepaald welke tekstverwerker) we gaan aanleren op school vanaf volgend schooljaar. Tot nu gebruikten we op school daarvoor de recentste versie van Microsoft Office op Windows voor. Het is duidelijk dat MS Word zowel in het onderwijs, in het bedrijfsleven als in de privésfeer de leidende tekstverwerker is.

Vanaf 1 september gebruiken we op school de iPad 1:1 (elke leerling zijn eigen iPad) en de vraag rijst dus: welke tekstverwerker gaan we aanleren in het eerste jaar in de lessen ICT en in het derde jaar in informatica. Het leerplan van het VVKSO schrijft geen product dat moet gebruikt worden voor, dus de school en vakgroep is dus vrij om voor een product te kiezen.

Persoonlijk heb ik er moeite mee om MS Word aan te leren: de leercurve is best stijl en we merken duidelijk dat leerlingen de vaardigheden die ze in het eerste en derde leerjaar aanleren onvoldoende onderhouden om ze effectief te gebruiken. Ik verduidelijk: in het eerste leerjaar leren leerlingen MS Word kennen om teksten te schrijven en op te maken. De aangeleerde vaardigheden gaan best ver: na het vervolledigen van de lessenreeks kunnen leerling o.a. met stijlen werken en kennen ze de fijne kneepjes van tekstomloop. In het derde leerjaar in het vak informatica wordt hierop verder gebouwd met o.a. stijlen, werken met secties en andere meer gevorderde functies. In de derde graad moeten leerlingen dan in het vak seminarie of voor hun geïntegreerde proef een uitgebreid tekstdocument maken (met alle toeters en bellen zoals inhoudstafels, afwijkende kop- en voetteksten, voetnoten, …) Elk jaar blijkt dat leerlingen de vaardigheden die ze in het eerste en derde jaar geleerd hebben, niet meer onder de knie hebben.

De vraag of de huidige verticale leerlijn waar MS Word op staat wel klopt, dringt zich op.

Kunnen we leren werken met gevorderde functies van een tekstverwerker niet uitstellen tot een later moment zodat die vaardigheden ook dadelijk toegepast kunnen worden?

Schrijfvaardigheden en motivatie

Blijkbaar gebruiken leerlingen om schrijfvaardigheden te oefenen of te tonen hun tekstverwerker dus niet volgens ‘de regels van het spel’ en hebben ze de attitude niet om stijlen, secties en andere nuttige tools te gebruiken om van lange teksten geen hel op aarde te maken. Waarschijnlijk zien ze er de noodzaak ook niet van in.

En is het wel nodig om elke schrijfopdracht op een A4’tje te printen en in het inlevervakje van de leerkracht te droppen? Deze tekst is dat al zeker niet: hij komt op het web terecht. Ik print hem niet uit, omdat ik dan een veel kleiner potentieel publiek heb dan wanneer ik hem op het net publiceer. Bovendien gebruik ik liever geen tekstverwerker: de interface leidt me af en ik heb al die tools niet nodig om deze tekst te schrijven (ik gebruik nu iWriter op mijn iPad)

Van lay-out trek ik me ook niet veel aan: jouw browser (en mijn markdown-syntax) doet dat wel. Ik breng structuur in de tekst met een titel, headers, en een occasionele blockquote zoals deze:

Wat willen we aanleren? Een product of een vaardigheid?

Elke leerling die intrinsiek gemotiveerd is, leert beter. Kunnen we het daarover eens zijn? De kans dat een leerling intrinsiek gemotiveerd is door een taak waarin hij een essay moet schrijven en indienen bij zijn leraar, is eerder klein. Uiteraard zit er in jouw klas misschien wel één van die lettervreters die in extase raakt als hij jou zijn boekbespreking van 600 woorden kan overhandigen, maar die kinderen vormen toch een kleine minderheid.

Wat werkt dan wel? Betrokkenheid van anderen. Ja, ook ik ga morgen kijken in mijn statistieken hoeveel mensen deze pagina bekeken hebben en hoeveel retweets of likes mijn post krijgt. Het drijft mij ook om betere stukken te schrijven.

En moeten schrijfopdrachten uiteindelijk een tekst opleveren? Neen! Is een scenario voor een video schrijven dan ook geen schrijfopdracht? Of een digitaal portfolio bijhouden in de vorm van een blog?

Een leerproces met technologie laat nu eenmaal toe om heel andere onderwijstaken te geven dan in een leerproces zonder. Google even SAMR, a.u.b.

En die scriptie dan?

Uiteraard zullen leerlingen nog wel nood hebben aan de skills om het schrijven van een lange tekst met correct gebruik van de tools in een tekstverwerker tot een goed einde te brengen. Maar laat ons ze dat dan leren wanneer ze het nodig hebben. Of beter nog: de leerling heeft tegen dan misschien zelf al op YouTube gekeken naar “How to edit text in MS Word”.

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Learn all about iPad automation from Brian Foutty

You might know that I did a series on this blog about using iPad as your only computer. In order to make that a success, you need some power tools. Automator has always been such a work horse on macOS. The app (yes, it is on your Mac too!) allows you to create menu actions, small apps and workflows to automate lots of tasks that would otherwise consume a lot of time. Renaming files, cropping and resizing pictures, combining PDFs, …

Apple never made Automator for iOS, but three young guys did and they named it Workflow. The app was recently acquired by Apple and they made it a free download from the App Store.

Fellow ADE Brian Foutty collects an amazing collection of Workflows on his blog that can seriously speed up your work on iPad. My all time favourite is the YouTube Downloaded. I know this is against YouTube regulation, but …

Not only does Brian list these Workflows, he also explains what they do. By doing that, he thus also teaches how to create your own workflows or tweak existing ones.

Read more about Workflow here.

Go to Brian’s website here.


Oh, and don’t forget to read his blogpost and Chromebooks and the new iPad!

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Listen to ‘The Wired Educator Podcast’

I strongly recommend this podcast by fellow ADE Kelly Croy. Kelly is an ADE from Oak Harbour, Ohio and teaches in Middle School. He is also a Keynote Speaker on art and education and published author. I had the privilege of talking to Kelly on Global ADE Institutes and the guy is truly inspiring.

Episodes of the Wired Educator Podcast are approximately one hour. Kelly had some pre-roll with follow-up of previous episodes and things he likes to share himself. The main feature of every episode consists of an interview with anyone interesting from the educational world. This can be an author, a classroom teacher, school leader, …

Kelly has the ability to find the right people for his podcast and ask the right questions. It is always a delight hearing his interviews.

On a personal level, it is also very pleasant for me to listen to this podcast since Kelly picks a lot of friends from the ADE community to interview. We don’t get a lot of opportunities to see each other, so this series sort of gets us back in touch.


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A Learning Device for Every Student? – Part I

Start with why

My school has always been a pioneer when it comes to integrating technology in the classroom. Previous school leaders envisioned that technology brings major assistance to the instructional activities of teachers and the learning process of the students. So every classroom used to have overhead projectors, we have had laptop carts, iPad devices, Android tablets, computer labs, LCD projectors and interactive whiteboards, heavy integration of an ELO. You name it, we explored its use in our classrooms.

More recently we have reached a tipping point. The learning process and student and professional life of our staff and students became more and more digital and online. We live in a connected world where we have almost 24/7 access to knowledge, peers and experts near and far. Not bringing this 21st century reality into our school would put us in a parallel universe. If we want to make sure the years a student spends in our school is worth the time and effort, we can not put ourselves in that parallel universe and we need to prepare them for the real world.

How might we achieve this?

That’s a question that has been puzzling me in the last 5 years as technology advisor and administrator.
Do we need more technology? Can we do this with the infrastructure we already have?
I do not want technology for the technology. Any device is an investment and needs constant renewing: no other environment changes at the pace IT changes.

We concluded very quickly we do need more tech in our school: in 2010 we had a computer/student ratio of about 15:1. By 2015 we lowered this to about 5:1. Getting access to a computer requires making reservations of either a whole computer lab or a number of tablets.

It’s not about the device, it’s about the learning!

If we want to create learning opportunities anywhere and anytime, we also need access to the tools that support these learning activities anywhere and anytime. Conclusion: we need to bring the 5:1 ratio down to 1:1.

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