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e-learning sustainability

Written by David on August 24th, 2010.      0 comments


In my latest article for Interface Magazine I make the case for e-learning sustainability, principally around the notion of IP.  The true cost of the IP locked in a skilled teachers head has huge financial implications for schools.   I believe the impact on a school from the loss of IP, especially e-learning IP,  is not fully appreciated or even understood by many schools.  It is not only the financial impact it is also the momentum loss that also severely hinders and even kills e-learning initiatives.  Creating a climate of sustainability, actively creating strategies to add to a growing database of skills and knowledge are key for maximising the financial return on the massive investment that schools are making in e-learning.  Actively protecting IP in an organisation also creates a resource for new inductees to the school and helps to inculcate an e-learning philosophy within the school that is robust enough to withstand any member of staff, including the SMT leaving.

If maintaining your IP and e-learning momentum is important to you, I am happy to advise you on how you can go about this.  Please contact me.


E-learning and the death of www?

Written by David on August 22nd, 2010.      0 comments


image ref: http://cr.ucdavis.edu/images/iphone.jpg


Earlier in the week I Tweeted an article from Wired Magazine, it was their cover article which procalimed that the WWW is in terminal decline.  Subsequently the article has also been given a reality check by technologizer’s article which reminds us that life is not quite so black and white and that the screaming banner headlines are just that.

However the app based reality envisioned by the Wired article got me thinking.  Talk of the digital divide has subsided somewhat over the last couple of years, the proliferation of cheaper tools to access the internet has seen to that.  Palfrey and Gasser in their book Born Digital argue that the digital divide was never about equipment, but about skills.  The skills required to effectively work with the exponential explosion of information that the Internet gives us access to and the ablility to make sense of that whilst working collaboratively with our physical and virtual peers.  The key here is that we all have equal access to the information and resources on offer on the Internet.   The Internet has become the great leveller and videos like Karl Fisch’s Did You Know, highlight the potential issues confronting all of us competing on a globally leveled environment.

So what of the app based reality envisioned or predicted by the Wired Magazine article?  This potentially puts access to and control of content back in the hands of the providers and producers. To date making money out of the Internet has been a difficult thing to master.  Wired magazine itself has just made an iPad app for their magazine and Rupert Murdoch is trying to charge for his news content.  How long will it be before the only way to read Wired online is through an app - subscription payment model?   Apps are marketed as code that works, a classic case of “it does what it says on the tin.”  My fear is that if the app based predicitons become reality, then education and e-learning will be the poorer for it.  It will bring back the user pays bad old days, which creates divides, creates information walled gardens, which education will be on the outside of, unless they pay.  The beauty of the open, unfettered net is that creative teachers can design and implement packages, experiences and stimuli catered to the needs of their children.  An app based internet reality will either bypass education completely as the returns are not high enough for developers to spend any meaningful time in that sphere or the apps themselves will be created for mass market appeal and not terribly educationally relevant.  The solution?  Educators should jump on the app band waggon and start to develop apps for schools, either that or the net should remain open to all.


More class experts

Written by David on August 19th, 2010.      0 comments

To follow on from yesterday’s post I have been working in Wakaaranga School today and one teacher shared how she is managing the e-learning experts in her class.  She has not created an experts wall, rather she has made the display the students themselves!  With a collection of lanyards lying around from old conference registrations, she has got the students to make their own experts badges in the vein of the image below.  This is a brilliant idea.  The more expert you are the more lanyards you wear.  Which one of the students in her class will be the first to resemble the 80’s A-Team icon “Mr T”?


Cross pollination of ideas

Written by David on August 18th, 2010.      0 comments



I have already shared how Mel at Westmere has taken my suggested idea of class experts and has created her own experts wall.  She even went to the trouble of creating and sharing a template for others to use.  I have been promoting the great progress and innovation that Mel has been achieving at Westmere and it is obviously paying dividends. I was in Buckland School yesterday working with their lead teachers from the cluster and they took me to one of the rooms that is powering ahead with e-learning.  To my surprise and delight, there was Mel’s experts wall template and my experts idea thriving on a class wall that neither of us have had input into.  Proving that great ideas need spreading.  The slide show above shows the images from Buckland.


UK Edchat - Twitter feed

Written by David on August 6th, 2010.      0 comments


The 4 August front page of UK Edchat #ukedchat featured many of the tweets I had made and also linked to my resources page.  It is great to see that sharing in this way is getting the free tools and the e-learning message out to a much wider audience.  May this continue!


Ulearn10 promo video

Written by David on August 2nd, 2010.      0 comments

I was asked by the organisers of Ulearn10 to produce a short video for them to promote Ulearn10.


Literacy and numeracy games for the Year 1and 2 classroom

Written by David on August 2nd, 2010.      0 comments



In my previous post I mentioned how gratifying it is to see the fruits of your labours blossom, especially when a teacher gets the bit between their teeth and goes for it, especially in an e-learning sense.  I work at Wakaaranga Primary on Fridays and in the dying weeks of term two,  I spent  a rushed session with Lorraine, she had been squeezed in between two other teachers and needed a bit of guidance with her wiki.  She had set it up, but was struggling with how to do screen captures, upload those images and then create links.  I helped her with this.  Prior to this point Lorraine had not been overly keen on the prospect of e-leanring, but the wiki had somehow lit a flame of relevance or authenticity for her and when I saw her last week she showed me where her wiki had come to in a few short weeks, mostly through the school holidays.  Her site has become an amazing tool for all year 1 and 2 teachers in NZ schools and you should pass on the url to as many as you can.  What Lorraine has done has trawled the Internet for Flash games relevant to Literacy and Numeracy for year 1 and 2 students.  She has then graded the games by level and strand, it is a fantastic resource and she is continually adding to it.  Her wiki address is: http://room3c2010.wikispaces.com/

e-learning innovation

Written by David on August 2nd, 2010.      0 comments


It is really gratifying walking into a school and to see your suggestions, visions and ideas in action.  It has happened to me a couple of times in the last week.  The first was at Westmere School where I work on alternate Thursdays.  I have been working with Mel all year and she has been making great progress on a number of fronts, infact she is leading the e-learning drive in school.  Perhaps it would be better to say that she is driving the e-learning!  She has been using a number of tools that I introduced her to, she has been experimenting with a range of them until she found what she considered a best fit for her and her students.  The tool of the moment and probably for a while to come is http://vocaroo.com I love this tool.  It is so instant, so easy.  The mean time for PD and Vocaroo mastery is about 30 seconds.  Don’t believe me?  Try it for yourself.  If you can copy and paste you already have the required skills!  It is the potential of this simple tool that gives it its educational power and Mel has put it to good use on her classwiki.  She is currently using http://vocaroo.com as a reading running record.  In addition she has got students to reflect on work they have created.  Mel’s site is well worth spending some time on as she has also got the students to reflect on their individual e-learning progress this year.  This class and this teacher and eventually this school are only going to go from strength to strength with their e-learning.

You can visit room 14 here:



David has been a specialist in the field of elearning for over 12 years. He has presented on elearning at conferences in Europe, Australia and New Zealand. His consultancy work includes education and business clients. READ MORE


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