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Monday, February 06, 2006

People get ready... there's a train a comin'

We aren’t ready.

3 days ago I let all our schools know that BBC jam was available online. I wondered if this was a good idea, as if everyone started using it, it could cause significant stress on our network bandwidth. Out of 93 emails, I have had 3 replies. Does that mean loads of people are now making use of great free interactive online learning resources? Probably not. I suspect most schools will have printed it off and stuck it in a staff ‘news’ folder. Some staff may get to read the printout. For most, it will be lost in amongst a million other similar A4 shaped treatises. Some even might get as far as writing down the URL. Even fewer might get around to finding a spare minute in their over documented, over-worked, day to type the URL into their browser. I hope they do.

Some will be shocked at the high quality of presentation, and the fact that this is free. Others will begin to think about how they can use these fantastic, rich resources in their teaching. Most (if not all!) will be crippled by how they have to document this for the ‘improvement’ agenda in our schools.

For those that don’t know, there are other ways of tracking pupil achievement than red pen and paper – it’s called technology. This doesn’t mean printing out A4 planners! A machine can deal with data far better than we can. If I were having to assess and collate forward plans and the teaching and learning process in school there wouldn’t be a bit of paper in sight. Even the oldest machines that we have in schools can run a simple database.

Incidentally, forwarding an email costs you nothing. In fact, it saves you time and money in printing. Oh, and the added advantage is you can simply click on a URL instead of having to write it down. My thanks to the schools that did pass the email on electronically to teaching staff – maybe you are ready?


Blogger marlyn moffat said...

Our Heedie did pass it on today at our staff meeting and ....you know what.... they all scribbled the url in their notes...so you never know! What replies were you looking for? Despite the fact that we are crippled, there are those out there who will throw away the crutches and, keeping their heads below the parapet, just go and look.....then they'll have to come up for air and just use it, as I did today in my classroom!! Children loved it, but then they had a high on ICT today!!!! Do I detect an element of cynicism or perhaps sad pragmatism?

11:51 pm  
Anonymous Morag Macdonald said...

I too have had a look at some of the content- but I will go back and surf again. I told you that I had not liked the particular things I looked at..but that is not to say other things won't be better. There is a whole world wide web out there and when we can get online and stay online and access things in a reasonable amount of time (bandwidth permitting) I will be happier. I try to integrate ICT into my teaching and encourage others to do so. My class love ICT in their curriculum but like a lot of things in life..it all takes a lot longer than you thought it would...don't be disheartened!

9:47 pm  

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