A Few Words from CoSN Conference

by Jean Tower

It is difficult to find time to blog while at the CoSN conference. There is so much to do and learn and there are so many peers from around the world to talk to and share ideas with.

So, here are a few notes (most were tweets) from CoSN conference March 15, masquerading as a coherent post.

Looking forward to hearing Aneesh Chopra in a few minutes here in New Orleans at #CoSN11

Up now: #OpeningPlenary on #MasteringtheMoment w/Aneesh Chopra, @keithkrueger, William Rankin, Diane Roussel #CoSN11

Ed Zaiontz – current funding crisis also presents opportunities for technology to be applied to problems #CoSN2011

Speaker: Diane Roussel -Schools are expected to deliver a 21st century education with a19th century budget #CoSN2011

A superintendent clears the way, finds the money & pushes from behind #CoSN2011

Curriculum redesign has to be with teachers’ work – not canned from a vendor #CoSN2011

It matters what your priorities are – New Orleans used all sources of money to rebuild schools with state of the art technology; partnership with Cisco #CoSN2011

results – New Orleans had largest gains in achievement in the last 2 yrs with focus on innovating learning with technology #CoSN2011

outside partnerships for New Orleans were key – Cisco, USGS, Smithsonian & more #CoSN2011

some people don’t have vision – you have to draw them a picture #CoSN2011

New Orleans schools describes themselves as the 1st digital school district #CoSN2011

Speaker: William Rankin, medievalist, Abilene -shows map and train – why Abilene exists is this connection (the train)- #CoSN2011

People exist to make connections with one another

William Rankin shared some stats:

80% of children from 0 to 5 yrs use internet at least 1X per week in 2010#CoSN2011

70% of children from 0 to 5 yrs use cell phone every day in 2010#CoSN2011

Internet and mobile technology will not be kept out of schools #CoSN2011

Changing technology does not just change the delivery method – it changes the culture #CoSN2011

a technology becomes successful because it solves a problem, the cycle is – innovation to building to solidifying to destabilizing #CoSN2011

three ages of technology – middle ages – hand is only tool to distribute information (book) #CoSN2011

lectures started in schools because books were rare – teacher read book and students copied it #CoSN2011

Model of teaching in the 1st age was that students lived & worked with teachers – apprentice, contextual learning, learn by doing #CoSN2011

great way to learn – really hard to scale; 2nd age- rely on book #CoSN2011

we changed teaching fundamentally when we changed tech-in 2nd age teachers serve as conduit of info w/students as receivers #CoSN2011

now in third age – the age of data- #CoSN2011

Rankin showed a great graphic of a google search – searched for education technology – the number of hits returned would take 86 yrs to evaluate, by looking at each page for only 1 second & working full-time #CoSN2011

3rd age – teachers must serve as guides & mentors, must teach to assess information, not find it #CoSN2011

Speaker:Keith Krueger-reimagining learning in times of crisis #CoSN2011

tough economy-finding resources requires innovative thinking #CoSN2011

to do: 21st C skills, transform classrooms, support PD and PLC, strengthen leadership, balanced assessments #CoSN2011

employers want critical thinking, problem solving, effective communication, collaboration, team building, creativity & innovation #CoSN2011

how to master the moment? 1) There is now an average of 1 tech device for every 4 kids- we can improve this by leveraging student owned devices #CoSN2011

2nd-software expensive, hard to maintain: solution is cloud computing #CoSN2011

3rd-need collaboration & teamwork: use web 2.0 collaborative tools to stimulate engagement #CoSN2011

Birdville TX uses twitter, FB, Skype & YouTube, Teachers communicate with parents on FB-not on web pages #CoSN2011

today CoSN will release 2 new initiatives – mobile devices & online community for ed leaders #CoSN2011

I found the opening plenary to be very engaging and quite effective to have 4 different speakers. The participants heard from four thought leaders in education technology and the differing points of view created an exciting mosaic of ideas.

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