Glow is providing the means for a small country to collectively harness it’s potential – build online communities and share opportunities for learning.
Marc Prensky “Digital Natives” – Professor Wim Veen coined phrase Homo Zappiens for children growing up in the digital age. New Technology leads to new skills. Immersed in the technology – new media leads to new skills and ways of learning. How do we as educators bridge the gap between teachers’ teaching preferences and pupils preferred learning styles. Different media different skills. As an example: Twitch speed – gamers have the same reflexes as fighter pilots Good at multi-tasking – surfing/on messenger to multiple friends/ listening to music/ on the phone all simultaneously Collaborative used to sharing ideas and resources and experiences How do you harness this motivation? What would an ideal scenario look like. This is where we created our vision for Glow. What would a 21 st century learning experience look like?
So, a 21 st Century curriculum to best meet learner needs is best provided via a solution like Glow
What is Glow? [click] Glow is the name for the Scottish Schools Digital Network – a digital network connecting every individual involved in Scottish education in a safe and secure online environment.
Some of the functions that are integral to Glow. All accessed via a single sign-on
The third element of the project is the one that every user comes into direct contact with. Glow is an internet portal that provides a host of online tools and resources for teachers, students and parents to use in their learning and teaching. What does the portal do?
In schools where we have 1 to 1 projects, we have seen students plan and work in ways more useful to them as individuals. It’s early days for this project, as it will take time to roll out across the entire country, but early signs of new pedagogy are interesting, challenging and inspiring. Greg Whitby quote – “Connect, Collaborate, Create”
I’ve included some screen shots here to show you what Glow does, and to give some curricular examples of how people are using it. Every user has access to the national site, where they can find out what is happening across the country, and receive targeted news for areas of education that they are interested in.
Whilst primarily a national intranet for those within Scotland, already links have been made internationally – this group shows 10 and 11 year olds collaborating with children their own age in Blantyre Malawi, using the tools of web conferencing to see and hear each other. Despite there being strong links between Scotland and Malawi, often this doesn’t filter down into the lives of the young people we teach. Were it not for Glow, Malawi for these students would be a country only read about in text books, but as one pupil commented “I can’t believe I’m speaking to someone my age, live, in another continent”.
For many, the most exciting feature of Glow is Glow Meet - the desktop web conferencing element. Web conferences allow users to engage in a rich multi-media environment. In Scotland, many of our schools are in remote areas, so web conferencing allows expertise to be brought into the classroom without the need of time consuming travel. Web conferences can also be recorded, allowing for any place, any time learning.
At a national level, users of Glow have access to centrally procured or shared rich learning content, that they would otherwise not have had access to.
Instead of having to rely on tried and tested ways of both staff and students having to remember complex URLs of websites, it’s an easy process to share hyperlinks in Glow to any other location on the web, and a simple process to incorporate windows into websites within areas of Glow as shown in this image.
Any user can create a learning space, known as a ‘Glow Group’, and invite other users to work with them there. This space can be customised to suit the needs of the group – the screenshot here shows a group with many different pages denoted by the tabs at the top, and different web parts shown by the yellow framed boxes.
Whilst based on 2003 technology (SharePoint 2003), it is an easy process to bring rich media such as Flash and web 2.0 content into Glow.
Each individual has their own space, which can be customised and shared with others – many students are already beginning to regard this as their own electronic portfolio, and collate work that they are proud of, and express themselves in their own space within a secure online environment, away from the potential dangers of the wider internet.
Flash based front end e.g Cool Iris
Mobile devices. Easy to use and work
Access to Glow via portal address here
Our Changing World John McCarney Head of Education Services, RM
Today's learner - coming soon to a school near you.......
Homo Zappiens Learning Strategies of the Digital Generation Professor Wim Veen, Deft University: Homo Zappiens: Growing Up in a Digital Age
Homo Zappiens Being in control of information flows
Homo Zappiens learns differently... Homo Zappiens twitch speed < multi tasking < non linear approaches < iconic skills first < connected < collaborative < active < learning by playing < instant payoff < fantasy < Homo Sapiens > conventional speed > mono tasking > linear approaches > reading skills first > stand alone > competitive > passive > separating learning and playing > patience > reality