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Welcome Home


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This is the slideshow that Bill Sullivan of Suffield Academy and Andrew Watt of the Rectory School presented at the CAIS Conference on 21st Century Learning "Welcome to the Digital Nation" on October 20, 2009. Conference archives at

This is a rough draft of the talk, without audio overview, but with the addition of hyperlinks to the relevant images and where necessary text.

Published in: Education, Technology
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Welcome Home

  1. 1. Welcome Home: a Guide to the Digital Nation By Bill Sullivan, of Suffield Academy & Andrew B. Watt, of the Rectory School October 20, 2009
  2. 2. Talk back at this Conference online hashtag: #dn21
  3. 3. Outline of Talk: 1) Creation story 2) Digital nation! 3) Tech and tech-related skills are a challenge (16-30) 4) New classroom management skills & teacher self- development (31-36) 5) Adopt growth and resilient mindset 6) FutureShock — the ever-changing landscape
  4. 4. Partnership for 21st Century Skills
  5. 5. Partnership for 21st Century Skills Learning and innovation skills increasingly are being recognized as the skills that distinguish students who are prepared for increasingly complex life and work environments in the 21st century. • Creativity and Innovation • Critical Thinking and Problem Solving • Communication and Collaboration
  6. 6. 21st Century Learning Environments • Creates learning practices, human support and physical environments that will support the teaching and learning of 21st century skill outcomes. • Supports professional learning communities that enable educators to collaborate, share best practices and integrate 21st century skills into classroom practice. • Enables students to learn in relevant, real world 21st century contexts (e.g., through project-based or other applied work) • Allows equitable access to quality learning tools, technologies and resources. • Provides 21st century architectural and interior designs for group, team and individual learning. • Supports expanded community and international involvement in learning, both face-to-face and online.
  7. 7. Our Own Right-Brain Effforts (Thanks, Kate!) Kate Knopp, Independent Day School
  8. 8. Dave Gray, Principal, An Metaphor = 1000 Images
  9. 9. The digital nation doesn't really have schools yet. Lots of eager learners. Lots of eager teachers. Newspapers and Libraries too. Even churches.
  10. 10. The Digital Nation needs skilled, knowledgeable risk-taking adventurers. You're not confined to any one process. Nor were immigrants in the late 1800s. Nor are we today. CRITICAL THINKERS, Please Apply. Text
  11. 11. Zealous immigrants know their new country... ...often better than the natives. source: US Gov't, therefore public domain.
  12. 12. Recognize Power of "Read-Write Web" Tim Berners-Lee, the British engineer who designed the World Wide Web, wanted anyone to be able to read anything, and to have anyone be able to write anything.
  13. 13. The Read-Write Web READ WRITE take in, absorb, express, explain, display, investigate, collect, communicate, present, research, detect, dive show, talk, teach, film, in, summarize, digest, photograph, draw, observe, watch, listen excite... WEB connect, knot, link, dialogue, team up, join up, meet up, field trip, empanel, lead, guide, spin, discuss, brainstorm, mind-map, outline, design, harness, develop....
  14. 14. A Network is a Learning Tool & A Distraction! Discover that learners are everywhere, of all ages and intentions on the Internet. It's for you.
  15. 15. The Realities of the Mess Do you privilege one skill-set over another?
  16. 16. Before We Used Tech... 1) "But my classroom is so orderly!" 2) "Isn't technology in the classroom a distraction?" 3) Loss of "sage on stage".. ... ∞) "Is it really learning?"
  17. 17. But I operated on a model of scarcity. How do I monitor the technology and the student at the same time?
  18. 18. This is a computer, now. How does this model — in my hand, almost anywhere & studying almost anything — change my teaching?
  19. 19. 21st century media
  20. 20. You don't have to use (modern) Tech... A stone age sundial has a lot to teach kids, too... Photo © Andrew B. Watt 2009
  21. 21. Use the best of the Old Pedagogy Content Counts! Different Modalities matter! Spelling & Grammar Matter! Photo © Andrew B. Watt 2009
  22. 22. But Celebrate Best of New Pedagogy Value linkages between ideas as much as the ideas. Quantity leads to quality Value Teamwork! Photo © Andrew B. Watt 2009
  23. 23. Peer Review Matters in Blogs More than 500 people read this guy's blog post in a 3-day timespan — like a photocopied newspaper article, it got passed around... lots of people read it... passed it on... read it... Did you give this essay a "grade book A" ? Photo © Andrew B. Watt 2009 with’s screencast
  24. 24. Students Show their Wiki work in History Classes His deeds show initiative. He sought definitions. How do we reward this learning? Photo © Andrew B. Watt 2009 with’s screencast
  25. 25. Networked Learning is Data-Driven The frequency of student contributions is logged and measured with wikis and with blogs. RSS feeds, like this one, track total and individual student contributions Photo © Andrew B. Watt 2009 with’s screencast
  26. 26. "Appropriate Use" conversations with students are best to have while you are using the technology. Photo © Bill Sullivan 2009
  27. 27. Not all student work has to end as only a "virtual product" — it could wind up on a store shelf. Is your school store stocked with student designs?
  28. 28. Privileged Kids May Have Computers... But they may not know how to use them as learning tools.
  29. 29. Students with Learning Differences... May understand their computers much better as learning tools, because they'd be lost without them.
  30. 30. Move around more in classes with technology: . "screen down" for Check . discussion; screens. OFTEN "screen up" for note-taking
  31. 31. 1/2 the time, "tech-savvy" friends do this... (from
  32. 32. The teacher used to be the only expert You can't do everything perfectly even with tech... delegate and expect results. Share your power and create leadership openings for your students. Expect them to fill big shoes.
  33. 33. NOW: think of yourself as captain of a team of competent people.
  34. 34. Are you solving puzzles, or going places? Send your team out on a MISSION
  35. 35. Role Model The Power of a Resilient Mindset
  36. 36. Robert Brooks Raising Resilient Children
  37. 37. All of you are in growth mindset right now... .... you're looking to broaden your horizons.
  38. 38. This Digital Nation isn't Settled Yet 19 October 2009 — Yesterday Louisiana State Legislature passes law requiring all electronic communications between teachers and students, on both public and private devices, to be logged and documented (transcribed), and records saved for one full year.
  39. 39. On the Opposite Side of the Spectrum Finland's government declares broadband Internet to be a legal right for all 5.5 million Finnish citizens. — October 14, 2009 Last week! Broadband is defined as 1 Mbps as intermediate goal, 100Mbps in two years. Switzerland did the same thing in 2006.
  40. 40. 14 October 2009 SAME DAY! WiFi Alliance announces, in 18 months, cellphones, new microwaves and other electronics will function as WiFi ports thanks to hard-and-software upgrades, covering everywhere with a big fluffy blanket of Internet.
  41. 41. "The illiterate of the 21st Century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn." — Alvin Toffler
  42. 42. So, on the margin of a flooded river, trees bending to the torrent live unbroken, while those that strain against it are snapped off. So Father, pause, and put aside your anger and be willing to listen to wise advice. — Haemon, in Antigone by Sophocles
  43. 43. Engage!
  44. 44. Questions, Comments, Concerns