iSchool. Are You In?

27 Feb

I’m interested in the iSchool concept developed by highschooler Travis Allen (now a college student and founder of the non-profit organization iSchool Initative.) Below is the YouTube video that launched Allen’s idea:

While I don’t subscribe to everything Allen espouses,  I think he’s definitely onto something when it comes to digital learning.  My munchkin’s generation will see a day when iPads, e-readers and similar technology will replace traditional notepads and textbooks all together. 

Teachers and schools embracing opportunities to incorporate interactive technology in the classroom are giving their students an advantage versus shools with more traditional educational approaches.  And students who learn and absorb technology at an early age will not only learn to embrace technology, they’ll also become more fluid learners and less resistant to change than kids who are limited to the physical world of paper and pencils. 

What you think about the iSchool Initiative.  Do you think this is where schools are heading?  Do you feel strongly either way about Apple’s role in the development of these platforms and apps?   How long will it be before you, as a parent, buy your kid their own iPhone or iPad for educational (vs. entertainment) purposes?


8 Responses to “iSchool. Are You In?”

  1. Carla Blumenthal February 27, 2011 at 5:32 pm #

    I think the concept is there, but how it is implemented and on what platform will evolve. Apple is the leader right now for this type of work, but the concepts in of themselves should be of priority. We need to determine what the needs are in the classroom and then build applications around what is of importance.

    What Allen does is show how what we currently have can be packaged together in a different way to display where education could head. The foundation is there, but much more research into the actual needs of the classroom will need to take place before widespread tech-takeover should take place. Technology for the sake of technology does need necessarily mean improvement.

    • technotparent February 27, 2011 at 6:00 pm #

      Love this perspective! It will be interesting to see in the iSchool realm if schools/teachers will drive the app creation, if app creation will drive the cirriculum, or if it will be a reflexive network. Thanks for taking the time to share!

  2. Tom February 28, 2011 at 3:26 pm #

    A great concept but still alot of bugs to be worked out. Kids today have a great selection of digital learning tools at their disposal. What seems to be missing are smart digital organizational tools for both kids and teachers (and I’m speaking more as a parent than teacher).

    My kids’ school is moving much of its lesson plans and assignments online but in a method that at times is difficult for 10 and 12 year-olds to manage. Part of the challenge may just be getting adjusted to a new workflow but I still don’t yet see a suitable replacement for the old daily planner with all assignments clearly written out.

  3. NupurR February 28, 2011 at 6:01 pm #

    I’m really interested to see where these trends are heading as well. While I see the benefits of online learning, I also think there are some downsides. My husband and I were talking about this recently, and we were talking about some things that kids might not get to work on because of all these online components – such as handwriting. He said even his school growing up had computers, so nobody ever really needed to work on their handwriting. Just a thought and interested to see how schools will address things like these.

  4. NupurR March 3, 2011 at 4:28 am #

    Also wanted to let you know I shared this via my blog also. I’m definitely interested in looking at how social media, etc. are affecting schools, so this fit in perfectly.


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