Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Language Barriers?

Last week, I met with Alexander, head research consultant for the E-learning support project at the National Training Foundation for teachers in Moscow, Russia. He and Gregory, a vice principal he works with, were visiting our campus to learn more about the ways to get technology more integrated into their school culture. Today, I Bruce Schauble and I presented to a group of 26 visiting teachers from Beijing, China. In both cases, we gave a brief show-and-tell of the ways our school uses blogs, wikis, Moodle, and a few other software applications. And what's been most interesting to a few of the groups is the 1001 Flat World Tales Project.

What struck me today was that all of our schools, irregardless of our contexts, are asking the same questions about technology, and we all seem to be moving in the same direction. It's exciting to think about the network of schools that will soon be connected and collaborating. Here are the questions that keep coming up:

How can a school create an environment where technology enhances communication rather than creates a barrier, physical or otherwise?

How do we define responsible (mindful) consumption of media? How much time online is the right amount?

How does a school mandate integration of technology in classes without mandating it?

What does the support system look like for faculty and staff?

How are results measured?

How does a school manage their digital assets?

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