Here are my session materials for day three of the 2013 Thinking and Learning Conference in Melbourne. Hope you find them useful:
Caught in the grips of change that is at once urgent and poorly understood, educators interested in creating 21st century learning environments often lose sight of the fact that there is nothing inherently magical or revolutionary about technology. Technology is only magical and revolutionary when accomplished teachers find ways to make learning more efficient and effective with new digital tools and services. In this session, participants are introduced to a process for making choices about the role that technology can and should play in their classrooms and schools.
Exploding on the social media scene in July of 2006, Twitter – a microblogging service that allows users to publicly share and follow short, 140-character messages with one another – has rapidly become one of the most popular online destinations on the Web. Sadly – thanks to a sea of politicians posting naughty pictures and celebrities pumping their own egos – Twitter is often poorly understood. In this session, designed for Twitter beginners, participants are shown just how important Twitter can be to professional educators.
No matter how old they are, our students WANT to make a difference in their world. Using digital tools to raise awareness about important issues – a process known as clicktivism – is a great strategy for tapping into that desire to get involved and a great way to incorporate traditional academic skills into real-world activities that resonate with kids. In this session, participants are introduced to the role that blogs can play in classrooms committed to causes AND the curriculum.