This and That about Learning Tools

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PATRICK LUMUMBA opines that E-learning may wipe out illiteracy. That’s an optimistic view; I like it, but don’t yet understand how to overcome the financial requirement for providing elearning to everyone.

Ray Schroeder says he looks for vision and new direction in educational technology on the web. The cutting edge exists on the part of the Web that is living, unpolished, free of word limits, and not always beautifully edited. Educators can easily find models of the diversity of these efforts. I wonder where other educators find inspiration for their vision?

Dual boot Windows XP on the new Intel Core Duo based Macs and win $6,000. Come on, tech teach, win it for education!

It’s useful to revisit comments by Will Richardson about plagerism. He describes hitches teachers address as mobile communication technologies increasingly participate in schooling. Thanks for your comments, Will. In this context, I wonder how we adjust “testing” so that we assess what a learner knows, vs. what a learner can find out.

I don’t like to refer to anonymous site writers, but this one caught my attention. I’ve heard faculty lament the issue she describes. I wonder if others share her observations and solutions. I wonder how does mobile communications technology fit into the problem or a solution? In Favor of Thinking opines: One of the pervasive dynamics of graduate education (both postitive and negative) is that of replication: graduate advisors are often thought to be (or think of themselves as) turning out younger, newer, fresher versions of themselves. Or the department is thought to stamp you in its mold, to be turning out X number of new units per year.

But the graduate students I have here at Large Urban U are nothing like the graduate student I was, just as this department is nothing like that department. I couldn’t replicate myself and my peers even if I thought that was a good thing to do (which I don’t).

Tamar Lewin reports that Philadelphia public schools are looking for major donors in exchange for putting their names on buildings, the same way sponsors have their names on professional sports stadiums and hospital wings. Hmmm. The story offers food for “creative” thought. I’ve raised major funds for educations buildings. The Philadelphia story leaves me uneasy, but not surprised. I think the school board should plan for more mobile communications vs. more bricks and mortar.

Ian Jukes and Donna Walker Tileston offer interesting comments about teaching and learning digital kids in the New Digital Landscape. It’s a useful summary of thinking shared among teachers (without external empirical validation) for a number of years. They assert that students are different today than, say, in 1935. These differences have profound implications for teachers and learners.

Drawn! is a collaborative weblog for illustrators, artists, cartoonists, and anyone who likes to draw. They offer many creative smiles and a forum for those wanting to participate. Good site for mobile educators to monitor and add Tablet PC digital ink.

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Robert Heiny
Robert W. Heiny, Ph.D. is a retired professor, social scientist, and business partner with previous academic appointments as a public school classroom teacher, senior faculty, or senior research member, and administrator. Appointments included at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Peabody College and the Kennedy Center now of Vanderbilt University; and Brandeis University. Dr. Heiny also served as Director of the Montana Center on Disabilities. His peer reviewed contributions to education include publication in [I]The Encyclopedia of Education [/I](1971), and in professional journals and conferences. He served s an expert reviewer of proposals to USOE, and on a team that wrote plans for 12 state-wide and multistate special education and preschools programs. He currently writes user guides for educators and learners as well as columns for [I]TuxReports[/I].com.