Monday, 14 January 2008

Platforms, Pedagogy and Personalisation

I went to BETT in Kensington Olympia last week for three days to enjoy the show but also to take notes about 'learning platforms' in England and more generally, advances in the
'personalisation' agenda south of the Scottish border.
There were plenty of companys ready to sell a tested learning platform and the seminars were full of presenters addressing the issue of personalisation in learning.
In the halls and stalls my first stop was the National Education Network stand.

Jim Henderson LTS, described to me some of the very useful resources available across the UK, through this network. Glow is at the top of the board: a Scottish solution with more to offer than many of the English based platforms. I lso saw Glow at the RM stand in Olympia 2. This where I saw a Alfred Wegners's tectonic plates in motion on an amazing globe.

I moved on to take a closer look at some of the learning platforms,VLEs and content behind this network. There were a number of stands offering useful information about personalisation and learning. Here are a few that I intend to revisit online:

The National Education Network
Department for Education and Skills
Student Voice

Fronter (see London Grid for Learning)
Gaia Technologies Plc

Netmedia Education (Espresso group)
Clipbank (Espresso group)
I also went to some seminars and found two very interesting speakers.
Personalising Learning-whats in it for me?
Bernie Zakary, Becta
“emerging technology is agnostic: it can reinforce traditional teaching or be used for self paced programs of learning”
“learning platforms are like car dashboards”
“teachers have a responsibility to design learning programs: personalising for the learner, with the learner and by the learner”
“every child should have access to an online learning space”
“teachers need more information about LPs and what to use first (functionality)”

Ten steps closer to the ICT pedagogy we need.
Ralph Taberrer
DCSF (keynote)

“In the UK,we have high standards in ICT and pedagogy but do not get all the benefits we should (improving life chances)”
“Other countries in Europe, are doing better with less technology”
The Ten steps (I think) are:
1. Self review and improvements in school management of technology.
2. More consistency in quality of teaching with technology.
3. Understand young people and their digital literacy better.
4. Allow learners to publish more often in school time.
5. Give parents more access to the school.
6. Remove artificial separations between formal and informal learning
7. Give clear advice on what to learn and how to learn.
8. Make the most of new technology; content and devices.
9. Provide an education service which is customer focused and personal.
10. Invest in change.

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