The Wireless Decade

car wash

I’m sitting in line at the car wash adding a blog post after reading some detailed articles regarding our wireless learners. Not so long ago I would have sat with a newspaper instead. I would have been limited to the content provided by the editors and authors of the day. Still an enriching experience but now I can direct my attention on the subjects I’m most interested in. They are at my fingertips. I’ve become the curator of my own learning.

At home one of the kids is using YouTube to develop a skill set in movie making. He’s spent a couple hours every night learning the tool and checking other artists creations to compare his own skills. He’s 13. He epitomizes today’s learner.

As we gear up for the movement towards BYOD devices in the classroom as a strategic plan instead of by accident, there’s a number of concerns bubbling to the murky surface that is the understanding of the learning community. Questions are focused on responsibility for the most part. It’s about damage and security and ownership. I have to admit that those concerns strike me as odd. I suppose it’s the teacher in me, but I would hope their first concerns would have been about improving learning.

The number of resources busting loose on the web related to the benefit of personal devices as a part of student learning are beginning to pile up. The articles generally expand on the notion of gamification of learning, the benefit of personalized devices and student organization and ubiquitous access.

As I work to engage parents, I’ll be adding links and refer to the research in future posts. In the interim here’s an article posted by John Steele from Dell Computing regarding gamification of learning.

Wireless devices have proliferated the space we’re immersed in. My phone just pushed a notification that my garage door opened and then closed. I know the boys are off to school and that they remembered to close the door behind them. The WeMo motion sensors and the lights connected to them will automatically shut down shortly and the FitBit on my arm is tracking my efforts towards maintaining my goal of remaining under 40…

It is a wireless decade. The curiosity belongs intertwined with what this means to the average learner. A constant set of analytical data is available and the impact of that work can be seen everywhere.

Join the idea of wearable technology with data analytics and there’s a great chance we will be seeing adaptable learning that happens in real time as feedback from student owned devices lets both the teacher and the learner know if they are in the flow.

This decade is accelerating the use of all things wireless – as educators we need to seek the opportunities that will allow us to leverage these tools to help all kids learn.