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Monday, April 22, 2013

1-to-1 - Now and Then


I’m prepar­ing for a trip to school in South Korea in the process of a robust 1-to-1 pro­gram and reflect­ing on the past 7+ years work­ing with schools tak­ing this jour­ney.  Here are some over­all observations:
1. It’s still about the peo­ple – the edu­ca­tors, the stu­dents, the par­ents, and admin­is­tra­tors – and mak­ing sure voices are heard, stake­hold­ers are brought into all con­ver­sa­tions. Deci­sions should start with these types of ques­tions – How will [stu­dents] ben­e­fit and par­tic­i­pate? How will [teach­ers] lead? How will [par­ents] sup­port? Then ask the ques­tions again but switch the stake­holder name.
2. Every pro­gram is dif­fer­ent – because each school’s mis­sion, cul­ture, and goals are dif­fer­ent. Ensur­ing align­ment to the school or dis­trict is key.
3. Stu­dents need to be empow­ered and should be part of the plan­ning and dis­cus­sions, and not just as the tar­get of the program.
4. There is no such thing as over plan­ning or over com­mu­ni­cat­ing. Plans will change and be fluid. Every­one will fill in the silence with their own inter­pre­ta­tion if there is not enough communication.
5. Hard­ware and soft­ware keeps get­ting bet­ter, more flex­i­ble, and eas­ier to use.
6. An online learn­ing com­mu­nity is vital  — one that every­one can access – to elim­i­nate unin­ten­tional silos of learn­ing, clut­tered email and frac­tured stu­dent experiences.
7. Fur­ni­ture is improv­ing – check this out: http://www.ideo.com/work/node-chair/
8.  Wifi is bet­ter but a net­work audit is still de rigeur. Most hard­ware ven­dors will help out with this at a low price in hopes of get­ting the contract.
9. Learner-centricity and per­son­al­ized learn­ing is what 1-to-1 is all about. What a plea­sure to see it writ­ten into so many school 1-to-1 plans.
10. Logis­tics still count; lap­tops still break; insur­ance is still needed; elec­tric­ity is a fact of 1-to-1 life.
11. Par­ents are our best part­ners; when they embrace 1-to-1 in their home prac­tices much of the bat­tle is won.
12. Relat­ing 1-to-1 to pre­vi­ous fac­ulty work can be a smart move. One school mod­eled their pend­ing 1-to-1 in part on dis­cus­sions with their fac­ulty sev­eral years back on “what is a 21st cen­tury class­room.” The ideas of their fac­ulty then became the impor­tant frame­work for pro­vid­ing lap­tops to students.
It’s so great to see that 1-to-1 con­tin­ues to flourish.
- Pamela Livingston
(Also posted on 1to1schools.net)

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