It’s been a while since I last talked about our iPad project. So what has happened in the past months. Let me give you a brief overview:
I started giving teacher training sessions on different apps, which could prove useful in the classroom. First I tried to explain the importance of a PLN and how it is constructed. Building on this philosophy, I tried to offer different apps that could add to my colleagues PLN. This is what I’ve covered so far:
Then we started getting some questions from people in our management team about how we were tackling the financial side of the project? Did we find enough teacher who were willing to start teaching in this iPad project? Maybe, this whole thing wasn’t such a good idea after all…
All hands on deck! We had to come up with concrete solutions, otherwise our project would be out the window. Off course we discussed these aspects at length last year, but (mistakenly) thought that others were on board with that.
- We managed to eliminate a quarter of our student expenses list, making room for the extra costs of a tablet. But this is only the first step in our plan. We plan on doing the same and better in the following years, so the tablet would be payed of at the end of a 3 to 4 year period, while cutting costs elsewhere.
- Of the 32 periods a student has in one week, we managed to find teachers to cover 23 of them. Not bad to get started…
- As many of our colleagues (wrongly) suspected they had to banish all paper from school, we tried many ways to explain that wasn’t the case. We had to explain (rigorously) that our project is based on learning differently. The tool used to achieve this goal is the tablet. There will always be plenty of room for books, paper … “traditional” learning methods.
All of this resulted in a talk with management, which we considered to be the talk to end all questions and misgivings that still lingered. We managed to get our message across and finally got the OK we were desperately waiting for.
So, the plan is as follows:
- 2013-2014 – raising awareness for the project and getting more people on-board to function as “prophets”.
- 2014-2015 – an extra year to instruct colleagues on how to teach with the aid of tablets.
- 2015-2016 – student implementation in one field of study (Human Sciences).
The delay of the extra “instruction” year is needed to prepare more teachers, more thoroughly. A concession we gladly made for the benefit of the project.