My friend Julie has written a must read post, 2020 Vision for Global Collaboration. As many of you may know, she and I have become quite amazed at the results we're seeing in our classrooms with Flat Classroom and Horizon Project being the mainstay in our advanced level classrooms.
I love how she opens:
I'm going to take some time to look at her thoughts and reflect, but I have been reflecting on global collaboration and what it means for teachers, students and the wider community. I have also been reflecting on sustainability of online spaces and how much of what we are ‘producing' in terms of creative output has not been preserved over the past 15 years. Let me be more specific.
We've talked about “legacy” projects quite a bit. Those that add meaning and serve as an archive and repository of information about that topic. This is why I like public spaces for the older students.. it gives them meaning and legacy in a positive way!
Let me outline her points that I agree with 100%. (Is that any surprise, however, we've touched on these and discussed it but not prior to her blog post!) Read her post for the entire description!
- Global collaborative projects need to be embedded into the curriculum…
- We need to continue (or start) to foster technology integration as part of what we do in schools. Gone are the days where students come to the computer lab. to do IT…. Facilitators must have a no-class load within a school and could be IT and/or library/media specialist or strong curriculum specialists comfortable with online tools and Web 2.0
- We need to be unblocking viable connectivity tools so that digital access and participation is available for all classrooms around the world…
- We need to be developing digital citizenship skills and courses within schools, starting once again at the Primary/Elementary school level…
- We need to be investigating sustainability of online spaces and archiving successfully projects and collaborations. Currently we use wikispaces and ning (amongst others of course)….will these still be around in 5 years time? If not, what happens to the amazing content and productivity from classrooms all around the world? Will it be lost for ever?”
Julie has put this together perfectly!
In my wish of wishes… could there be a way for those of us DOING this to get our heads together and share some sort of vision/ document as it relates to global collaboration? One we can share with schools and others? Is that possible?
How can we push past the innovators and help ALL schools and ALL students benefit?
Transformation is almost a benign word when talking about what happens when students go through these projects. World view change… self esteem… self confidence… ability to tackle large projects… I could go on.
We have over 250 students in this year's Horizon project and that seems like a lot.
However, it seems like a tiny drop in a bucket of education too focused on the test too see past the paper in front of their noses and realize that the ability to collaborate effectively with the world is going to be one of the largest, truest tests of these students lives.
And to leave students totally uneducated for this real life “test” is akin to educational malpractice in my opinion!
Don't get rid of what we're doing correctly… but remember that there is a difference between URGENT and IMPORTANT and somehow we're looking at a short term view and missing the big picture here.
Please read Julie's post… it is truly brilliant from an award winner who knows what she's doing!
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