Thursday, September 8, 2011

Student Inspires Educators to Think Outside the Ban

iSchool InitiativeI had the pleasure of meeting Travis Allen at this year’s International Society of Technology Educator’s conference.  Travis explained that as a high school student he felt rather bound and trapped by the prison of school that enforced outdated restrictions that did not allow him the freedom to learn. It began with his parents getting him an iPhone for Christmas. He immediately found he enjoyed the endless list of applications on it and shortly after, began looking into educational apps to help in school. It wasn’t long before he realized the amazing capabilities this device would have in education.  He was so inspired by the unlocked potential of these devices that he made the following video, called the iSchool Initiative.



Unfortunately, teachers working in an educational system stuck in the past, told Travis that his technology was not an educational tool and he would not be able to use it for learning.  Frustration turned to inspiration.

If his school wouldn’t let him unleash the 21st century learner trapped outside the school walls, he’d take matters into his own hands.  Travis launched the iSchool Initiative, a non-profit organization dedicated tor revolutionizing our education system through innovative technology.  Since its inception in 2009, the iSchool Initiative team has expanded to over 25 members consisting of students who work around the globe helping educators break free from outdated constructs and join the digital learning revolution taking place in the world.

Travis explains his work in this interview with Wes Fryer.



Is your school one that traps students in the past or one that empowers them as 21st century learners?  If it’s the former, maybe you need to hire Travis and his team.  Visit http://ischoolinitiative.org to learn more. 

3 comments:

  1. I sent this to my daughter's principal. I suggested we try some experiments. I wonder what he'll say?

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  2. "Unfortunately, teachers working in an educational system stuck in the past, told Travis that his technology was not an educational tool and he would not be able to use it for learning."

    That's just pathetic, isn't it?

    As somebody who has had the pleasure of sharing with my son, since he was removed from school in 2002, nine years of 24/7 learning at the speed of thought through electronic media, I have no hesitation in suggesting that the need for Travis Allen to create the iSchool initiative speaks volumes about what schools have become.

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  3. Great idea, Travis! I think you are the future of educational advances... keep speaking out in favor of technology in schools and letting students learn in a way that makes sense for them. Love all the recommended apps - there are thousands and thousands of others, too, and not just for younger kids! Mind if we share your YouTube video on our My Shiny Monkey blog - a blog by and for tweens (kids 8-14) - to inspire them, too?

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