The Manhattan Office of Educational Technology held an innovation celebration to showcase the work of students who partnered with teachers for learning with technology. At the event student presenters demonstrated for visiting adults and peers ways in which they were using technology to innovate learning.
Some students shared how they are empowered to analyze their own data to drive their learning, others shared how they use student response systems to grow their abilities in mental math, some showed how they used iPads to better understand and discuss stories they were reading, and another class showed how they came together to publish their own book about their learning using iBooks. The event also featured a panel where students explained to teachers and peers the importance of being empowered to use the technology tools they love for learning.
Showing his support for this work, Congressman Charlie Rangel spoke with the students and teachers addressing the audience with inspiring words about learning with technology and the importance of doing so to prepare learners for a digital world.
There was much excitement and inspiration throughout the day as students shared their innovative work with other students and teachers. You can view a recap of the day in pictures and words at the following link, see one school's take on it here, and read about the event as it was covered in Gotham Schools here.
By the end of August the ed tech offices in all five boroughs of New York City will be shut down as the funding runs dry. Supporting students in using the tools they choose to accomplish learning goals and encouraging them to share their knowledge with others is a key to preparing 21st century learners.
Unfortunately, with our test-obsessed focus driving today’s education system, the U.S. Department of Education has failed to reauthorize funding to enhance education through technology. This was a result of a decision to cut programs they considered to be inefficient. Instead, funds are being allocated to the mega-billion dollar industry who makes all those tests. As a result we will have successfully Raced Our Nation to The Top when it comes to drill, kill, and bubble fill rather than created one that has empowered young people to create, connect, and critically think.
Photo credit: Mike Sheehan Photography