Thursday, September 23, 2010

iPad Launch and What it Means

Today a pilot 1:1 iPad program was launched at the high school I work at. 11 students, 4 teachers and one supervisor received iPads. The students are part of another pilot initiative to build small learning communities within a traditional high school. What was great to witness was how excited students and teachers were. Students reported to class before the morning bell rang and cleared their desks in anticipation of receiving an iPad. I guess, who would not be excited to receive an iPad. However, I think students and teachers were and continue to be excited at the prospects of what can be accomplished in a connected classroom where all stakeholders have ready access to powerful technologies.

While only small in the number of students and teachers involved in the 1:1 initiative, the impact of the program could have significant implications on how students, teachers, administrators and parents view instruction. Our pilot program is not unique. 1:1 programs exist in classrooms throughout the world and more and more educational institutions are becoming wireless environments with each passing day. However, having the chance to watch transformations in the classroom through the access being provided is significant in regards to changing on a global scale, how teachers construct space for students to grow and how students assume ownership over learning.

It will be curious to see how after the initial euphoria of receiving a new shiny device dissipates, students and teachers react to a classroom environment where all stakeholders have equal access.

It remains to be seen what occurs. However,if today is any indication, the excitement for what is possible should lead to memorable accomplishments