Mobile Technology in the ClassroomThe Fun TheoryQuotes and ThoughtsFacebook in SchoolsDesktops Only Have Three Years LeftNot On The TestOther Interesting Links and Sites Mobile technology In The Classroom
Newspaper article re cellphones in the classroom Cell phones in class The ugly side to cell phones in classes Cellphones in class #2
Mobilise wiki This link leads to a wiki regarding mobilised technology for in and out of the classroom - worth a look.
New York Times The debate continues over mobile phones in the classroom

Can't afford or don't have video cameras at school? What about this?

At one school I have been working with this year, a teacher has been using cellphones
to teach film techniques. He is in a low decile school, and realised nearly all
students had cellphones, and most had ones with a camera function. So after showing
students each of the shot types and camera angles, he then sent students out in
groups of 2-3 and they had to gather examples of each shot type they had been shown.
Students then paired up with another group and tested each other on shot types and
This struck me as a really simple and sensible use of making the most of the
"technology in their pocket".
Have you surveyed the class to see what technology they carry with them? It might pay
to do online, as it is important that students don't feel they have to share
publically what they do or don't own.

Mobile Phones In The Classroom?!

How do you make your homework tasks worthwhile and challenging?
What would you do with all your students phones in the class?
What possibilities would this open up for your teaching and learning?

Email response to the newspaper articles above regarding the cell phone bullying.
Ah, yes, the Sunday Star Times articles. The emotive story, about the student bullied on his cellphone on the front page, aimed to paint modern technology as something to be feared or banned unless it could be actively managed by schools. A second article inside the paper explored the more positive side of the argument with a description of the trial use of cellphones for learning at Howick College.

The issue of bullying existed long before cellphones, and it has always extended beyond school time, making it harder to manage. Schools have a duty to create a zero-tolerance culture towards bullying, regardless of how it is done. Banning technology because of the way it might be used serves only to drive poor behaviour underground, and even further from the school gates. Even the Howick College trial referred to their cyber-safety policy as being about banning phones for improper use rather than fostering positive peer group behaviour.
The use of technology in schools should be hand-in-hand with the way we plan learning, and cyber-safety is part of that. I would advocate schools taking advantage of the ubiquity of mobiles to explore relevant aspects of the curriculum, such as how we relate to others, how we manage ourselves, how the use of technology enables us to participate with the understanding that this brings responsibilities as well as rights. The only way to help young people learn how to manage and navigate the challenging issues that can arise in these situations is to work wi th students as they use these technologies.
Mobiles are particularly pertinent because of their ubiquity - which means that, should they be used for bullying, the reach of the bully can be much greater - all the more reason to help students manage the situation and keep the issue in the open. Cellphones, with web access, mean that students don't only need to know how to avoid bullies, but also how to manage other issues that arise with unfettered access to the internet.
While banning student access to a technology that they enjoy/need might be an appropriate step at some point down the line, I don't think it should be a first (reactionary?) step. The opportunities for maximising collaborative learning beyond the classroom, together with the need to prepare students to make the most of technologies in today's world, should be a key driver for promoting the use of technologies such as these. A positive, rather than negative, default position, I think.
Whether my child is going to be swimming with sharks or taking the bus into town on his own for the first time, I'd much rather he was prepared, knowledgeable, and supported than going into the situation blind.
Netsafe has some great advice on cyberbullying ( and also a useful guide for helping students take responsibility:


The Fun Theory

What is / are the piano(s) in your class?How do you create the 'fun theory' in your teaching and learning programmes?
Would you use the escalator, stairs or the piano? Why?

How is this clip a metaphor for the way people see, use, identify, interpret ICT?

What would you do?


A homework discussion idea for your class perhaps?
What would make your students keep their rooms tidy?

Quotes and Thoughts:
Those who speak most of progress measure it by quantity and not by quality.
George Santayana

When i took office, only high energy physicists had ever heard of what is called the world wide even my cat has its own page
Bill Clinton

In all large corporations there is a pervasive fear that someone, somewhere is having fun with a computer on company time. Networks help alleviate that fear.
John C. Dvorak

I don't care what it is - when it has an LCD screen it makes it better.
Kevin Rose.

I never teach my pupils. I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn.
__Albert Einstein__

Television – a medium. So called because it is neither rare nor well done.
__Ernie Kovacs__

What happens when the future has come and gone?
__Robert Half__

"I have come to believe that a great teacher is a great artist and that they are as few as there are any other great artists. Teaching might even be the greatest of the arts since the medium is the human mind and spirit."
John Steinbeck

You can analyse the past but you have to build the future.
Edward De Bono

You know that children are growing up when they start asking questions that have answers.
__John J. Plomp__

Have a look at this.

Yes it is a college in the States - but what could we do with it?

Facebook in schools

Google Exec Gives Desktops Three More Years

Advertising VP predicts irrelevance will set in as mobile takes over

Comment Thursday, March 4, 2010

By Doug Caverly 3Buzz This

Never mind the associated cubicles, desks, chairs, and monitors that, for many people, have become part of everyday life. A Google exec believes desktop computers will be irrelevant in three years' time.

external image JohnHerlihy.jpgNo twisting of words or misinterpretations took place here. John Herlihy, Google's vice president of global ad operations, simply said at University College Dublin's Digital Landscapes conference, "In three years' time, desktops will be irrelevant."

According to John Kennedy, Herlihy then argued, "In Japan, most research is done today on smart phones, not PCs . . . . Mobile makes the world's information universally accessible."

So if Herlihy's views are representative of Google's, it's probable that the company will continue to focus more and more on Android. Chrome OS, the lightweight operating system intended for netbooks, should get a lot of attention. And Google's cloud storage offerings will likely be expanded, too, to compensate for the small hard drives in smartphones and netbooks.

Interestingly, though, mobile ad opportunities may not be a primary consideration next to all of this stuff. Herlihy said, "When we build something we strive for ubiquity in usage and adoption. That helps us understand how customers react and then we build a revenue model."

Things to think about?

1. Where do we see computers in our schools in just three years time?
2. What will they look like?
3. How will they be used?
4. How will they be provided?
5. Will they be restricted to the classroom?
6. What about the dinosaurs we are using now?
7. How will we be ready for this change that is happening now?
9. How well would you use them and what for?
10. Why shouldn't our students have one?

Not on the Test!

Some Other Interesting Blogs and Wikis

You might like to have a look at some of the following - or join them. Just click on 'follow' for the blogs and 'request to join for the wikis. ICT Enhanced Teaching and Learning - great cluster blog with lots of ideas and advice. Good discussion links also. Rochelle (Rocky) Jensen's Blog - Bay of PLenty E-Learning Advisor. Some really fantastic links to online projects - NZ-based and others. Another cluster focused on strong links between ICT and Inquiry in meaningful, relevant - and fun! - ways. Huge number of links to other blogs to help get ideas for ours. Many resources that can be picked up and easily applied and used in the classroom. Interesting professional readings also.