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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

from Brick and Mortar to Click and Order

The transformation of schools and instructional delivery systems is a challenge that is characterized by the clash of the past ("brick and mortar") and the present ("click and order").

At my age, I can remember film strips featuring social studies and science information with pictures and accompanying narratives, vinyl records for music class, SRA kits for Reading, the enviable chore of cleaning the chalkboard erasers, and many more memories.

I recall how exciting it was in 1982 to open boxes containing brand new Vic Commodore 20 computers and later Commodore 64 version. Wow, it was unbelievable what those units could do! And the hand held calculators that replaced the large boxy desktop calculating machines? How would have thought? Digital watches, are you kidding me? During a break in a conference I attended in 1991 I felt compelled to inform a friend of mine who was a presenter that the people at my table were so curious and intrigued by how he was delivering information that unless he explained how PowerPoint worked they would unconsciously allow the messenger to obscure the message.

And today, I also grapple with social media, interactive white boards, informative youtube videos, tablets, and a host of other new and exciting technological learning instruments.

It's been a thrilling roller coaster ride across nearly four decades in education.

Here's a four minute video on 21st century education that is both scary for those secure in the past and promising for those anxious to chase the future.

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