what's this collection about?The pace of change of new technology is frenetic, but in our classrooms many teachers are using computers in exciting ways to take their learners forward. Schools have a long track record of innovation in ICT (and formerly in IT), probably because of a willingness to embrace new technologies but also because there are so many creative imaginative teachers with a passion for learning. This collection is designed to help all teachers to progress that proud track record.
But the challenges include: how do we share the results of our successes and our endless trials with new technology? how can we be sure that the changes we see are not only new, but better than what went before? how can we evidence our own successes to our colleagues around the country? how can parents understand the new things that computers might add to learning when their own experience of school is different? how can we make sense of the very many examples of activity in many schools and how can our classrooms be pollinated by the ideas of others, whilst retaining a unique local culture and identity
This collection cannot be static - technology and the curriculum move on, teachers have more wonderful ideas and children push our ambition for them constantly. That's why this Learning Age is such a wonderful (but exhausting) time.
Some years ago, during their INSET days, teachers might have swapped ideas and thoughts over coffee or lunch... but in the 21st century the days are even busier, the "ideas and thoughts" more complex and the opportunities to swap face to face, for some at least, rather fewer (although a number of recent initiatives may be currently helping this to improve).
This collection of your evidence of useful classroom ideas using ICT is by teachers for teachers (hence the TforT.net web address) but is open for viewing by many others including of course children and parents. It offers a place for your many good ideas together with the essential detail that makes them convincing, including context. The ideas here are the result of longitudinal research; what matters is not the idea but how it was developed over a period of time, together with what convinced the contributor that the effort was worthwhile.
For those of you exploring the collection there may be many things of interest to discover:
- the many and diverse measures of success
- better understanding for parents of what ICT can do for learners
- better understanding for school students of what ICT can do for learners
- better understanding for ministers and decision makers of the contribution their investment has made
- clear evidence of the changes in practice that lead from initiatives like the England and Wales teachers' NOF training support.
and of course the promotion of a culture of action research, by teachers for teachers, that we all need if our classrooms are to progress as fast as children expect, as the economy needs and as our imaginations will allow.
Enjoy the collection and thank you all for your interest, your ideas, your diligence in collecting evidence and your scarce, scarce, valuable time.