Thankfully, the worst case scenario has not happened. The network has thankfully held up and so far (well, from my extremely limited vantage point) the network has not been hacked into oblivion. However, that’s not too much of a surprise either since https is still unblocked and if you are into some pretty awful stuff..you can download it at 500Mbit/s speeds on the 10G network they run between schools (yes, 10G ring…don’t ask).
So my thoughts on this so far? I still think this is an abject failure. Why?
The kids are using iPads either as glorified notebooks or digital cameras and constantly uploading to Facebook. I’m guessing that a significant majority of traffic on the network is probably social media related….which is actually fine in my book. It’s how that it’s being used is the problem.
But what does this mean for the schools? Well, we still have ~$2million in iPads that have to be used over the next four years. We still don’t have lesson plans other than “take notes on them” and I’m guessing the most abused access point in the entire network is the one in the commons area…and not in the classrooms.
See, there’s lots of postings in the #HCCSC2012 hashtag which mostly revolve around buzzwords. In almost everything inside of the hashtag, you see someone posting about great ideas which involve ways create dialogue to synthesize interest in the paradigm of learning in the digital classroom. Or in other words…a bunch of clever words covering up a bunch of BS.
We have this in the business world…they are called buzz words and if you get enough of your friends to play along, you can play buzz word bingo. Every time your
teacher facilitator demonstrates a way paradigm shifting method to teach enhance the educational experience….yeah, you have been there. And yes, there is an app for that….
Now I have been pretty snarky about this process…and I think I have been pretty right on about the use of this (I still get questions on “how do I use this”?) so I am willing to make this offer. I am willing to take time away over the next few weeks and help any teacher in the corporation to put together some ideas on how to really introduce the iPad into their classroom. Beyond posting on a random blog or updating your Facebook status. I’m not planning on making a buck on this or wanting to prove a point. But I see the resources out there and I am also seeing teachers struggle in trying to incorporate this new mandate from above while trying to teach classes…and it appears to be quite a big hurdle.