In Ontario we know we have pockets of excellence when it comes to Technology-enabled learning and teaching.
When I refer to “pockets of excellence”, I mean schools and classrooms where learning to do this, digging into doing this well, and supporting the understanding of how learning needs to change to meet the realities of today’s world, are front and center in their thinking and sharing.
Progress in improving learning and instruction through the use of technology is not “by chance” in these spaces. This is where communities are working hard and inviting input into figuring it all out.
The work of eLCs in Ontario has shifted significantly this year into a leadership role in boards to enable a better understanding of how we can use technology to enhance learning and teaching. As we worked to build capacity/capital in the eLC community, engaging them in conversations and learning with these ‘pockets of excellence” became a priority.
Last week, many of the northern eLCs (Thunder Bay Region, Sudbury-North Bay Region, Barrie Region) went on a “field trip” to do school and classroom visits.
Their generous hosts from Hamilton Wentworth District School Board, and Trillium Lakelands District School Board were as follows:
Ancaster Senior Public School, HWDSB (Principal Contact – Lisa Neale)
Dr. J. Edgar Davey Elementary School, HWDB (Teacher contact – Aviva Dunsiger)
The Virtual Learning Centre, TLDSB (Principal contact – Peter Warren)
Special thanks to host eLCs:
Paul Hatala (HWDSB)
Jeremy Cadeau Mark (TLDSB)
The connections, the conversations, the learning and the sharing were incredibly rich. The eLC visitors and the host schools have been sharing their learning through their blogs. Some of these are posted below (eLCs/hosts: please contact me when you have more visible thinking to add to this list).
Host Lisa Neale: Principal Neale
eLC Anne Shillolo: eLC Reflections
eLC John Gibson: eLC Road Trip
So now what?
My work today is to determine next steps.
How do we continue to spread and share our thinking about how learning needs to happen for our students in a world where the industrial model no longer meets their needs?
How do we create the conditions in Ontario to allow teachers to be researchers into best practices for student learning?
How do we continue to deepen the conversations and engage all educators in reflective practice?
How do we ensure that all of our classroom (bricks and mortar, and online) educators access the richness of learning available online 24/7?
With the structures currently in place in Ontario, what needs to happen to ensure optimum learning for students in every class?
Your input is both welcomed and appreciated.