Whispering Change

Is the sun beginning to set on a cumbersome educational landscape? One that is too rigid to quickly adjust to what leaners need and what they want from the future. A system that looks on as grass roots spread wider and wider beneath it.

I am in revolutionary mood as I return from some inspiring conversations with people at #BectaX.

Can those of us who recognise the need for change, rise above the cynicism? Rise above the barriers and the blocks. Let us be determined and positive, and make change happen in small ways, where we are, where we can.

Perhaps it is wrong of us to ever have believed this change will occur from policy. I am sure you are like me in that you have never waited for policy to define your practice. Each of us has a certain amount of influence, an ability to change 1 or 5, 30 or even 500 students’ experiences of school. If we believe it should be done, we need to make it happen in every small way we can.

I have stood in a room with hundreds of people whispering. It is very loud.

If we all make a small contribution, a small effort of change – if we all whisper, our voices will be heard. Here are some whispers:

  1. Talk to your students, to your classes about technology. Find out how they use it at home and what they enjoy. Plan to do it again soon.
  2. Take what you find out (formally or informally) to someone else in your institute. Better still get your students to explain it.
  3. Show someone how you use Twitter or other online tools to connect with teachers. Do it as often as you can.
  4. Write a blog post about your ideas. (Or even start a blog for your ideas!) Share your experiences, frustrations, successes and hopes for your work.
  5. Share an interesting blog post you have seen with someone who may never see it.
  6. Ask on your blog or on Twitter for other schools to connect with. Share the process with your class and give them an insight into what is happening at schools in other countries.
  7. Help someone on Twitter by retweeting a request for assistance. You never know where that ripple will stop.
  8. Let your children or students teach you how to use something.
  9. Find ways to help parents better understand what you do in school and how their children are using technology.
  10. Find out what your students think of blocking websites. What do they think is “safe” internet use.
  11. Consider managing your own internet filtering. At least have the conversation.
  12. Ask your local authority to unblock useful websites. Keep asking.

Whatever form your whisper takes, raise your voices. We are louder together.

IMG_9566.JPG by fabola – Attr-NonCom-NoDerivs Lic

Tom Barrett

Tom is a writer, speaker and consultant. He has been sharing his thoughts on teaching, learning, curiosity and creativity on this blog for over 10 years. Drinking coffee and writing would be his idea of a perfect day.

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6 Comments on "Whispering Change"

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Darcie
Guest
6 years 4 months ago

Wow, great ideas here! Separating each of these out, this would make a good series of blog posts for teachers beginning to use technology and letting them see the power of it and blogging at the same time. Thanks for sharing!

Neal McQuaid
Guest
6 years 4 months ago

Great post and one I'm fighting to stick with as I start out in ICT as a teacher. Very nice ideas, I'm finding the kids are enthusiastic to the ideas, the challenge is to get the whole establishment to change with them.
Time to start whispering 🙂

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[…] latest post: ‘Whispering change’ http://bit.ly/9KG8kA elaborates on how concerted attempts to make your voice heard, no matter how small, can lead to the […]

David Pott
Guest
6 years 4 months ago

Great post. Can I add:

13. Tell your senior leadership team, governors, parents, other schools. Be enthusiastic and persistent.
14. If it needs money, cost it out for your senior leadership team, and suggest where the money might come from.
15. Identify deliverable school improvement, and link it somehow with your school improvement plan and SEF.

pamthompson
Guest
pamthompson
6 years 4 months ago

Love the idea of integrating ICT by stealth Tom 🙂 Very thought provoking and intelligent post as usual!

Helen Morgan
Guest
6 years 4 months ago

Your 'whispers' seem to form a 12 step program 🙂

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