The journey can be exciting and scary at the same time.

Flickr by Edge of Space

In December 2009, I used this photo in my Leadership and 1:1 Bus post and last year I used it with the Graded faculty to describe our journey to provide students with a relevant education for today and the future. This journey includes going 1:1 in August 2012. For me the photo conjures up excitement and fear. And while some people are adventurous enough to sit on top or hang on the side, others feel more comfortable inside. It doesn’t matter where one sits, the important thing is that we’re all together on the journey.

When is it exciting and often magical?  When our students are using technology for learning, creative and original thinking, communication and collaboration, research and information literacy and critical thinking and problem solving.

When is it a bit scary?  When we are uncertain of what is coming next or when we have to step outside our comfort zone to try something new.

We have so much to be proud because we have traveled so far in such a short amount of time. This year we have done the following to prepare for a full 1:1 rollout in August.

  • Support professional development at conferences by providing faculty with the opportunity to attend the Laptop Institute at Lausanne Collegiate and Unplugged at the American School of Bombay.
  • Provided all of our teachers and administrators with laptops so that we all get used to working anytime, anywhere.
  • Using digital tools to help us with our work and our learning. The idea is that we will experiment and figure out what works as we do the same in our classrooms.
  • Created PLCs around assessment in today’s digital environment.
  • Reviewed and redesigned our curriculum in science and English with a 21st century lens.
  • Encouraged students to bring in laptops to ease the transition for August.
  • Defined our Information Communication and Technology standards that will be integrated schoolwide next year.
  • Provided teachers with a full-time academic technology coordinator to support them with integrating technology and professional development.
  • Developed our acceptable use policy and LARK guidelines so that our community members can be responsible digital citizens.
  • Developed a digital toolkit that will provide us with some software standardization in our bring your own laptop environment.
  • Upgraded facilities so that we have electrical power throughout the campus.

We realize that the journey is not over yet. In reality, we’ve really only traveled a short distance. The key is that we are well on our way to transforming the learning experiences for our students.

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8 comments

  1. I am here, Blair, following you as I have been doing since we first met. Yes, this is what life is all about: connecting and making sense of the connections we cherish. The journey has been valuable and I just love the buss. Exactly as it is. Carinho agradecido.

  2. That list is nothing to sneeze at! Recently Jeff Utecht wrote a blog on there is no one way to go 1:1 and clearly Graded has been thoughtful and intentional about supporting teachers in taking this on… Looking forward to continuing the journey.

  3. Yes Graded has accomplished a lot on the journey so far. I agree it is very important to keep reminding ourselves of these accomplishments, be proud, and use them as fuel to keep the bus going!

  4. I used to be one of those people inside the bus but gradually I am moving to the top of it! It does not happen overnight and it would not be possible without the support we have been receiving!

  5. The bus, the buss, the buses and busses, with all symbolic meanings attached, simple and complecated mistakes included! The journey is valuable. And probably it is as endless as it is memorable for each task completion. And guess what: the bus is much more solid and safer than it appears to be… long lasting bus, journey, team…

  6. Another accomplishment to remember on this journey is how fast the High School has been moving towards 1:1 even though we have had a 2 years preparation. In these two years, they moved from no laptop carts, to laptop carts, then a few students bringing laptops, to many students bringing laptops, and then official 1:1 next school year. Middle School had many many years of heavy laptop cart usage before they started the 1:1 pilot. As they were the pioneers, we also have to thank them for paving the way and giving us confidence. Congratulations to all the teachers who have been on this bus!

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