Time Zone is no longer a Barrier.
Distance is no longer a Barrier.
Language is no longer a Barrier.
Big walls and other barriers like fences, rivers, marshland, tidal estuaries and hedge rows are no longer barriers.
There is a word that I have heard within New Zealand education for the past 6 months – Ubiquitous Learning. Now I do not grasp new educational discourse quickly and usually ignore it until it slaps me on the face, but a friend commented on Twitter last night about the #NZSchoolTimelapse project and mentioned the word. The light went on in my head and I truly grasped the meaning of Ubiquity (and google searched a bit to make sure I was right).
Part of the Wikipedia entry on uLearning (as I am an expert that is what I will call it now 😉 ) is…
- Shifts the classroom from a traditional to non-traditional context.
- Prepares and encourages students to become lifelong learners.
- Prepares students for “real life.” New technologies have become a part of our lives, and students need to learn how to use these technologies in order to prepare for their future careers.
…and is that not what we want for our students and is that not how we learn ourselves. I know that my learning is within a Ubiquitous Environment – my PLN, the blogs I read, the devices I have at my disposal to learn on the go and in places of my choosing. My next challenge is to make sure that the way I learn is emulated in my classroom and, while with my year 3s and 4s still need a lot of scaffolding and I have technological restraints, I know where I am heading and know that it will benefit my students.
Finally the inspiration for this posting, other than Anne’s ‘Ubiquity MAGIC!’ comment, the New Zealand School Time Lapse Project that organically grew from a twitter chat, involved 13 schools, 16 teacher and thousands of students through out New Zealand and a few other countries and was so much fun to edit together. It was completely managed through Twitter and a Google Doc and not an email, phone call or face to face influenced it – although a cuppa and a chat with all of the contributors would have been fantastic.
Ubiquity in action and the start of something big!