This course has been quite a different experience from the previous courses that I have done through extra mural study, with the main difference being around that uncertainly that I have had in my own mind with exactly what I have needed to do to complete assignments. However, this has led to the process being more rewarding through finding my way through assignments 1.1 and 1.2 relatively successfully, with, hopefully, this being the same case for 2.1 and 2.2.
I enjoyed the structure of the SP4Ed programme, with the variety of readings (although I did find it a little overwhelming at times, with the daily requirements over the course of the programme). I particularly enjoyed the use of Twitter for micro blogging, as I believe that Twitter is an underutilized tool in education. I can see how Twitter is very effective for sharing ideas through class Twitter feeds (instead of the usual blogs), as well as a tool for reflecting on learning and building connections between home, students and teachers. My own research aims to demonstrate how Twitter can be beneficial in a blended learning environment.
I found scenario planning to be a very worthwhile process for schools to use as a means of preparing for the future. In my own experiences I have made some poor decisions, with the decisions being made based on expected futures and current practice, without looking at potential future and unexpected events. One such example has been as a senior manager investing on net-books and a computer suite full of desktops at a time when there was the rumored development of tablet devices.
In regards to scenario planning, the most enjoyable task that I have completed for the course was the writing of the newspaper article looking at possible futures. This really did encourage me to reflect on what the future might hold, while at the same time thinking about how so many of the predictions that I can remember being made 20 years ago not having come to light, with many classes still being run the same way that they were decades ago.
The one overarching question that I do have around digital and future learning relates to the previous paragraph; this being, does the future have the big changes that so many are predicting around the implementation of ICT to support future learning? I have been on the receiving end of two ICT clusters, and it is difficult to see what impact these clusters had, if any, regarding the integration of ICT in class programmes, this being despite the hundreds of thousands of dollars that supposedly went into upskilling teachers. I believe that the lack of accountability in these clusters led to a relative few receiving almost all of the professional development, then not passing on to those who needed the support for their own development. Any future such programmes will need considerably more planning and thought, as well as accountability on those who are leading the development.
Although I am now aware of change processes, and have focused on the Concerns Based Adoption Model for assignment 1.1, an area of learning for me is still around successful long term change and implementation. I am hoping that the initiatives that I have set up in my school, stemming from both EDEM627 and EDEM630, have long term viability, especially as we are bombarded with exciting and new ideas and information everyday. I need to ensure that I focus on what's important to my own school community, while taking into account the many opportunities that are available for creating the best possible learning environment for the students at my school.