in Education, Professional Development, Reflection

ISTE 2010 Keynote

Opening keynote by Jean-Francois Rischard

Sylvia Martinez’s post about the keynote – http://blog.genyes.com/index.php/2010/06/28/the-iste-opening-keynote-what-i-wish-had-been-said/
I was volunteering behind the blogger’s cafe during the keynote and saw that the message was being lost in powerpoint translation with that particular crowd. I couldn’t hear the message over the powerpoint slide outrage but was intensely curious about the message, especially after reading some tweets that said how interesting Rischard’s book is.  I spoke with a SMART engineer during lunch on Monday and asked him about they keynote. It was interesting to note that he did not mention the powerpoint slides, but rather mentioned the urgency that he felt from the message that children of all ages need to be involved solving global issues, environmental issues being the biggest one mentioned. I got similar responses from some educators that I spoke with.
In Sylvia Martinez’s post, she mentions “I think Mr. Rischard missed the point by saying that we should develop curriculum for K-12 that does this…” I didn’t hear the keynote so I’m not sure what Rischard said but I don’t see any reason why curriculum developed couldn’t be hands-on. I agree that we must have students directly involved in doing the problem solving and related work. I’d go so far as to say that we need students being and doing. A few summers ago, I went to visit family in Canada. My little (half) sister who was 5 at the time was throwing a can into the garbage bin. I told her that she needs to recycle it. Her response was that she learned about recycling at school but that was just  a school thing. Somehow the action at school did not get translated to her activities at home. She was “doing” by recycling at school but she wasn’t “being” the message because she hadn’t internalized the message to apply it all the time and to share it with others. Our curriculum definitely needs to get students being responsible citizens by acting and thinking as a global citizen.