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Thanks to Ben Jones for alerting me to David Crystal’s recent talk. Like you, I have many of his books on my shelf and find his insights into language, especially the English language, sage.
Local people and organisations ‘working together towards a healthy and sustainable future’ is as important as national and international environmental reform. Considering this, it was a pleasure to be invited to our local community’s launch of the Kiamasphere, last Thursday at The Pavillion in Kiama, to support efforts to improve sustainability.
At the launch my friend, Darren Collins, gave a good presentation on the journey his family has taken towards sustainable living. I really admire what Darren’s family are achieving. Darren gets the ‘local networking thing’ and is able to use his blog effectively to assist people to find each other and gain support for their own sustainable journey locally.
Our local schools were the recipients of some of the sustainable living grants and also performed at this launch. The Divas, Kiama Public School’s choir, gave a lovely performance of a well-chosen song, ‘SaltWater’ by Julian Lennon.
My brief, to present at a Year 11 conference about online tools, has accentuated, in my mind, how far away we are from providing the Personal Learning Environment (PLE) at school students need in a networked society.
Your input, via comments at a previous blog post, twitter and yammer proved invaluable but also challenging, when one considers the realities for kids in our schools. Year 11 will have virtually no opportunity, in their day at school, to use a computer or the many tools available online. During this presentation, I acknowledged that the student delegates will just have to use all this stuff at home.
One kid pointed out, that even if they had DERNSW laptops, software could not be installed and many of the sites, especially social media and collaboration tools, would be blocked anyway.
I was surprised at how little they knew of the tools discussed. The students were unfamiliar with all the tools, except iGoogle.
The big question in my mind: will opportunities for innovative pedagogies and practice emerge from the Australian Curriculum?