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Innovative Teachers Forum Is World Affair

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This week, about 250 educators from 64 different countries converged in Hong Kong at the Innovative Teachers Forum, sponsored by Microsoft, to talk about different ways to use technology in classrooms across the globe. Today, some of those teachers were recognized for their exceptional and innovative work in ed tech.

Although our focus here at Digital Directions is mostly on education in the U.S., the more I report on ed tech, the more undeniable it is that we are actually living in a global learning environment that values collaboration between nations. Reading through the winners of this year's Innovative Teachers of the Year, it's clear that those values are at the forefront of the most creative and innovative teachers, and technology is bringing the world into the classroom in a way that has never before been possible.

If you have the time, it's worth reaching back into the archives to read the 2004 Technology Counts report, "Global Links: Lessons from the World," which examined how educational technology was being used in schools around the world. That report was a very ambitious and interesting project.

3 Comments

Katie,

I couldn't agree more with you on the point that "we are actually living in a global learning environment that values collaboration between nations". This is what Thomas Friedman talks about is his book 'The World Is Flat'. Technology is thinning the boundaries between different countries and the flow of information is greater than ever before between students, teachers, schools, colleges and other educational institutions around the world.

Teachers from around the world are being employed in the US to make up for the lack of teachers here. These teachers along with their subject knowledge also bring the cultural values and beliefs that they have grown up with- influencing the children here (positive influence in my opinion).

Companies are using cutting edge technology and global resources to make online math tutoring available to middle income families here at highly affordable prices. This has enabled the students and parents in the US to get personalized help they cannot otherwise afford.

Overall I think technology (with required checks in place of course) is and will continue to help the education industry thrive worldwide and those seeking to learn more will benefit tremendously.

Katie,

Technology will help the education industry. Practically some problems definitely will exist. Such problems need to be solved, You were explaining about US education system, the need for ED-Tech is not only in US, but its a global need.


Jessica

Katie:

In a recent course I am taking on Current Educational Issues we debated a topic pertaining to technology in the classroom. Even though both sides presented good arguments pro/cons for technology, it is inevitable technology in the classroom is here to stay. The delima now is how to make technology available to every household so that not only do all middle-class people have access to on-line tutoring but low-income families are able to receive services that are beneficial to their children as well. How can we make the classrooms in America equitable? Hopefully there are others out there who are working for global technology with this goal in mind as well. Our world is opening up and expanding thanks in part to technology. Hopefully we are responsible with the power technology brings and willing to allow that power to be used for the good of all.

Kim

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