#GoBigorGoHome-Scaling Personalized Learning | Austin | Education | Education Elements | Education Technology | Personalized Learning | Policy | SXSW | SXSWedu | Scaling Personalized Learning | Students | Teachers
This spaghetti western is one of my favorites...but also appropos to my time in Austin last week. Something about SXSWEdu actually felt a little bit like throwing spaghetti against a wall to see what would stick. It is an event that is trying to piece together representation from all aspects of the education sector, with topics that range from civic engagement, to shark tank style startup pitches, to leadership/inspiration. And speakers? Well, they ranged from Diane Ravitch to Michelle Rhee and Wendy Kopp. It is an event that is like our education system - edtech companies new and old, policy makers, philanthropists, teachers, students, parents, school leaders all coming together with sometimes similar, sometimes wildly divergent solutions to a complex set of problems. SXSWEdu was a microcosm of the system for three days. Three, unseasonably cold days, in Austin. Good thing there were lots of heated debates inside the conference walls!
This week education and edtech leaders and thought leaders from across the country descended upon Austin, filling the lobby and halls of the Hilton Hotel with chatter that is music to our ears. There are discussions, debates, brainstorms and best practice sharing happening everywhere on everything from Common Core to 1:1 initiatives to gaming, MOOCs and beyond. Everyone is focused on students, teachers and leaders. On outcomes, engagement, agency, readiness, preparedness and satisfaction. For just a few days Austin is less about the music, bbq and beer and more about how together entrepreneurs and educators can transform teaching and learning. And we are so excited to be part of this moment in time.
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Austin, TX AUSTIN – KnowledgeWorks Senior Director of Innovation, Lisa Duty, Ph. D, in partnership with Amy Jenkins, General Manager, Strategic Initiatives, and Vanessa Gonzalez, Design and Implementation Consultant, for Education Elements, will discuss an innovative new school model that combines blended learning and notions of collective impact to create a dynamic learning ecosystem Tuesday at the annual SXSWedu conference. The conference, which began Monday, runs through Thursday at the Austin Convention Center. The session, In it Together: Blended Classroom and Communities, will begin at 3 p.m. Tuesday at the Hilton Downtown Austin, in Salon A. “Combining blended learning with notions of collective impact engages the entire community, extends learning beyond the classroom and results in the creation of a student-centered learning ecosystem,” Duty said. “Students are able to master skills at their own pace through a seamless integration of learning in school and throughout the community.” Blended learning integrates technology with face-to-face instruction in the classroom to address multiple modalities and enable differentiated instruction for all students. Collective impact engages all sectors of a community to systematically support each child’s success in schools. When paired together, blended learning and collective impact have the potential to deliver transformative change in teaching and learning. “At its core, blended learning is about delivering a personalized learning experience for every student. The integration of community-based learning, which is the vision for the Oasis model, can enhance the impact of personalized learning in the classroom and magnify the focus on each student” said Jenkins. The presentation will focus on the efforts of KnowledgeWorks, Education Elements and Reynoldsburg City Schools in fusing blended learning and notions of collective impact to create the “Oasis” model. Duty, Gonzalez and Jenkins will share, in an interactive discussion, the project’s goals, design challenges and their expectations for how the system will unfold. "Education Elements has partnered with many schools that are pioneering blended learning models,” Gonzalez said. “We see the Oasis model as another way to keep pushing the boundary of innovation for how to approach teaching and learning and achieve better outcomes for students." The SXSWedu conference seeks to provide meaningful conversation and collaboration about promising practices and tools for improved learning. The content of the conference has been designed for a diverse audience of not only education professionals but also business, industry and policy leaders who are committed to creating a better tomorrow.