I woke up yesterday to a hectic morning as my wife was rushing out the door to go to work. She couldn’t start her car because the key wouldn’t turn in the ignition. We took turns wrestling with the key and steering wheel without budging them when I decided to search online to see if anyone else had posted their experiences with the same problem and listed a possible solution. Luckily, there were several discussion posts in a couple of different forums about such a problem, and I tried a few suggestions before I found the one that did the trick. I eventually unlocked and locked the car door manually with the key in order for it to reset. When I inserted the key again, it turned, and I heard the best sound in the world at that moment – the engine thundering into action!
I considered how awesome it is to have that immediate access to information when it is needed, just in time. Similar situations happen in the classroom. Students need ready access during the process of learning, but that access is controlled by the content obtainable in the textbooks, the availability of school’s technology resources, and the opportunity students have to make choices. When students bring their own technology to facilitate their learning in BYOT, they can utilize more independence in finding necessary information and answers to their questions. They can collaborate to build the body of knowledge with the other students in their learning community by posting content that has relevance and meaning to the rest of the group. Teachers can also encourage students to search for new ways to learn with their own technology tools and to create original products and projects.
It’s time to turn that key for BYOT from LOCK to START and accelerate learning for all students – just in time!