Everything Arts + Education + Technology in 2014
It’s the start of a New Year and technology will continue to be a hot arts education topic in 2014. Since launching my own ArtsEdTechNYC venture last spring, I’ve immersed myself in many conversations exploring ways in which technology – I admit, a super generalized term – is being utilized within the scope of arts education. In meaningful, effective ways including K-12, higher education, distance learning and special needs populations, I remain continuously inspired by so many people doing amazing work.
Here are a few things I’ve discovered where technology will continue to change the way we teach, educate and inform our arts education field this year and beyond.
The Wallace Foundation released two critical pieces of research late last year. As access to technology for learning, communication and art making grow among our youth, self-directed, connected, and digital learning opportunities are expanding as well.
These reports are a must-read:
- New Opportunities for Interest-Driven Arts Learning in a Digital Age by Dr. Kylie Peppler at Indiana University
- Something to Say: Success Principles for Afterschool Arts Programs from Urban Youth and Other Experts by Denise Montgomery, Peter Rogovin and Nero Persaud
ONLINE LEARNING & PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
The EdTech movement is the driving force behind development of so many new online learning platforms, apps, and software being created at lighting speed. Here are a few arts, creativity, and innovation sites that I think are great:
- Connected Classrooms is a new venture recently launched by Google. The concept centers on how “Educational Virtual Classrooms” use the video platform Google Hangout to connect with others all over the globe. Adobe Education Exchange, Microsoft’s Bing for Education – Class Think and Apple and Education among others, are also great sites.
- Susan Riley’s STEM to STEAM focused Education Closet provides a wonderful platform for art integration ideas and professional development, while also offering a unique annual virtual conference. The STEM to STEAM conversation will continue to be an extensive one.
- The educational arm of TED: Ted ED is a cool opportunity for teachers to submit lesson plans to professional animators that bring curriculum to life beyond the classroom. Ted-ED is a great platform for “flipping” or the “flipped” classroom concept.
- Project ED puts out regular contests for students to submit videos that succinctly teach educational concepts, vocabulary and mathematical equations. I have to remind myself every time I watch these videos that they are student-created and not submitted by seasoned professionals.
- Khan Academy, probably the most widely recognized “learn for free” online learning tool database available today is in company with Edutopia, Edudemic and Skillshare.
- Massive Open Online Courses, otherwise known as MOOCS, are higher education-focused online learning platforms that continue to be of great debate. Websites like Knewton, Coursera and General Assembly offer an array of online courses, a mix of free and tuition based options. I’ve registered for several Stanford University MOOCS on creativity and innovation in education, but will be completely honest – I have yet to finish one. Online learning, especially when not engaging and interactive, can be challenging learning environments. The jury is still out!
K-12 ARTS ED ONLINE COMMUNITIES
School districts big and small are exploring – and struggling – with ways to effectively implement technology on a mass scale. Whether you agree with Los Angeles Unified School District’s epic iPad rollout with Apple, Amplify’s mass tablet initiative in Greensboro, NC, or a multi-year federally funded Arts Achieve assessment and evaluation model the New York City Department of Education is exploring using technology – it’s time to get with the program, technology is here to stay.
Los Angeles’ Music Center recently provided it’s Artsource Curriculum online for free, and I foresee in the near future many more arts education programs who have the funding and capacity following suit.
I’m really excited about the opportunity in a few weeks to meet Mark Coppin, a recent “Champions of Change” awardee by President Obama and the White House, who works with special needs populations using Assistive Technology*. I’ll be featuring more of my ArtsEdTechNYC at Apple SoHo talk with Mark in my Jessica Says column for the Clyde Fitch Report at the end of January. I’m happy to announce this column will take a new focus on all things #ArtsEdTech in the coming months.
SOCIAL NETWORKING & CONFERENCES:
I’ve written before about the impact that social media, particularly Twitter, can have on growing your professional networks and community. I can’t speak enough about how much rich information and discussion can be found via social media on arts education and tech related topics. I would also include Meetup.com as a more in-person way to meet others in your local community around a common interest.
*Check out this interview with Mark Coppin on YouTube:
This post barely touches the surface of the plethora of information available. I encourage all of you to add your own favorite arts, education, and technology related sources to the comment section of this ARTSblog post! And, like always, feel free to drop me a tweet on Twitter! @JessicaLWilt