What’s Coming, and How Do We Work With What’s Already Here
In this insightful podcast, Rachel Hovington, the Head of School at Benjamin Franklin International School (BFIS) in Barcelona, engages in a meaningful conversation about technology in schools with Tricia Friedman, Director of Learning and Strategy at Shifting Schools. Tricia, a seasoned podcaster herself, co-hosts the Unhinged Collaboration podcast with Kathleen Naglee, Head of School at the International School of Helsinki.
The key points of the conversation between Hovington and Friedman are:
Human-Centric Technology Integration
Both explore the challenge of incorporating technology in schools to enhance students’ humanity. Tricia emphasizes how we are losing humanness in schools seeing the lack of play, recess times, and joy in many schools, and questions practices like early school start times and standardized testing. They delve into the impact of AI on education as an opportunity for us to reevaluate educational practices to allow students to explore more their identities, collaborate, and contribute meaningfully to their communities.
The conversation extends to the significance of merging the Arts with STEM, becoming “STEAM” and emphasizing the natural interdisciplinarity of subjects. The duo stresses the need for bridges between different fields, how this can enhance human connections and problem-solving skills in students, and advocates for technology usage with a higher purpose beyond mere flash or flair to allow students to connect with their interests and their communities.
Strategic Use of Technology in School
Rachel and Tricia share perspectives on schools adopting zero or low-tech approaches, drawing attention to the disparities between Silicon Valley tech communities and the majority of families around the world. The debate focuses on the intentional use of technology in education, avoiding its excessive or inappropriate use, and how it can facilitate collaboration and learning both locally and internationally.
Agility in Education
The conversation between both educators concludes with a focus on the necessity for schools to be agile, encouraging experimentation with different approaches and technologies to enhance student learning and preserve humanity in the face of a rapidly evolving tech world.
Don’t miss this interesting and timely podcast from two international educators of note. Available to listen to on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.
Additional Resources mentioned in the podcast
- Jen Christiansen Science Communicator episode
- Ears of East: https://portfolios.uwcsea.edu.sg/theearsofeast/
- BBIS SJC zines with Kristina Pernell Goetz supervisor: https://sites.google.com/bbis.de/bbis-social-justice-committee/zines?authuser=0
- “Going to the ocean” analogy from Dr Orben: https://podcasts.apple.com/ca/podcast/science-weekly/id136697669?i=1000627554081
- Women in Games International how do you launch a non-profit that is relevant and human centered?
- Swapna Krishna: Interdisciplinary thinking–linking a passion for Star Trek to Stargazing to Mediation to more.
- The Body Electric series https://www.npr.org/series/1199526213/body-electric
- Seven Shifts resource–get experimental with it.
- Unstructured play (The Gift of Failure)