Putting the Pedagogy back in Technology with STEAM thinking

Mark Gleeson and James Riggall

In Tasmania we have great schools, excellent teachers and wonderful young people, but sometimes there can be a disconnect between what we teach and how these experiences are delivered.  Mark and James will talk about their experiences as STEAM educators, interrelating purposeful learning experiences with technology and collaborative learning cultures to produce powerful, innovative outcomes.  Mark and James will emphasise that Tasmania has a great advantage in this area – access to partners in these learning journeys that can add enormous value to your school programs.

Presentation Introduction:

  • An overview of the kinds of skills young people are going to need in the future.  Not just coding etc., but the thinking skills — computational thinking, design thinking, creativity, etc.
  • James Cuda who runs Savage interactive hires for “creativity” and Simon Tyrrell from LiveTiles hires for “empathy”.  Those are the employers we’re preparing students for.

 Interesting Projects:

“So, if this is what we’re trying to teach, what are some of the ways we can teach it?”.

  • The Battery Shed
  • Design Thinking with LiveTiles
  • Breakie with a Techie
  • Bitlink programs (particularly Level Up)
  • Active Technology, etc.
  • VR in Education @ Bellevue College
  • Family Code Club @ Enterprize

Where can you start?:

  • We introduce some easy/low barrier places to start:
  • Running a code club at your school.
  • Getting out of the building and seeing who’s around in your community.
  • Reaching out to the parents and friends network.
  • If you’re in Launceston, talk to the STEAM NGN.
  • Use org or Scratch.

 Key themes/ideas:

  • That you want to build a community around technology if you can. Avoid single-person dependence!
  • That you want to engage the wider community in this teaching at your school. Partnerships are everything!
  • You don’t need a whole heap of specialised knowledge to get started. Getting started is the key!
  • The kids can move at their own pace if you use the right kinds of tools. Engagement, engagement, engagement…
  • Don’t lose track of pedagogy when you start tangling with the technology. Technology without pedagogy is a gimmick…