From Our Blog

Five obstacles to integrating ICT into pedagogy

For those who have been evolving in the world of education for a few years, you will certainly have realized how stifling the education world can be when it comes to supporting educational innovation or change in its manifold. facets.

But why such a paradox? Mandela cites that education is certainly the best tool for change. How can she be an agent of change when, at the base, she has crystallized in a conservatism and an ineloquent inertia?

Today, new teaching strategies more often than not exploit new information and communications technologies. It is therefore all about trying to understand what is blocking our teachers so that they take the plunge …

Demagoguery and the need to oppose

Stereotypes are conveyed in all directions. What if ICT did not improve the quality of education? That the results among the pupils were not increasing? For every argument, there is academic research to back it up. Otherwise, the statistics make one side lie or another. These doubts justify an educational adaptation of the precautionary principle, implying that in the absence of scientific certainties, it would be better to refrain from adopting a behavior which could prove to be harmful for, in this case, the world. education. However, whatever the tool, the difference is the teacher who makes it! Listening to these biased oppositions, it’s a bit like justifying the need to remain inert by simply opposing yourself.

Everything that is new goes there. It is a necessary step. Hervé Sérieyx eloquently cited that any new idea immersed in a society receives from it an inverse vertical thrust equal to the mass of its conservatism [1] . This is what he calls the Archimedes principle. Basically, the Thrust of Archimedes, which dates from ancient Greece and bears the name of this great scholar, states that a body immersed in a fluid will displace the volume equivalent to   Read the rest

Montaigne and active pedagogy

Have you ever bothered to read the Essais de Montaigne? At the very least, those on education through pedantry (chapter 24) and the institution of children (chapter 25)? Do you find this gentleman too… old school ? Possibly, since his essays were published at the end of the 16th century. But think again. Michel de Montaigne is probably the father of modern education and even, in a certain sense, of the educational renewal!

Essays, book 1, chapter 24: On pedantry

Pedantry is peculiar to the being who displays his book knowledge in a vain, arrogant and complacent way. In this regard, Montaigne clearly displays his colors by promoting knowledge that is useful rather than bookish. He hates above all pedantic knowledge (p. 204), denouncing that we only work to fill memory and leave understanding and consciousness empty (p. 208). We learn, not for life, but for school (p. 215). In other words, Montaigne claims that school knowledge is often meaningless for young people and that they are out of step with a practical application in everyday life: we must not only acquire wisdom, but also benefit from it. (p. 212).

Would knowledge-based education stifle the mind? Paradoxically, would it harm the training of students? We have to believe that the MELS skills-based approach is appropriate and that it is not such a bad idea to spell the end of the knowledge-based approach! Learning is not an end in itself, except to apply this learning in an empirical context! Nevertheless, the last years in the Quebec education world have enabled us to understand that in fact, a competency-based approach does not necessarily remove knowledge from school curricula. Quite the contrary. They must be integrated in order to serve the development of skills.To instruct not by hearsay, but by the test of action, by shaping and molding them vividly, not only of precepts and words, but   Read the rest

The stereotypes conveyed regarding the integration of iPads into teaching

This week, the Quebec guru of the integration of ICT in pedagogy published the results of his survey on the integration of iPads in schools. Indeed, Thierry Karsenti, holder of the Canada Research Chair in Technologies in Education, published The iPad at school: uses, advantages and challenges: results of a survey of 6,057 students and 302 teachers in Quebec.

Several points hold my attention, starting with the fact that the book was published last Monday and that the same day, several players in the world of education had already read it in its entirety. This demonstrates the ever-faster aspect of the snapshot. As if what could be immediate, could be more … Nevertheless, this proves that the amalgamation of digital publishing and social media has an effective and above all, efficient strike force.

The report, as such, gives ammunition to all stakeholders in the world of education; as much to the detractors of the integration of ICT in pedagogy as to technopedagogues. The best example is certainly the article that appeared in La Presse two days after the publication of the research results of the study. Journalist Michael Oliviera had the brilliant idea of ​​captioning his short article as follows: One in three students plays on their iPad in class . Failing to inform us adequately about the research of Mr. Karsenti, the journalist gives us a lesson in journalism on the art of picking up obvious information to publish it out of context in a treacherous, tendentious, demagogic and misleading way.

(…) An astonishing 99% [of the students] said they found the technological tool distracting (…)

Obviously, almost all students find the iPad distracting. This is the very principle of the tool! With its integration into teaching, we aim, among other things, to combine a student’s personal tool to make him discover the “professional”   Read the rest

Technopedagogy and active pedagogy

ICT and academic motivation
Technopedagogy is a neologism adopted by the world of education, which reflects an unavoidable reality in the twenty-first century: the integration of ICT into pedagogy. In Quebec, we shamefully realize that the school dropout rate hovers around 30%, despite the fact that governments claim to want to reduce it and are taking a series of measures to achieve it, which, very sadly, prove to be true. little fruitful.

Also, there is a significant divide between digital natives, this new generation of trendy and technologically competent students. They have fallen into the potion and adopt a digital lifestyle, not to say virtual. In contrast, we find teachers, parents who use their devices, in many cases, in an incomplete way. They use them for their primary function (a camera for taking a photo, a cell phone for making calls, etc.). They often consider these devices to be gadgets. These digital immigrants partially integrate ICT into their lives, but nothing more, unlike the youngest who use them fully.

Technopedagogy is thus intended to bring these two solitudes together around a unifying pedagogical strategy, maximized by teachers anxious to renew their professional practice in order to adapt it to the new realities of their clientele, made up of students motivated to learn differently. .

According to studies by Thierry Karsenti , holder of the Research Chair on ICT in Education , there is a direct positive link between the integration of ICT in pedagogy and academic motivation. It appears that the modification of the school context does indeed have an important role to play with school perseverance. Among others, we are talking about:

  • Realization of mobilizing learning placing the student at the heart of the action;
  • Creation of a renewed creative space for both the student and the teacher. In a way, it is the return of
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The seven characteristics of highly effective techno-educators

We just read a short article on an American blog called AlwaysPrepped , or always prepared (in the sense of preparation or educational planning). Short, but full of common sense because it refers to 7 essential characteristics of the technopedagogue teacher. Also, we remind you that, according to the benchmark of 12 professional skills among Quebec teachers, skill # 8 is unequivocal: integrate information and communications technologies for the preparation and management of teaching activities. -learning, teaching management and professional development. 

Here are these seven characteristics, translated into French and updated to date:

1. They aim for a specific goal using technological toolsAt no time are they using technology just to use it. They do it with a goal in mind or use it to deploy a strategy. Technology is a tool at the service of pedagogy and its educator and not the other way around.

2. They are flexible and demonstrate good adaptability

Obviously, they are flexible and are able to adapt to technological innovations. They know full well that they will have to adapt to new tools in two or three years. But this prospect does not frighten them, on the contrary. They are stimulated by this situation since they see the possibilities of being better performing teachers, providing higher quality education.

The idea of ​​having to revise their course planning as well as their lessons never frightens them since they have never maintained a perception of teaching as being static and immune from the inevitable updates of their own development. professional.

3. They are open to change

For them, change is an intoxicating opportunity to do different things and it’s a new opportunity to surpass themselves. They don’t experience change, they generate it. In times of instability, they are driving forces and positively influence the restrictive forces, more resistant to change. These teachers are   Read the rest

Popplet and its educational potential

Explain effectively, with few words

Here is an interesting tool that allows students and teachers to work differently. Thanks to Popplet, students can organize their thinking in a different way by using images, drawings, videos to demonstrate concepts specific to a theme. The popular expression holds that a picture is worth a thousand words. Popplet understood this. For each image or bubble, there is the possibility of adding a few words that can justify the idea or specify the links between two bubbles.

What I see as potential, in the first place, is certainly the decrease in the need to write and use words to describe a concept, a situation. It is the art of linking the schematic and the concise and applying it to all possible and imaginable educational sauces. Because today, it is no longer true that students have to write work which, page after page, describes a reality.

Understand, Popplet allows you to give real importance to words without using them. Should this internet application replace the good old dissertations or more theoretical essays? NO ! It’s like any other educational tool or strategy. It should be used alternately and sparingly so that the interest and relevance of using it with students remains high.

Learn to work in a team

Beyond the question of the graphic organization of information, there is the whole question of sharing and the possibility of accomplishing real collaborative work among students (and teachers). By creating a Popplet, we can give access to colleagues who contribute to the work by inviting them. Each contribution is identified with the name of the user who added your two cents. It’s fantastic! More than I did all the work on my own or did nothing ! Easily, it is possible to transfer and edit the document so that it always remains current and relevant. Popplet makes it possible to become the technopedagogical   Read the rest

Better understand adolescent impulsiveness and egocentricity

Secondary education professionals testify to this daily: adolescents push back the limits of egocentricity and extreme behavioral variations.

We all know that adolescence is marked by profound physical, hormonal and psychological changes associated with puberty. New medical technologies are enabling new mapping of the brain, and neurologist, professor and researcher in cognitive neuroscience, Sarah-Jayne de Blakemore of the University College of London (UCL) has a few explanations for us.

His research, conducted using a new magnetic resonance imaging technique, reveals several interesting findings that all teachers and parents working with teens should know:

  • Decrease in gray matter in the prefrontal cortex, which can be explained by a certain purification of synaptic activity where the lobe gets rid of certain synapses with a view to renewal with a view to carrying out new cerebral activities. The brain is, in fact, molting to prepare for abandoning childish tasks to accomplish more complex tasks intended for adult life;
  • The study of the so-called social brain reveals that the brain activity of the median prefrontal cortex is reduced compared to the same region in an adult, which explains that the brains of teens and those of adults employ different strategies during various social interactions. .
  • Social perspectives, due to brain development, are therefore essentially altered in adolescents. This explains why teens cannot react in the same way as adults when faced with situations of common life.
  • This results in a marked difficulty in taking into account a perspective from others, which aims to guide their own behavior in every sense of the word.
  • The adolescent’s social judgment is therefore impaired by a slowing down of certain areas of the brain.

The research results would therefore explain, at least in part, the behaviors that are usually denounced by adults about adolescents:

  • They are brainless and take unnecessary risks, regardless of
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Work-study balance among high school students

The second cycle of secondary school in Quebec is finding it increasingly difficult to compete with the world of work. In fact, he is engaged in a merciless struggle against a world that steals his brains to harden them to various tasks paid a little more than minimum wage. Recently, the dailies were talking about the concerns of teachers who find that students are studying less and less. They don’t have time anymore!

Yet the benefits of the world of work for young people are undeniable. This helps to develop the sense of organization and responsibilities of our students in addition to helping stimulate the emergence of essential qualities in an adult in the making: interpersonal skills, autonomy, openness, etc. At 16, it is desirable, even essential, for a student to learn to manage different facets of his life: friends, family, love, work, school. The key to success, however, is balance and currently, we have reason to believe that too many students are blindly and excessively investing in their so-called “professional” activities.

“If work interferes with your studies, drop out of school!” “

While we have been talking for a long time about work-family balance for Quebec adults who somehow combine their family and professional life, we are facing a new reality: work-study balance among our young people in schools. Already in the fourth year of secondary school, at age 15, they learn to juggle work schedules and their school obligations.

Take the case of a student who works thirty hours in some company. To his working hours, we add thirty-five spent working in a school environment. In total, of the 168 hours per week, he has already spent almost 40% of his time working at school or elsewhere. To this, if we add the nine hours of daily sleep recommended for adolescents by the Canadian Sleep Society, 75% of a   Read the rest